Packing Tips for Your Big Move
Now that you have found your dream home, it is time to begin to think about the packing process and what all is involved. You will want to start early, so as to give yourself time to sort through all that you have accumulated throughout the years. The less you have to transport, the easier the moving process will be.
Below are some general packing guidelines:
- Pack items that are used least in your household first.
- Clearly mark fragile items for your mover.
- Pack one room at a time, and label each box indicating its contents and room name.
- Use smaller boxes for heavier items.
- Ensure that your boxes are well taped to hold their contents.
- Place heavier items on the bottom and lighter items on top.
Items Not to Pack
There are certain items that movers will not transport because they are classified as dangerous or hazardous. These items will need to be disposed of properly prior to your move, or you will need to make alternate transport plans for these items.
Included in the items that cannot be moved by your movers are:
- Paints and Paint Thinner
- Aerosol Cans, Bleach, and Cleaning Supplies
- Pressurized Tanks
- Loaded Firearms and Ammunition
- Gasoline or Kerosene or Other Flammable Chemicals
- Perishable Foods in Glass Jars
Any items of great value should remain in your possession during the move. These items include:
- Legal Documents
- Stock/Bond Certificates
- Any Contents of your Safety Deposit Box
- Irreplaceable Family Mementos
Packing Materials You Will Need
Once you are ready to begin packing, you will need to collect all of the materials you will need to pack your furnishings. Recommended packing materials include:
- Cartons: Make sure the cartons you collect are in good shape and will not fall apart. Check to see that none of the corners are crushed and the covers are intact. You can purchase cartons from your movers in various shapes and sizes.
- Packing Paper: Use this instead of newspaper. The ink on newsprint will rub off on and damage your items. Packing paper can be purchased from your movers.
- Bubble Wrap and Tissue: Use these supplies to wrap delicate or fragile items.
- Packing Tape: The best tape to use is plastic and approximately 1.5 to 2 inches wide. Using masking tape is not recommended.
- Markers: Use a black marker to label each carton with the room name and contents.
- Scissors and/or Cutting Blades.
Other Tips For Specific Items:
- Computers: Make backup copies of all files on the computer. All detachable cords and cables should be removed and individually wrapped. If at all possible, it is best to pack these items in their original packaging. If the original carton and packaging is not available, be sure to use plenty of padding to protect these items when packing. When packing printers, be sure to remove the ink cartridge before transport.
- Glassware: Pack each glass with 2 pieces of packing paper, and fold the 4 corners into the glass. This will create a protective lining for the second glass to be inserted into. Wrap the third glass as you did the first and add the fourth and stack onto the other glasses. Completely wrap the stack of glasses with several pieces of paper and tape securely to the bundle. Place the bundles upright in a carton that is packed with newspaper bundles at the bottom for extra padding. Stemware should be packed separately. Place newspaper on top of the items as well for extra security. Once the carton is securely taped, mark its contents as “Fragile-Glassware.”
- Dishware: Place wadded newspaper along the bottom and sides of the packing carton. Place the first plate in the center of a stack of packing paper and then wrap 2 sheets over the plate. Place a second plate over the first and repeat. Continue until you have a bundle of four plates and tape the bundle securely. Place the bundle in the box on its edge instead of flat in the carton. Add extra wadded newspaper to the top of the box for extra security. Secure the carton and mark the box “Fragile-Glassware.”
- Lampshades: Place packing paper between each shade and then nest together into a single stack. Lampshades should be packed exclusively in their cartons without any other items. Fragile shades, such as ones made of silk, should not be nested with others and should be packed in a carton alone. Pad the carton with packing paper before sealing.
- Pictures and Paintings: Place an “X” of masking tape over the glass to help protect the picture itself in case the glass is broken during transport. Wrap small pictures individually with bubble wrap and place upright in the packing carton. Fill the cartons with towels and/or bedding for extra padding. Larger items, including mirrors, should be specially packed by your movers. Once all of your pictures are packed, fill the carton with extra packing paper and seal the carton. Mark the box “Fragile-Pictures/Paintings.”