You’ve found a new home, rented a truck, and bought boxes and tape. All that is left to do is go room to room, packing your stuff – how hard could that be? The truth is, packing is a journey. By understanding how to pack your belongings in the most efficient way, you can ensure your move will be smooth and that everything will arrive in one piece. Whether you are moving to a new home or simply moving your belongings to a storage unit, one of the most important decisions you can make is considering what items should be packed together?
Pack by Room
It makes sense to pack your belongings based on rooms. Doing so will allow you to quickly place items in their correct place in your new home. However, don’t just start at one end of the room and pack as you go. Instead, use a few common sense guidelines to pack your boxes smartly:
- Pack pairs or sets together – Make sure your box is the appropriate size to hold a complete set of belongings.
- Pack your items by weight – Remember, when you load up the truck, you will need lightweight and heavier boxes, so keep an eye on your box weight. It is a good rule of thumb to keep your heaviest boxes to no more than 50 pounds.
- Pack personal items together – Keep one box separate in each room for personal items – the things you might need during the first few days at your new home. A set of clothing, toiletries, electronics – anything you can’t live without. Pack these boxes on the truck last so you don’t lose track of them.
Larger rooms, such as the kitchen, require a bit more thought. Packing thematically can help you organize these items for your move. Start by carefully sorting through everything you need to pack, creating categories as you go. This is also an ideal time to create an inventory of your belongings. Larger rooms require more boxes and an inventory will help you quickly locate items as you need them. An inventory is particularly useful when moving your belongings into a storage unit.
In the Kitchen: Consider packing everyday dishes, serviceware, bakeware, Tupperware and silverware separately. Use as many boxes as you need to create easy-to-lift loads. Crumpled newspaper, bubble wrap or corrugated cardboard will help prevent your fragile items from breaking.
In the Bathroom: Consider packing your linen closet and bathroom at the same time. Pack bottles and medications together and keep them separate from other belongings. This will help prevent accidental spills or loss of medications.
In the Garage or Basement: Your garage or basement has likely become the place for anything you don’t know what to do with, so before you begin packing, sort out what you want to keep and what you don’t. Tools, painting equipment and cleaning chemicals should be packed together in clearly marked boxes. You may want to use plastic totes to prevent leakage. Keep an eye on the weight of boxes from these rooms especially. Don’t forget, many of these items can be easily stored in a storage unit until you need them.
Crystal, china, ceramics and keepsakes need to be carefully packed with lots of padding. Because of this, it is often easier to pack them together. Pack these items in smaller boxes with appropriate packing materials and clearly labeled as fragile. It is often best to transport these items in a car instead of the moving truck.
What NOT to Pack:
It isn’t enough to know what items to pack together. You must also consider what should not be packed. Some items can be hazardous during the moving process so it is best to dispose of them prior to moving.
- Fire Extinguishers
- Chlorine granules
- Heating agents like Sterno
- Paints and varnishes
- Auto batteries
With a little planning and time, you can easily pack your entire home in a way that will make it possible to move without worrying about broken or misplaced items. These packing tips and tricks are just as effective when moving your items into a temporary storage unit.