How To Pack For Moving Houses

Packing your belongings has to be the most demanding task when moving houses. You have to dismantle pieces of furniture, protect all the items and manage storage space while saving time and costs. 

This task may seem overwhelming, but there are plenty of tried and true techniques that can make packing your entire items a breeze.

How to Pack Your Items When Moving Houses

I have put together simple and creative ways to pack your items to help you save time and frustration and ensure the safety of your items.

Before You Start Packing

There are a few things you need to do before the actual packing day to lessen the stress of packing.

1. Get Rid of Unnecessary Items

You will suddenly realize how much stuff you actually own and how seldom you use some when you decide to move. There’s no better time to do away with worn-out and unnecessary items.

To significantly reduce the items you have to pack, you need to be very objective. It is vital to start getting rid of those items as soon as you decide to move. The fewer items you have to pack, the more manageable and efficient the packing process becomes. Aside from trashing the items, you can do away with unnecessary items by:

Donating the items 

Donating to charity is a good way to get rid of items you no longer need. It’s a perfect way to engage in charity while reducing the items you have to pack. Instead of wasting money moving unnecessary items, you’re giving them out to people that need them. 

Besides, many charity organizations have drop-off sites all over the country and provide free pick-up services. Depending on the location, you can choose from these charity organizations.

Organizing a Garage Sale 

If you are interested in converting unnecessary items to cash, organizing a garage sale is an excellent option, especially if you have items of value that do not fit into your new home. For instance, your sofa may not match the interior decor of your new home, but you’ll need to purchase another.

Once you’ve picked out the items, you want to sell, pick a date and inform your friends and neighbors.

Online platforms such as Facebook Marketplaces, Craigslist, OfferUp, and LetGo can also help sell those items.

2. Categorize Items for Each Room

Before you begin wrapping items, it is important to sort your belongings based on the types, sizes, shapes, and materials. This is an efficient way to have a bird-eye view of all your items and avoid mixing breakables with non-breakables. 

Find convenient corners in your room to keep your books, important papers, clothes, and shoes.  

Of all the rooms, the kitchen has more items that need categorizing. Take your time to keep items in as many groups as possible — Wine glasses, mugs, bowls, plates, silverware, Chinaware, glassware, etc. 

3. Get Packing Supplies

Regardless of the number of cardboard boxes you have at home, you will need boxes of different sizes and layers of thickness to pack your items efficiently. 

  • Small boxes
  • Medium boxes
  • Large boxes
  • Dish Barrels
  • Wardrobe boxes
  • Heavy-duty boxes
  • Mirror boxes/ Telescopic cardboard boxes

It is vital to keep in mind that you can optimize storage space by using some containers you already own. You can pack items in suitcases, coolers, plastic totes, laundry hampers, trash bags, dresser drawers, etc. Alternatively, you can obtain free moving boxes from grocery shops, wine stores, and online ( Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace). Aside from the boxes, you’ll need protective packaging materials such as:

  • Labels
  • Marker
  • Styrofoam
  • Bubble wrap
  • Plastic bags
  • Packing tape
  • Old newspapers
  • Stretch wrap for furniture

4. Mark Boxes for Each Room

Marking boxes for each room will save you time and make arranging your items in your new home easy. You can either write the room’s name on the boxes or use a color code for each room and mark the boxes as you pack.

You’ll be able to identify the rooms each box belongs to when you get to your new home.uBoxes Smart Moving Tape can make labeling easier. This tape comes with over 800 labels and different color codes for each room.

Aside from knowing which room each box belongs to, it is valuable to identify the content of each box without hassle. If you have enough time, you can take inventory of each box by creating a spreadsheet document. You can track each box by searching for them in the document.

5. Assemble Boxes with Paper Packaging Tape

Paper packaging tape is perfect for building and sealing boxes. You can cut it effortlessly without any sharp object. Finding the end of the strip is also not a big deal. It sticks well, but it is easy to remove, and it won’t rip off the boxes to shreds as plastic tapes would. When you get to your new home, you can open the boxes swiftly and reuse them if need be.

6. Keep Packing Materials Together

One way to avoid adding the daunting task of searching for supplies is to keep all materials in one place. Put some scissors, markers, tape, and others you may need in a small basket you can move from one room to another.

7. Rent Necessary Moving Tools

Moving tools are essential, particularly for packing your furniture. You may need a furniture dolly, moving blankets, furniture pads, and tie-down straps. If you’re likely to move again, buying these tools will be helpful.

8. Pack Your Items As Soon As Possible

The moving day always comes with extra stress. Pack them in advance to avoid rushed and haphazard arrangements of your belongings. Doing this will give you enough time to categorize your items, arrange them orderly and pick every necessary item.

You can start by packing items you use less often. For instance, if you’re moving in summer, you can pack up winter coats and snow boots early.

The rule of thumb is to pack up to 95% of your belongings, and you can pack the remaining items like essentials you used overnight in a tote bag.

Pack Up Your Kitchen

Packing the kitchen is a task that keeps you on your toes. You have to deal with the special requirements of packing oddly shaped glasses, breakable plates, sharp silverware, perishable foods, and large appliances. Knowing the best methods for packing the various items in your kitchen will save you energy, time, and headaches. 

9. Pack Silverware in a Tray

If you use a cutlery tray, packing your knives, fork, and spoons for a move will not be difficult. Just ensure your silverware, and the tray is neat and dry.

To ensure the flatware doesn’t shift, you should place each cutlery category in its compartment and stuff the gaps with crumpled paper to ensure the flatware doesn’t shift. Add another layer of protection by covering the items with packaging paper.

Next, wrap the tray containing the silverware with newspapers, packing papers, or wide towels. Plastic wrap is also a good alternative. After wrapping the tray, label either side of the wrap in a way you can identify where the items are packed. This is to prevent the silverware from falling out when unwrapping.

Place the wrapped in a corrugated box of suitable size. You can fill up any remaining space with soft kitchen items like oven mitts and towels to immobilize the tray and optimize space. Secure the box with duct tape, use a marker to label it “SILVERWARE,” and indicate which side is up.

Tip: Wooden Silverware trays offer the best protection for your silverware. Bellsal Store offers top-quality wooden trays on Amazon. It is also important to note that there are diverse ways to pack your silverware without a cutlery tray.

10. Pack Wine Glasses with Divider Boxes

Divider Boxes are designed mainly for moving kitchen items, and these boxes have default dividers that typically form 24 compartments for holding glasses. Though each wine glass stays in separate compartments, you still need to wrap the glasses properly before storing them.

You don’t need to assemble these boxes. Once your wine glasses are wrapped, you can place each in a compartment. It is a good option for people with fewer than 24 wine glasses, and they also have default handles for easy carrying. You can purchase quality boxes with dividers from Banker Box Store on Amazon. 

If you can’t get a sturdy box with dividers, there are other ways to pack your wine glasses effectively.

11. Pack Flat Fragile Items Vertically

Stacking flat items like plates and small picture frames on each other increases the chance of the items getting damaged in transit. Instead, arrange your plates and other flat objects vertically as you would in a dish rack to even distribute the pressure around the box.

Either way, you still need to line the box with bubble wrap and place styrofoam or paper between the plates for maximum safety. You can add tea towels, packing peanuts, and other cushioning materials around the items to keep them from shifting.

12. Pack Breakables in Dish Barrels

The ideal box for packing fragile items, particularly kitchen wares, is a dish barrel. This box is eco-friendly and double-walled for maximum protection, and they are strong enough to withstand external contacts that may damage fragile items. Kraft Double Wall Corrugated boxes on Amazon are an excellent option.

We have put together four other creative ways to pack your wine glasses.

13. Pack Perishable Food in Coolers 

The best time to pack perishable food items is a day before or on your exact moving date. You don’t want perishables staying out for too long.

You can use coolers to ensure perishables stay fresh longer. 

Coolers are storage containers that you can carry with ease. Because they are made from insulating materials, coolers keep your perishable foods uninfected and non-stale regardless of the outside temperature.

However, this option is only appropriate if you’re moving locally within a few hours. If your move takes several hours or days, it might be best to donate or discard perishables.

14. Pack Kitchen Pots and Pans in Big Boxes

Unlike glassware and plates, pots and pans are easy to move. It is sufficient to pack those pots and pans in a few sheets of newsprints and place them in a big box. 

The nesting packing technique is perfect for maximizing space when packing pots. You can do that by simply placing small wrapped pots into larger ones.

If you don’t have a box, your might want to see How To Pack Pots And Pans For Moving without a moving box.

15. Cushion Bowls and Cup with Coffee Filters

Coffee filters are cheap, and you probably have plenty of them taking up space in your cupboard. Why waste so much money on packing papers? You can use coffee filters as padding between your bowls and cups to avoid cracks and breakage.

Pack Your Living Room

The living contains various items, including electronics, fragile light fixtures, bulky furniture, and sentimental artwork. Packing these items may seem overwhelming but knowing the right tips makes it manageable.

16. Disassemble Furniture in Advance

Take apart all the parts of each furniture piece. From table legs, bed frames, and cushions to any furniture part you can disassemble. Doing this makes it easier for you to pack the furniture and prevent any damage caused by hitting the door frames or the wall. Arranging the items is also easier when dismantled. Things to keep in mind while at it:

  • Use the manufacturer’s manual to disassemble and reassemble them.
  • Protect fragile furniture like glass tabletops with soft padding when dismantling.
  • If the furniture is complicated, take pictures or record a video of the deconstruction process.
  • Secure screws and tiny pieces in a sealable plastic and tape the bag to the furniture it belongs to.

To help you pack your furniture correctly, you may want to see How To Pack Furniture For Moving and Save Cost.

17. Snap Wiring and Electronic Setup

Some electronics and wiring setups are complex. To remember how to set them up, you need to take pictures before you start detaching the wires. Additionally, taking pictures of fragile items will help you make insurance claims when they get damaged.

Because pictures can get missing or destroyed, labeling the cables as a backup means of identification is necessary. The simple way to label the cords is to pick different colors of painter’s tape, place them above each port, and wrap connected cables with matching tape. You can purchase Supla 10 Colors Art Tape on Amazon to make the job easy.

18. Pack Electronics and Appliances in their Original Boxes 

The ideal way to pack electronics and appliances is in their original boxes. Many people store these boxes specifically for this reason. The boxes were specially designed to protect these items. Check if the first box and its packaging materials are still available before packing.

If they are available, take out the styrofoam and packing wrap and fix them just as it was when you purchased them. Slide the appliance into the box, ensure there’s not much space, and seal it correctly. 

However, if you can’t get hold of the original boxes, you can opt for solid cardboard boxes of similar sizes. Wrap small appliances in packing paper, place them in their suitable boxes, fill extra spaces with padding materials, and seal the box tightly.

No Box at all? Check out 3 Ways To Pack TV For Moving Without A Box.

19. Place Screws and Small Pieces of Furniture in a Plastic Back

As you take furniture to pieces, keep small pieces of furniture and screw them in a plastic bag. To avoid unnecessary rummage at the new home, mark the plastic and tag it to the particular furniture. 

Additionally, dedicate a box for moving furniture and label the box.

20. Protect Picture Frames with Pieces Of Clothes

Picture frames are fragile and can easily get damaged if they bang against each other in transit. You don’t have to spend much to avoid damaging your beautiful frames, and you can use some of your clothes to wrap the frames.

Another option is to use pool noodles on the exterior of picture frames.

Packing Up Your Bedroom 

This room contains personal items you will not like to lose during the move, from stylish clothes, cuddly pillows, and cozy blankets to fragile mirrors. Even though most items are not breakable, you still need to pack them properly.

21. Packing Clothes and Hangers with Wardrobe Boxes

Wardrobe boxes are uniquely built for moving clothes with hangers. These boxes come with a metal hanging bar at a height that keeps your clothes from touching the bottom of the box. 

You don’t have to worry about your clothes squeezing or hangers tangling with wardrobe boxes. You can obtain sturdy wardrobe boxes from the Banker Box Store on Amazon.

Aside from wardrobe boxes, there are other 5 Ways to Pack Your Hangers for Moving.

Pack Large Mirror and Frames in Picture Boxes

While it is tempting to stack large picture frames, mirrors, and framed paintings in regular boxes, it’s best to use picture boxes to pack each item separately. These boxes are made to fit the framed items leaving little space for cushioning, and it secures the items from shifting and breaking in transit.

22. Remove Ink and Cartridge from the Printer

If you run a mini-office in your bedroom, you need to remove the toner and ink cartridge and put them in a plastic bag before you move. Toner and ink cartridges can stain other items if they break, burst, or leak in transit.

Keep the plastic containing the toner and cartridge on top of other heavy materials in the truck. 

23. Put Your Suitcases to Use

Your suitcases are made to carry items. Why not use them? Pack clothes lying around into the suitcases, creating space to pack other items in the boxes.

Also, you can use suitcases to pack individual essentials. It might take a few days to empty the boxes in your new home. Having items like toothbrushes, PJs, and phone chargers in a suitcase can be a lifesaver.

24. Place Sheets and Pillows in a Dresser Drawer

This is one of the hacks that will keep your bed linens neat. Before packing things, remove your sheets from the bed, fold them, and put them alongside pillows in the dresser drawer. 

Use masking tape to keep the drawer closed. Your sheets will be just when you need them in your new home.

25. Don’t Remove Clothes from Hangers

Keeping your clothes on hangers gives you ease in moving and setting them up in your new home. Please put them in groups of 6 to 10 and bundle them in light plastic bags.

On the other hand, you can simply leave the clothes on the metal hanging bar if you have a moveable wardrobe.

26. Cover Your Mattress With Fitted Sheets

You don’t need to spend extra dollars purchasing a mattress protector, and your old fitted sheets can do the magic for you. Covering your mattress from top to bottom will ensure it stays clean throughout the moving process.

27. Use Toilet Roll to Protect Necklaces

Necklaces and chains can get tangled when packing—string necklaces, chains, and bracelets through empty toilet paper to avoid this. You can connect them around the tubes. 

Alternatively, you can use egg cartons to keep the tangles at bay.

28. Guard Razor Blades with Binder Clips

From injuring you to damaging other items, razor blades can cause a lot of harm if not carefully handled when moving. If the protective cover for your razor blade is missing, use a binder clip to prevent accidental injuries when moving. DSTELIN Binder Clips on Amazon are an excellent option to check out.

Pack Up Your Bath and Washrooms

Even though the bathroom and washroom are the smallest rooms to pack, you need to place close attention to half-used tubes, skin-care products, and liquid containers. To pack them efficiently, you have to

29. Seal Liquids Supplies with Plastic Wrap

You can prevent liquids, especially toiletries, from leaking in the moving truck. You have to unscrew the liquid containers’ lids, put a plastic wrap over the opening, and screw the lid with the plastic underneath it.

30. Put Towels in the Washing Machine 

Excessive motion in the drum of your washer can cause the suspension to break—stuff towels inside the washer to prevent the tub from being damaged, which will control the movement.

Alternatively, you can secure the drum with a transit or shipping bolt. There is a space for these metal rods at the rear of the washer.

31. Tape Mirrors To Prevent Shattering

It doesn’t matter the packing method. The first step to safeguarding your mirror is to tape an X across the mirror’s surface. Should the mirror crack during the move, these tapes will prevent the mirror from shattering while protecting the frame.

General Packing Tips

Regardless of the room or the particular item you need to pack, there are a few rules to keep at the back of your mind whenever you need to pack for a move.

32. Wrap Fragile Items Properly before Placing in the Box

Use soft protective packaging materials to pad all your fragile items. It is helpful to stuff pads inside glasses, wrap them around glassware and ceramics, and shove them between your plates and the side of your boxes.

You don’t need to spend extra dollars buying bubble wraps, especially if you’re moving on a budget. Use what you have at home to wrap picture frames and other fragile items. Items like linens, towels, sheets, and clothes can serve as valuable alternatives for bubble wraps. 

33. Pack Heavy Items in Small Boxes

To ensure the boxes don’t break under the weight, it is advisable to pack heavy items in small and medium boxes. The optimal weight a moving box can hold is 40lbs. 

Packing heavy items in small boxes also makes it easy to move the boxes. Items like dishes and books may not seem heavy individually but can be when packed together.

34. Pack Light Items in Large Boxes

On the other hand, large boxes are suitable for packing light items as you can pack many belongings without making the box too heavy. Lightweight items to pack in large boxes include pillows, towels, clothes, teddy, etc. 

35. Pack Heavy Items at the Bottom of the Box

When moving non-fragile items, you may need to mix heavy and light items to maximize packing space. Pack heavier items first before placing light items on them in such situations. This will prevent the smaller items from getting. Fill any gap with packing materials or soft clothes to cushion the box. 

36. Pack an “Open Me First” Box

You may be too tired to start rummaging through your belongings to find essentials on your first night in your new home. It is wise to have a box that contains soap, paper towels, cups, toilet paper, trash bags, utensils, and more. Mark the box “Open Me First” for easy identification.

This box containing your essentials is typically the last box to pack and the first to unpack in your new.

37. Create Handle in Boxes for Ease of Lifting 

Make the boxes easy to carry by cutting curvy rectangle shapes on the covers. You can use the X-ACTO knife to avoid destroying the cardboard. Also, be sure not to cut too close to the top of the cover to avoid a rip-off.

38. Shake Boxes Gently before Sealing

After packing items in the box, it is essential to ensure they are secured before sealing the box. The best way to confirm it is to lift the box and shake it gently.

You shouldn’t feel any movement if the items are well packed. If you feel any movement, you can keep adding packing materials until you feel no movement. Then, it’s perfect to seal the box.

39. Pack a Cooler with Snacks and Drinks

Packing requires a lot of energy, and eating and drinking are the gas that will keep you going. But many people get so lost in the stress of packing that they forget to make arrangements for food and water. 

It is vital to pack a cooler with snacks and drinks and keep it where it won’t obstruct movement.

40. Use Materials You Own in Place Of Bubble Wrap

You don’t need to spend extra dollars buying bubble wraps, especially if you’re moving on a budget. Use what you have at home to wrap picture frames and other fragile items. Items like linens, towels, sheets, and clothes can serve as valuable alternatives for bubble wraps. 

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