There are few feelings as exhilarating as making a new home your own, but first you'll have to deal with the nightmarish storm of collapsing boxes, broken valuables and bubble wrap, also known as packing.
Don’t despair. There are a few things you can do to make packing easier and to keep your contents protected.
1. Choose the right boxes for the job
Think any old box will do the trick? Think again.
- Are your boxes strong enough to carry heavy objects? Reinforce them with extra packing tape along the top and bottom to be sure.
- Are your boxes similar sizes? This is important for keeping them snug and secure in transit.
- Can you carry them comfortably? Big boxes are necessary for some things but make sure you can lift them safely and comfortably.
Top tip: Get more boxes than you need! When you don't have enough boxes, you may be tempted to over-stuff the ones you do have, causing damaged valuables.
2. Think before you wrap and pack
Now it's time to get down to the business at hand - packing.
- Make sure there aren't any gaps in your boxes where items can move and be damaged. Fill the gaps with clumped bubble wrap, paper or even a towel.
- Keep all liquids upright and secure.
- Wrap delicate items in unprinted paper, as newspaper can leave marks.
- Keep heavy items at the bottom of your boxes and mark the boxes so your removalists know which way is up!
Top tip: Separate heavy items from the light ones. Many people make the mistake of loading their weightiest possessions into their biggest, strongest box, but this results in an incredibly dense package that is simply too difficult to move. Instead, fill smaller containers with your heavy items and load up the big boxes with lighter items like linen or clothing.
3. Load it safely
Even though your contents insurance may cover your belongings in case of an accident, there are a few things you should keep in mind when loading up the truck to keep everything safe.
- Keep your packages stable with cable ties.
- Make sure all of your boxes are labelled to make unpacking easier.
- Be generous with padding when it comes to furniture. You can't package everything in a box and bubble wrap, but thick blankets provide protection from scrapes and scratches.
- If you're moving a fridge or washing machine, be sure to allow at least 48 hours for it to drain. The last thing you need is your boxes and furniture sitting in a puddle on the moving truck.
- Lay a tarp on the truck's floor to combat dust.
Top tip: Pack what's known as an 'essentials box'. After a long day of moving, the last thing most people want to do is dive right in to the unpacking process. Instead, prepare a box with your toiletries and a few changes of clothes, some unpacking snacks, cleaning supplies and rags, and you'll be able to make yourself at home without having to trawl through all of your possessions.
Have some great packing tips or a funny packing story? We'd love to hear it below.