To have a successful move, both organization and planning ahead are key. In need of packing inspiration? Consult our packing tips and suggestions.
Round up tools you'll need beforehand. Gather plenty of sturdy, corrugated cartons, packing paper, bubble wrap, sealing tape and marker pens, along with any furniture covers.
Cover and protect furniture legs, chairs and mattresses. Wrap furniture legs with bubble wrap, furniture covers or pads to prevent scratching. Leave slip covers on upholstered chairs and cover them with plastic chair covers. Secure bed rails together and mark the pieces for easier assembly later. Cover mattresses to keep them clean during storage.
Label and take inventory of boxes as you store them. Label boxes on all sides for easy identification, clearly marking fragile items. Ensure fragile boxes are stored atop heavier, less delicate boxes. Consider making a list accompanied with descriptions or pictures of all your stored items as a reference tool.
Utilize empty spaces in stored furniture and appliances. Dresser drawers and larger appliances, such as stoves and refrigerators, can be used to store small items such as towels and linens or small, fragile items. Use padding material, such as bubble wrap, newspaper or linens to secure items.
When possible, pack in similar sized boxes. Fill boxes tightly, but take care to neither overpack nor underpack. (Bulging cartons tip when stacked, while half full boxes tend to collapse). Use wadded up newsprint, bubble wrap, rags, towels, or blankets to fill in empty spaces. For maximum protection seal cartons with tape.
Distribute heavy items across many boxes. For easier handling, limit the weight of all cartons to 30 lbs. or less. Do not fill large boxes with heavy items such as books or magazines; instead, use several boxes for heavy items and place many light items in large boxes.
Clean and dry appliances before storing. Secure all movable parts with paper, or wedge and wrap a paper pad around each item for protection. During transport tape all doors shut, but remember to wedge them open for storage.
Pack books flat to protect their spines. Line cartons with plastic and fill empty spaces with packing paper to protect the physical integrity of your book collection. Consider distributing books in many different boxes to make them easy to move and handle.
Use a generous amount of paper to pack dishes and glassware. Place a layer of packing paper inside the bottom and top of cartons. Wrap each dish and glass separately and cushion them with crumpled paper. Clearly mark cartons as 'Fragile' and store them atop sturdy, non-fragile boxes.
Hang clothes and draperies in wardrobe boxes. For unwrinkled and secure storage of clothes, linens and draperies, use wardrobe boxes, which allow for hanging rather than folding. Clothing is also a great padding tool for fragile items in boxes.
Pack lamps and lampshades in individual boxes. Use plenty of clean paper, bubble wrap or cloth for padding. Store these boxes on the top row with other fragile items.
Pad mirrors and paintings with paper. Place them in special mirror packs or large boxes; mark boxes as fragile and store with other fragile items.