Empty the dresser drawers!
Packing can be overwhelming, especially if you’ve been in your home for a long time. Putting your belongings into boxes is both an emotionally taxing and physically difficult task. With the right tools, though, you can make it easier. At BAEM, we’re committed to making your moving experience as stress-free as possible—and that commitment begins before you even pack your first box. Check out our tips, then get those boxes packed!
GET ORGANIZED AND START PACKING EARLY
The best way to make sure you have gotten everything is to open up all of the doors and crack open all of the drawers. Once you have packed up all the items in that area, make sure you close it to signal that it has been completely packed.
Avoid mixing items from different rooms in the same box.
Use wardrobe boxes to make closets easier to pack (you can leave your clothes on their hangers!). Clothes in drawers can be placed in suitcases.
You can never use enough packing paper to ensure items stay protected.
Always stack dishes upwards when packing, and avoid breakage by using custom-designed boxes. It’s also a good idea to avoid wrapping china in newsprint; the ink can stain your dishes.
Save time for the kitchen. It takes the longest to pack up because you have to make sure everything is individually wrapped.
PREP YOUR BELONGINGS FOR A SMOOTH MOVE-IN
Try to pack all electronic equipment, like TVs and stereos, in their original boxes. Otherwise use bubble wrap to protect these items. When packing your own items, be sure to always close and tape a box. Open boxes are more difficult to handle, and items may fall out. Open boxes also take more space.
Pack important and sentimental documents separately to be easily accessible—children’s health records, passports, family records, insurance information, and photo albums.Make sure you label your boxes for where you want them to go and not where they came from. For example, if something came from your basement, but you want it to go in the playroom, make sure you label "playroom" on the box so it ends up in the correct space from the get-go.
Don’t pack with used boxes or boxes from the supermarket. You never know what little critter is hiding or if the box will be strong enough to support your possessions.Most animal kennels break down. They’re much easier to transport if they’ve been taken apart.Always pack and unpack breakables over a padded surface.Never tip stand mixers on their side when packing into boxes. The lubricating oil inside the mixer might pour out of it.Use only small boxes for books. They get very heavy, very fast!
LAST MINUTE PACKING
Ask your movers to load anything you might need right away in your new home toward the end of the truck, so that it is the first thing unloaded.
Place items that you are taking with (cable boxes, medication, or any other personal items) you off to the side, and inform all crew members not to pack them.
As you take apart furniture and other items, make sure to tape all parts to the main base.
Have a wardrobe box available on the morning of the move. The last things you’ll pack will be the bed linens, comforters, and pillows you sleep with. Put these items in the wardrobe box, so they’ll be easy to find when you’re ready to collapse after a day of moving.
Use the right size boxes.
Put heavy items, like books, in small boxes; light items, like linens and pillows, in bigger ones. (Large boxes packed with heavy items are a common complaint of professional movers. They not only make the job harder but also have a better chance of breaking.)
Put heavier items on the bottoms of boxes, lighter items on top.
And if you’re loading the truck yourself, pack heavier boxes first, toward the front of the truck, for balance.
Don’t leave empty spaces in the boxes.
Fill in gaps with clothing, towels, or packing paper. Movers often won’t move boxes that feel loosely packed or unbalanced.
Avoid mixing items from different rooms in the same box.
It will make your packing quicker and your unpacking a lot easier, too.
Label each box with the room it’s destined for and a description of its contents.
This will help you, and your movers know where every box belongs in your new place. Numbering each box and keeping an inventory list in a small notebook is a good way to keep track of what you’ve packed―and to make sure you still have everything when you unpack.
Tape boxes well.
Use a couple of pieces of tape to close the bottom and top seams, then use one of the movers’ techniques―making a couple of wraps all the way around the box’s top and bottom edges, where stress is concentrated.
If you’re moving expensive art, ask your mover about special crating.
Never wrap oil paintings in regular paper; it will stick. For pictures framed behind glass, make an X with masking tape across the glass to strengthen it and to hold it together if it shatters. Then wrap the pictures in paper or bubble wrap and put them in a frame box, with a piece of cardboard between each framed piece for protection.
As you pack your dishes, put packing paper around each one, then wrap bundles of five or six together with more paper. Pack dishes on their sides, never flat. And use plenty of bunched-up paper as padding above and below. Cups and bowls can be placed inside one another, with paper in between, and wrapped three or four in a bundle. Pack them all in dish-barrel boxes.
Consider other items that will need special treatment.
Movers wrap TVs in quilted furniture pads. However, plasma TVs might require special wooden crates for shipping if you don’t have the original box and can be ruined if you lay them flat. If you’re packing yourself, double-box your TV, setting the box containing the TV into another box that you’ve padded with packing paper.