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    Packing The Right Way

Whether your move is across country or across the street, a little bit of planning can make a world of difference when packing up your home. Here are a few tips to get you started.

  1. You can save a lot of money if you do the bulk of the packing on your own. Limit yourself to non-fragile items such as books, linens, clothing and shoes; and replaceable items such as plates, dishes (not fine china or expensive silverware), and small kitchen appliances. These items will be cheaper to replace in case of damage as opposed to hiring workers for the extra labor. Leave the furniture, mattresses, and heavy appliances to be packed by the mover.
  2. The heavier the item, the smaller the box it should occupy. Don't toss everything into one huge box. It will make the hauling much more difficult. A good rule of thumb is if you can't lift the box easily, it's too heavy! Keep the weight of the box under 50lbs and remember to always lift with your knees, not your back.

  3. You should never let the movers pack your jewelry, family heirlooms, or other priceless items. Should they be lost or damaged, the insurable value will not come anywhere near the value you would place on them. Such items include jewelry, sports memorabilia, photo albums, and various hobby collections. Pack these items yourself and take them with you, either in the car or as carry-on luggage if size allows.

  4. Get the proper boxes for your items the right sizes and strengths. Have enough wardrobe boxes, as they'll save you ironing time later. You can pack t-shirts and jeans in suitcases and regular boxes but you don't want to pack your fine clothing such as suits or dresses in the same place. Save space by tossing in shoes at the bottom of the wardrobe box, but be reasonable.

  5. Don't let the box become too heavy or susceptible to fallout from the bottom. Purchase the padded dish boxes with dividers to protect your fine china. For your replaceable and non-fragile items, save money by using the free boxes that you can obtain from supermarkets and wrapping the items in old newspaper.


Packing Tips:

  1. Pack like with like. Don't pack delicate items in a box with items that could damage them.

  2. Grandma's antique tea set and Junior's computer don't really go that well together.
  3. Cover any sharp edges of your larger items (table corners etc.) so that they do not damage other items.( A rag with a rubber band or some sort of elastic works well for this.)

  4. Wrap items in clean paper. Use newspaper for cushioning only, because
    Newspaper ink can damage your delicate items (like china).
  5. Place crushed paper or other Styrofoam “peanuts” in the bottom of cartons for cushioning.

  6. Keep the heaviest items on the bottom and the lighter items on top, both in individual boxes and in general. No matter how strong your coffee table is, chances are it won't hold the weight of your big screen TV.
  7. Seal cartons tightly with tape whenever possible.

  8. Develop a system to catalog the boxes. You might give each box a number and keep a list of the items in that box in a notebook. Or even do something as simple as write the actual room each box will have to go in. Once those boxes are sealed, if the boxes are unmarked, your memory will inevitably fail you. Why leave it to chance?

  9. Use this system to let your movers know which box needs to go in which room upon arrival.

  10. Wind electrical cords, fastening them so they do not dangle. Many errant electrical chords have caused the demise of a beloved lamp or computer.

  11. Empty out your drawers completely, especially of items that could cause damage when in contact with other possessions.

  12. Fill in empty spaces between your heavy and light layers with crushed paper or other cushioning.
  13. For very small and fragile items, pack a small box inside a larger box with paper or other cushioning in between the boxes.

  14. Try hard not to separate items that belong together. Any pairs or sets of items should go together and any screws, nuts or bolts that will be used to reassemble a larger item should be placed with an item, clearly labeled and well sealed.
  15. Fill your boxes completely but try to limit their weight to 50 lb. Use cushioning to achieve this