5 Best Practice Tips for Packing Your Moving Boxes

You’re moving into a new home and have decided to do it yourself? Great! It’s an excellent way to save money. First, check out these tips for packing all those boxes and making your move as smooth and easy as possible!

1. Find the Right Boxes

It may be tempting to grab free boxes at a local store, but that may not be the best move for your move. Consider searching classified ads or online social media marketplaces for used moving boxes. Also try posting a shout-out to friends, who may know someone who has recently moved into town.

Remember to ask for used packing materials too (bubble wrap, packing peanuts, etc.), to save even more. Gently-used moving boxes and packing materials provide the best value, compared to making do with freebies or buying brand new.

Why spend any money on moving boxes? First, they tend to be thicker and sturdier, providing more protection for your possessions. They also tend to be uniform in size, so they stack better. Plus, they usually hold their value so that you can resell them on the other end of your move.

Moving boxes also come in special use styles and sizes that make packing easier. For instance,  items hanging in your closet can be packed into wardrobe boxes in a matter of seconds. On the other end, your closet can be reassembled just as quickly, without juggling boxes filled with tangled hangers and wrinkled clothes.

2. Pack Like Items Together

When boxing things up, group similar items and items used for related purposes together. For example, pack the contents of your desk together, pack all kitchen utensils together, and pull together everything for a particular hobby or activity. Staying organized significantly simplifies the unpacking process in your new location.

Items of a similar weight should also be packed together, with the heaviest things on the bottom of the box, resting on a layer of packing material. This will cushion the contents in case the box is dropped or set down too heavily.

3. Pack Tight, But Pack Light

To make it easier to move and arrange your boxes, try to keep each one under 30 pounds. That includes boxes containing books!

Don’t leave any open space. Fill excess space with packing peanuts, bubble wrap, cloth, or wadded-up packing paper. The less the contents in your boxes shift during transport, the safer they will be. Also, full boxes can be stacked, but partially empty boxes can cave in.

Make sure delicate items are wrapped in bubble wrap and that these boxes are placed high, on top of heavier boxes.

Anything that might leak should be placed inside a zip-lock bag or wrapped in plastic wrap. Adding a layer of plastic wrap over the opening of a bottle or jar and replacing the lid will also help minimize leaks.

4. Pack Into the Right Size Box

Have some oversized boxes? Great! Pack your pillows, comforters, and extremely lightweight items in there, while reserving your smaller boxes for your books… or your personal rock collection.

Picking the right size box, in relation to its “packed up” weight, will protect your possessions, your back, and your sanity.

5. Label and Color Code

In big black letters, label each box clearly on the top and two opposing sides in the upper right-hand corner. That way, no matter how you grab them, you can see a label.

If you are using boxes that have already been marked up, either scratch out the old words or cover them with a blank label. Use simple descriptions for the contents (books, linens, shoes, etc.)

Use colored circle stickers and assign colors to each room. For example, kitchen = red; master bedroom = blue; and home office = green. Add colored stickers to each label, so it’s easy to tell at a glance where each box belongs in your new home.

With a little planning and the right supplies, you can significantly reduce the stress of moving out and moving in. Here’s wishing you a safe and satisfying move!