Did you know that around 13% of Americans move home every year? That’s over 40 million people!
Don’t be fooled though. Just because lots of people do it doesn’t mean moving’s easy! With endless things to think about and tasks to complete, the experience can soon turn into a stressful, expensive, and time-consuming affair.
And it gets even harder when you don’t pack your moving boxes properly! The good news is that’s something we can help with.
Are you moving soon and want to make lighter work of the packing process? Well, you’re in the right place. Read on to discover some proven box packing tips and tricks.
Get the Right Supplies
Start by gathering together the various packing supplies you’ll need. These include packing tape (and a dispenser), labels, packing paper (and/or peanuts and bubble wrap), and, of course, the boxes themselves.
We should point out that not all moving boxes are made equal though. While it might be tempting to re-use the old and crumpled cardboard boxes you have in the attic, they could collapse in transit. That’s the last thing you want when they’re full of your precious (and sometimes fragile) possessions!
Do yourself a favor and invest in some high-quality, purpose-built moving boxes instead. Strong and durable, they’re much more likely to keep your items safe.
Many movers make the mistake of cramming items into boxes in an unplanned, haphazard manner. It’s an understandable approach, but we advise against it! You may save some time in the first instance, but it’ll slow you down a lot overall.
Remember, you’re going to have to unpack everything upon arrival at your new home. That process will take ten times longer if each box contains a big jumble of assorted items! Trust us, strategy’s key.
Pack room by room, tackle one area at a time, and group similar items together (in terms of weight and size) before loading them into each box.
Pack Heavy Items First
Another reason to avoid throwing everything inside without forethought is that you risk squashing lighter, softer, and/or more fragile items with bigger, heavier, and harder ones! Nobody wants to open a box to find the contents ruined, so be sure to put heavier possessions in first (with some packing peanuts underneath and around the sides for added protection).
By the same token, you’ll need a way to identify the top and bottom of every box you pack. You’d think this would be obvious, but it can be tricky when you’re dealing with plain unmarked cardboard! Writing “this side up” on top should stop any unfortunate accidents from occurring.
Fill Up Each Box
Don’t leave too much space in your boxes either. Aim to fill each one so that it’s almost full! This is partly to prevent you from using too many boxes, but it’s also because they could collapse when stacked on top of each other if you don’t.
The only exception here is if the items you’re putting into a box are heavy. After all, you want to be able to lift it without hurting yourself, right?! Only fill moving boxes to the brim if the items are small, lightweight, and non-fragile.
If leaving a gap at the top is unavoidable, then try adding extra packing paper to the box before sealing it- especially for fragile items. On that note, we recommend having at least 2 inches of packing material around anything that could break in transit (such as crockery, instruments, and electronics).
Take Extra Care with Breakables
Packing in a fast and efficient manner is great. But you want everything to arrive in one piece as well! Whenever you’re packing something that could break, then, take the time to wrap it up in a protective material, such as bubble wrap, before placing it in the box.
As professional moving companies (such as Best Fit Movers) will tell you, the manner in which you pack these items makes a difference too. For example, packing things like plates and dishes on their sides (instead of flat) helps to protect them. Things like cups and bowls (assuming you intend to stack them) should have packing paper between them for the same reason.
And those small glass items in your kitchen and beyond? Wrap those in bubble wrap before putting them into a cardboard box with dividers that split it into sections. Held snugly in position, they’re much less likely to shatter, chip, or crack.
Seal and Label the Contents
Imagine that you’ve finished packing a box. The heavy items are at the bottom, the fragile items are wrapped and protected, and you’ve filled the gaps with packing paper. The final step is to seal it up and, most important of all, label the box with what’s inside (e.g. “kitchen – plates and bowls” or “bedroom – sheets).
It’s hard to overstate the value of those labels when you’re loading and unloading dozens of boxes! They can be the difference between a stress-free unpacking experience and spending hours just trying to find the right items for each room.
As for the sealing part, make sure you use sturdy packing tape for the job. Put one strip down the box’s flaps and another across them to keep everything shut tight (without making them impossible to re-open when you start unpacking!).
Start Packing Moving Boxes More Efficiently
The vast majority of Americans who move home each year will attest to the fact it can be a long, tiring, and stressful experience. However, it’s sure to go more smoothly with these packing tips for moving up your sleeve! Keep them in mind when packing your moving boxes and the process should be quicker, easier, and less likely to end in disaster.
To read more on topics like this, check out the Life Tips category