Monday, May 20, 2013

16 Packing Tips for a Safe and Fun Move

Summertime is a great time for moving. Kids are out of school, people are getting married, houses sell well, plus the weather is usually good so your vintage leather sofa won’t get destroyed in Uncle Bob’s pickup during a rain storm or on the way out to the moving van.

No question about it, moving is a chore. Here are some ideas on how to make sure you get your stuff safely from here to there, whether you’re hiring it all out or moving it all yourself.

1. Declutter as you pack, room by room, shelf by shelf. Have some boxes set up for “Recycle” and “Donate.” If you haven’t used it in a year, get rid of it. Save yourself time and only carefully box up the stuff you’ll move. Have your kids do the same thing. It’s OK to get rid of books!

2. Use what you have as packing material. Wrap your dishes carefully in your clean dishcloths, kitchen towels, and pillowcases. Use your bath towels, sheets and blankets for the big stuff: planters, lamps and accessories. Not only will you save money by not buying extra packing materials, you’ll save time by not needing to wash all your dishes after wrapping them in newspaper (the ink can be very difficult to remove from glassware) or going to buy more wrapping paper. Fill the voids between stacks of dishes and at the top with other clean towels, clothing, socks, etc.

Save or scrounge boxes. If you have room, keep them together to save time, or flatten them to conserve space until you need them. Uline, UBoxes and Office Depot sell new boxes, you may be able to find used boxes for sale near you. Alien Box and Rent-A-Green-Box rents these green reusable, stacking plastic containers, there may be a similar company near you.

3. Label all your boxes as you pack them, with the room name they’ll go into and the date. Add important details of the contents like “pots and pans” or “living room books” so you’ll know what you need to unpack immediately.

4. Box everything, even if it’s lightweight. Lampshades, baskets, fake flowers, lamps, fans, throw pillows, etc. are all awkward and often fragile, so they need protection. Nest the lampshades and baskets to save room. Boxed items can be stacked to save room in the truck or trailer. Nothing slows a move down more than tiny loads of ungainly items.

5. Use small boxes for books and heavy stuff. Trust me. These get ungainly fast.

6. Don’t wrap stuff that doesn’t need it. You do not need to wrap each utensil, fork and spoon separately. Do keep them together. Wrap the sharp knifes carefully for safety.
7. Clean and repair stuff before you pack it. Keep dusting rags and tools handy and if you can’t fix it, get rid of it.

8. Keep similar stuff together. Chances are you’ll find stuff easier if they share the same space in your new house. Unpacking will go faster, too. Take the contents of each drawer, pull out stuff to get rid of and pack the rest into a single pillowcase, including the organizers, after you clean them of course! Put all these pillowcases into a single box marked “Under Kitchen Sink,” “Her Dresser Top Left,” “Pet Grooming Stuff” or whatever.

9. Don’t throw away menial stuff that you think you’ll replace when you move, such as cleaning supplies, yard tools, etc. Even if it’s nearly worn out. If you don’t pack it, it’s likely you’ll need it right away when you get to your new house, after you forget to replace it.

10. Do throw out old makeup, lotions, shampoos, etc. Move only the stuff you’re using now. Also use the opportunity to get rid of all the old foods and samples in the back of your pantry, the old batteries, pens, outdated coupons, maps and phone books.
11. Pack up essentials separately, as if you’re going on a trip. Toiletries, a few changes of clothing, a few towels, medicines, your pets’ food and dishes, what you’ll need for a few days until you get everything unpacked.

12. Only open and unpack a box if you need something in it. Store these less essential boxes, and in a year or so, if you haven’t opened a box, you probably don’t need it.

13. If you’re moving within the same city, consider loading up your car with the most fragile things each trip even if you’re hiring professionals. You won’t need to stress out yourself or your friends.

14. Don’t try to do everything in one day. Start weeks early. Packing takes time, especially if you need to clean and de-clutter as you go. Start with the least used stuff first, and don’t get into a box again until it’s in your new house!

15. Use the right tools for the job if you're doing it yourself. In addition to trucks and trailers, U-Haul rents or sells moving blankets, hand trucks, dollies, appliance straps, water bed and aquarium pumps, and a huge variety of things that will make your life easier. 

16. Enjoy. Take breaks, moving is hard work but it can be fun. It’s an exciting change, make the most of it!

Let us know your ideas, we’d love to hear what you think. Horror stories are fun too.

Until next time!
-Elaine Bothe

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posted by Jennifer Adams Design Group Blog @ 12:01 AM 


Anonymous Nini Bartlett said...

Moving home is a daunting task. Even thinking about me makes me sweat! Thanks for your trips that helps me a lot of packing up!

May 22, 2013 at 6:20 PM  
Anonymous Nini Bartlett said...

Thanks for your tips! It helps a lot in giving me ideas on how to pack up! Phew, moving is HARD!

May 22, 2013 at 6:22 PM  
Anonymous Adan said...

It's good idea to make a TO-Do checklist of your stuff that will ensure you what you should keep or not. If you want to stress free all these things then go ahead and take help of professional removal service.

May 23, 2013 at 10:18 PM  

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