Pack Like a Pro: 8 Next-Level Packing Tips for the Big Move
Are you prepping for a big move? Whether you're moving across town or across the country, you want to make sure that your belongings are safe and secure during their journey. But with so many responsibilities to juggle at once, it can be hard to know where to start.
Keep reading to learn 8 excellent tips that will help you pack like a pro!
1. Use Labels and Color-Coding
One of the biggest moving tips is to stay organized throughout the process. Determine an organizational system that you can use to keep track of what goes where. The last thing you want to see in the moving truck is a collection of unlabeled boxes.
Use color-coding and labeling to ensure that boxes are easily identifiable. Grab a felt-tip pen to do the writing and keep your labels consistent in terms of location and descriptiveness. Avoid mixing contents from different rooms in the same boxes.
Once a box is packed, seal and label it right away. Assign a color to each room in your house, and then tape a scrap of paper or sticky note in that color to the corresponding box. This is one more way you can ensure an easy and organized move!
2. Gather as Many Boxes as You Can
You'll need at least a few dozen boxes to get your move done, so you'd be wise to start grabbing any boxes you see. Try to find sturdy boxes that have been used to ship small appliances, or check with your local appliance, electronics, or grocery stores to see if they have some excess boxes they wouldn't mind giving away. You can flatten bigger boxes temporarily to save space until you're ready to start packing.
If using a moving company, they may sell boxes. These will likely be high-quality and specific to your items such as a TV or wardrobe box. Check out our moving resource on where to get moving boxes and packing supplies for your next move.
3. Designate a Few Boxes for Immediate Necessities
When you move into your new place, you'll need to have some necessities handy for the first day or two. Choose a clear bin or easily identifiable box, and then fill it with the essentials. A coffee maker (and coffee), soap, toilet paper, and some disposable plates and utensils would be a good starting point.
Make a quick list of the most important items to get started so you don't have to rush off to the store. You'll save yourself a big hassle and give yourself more time to start unpacking.
4. Stock Up on Bubble Wrap and Crushed Paper
Another piece of packing advice? Use ample bubble wrap and crushed paper to keep things safe in your boxes. You can expect some literal bumps in the road when your moving truck is transporting boxes to your next home, so use these two materials to make sure everything is cushioned before you seal it up in a box.
Nestle your glassware in crushed paper each time you add something to a box. Use bubble wrap to protect the surfaces of mirrors or wall art that can be prone to scratching. And don't forget to use good packing tape to secure everything in a box before you put it in the truck.
5. Keep the Weight Low with Boxes
Boxes that are packed with heavy items, like books, will be a challenge to lift — and could lead to back problems or worse. Aim to stagger the heavy items so they are not all crammed into one box. Place a few heavier items on the bottom and add a few lighter items on top in each box.
Try not to let the weight of a box exceed 50 pounds. When it's time to unload the truck or move a box to another room, you'll be much happier! Also, if you’re packing something heavy, try to use a smaller box – this will help limit weight in a box.
6. Pad Your Furniture
If you just bought a new bookcase or have an antique armoire, you want to keep these treasured pieces of furniture safe during the trek to a new home. Especially for long-distance moves, it's critical that your furniture is padded for the journey. Situating your furniture on a moving truck without a protective barrier puts it at risk for scuffing and scratching.
Furniture pads, or moving blankets, can be wrapped around anything from bookshelves to bedframes and secured with tape. For cross-country moves, these pads also prevent the build-up of dust and debris. If the padding material covers the entire piece of furniture, you'll reduce the risk of scratching floors or bumping entryways during the moving process, too.
7. Pack Like a Pro by Starting Early
One of the best moving tips is to start the process early. Nothing makes moving more stressful than having to pack and coordinate everything with little time to spare. Put your mind at ease by starting sooner rather than later.
Create a calendar and establish deadlines for different parts of the process. If you have loved ones moving with you, delegate responsibilities, and hold each other accountable. The level of organization that you institute on the front end can set you up for a smoother ride.
8. Hire Professionals to Get the Job Done
If you're concerned about doing the heavy lifting yourself, it's worth the investment to hire professionals who will get the job done right. Licensed and insured movers will bring a level of efficiency and expertise to the moving process that can reduce your stress level significantly.
You won't need to pester your friends or elderly relatives to step in and lift things they shouldn't be lifting. And best of all, you can find the level of service that meets your needs and budget!
Moving is a big adventure, but it can be a stressful one without proper planning. Take the time to create a plan for your next move so that you can pack like a pro and check things off your to-do list. And don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it.