Selling your home is a huge accomplishment, but now you need to organise your move, which can be a daunting task in itself. Whilst you can hire companies to pack all your belongings and move everything to your new home, you may prefer to pack your belongings yourself. If this is your preference, here are ten tips for making it a smooth and stress free process.
1. Pack by size and shape
Some homeowners pack by room, which is a great idea, because you have everything together for each room. You can then stack all the boxes for one room together and unpack them at your leisure. On the other hand, packing items of the same shape and size together in a box reduces the amount of boxes you need because the items all fit snugly inside the box.
2. Don’t pack heavy items all together
Heavy items such as books need to be packed into boxes, but if you completely fill large boxes with books, they become too heavy to lift safely. The trick here is to use smaller boxes so that when full of books, they can still be easily lifted.
3. Make sure to label all the boxes
This sounds like a very simple idea that everyone should use, but it’s not unknown for homeowners to forget about labelling their boxes. As you can imagine, this makes for an exciting time of discovery at the other end, but can also be quite frustrating when you are searching for the kettle, mugs and coffee!
4. Wrap small items separately
Small items like remote controls can easily be lost in transit, so either tape these to the TV or sound system, or pop them into zip lock bags and keep them all together in one ‘small items’ box. Electrical leads are another item that can often be lost or mislaid during packing, so either tape them to the appliance or put them all together in one box (remembering to mark each one to its origins).
5. There’s no need to empty all the drawers
Many people empty their drawers and pack everything in boxes, but this isn’t necessary. It takes additional time to repack everything into boxes and why bother, when everything is already packed in your drawers? The entire dresser needs to be transported to your new address, so leaving the drawers full of your belongings isn’t going to make any difference and is a much easier option.
6. Stack plates on edge
Most homeowners stack their plates on top of each other, separated by tea towels or paper towels. This can lead to breakages, so the best strategy is to pack plates on their edge. You still need packing material around them to prevent breakages, but professional packers know that this is the best way to reduce plate breakages during a move.
7. Protect your furniture with old sheets
Wrapping sofas and upholstered chairs in old sheets and duct tape is a good way to protect them from dirt, dust and scuffs during the move. It’s also a very effective way to protect your mattresses, because all you need to do is put one on the front and back of each mattress. You can either keep these old sheets after your move or throw them away.
8. Invest in packing fillers
Of course, you can use old clothes or towels as packing fillers, but you can also purchase these fillers, as well as bubble wrap from your transport company. If you have ever moved before, you will realise that you can never have too much packing material! It’s the ideal way to protect against breakages during the move, prevent furniture rubbing against each other, and can be used to fill awkward spaces in boxes to keep everything safe during the move.
9. Pack everything in boxes – if possible
Loading and unloading boxes is much easier than trying to manhandle unwieldly shapes on and off a truck. This means that you need to do your best to pack everything into boxes. You might be surprised at the type and size of boxes that are available today – you can get boxes for bicycles, standing lamps and large plasma screens. You can even fit other items into these boxes, such as garden tools, large mirrors and computer screens, even golf clubs, making your move a lot easier and quicker.
10. Pack a ‘must have’ box
At some point during your move when you are carrying boxes into your new home and unpacking, you will want a cup of coffee or use the bathroom. So where’s the kettle, coffee, milk and mugs, and where’s the toilet paper? These are the items that you will need immediately you move into your new home and you don’t want to be faced with searching through a multitude of boxes just to find a few essential items. The solution is to pack one small box with these everyday essentials and take it with you in your car when you move.
These ten tips should make your move both efficient and stress free.