Many people find that taking advantage of the packing services offered by their moving company makes the whole relocation process a lot less stressful. Others, however, prefer to take care of the packing themselves, whether it's for financial reasons or simply due to the fact that they'd like to box all of their belongings in a certain way. If you fall into the latter category, there are steps you can take to ensure the packing process is as stress-free as possible. Read on for how to stay organized and at ease as you prepare to move:
Decluttering is a crucial first step of packing your home for a move. Especially if you're preparing for a long-distance relocation and your moving company is charging based on the weight of your belongings, it's important to bring only the items you need. Go through each room in your home with a trash bag, a donation box and a sell box. Trash anything that's broken, stained, torn or otherwise damaged, and sell or donate anything you haven't used in at least one year. Be ruthless - sentimentality is understandable, but if you never use something, there's no reason to keep it.
Gather plenty of packing supplies
There are plenty of packing supplies you'll need to stock up on in order to keep your belongings organized and secure. Here are the basics:
- Packing tape.
- Packing paper, bubble wrap and other cushioning for valuables.
- Permanent markers.
- Plastic baggies.
Gather at least three different sizes of boxes, and make sure some are corrugated or extra sturdy for safely transferring your dishware and any other fragile items. You'll likely need more packing supplies than you think you will, so stock up. If you purchase supplies from Atlas Van Lines, you can always return anything you don't end up using.
Create a personal organization system
Setting up an organizational system is a vital way to prevent stress when you're packing - the more organized you are, the less chaotic the process will seem. Perhaps this means color-coding your boxes by room or item type. Or, maybe you'd rather number each box and keep a corresponding inventory list in a notebook. Make use of apps, spreadsheets, checklists and any other tools or materials that can make the organization process easier. Just remember that the better organized you are now, the easier the unpacking process will be later.
Know the packing basics
There are some packing basics everybody should keep in mind as they prepare for a move. For one thing, spread your packing out - you don't want to be scrambling at the last minute. Begin weeks in advance with storage closets and decor that you won't miss if it's packed away, and work from there.
Also, make sure when you're packing boxes, you place heavy items on the bottom and lighter ones on top. This will keep your boxes more stable in transit. Remember that large boxes should hold lighter items, while heavier items can go in small boxes.
Finally, pack two or three "load last, unload first" boxes, which will contain kitchenware, bedding and other items you'll need right away at your new place. You don't want to make it to the new house and realize you have no idea where your coffee maker or your best work shoes are.