How to Pack for a Move
Let’s look at a few general packing tips to get started, then break it down by room or specific item.
- Start packing early. To make the job manageable, begin boxing up the items you use less frequently—like books, knickknacks, or seasonal items—a few weeks before your move date. Save everyday use items until the end.
- Prepare your boxes for moving. Reinforce the bottom of every box with packing tape, then line the box with crushed packing paper for extra cushion for glass or fragile items. Use more paper as ‘filler’ to eliminate empty spaces.
- Make the most of each box. The less space your items have to move around in the box, the lower the chance of damage, so pack as much as you can into each box. This will also make loading easier—uniform boxes stack much better than odd-shaped items that aren’t boxed up.
- Label boxes well. Pack each room in separate boxes and clearly mark the box with the contents and what room it’s destined for. A color system can also help as a guide for the movers.
- Pack heavy items in small boxes. Overweight boxes are difficult to lift, and could cause injury. Keep the weight of the boxes at a manageable level especially when you’re packing books.
- Leave light-weight linens and clothing in their drawers. This is a big time (and space) saver! Movers will wrap your dresser with a blanket and stretch wrap.
- Pack extra linens or pillows in large kitchen trash bags. Then use the bags as cushions or fillers as you load.
- Disassemble as many items as you can. Remove feet or legs from furniture, take lampshades off of the base, etc. This makes it much easier to load your items into the moving container.
- Pack valuables and essentials separately. Jewelry, medications, daily toiletries and important documents are items we recommend that you keep with you during the move.
How to Pack for Moving: Room by Room
Check out these packing tips to make boxing up your home (and the specific items you typically find in each room) easy and efficient.
How to Pack Kitchen Items
- Use the original boxes for small appliances like a microwave or toaster (if you have them). Or, follow these detailed steps to pack small appliances safely.
- Wrap breakables in packing paper, foam wrap, or Bubble Wrap® for much-needed protection. Pot holders and dish towels can also double as extra cushioning.
- Pack dishes in dish pack boxes that include partitions to keep glasses, bowls, plates and other pieces in place during transit. Watch our video for examples of how to carefully pack dishes and china.
- Wrap fine silver in cloth or silver paper. For tips on how to move everyday cutlery, check out our tips on how to pack silverware.
How to Pack Up Your Bed and Bath
- Move dressers with the contents still in drawers to avoid packing and unpacking again. Pack linens and towels from the closet in boxes.
- Keep valuable or sentimental jewelry with you as you travel to your new home. For everyday pieces or extra baubles, try these jewelry packing methods.
- Makeup can be fragile, so follow our makeup packing tutorial for tips and tricks to protect palettes and delicate bottles from damage.
- Stow shoes in the bottom of your wardrobe boxes or follow the ‘burrito method’ for another way to pack shoes.
- Group most-played-with toys together to make unpacking easier. Pack toys in boxes and use plenty of crushed packing paper to keep them from shifting around inside the box during transit.
- Baby gear should be wrapped in padded paper or moving blankets if it’s bulky and won’t fit in a box. Check out our best tips for moving baby items like strollers, bouncers, and more.
- Keep daily medications and toiletries with you as you travel to your new home. Bring enough for a few extra days as a precaution, then carefully pack medicines and toiletries that you use less often in a small box.
How to Pack Living Room Furniture and Décor
- Wrap wall hangings with furniture pads or use mirror boxes for those pieces. Pack flat items like framed art or mirrors on their edges (standing up).
- Wrap individual home décor pieces in packing paper and pack several items together in a box. See how to pack picture frames, knickknacks, and other decorative items in more detail with our how-to video.
- Use the nesting method for lamp shades and pack several in a box at once, or use specialty lamp boxes for taller lamps. Watch how to pack a lamp in this tutorial.
- Watch our videos to learn how to pack CDs, DVDs, and video games, along with how to pack books and other entertainment collections.
- Use the original box to pack your computer, printer, or other electronics if you have them. Our step-by-step guide to packing a computer and electronics will show you how to handle the cords and accessories.
How to Pack Lawn and Garage Items
- Drain all gasoline and oil from lawn mowers, weed eaters, chain saws and other gas-powered equipment.
- Bundle garden tools together for easy handling.
- Pack heavy tools in small boxes and fill in the gaps with crushed packing paper.
- Check the “Do Not Ship” list for items that cannot be shipped, such as poisonous or flammable items and corrosives.
Questions about moving or packing?
Getting a jump on packing is great! But if you haven’t nailed down your moving plans just yet, we recommend getting a quote and reserving your move as the next step. Whether you have questions about moving helpers, or just aren’t sure how to pack your golf clubs, we’re here to help—give us a call at 303-416-5465.