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When preparing for any move, the most important step is to be prepared and organized. It is a good idea to sort through all of your belongings ahead of time. It is a great idea to sell, donate, or dispose of anything that you don’t need.
Prior to loading day, you want to defrost any refrigerators or freezers that will be transported. You will also need to drain any aquariums and water beds. Have all packing completed if you are not paying for full packing service. The most important thing to do before your move is to sort out any items that you do not wish to have handled or moved. Secure all wallets, purses, credit cards, cash, currency, passports, personal jewelry, and any other items you wish to take with you.
Do not forget cell phone chargers, toiletries, medications, and all items needed for travel.
You should pack a bag of clothing even if you are only moving locally. There is always a possibility of a closing delay or conditions that prevent unloading.
Many people prefer to have their belongings packed professionally to avoid risk of damage. Your moving coordinator will be happy to discuss costs, materials and unpacking services.
If you do pack for yourself, you are responsible for all packing, which must be completed prior to loading day. The loader will check every box to make sure it meets packing guidelines. You may be asked to repack a box if it is deemed susceptible to damage. There is an additional charge if you choose your moving company to do your packing.
• Prepare a convenient place to work and gather all packing materials in one location. If there is a spare room available, consider setting it up as your packing headquarters.
• A large table covered with a heavy blanket or mattress pad makes a good, firm work surface. It may be helpful to have a second table nearby for soon-to-be-packed items.
• You will need packing cartons, newsprint (unprinted newspaper for wrapping), bubble wrap, tissue paper, packing tape, a marker, scissors and newspapers. The printed newspaper should be used for outer wrapping or cushioning only. The ink always rubs off, and can become embedded in your dishware. When using newspaper, be sure to wash your hands frequently to avoid rubbing the ink on the items you handle.
• Secure all of your computer data on a backup drive or zip drive.
The boxes you use to pack your household goods are important. In order to minimize damage, select cartons that are suitable for transporting your goods. Make sure that you are not packing boxes too heavy as they can break open, or too light as they can crush when they are stacked in the moving van. Your sales representative can help you locate and purchase cartons.
1.5 cubic foot cartons (Book or Small carton)
This is the smallest of the general-purpose containers. Use for books, CDs, DVDs, VCR tapes, tools and canned goods.
3.0 cubic foot carton (Medium carton)
This is the workhorse carton. Smaller and heavier items are usually packed in these containers, including small kitchen appliances, lamp bases, pots and pans and small outdoor tools.
4.5 cubic foot carton
As the size of the container increases, the weight of the individual items going into the container should decrease. Use this carton for non-hanging clothes, larger lamp bases, lamp shades, linens, unbreakable kitchen goods and toys.
6.0 or 6.5 cubic foot carton (Large carton)
This is the largest of the general purpose cartons. This carton should only be considered for the lightest and bulkiest items such as stuffed toys, blankets, pillows, area rugs and winter coats. Most movers use these types of boxes for lampshades also.
Dishpack (Barrel or Dish Barrel)
This is the safest of all the cartons because of its extra-strength, multilayer construction. All breakable kitchenware, china and crystal should be packed in these cartons for safety. Occasionally, lamp bases, small antiques and bric-a-brac also are packed in dishpacks.
• The best tip for packing glassware is to use plenty of cushioning at the bottom of the box and place individually wrapped items inside the box as you would place that piece in a dishwasher. For example, a dish should be placed on its edge rather than flat. Stemware should be upside down, not flat. Pack similar items together such as figurines with glass items or pots with pans.
• Keep all parts or pars together and use resealable plastic bags for hardware, taping the bag securely to the item.
• Do not include unwrapped breakables, spillables or anything that would damage other items.
• Wrap items individually in clean tissue paper or newsprint.
• Small items are easily identified when wrapped in colored paper.
• Very fragile items should be double wrapped and then wrapped in bubble wrap.
Label boxes with fragile items “FRAGILE, This Side Up”
• Wind electrical cords, fastening them so they will not dangle.
• Place glass, kitchen and stemware items as you would if you were placing them in a dishwasher.
• Pack in layers, with heaviest things on the bottom, medium weight next, and lightest weight on top.
• As each layer is completed, fill in empty spaces with crushed paper, adding layers of crushed paper between items.
• Avoid overloading the carton, but make sure that nothing “shifts”.
• Blankets, towels and other soft items may be used for cushioning.
• Put a two or three-inch layer of crushed paper in the bottom of the carton to serve as a cushion and a one inch layer on top.
• When sealing make sure the carton is not over filled or under filled, then seal tightly with packing tape.
• Mark each carton with your name and the room to which the carton should be delivered on the side of each box.
• Write “unpack first” on items you will need immediately at destination.
• When you arrive at your new home, tape a sign on the door of each room corresponding to your carton labeling.
How To Pack
China and Glassware
• Professional packers use a dish pack for china and glassware. Place plenty of cushioning material in bottom of carton. Wrap each piece in several sheets of paper. Start from the corner of the paper, tucking the edges as you roll. Put in box with rims down. Add two or three inches of crushed paper on top of the bundles to protect rims and make a level base for the next tier. Always remember, the heavier pieces go on the bottom!
• Plates should be wrapped individually using several sheets of paper. Start from the corner, wrapping diagonally, continuously tucking in overlapping edges. Then wrap four to six in a bundle with a double layer of newspaper. Place these bundled items in the carton n a row, standing them on edge. Surround each bundle with crushed paper, being careful to leave no unfilled spaces.
• Stand shallow bowls on edge in the carton and deep ones (such as mixing bowls) nested two or three together, upside down on their top rims.
• Wrap sugar bowl lids in tissue, turning them upside down on the bowl before wrapping together. Place sugar bowls, pitchers and similar pieces upright in the carton, being careful to cushion firmly.
• Cups and glassware should be wrapped in a double layer of paper and placed upside down on rims in a row on an upper layer within the box with all the handles facing upward in the same direction.
• Again, place dishes and glasses as you would in a dishwasher.
Loose flatware may be wrapped either individually or in sets, in clear plastic or tissue. If the silverware is in a chest, you still may want to wrap the pieces individually and replace in the chest, or fill in all empty spaces in the chest with tissue paper or paper toweling.
Silverplate or Sterling Silver
Since air causes silver to tarnish, all silver pieces should be completely enclosed in fresh, clean tissue paper or plastic wrap. Silver bowls, tea sets and serving dishes should be carefully wrapped as fragile items and packed the same as china.
Because books are heavy, be sure to use small cartons. Pack on edge, alternating bound edge to open edge. Pack books of same general size together.
After removing the light bulb, wrap the base, harp and bulb separately, in newsprint, (never use newspaper) and place together in a carton, filling spaces with crushed paper. Carefully wrap each shade in three or four sheets of fresh tissue paper, a pillow case or large lightweight towel. More than one lamp or shade can be packed in a carton if properly protected. Large, Tiffany-style lamp shades and chandeliers should be crated. Do not pack lampshades in the same box with the lamp bases. Mark lampshade boxes as “ top load only” , or “ do not crush”.
Glass Table Tops, Marble Slabs, Mirrors & Art
The packing and wrapping is included in your price.
• Footwear may be left in shoe boxes and placed into large cartons. You can also wrap each shoe individually, then in pairs. Footwear should be cushioned to avoid damage occurring to high heels or ornaments. Do no pack heavy items on top of shoes.
• Leave clothes on hangers and transport in wardrobe cartons, which can be purchased from your agent. Or you may remove each garment from the hanger, fold and place in a suitcase or a carton lined with clean paper. Some lightweight clothing such as a hosiery, lingerie and sweaters may be left in dresser drawers.
• It is recommended that you take any furs or high-value items with you, rather than packing them in the moving van.
Linen and Bedding
Because they are lightweight, these items can be used for padding delicate items or folded and packed in larger cartons. Line the box with clean paper, and place the linens in a large plastic bag for protection.
Draperies, Curtains and Rugs
Draperies and curtains may also be folded and packed in larger cartons, lined with clean paper. Another alternative is to place on hangers, and pack curtains and drapes in a wardrobe carton. Leave rugs on the floor for the moving company to handle. If they have just returned from the cleaners, leave them rolled. Carpets will be rolled and stretchwrapped prior to placing them on the truck.
Photographs and Valuables
• If possible, carry all valuables and photos with you to your new destination. If you pack photographs, wrap framed photos with padding and cushioning, and like you dishes, stand them on edge in the box.
• Photographs are best protected in photo albums, which should be wrapped and packed in separate cartons. Loose photos should be packed in separate cartons and protection from moisture or possible water damage. Take the time to properly pack your irreplaceable items.
Small clocks, radios and similar items can be packed in the same carton, or with the linens. These items should be wrapped individually, using several pieces of paper, and should be placed in the packed carton with plenty of crushed paper.
It is required that your appliances be serviced before shipping them to your new location. All appliances must be dry before loading. Be sure to discuss with your Sales Representative.
• Hand tools may be left in tools boxes, the spaces filled with crushed paper, or the tools may be packed according to general packing rules. Always use small cartons because tools are generally heavy.
• Long handled garden tools, as well as brooms and mops, should be bundled together securely. Attachments should be removed from power tools and packed separately.
We suggest you use up or give away any food you have in your pantry. We do not ship anything that is perishable. If moving canned goods pack on the bottom of a box containing several other light items
Moving Day Carton
• If you are traveling by car, be sure to pack a “Moving Day Box” Place your last minute items in this box along with things you’ll need right away at your new home.
• Keep a folder with all of your moving paperwork with you at all times.
• You may also want to take along:
• Bottled water, Snacks, Paper Plates and Plastic Utensils, Coffee Cups and Instant Coffee, Juice
• Toiletries, soap, towels, wipes
• A small tool kit
• Toys for the kids
Loss and Damage Protection
Be sure to discuss valuation coverage with your moving representative. In the event that an item does get broken you’ll want to be sure that you have the adequate coverage to repair or replace the item.
Good Packing Requires
• Wrapping items carefully.
• Using sturdy cartons that close completely.
• Making sure of a firm pack that will not rattle, bulge outward or bend inward.
• Providing plenty of cushioning to absorb shock.
• Limiting cartons, when possible, to a maximum weight of 50 lbs.
(DO NOT PACK)
• Combustible Liquids – Rubbing Alcohol, Antifreeze Compounds, Combustible Cleaning Materials.
• Corrosive Liquids – Acids, Bleach, Auto Batteries.
• Explosives – Black Powder, Dynamite, Explosives, Fireworks, Ammunition of Any Type.
• Flammables – Adhesives, Aerosol Cans, Ammonia, Cleaning Fluids, Weed Killer, Gasoline/Diesel Fuel, Flares, Kerosene, Light Fluids, Matches, Paint Removers, Stain, Lacquer, Varnish, Paint Thinners.
• Compressed Gases – Any Gases used in Welding, Scuba Diving Tanks, Propane Tanks and Fire Extinguishers.
• Valuables – Stock, Currency, Jewelry, Documents, Medications, Moving and Household Information.
• Food Items – Perishable Items of Any Kind.
• Houseplants – Living Plants of Any Kind.
Moving and Packing Tips
We know how stressful moving can be and how much planning is involved. There are a lot of things to remember and organize. So to make it easier, we have provided some tips and insider's opinions on how to make moving day easy!
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