If you happen to be a thrill-seeker by nature, forget about shocking horror movies or horrifying psychological thrillers. All you need to hear is the dreaded combination of the words PACKING and MOVING, and you’ll have your blood run cold faster than a moving truck speeding on the highway.
When facing a residential move across the country, packing for a move will become, willingly or unwillingly, your action sport to keep your adrenaline pumping through your veins the way you like it.
Without a shadow of a moving doubt, packing is the most arduous moving task during the entire relocation preparation.
You have nothing to worry about as long as you take advantage of this packing checklist that offers exactly 60 practical and logical packing steps to help you pack up your house quickly and efficiently.
What do you think will happen if you choose to combine the comprehensive power of this 60-step packing checklist with the interactive authority of the greatest moving checklist of all time? Of course, you’ll get nothing less than flawless time management and a guaranteed happy ending for your home moving adventure.
60 packing steps.
60 packing tips.
For your perfect move
How To Pack Efficiently
Step 1. Bring the number of your household items and personal belongings to their absolute minimum. The golden rule of packing states that the more stuff you have for packing, the more money you will have to pay for their actual transportation to your new home.
Step 2. Do not underestimate the time required for packing up your home for a move. The silver rule of packing states that you should start packing as early as humanly possible to avoid the perfectly avoidable buildup of moving stress.
Step 3. Packing up an entire house for a move often proves to be an impossible task for one family, let alone for one person. The bronze rule of packing states that you should either ask your friends for packing assistance or hire professional packers.
Step 4. Inventory your entire home and decide which items you will take with you /set them aside for packing/, and which ones you will have to leave behind /sell them at a garage sale or online, give them away to friends and family, donate them to charity or simply throw them away/.
Step 5. Do not waste your time and energy packing items that are forbidden for transportation – hazardous goods /explosive, flammable and corrosive substances/, pets and plants, perishable foods, and items of great monetary or sentimental value. Request in advance the list of non-allowable from your moving company.
Step 6. Observe all fundamental safety packing techniques when boxing up your possessions for a move. Safe packing is exactly what will help protect your valuables on the road and will determine not only their well-being but your post-relocation emotional state as well.
Step 7. Create a packing calendar so that you can organize well the time you have until Moving day. Good organization is a must for a quick and efficient packing, and your customized and prioritized day-by-day packing calendar will enable you to spend each minute of each hour on the mini packing goals that matter the most.
Step 8. Devise a master packing strategy to avoid wasted time on random and disorganized packing jobs. Follow these three main packing principles: 1. Start from your toughest rooms to pack; 2. Start packing from the rooms you use less frequently, and 3. Pack your heavy and bulky items first, then move on to your odds and ends.
Step 9. Adopt the pack-in-stages tactics as packing up your home in one single go will never work out. Starting the packing process early is important, but it’s even more important to make sure you pack a certain number of boxes every single day /consult your own packing calendar for the exact number/.
Step 10. Speed up considerably the packing process by preparing one specific room to serve as your packing station. This way, your other rooms will stay clutter-free and easily accessible throughout the most time-consuming pre-move task of them all.
Step 11. Make a habit of regularly removing your no longer needed materials and all excess packing supplies as your packing progresses. Cluttering up your living space will only slow down your progress while keeping your packing station clean will help you pack quickly when moving.
Step 12. Make a real effort to stay focused when packing and you’ll see how your packing speed breaks the speed limit in no time. The ability to keep your focus when packing for a move will prove to be merely priceless in the end.
Step 13. Don’t forget to have meaningful breaks during your packing marathon to raise your moving morale. Believe it or not, having short pauses of downtime to do something enjoyable can enable you to rediscover your purpose and later resume packing even more quickly.
Step 14. How to pack fast for a move? Eliminate all distractions that can hurt your packing speed and rhythm. Simple yet effective, this move will give you the much-needed boost to finish packing on time. Hire extra helping hands to look after small children, pets or any other attention-seekers you may have in your home.
How To Pack A Moving Box
Step 15. Get hold of the King of all packing supplies – MOVING BOXES. Purchase a large number of cardboard boxes in good overall condition /strong and clean/ either directly from a local moving company or get moving boxes for free, or almost for free, from local businesses /supermarkets, bookstores, electronics stores, etc./.
Step 16. Besides moving containers, you will also need a score of other packing supplies to pack efficiently for a move. Make sure you have enough sheets of bubble wrap and clean packing paper, as well as packing tape, a pair of scissors and a black marker pen to label the packed boxes.
Step 17. How to pack moving boxes? Before you start filling up a moving container with your earthly possessions, lay a sheet or two of clean packing paper on the bottom of each box as additional protection for your valuables against any instances of improper handling, the whims of Mother Nature and possible transportation hazards.
Step 18. No matter how sturdy a moving box looks and feels, you should reinforce its bottom with a few lengths of high-quality packing tape to avoid the possibility of accidental breakages and nasty spills while your goods are being transported from Point A to Point B.
Step 19. Observe the size rule when packing a box for shipping – use small boxes for packing heavy items /medium-sized containers are also applicable/ and large boxes for lighter goods. Remember that making a moving box too heavy to carry around will not help you achieve greater efficiency, but can surely help you get stronger headaches.
Step 20. Do not make the mistake of underestimating the importance of filling and padding materials. The better you fill up any remaining space inside a moving container with soft fillers, the more immobilized your items will be on the road and therefore, the greater their chance of survival will ultimately be.
Step 21. Our 60-step packing checklist continues with yet another essential aspect of packing a house for a move – labeling the moving boxes. Save time, nerves, and confusion by marking the content, destination room and special handling instructions on at least two sides of each packed box with the help of a black marker.
Step 22. Pack a special moving box, or maybe even a few ones, with absolute essential items that you need on a daily basis. Once your possessions are loaded onto the moving truck, you just never know when you will have access to your stuff once more – a few hours, a day, three days, a whole week?
Step 23. Besides the word moving, what do a moving dolly and a moving box have in common? Everything. Do not try to be Hercules, but overcome the Herculean task of moving your packed up boxes to the moving truck by using the invaluable assistance of a moving dolly. When things get tough, hire the pros to do it for you or ask your friends to give you a helping hand.
How To Pack A Kitchen
Step 24. Our step-by-step packing checklist for moving enters the most delicious room in your entire home. Similar to your storage areas, start packing your kitchen as early as possible because, despite its smaller size, the number of items in the kitchen can be rather overwhelming – utensils, appliances, pans, pots, bowls, cups, glasses, plates, etc.
Step 25. How to pack glassware? You can wrap your breakables with soft packing paper and then place them inside clean thick socks for extra protection. Don’t skimp on padding materials when packing fragile items for moving and make sure each packed glass is perfectly immobilized and protected in the box.
Step 26. How to pack dishes? Stack your easily breakable kitchen plates one on top of the other and separate them with paper plates or Styrofoam plates. But before you do it, wrap your plates first with two layers of packing paper or one layer of bubble wrap for additional insulation.
Step 27. How to pack knives? Knives and other kitchen utensils with open blades and sharp pointed parts should be first packed in a couple of layers of packing paper and then made safe by a sheet of bubble wrap. Tape well in place to avoid accidental unwrapping.
Step 28. How to pack kitchen appliances? It’s best if you keep the original packages of all your small kitchen appliances as they provide the best transportation protection. If not, find strong moving boxes of appropriate sizes to accommodate your toaster, mixer, blender, coffee/juice maker, food processor and so on. Use plenty of padding materials too.
Step 29. Wrap your larger and heavier kitchen appliances /washing machine, dishwasher, cooking stove, microwave oven, etc./ in protective moving blankets before you load them onto your trustworthy dolly. Use straps or rope to secure the appliances against undesired shifts and movements first on the two-wheeler and later on the moving truck as well.
Step 30. Despite the robust appearance, your refrigerator has a rather delicate cooling mechanism so be extra careful when packing and wheeling the appliance out of your home. Keep your fridge in an upright position, instead of placing it sideways or tipping it too much, so that the compressor oil doesn’t run into the cooling lines and thus damages your refrigerator.
How To Pack A Bathroom
Step 31. The step-by-step packing checklist moves into the tiniest and yet trickiest room to pack – the bathroom. Most of your bathroom items are too fragile, contain liquids that can be easily spilled and are needed up until and including on Moving day. Don’t leave packing your bathroom for last!
Step 32. Go through your bathroom cabinets, cupboards, shelves and drawers and sort out their content. Throw away any items past their expirations dates, used up bathroom products, ones with unclear or illegible labels, and all bathroom items that are forbidden for transportation.
Step 33. How to pack bathroom items for moving? Pack a special bathroom essentials box to keep with you at all times and fill it in with shampoo, soap, toothpaste, toothbrushes, makeup, shaving accessories, and other toiletries you use every single day.
Step 34. Use safe Ziploc bags to keep any bathroom items that are already open and pose a spilling hazard. Wrap all glass bottles with bubble wrap or bath towels to avoid breaks, and use your bath towels and shower curtains as padding protection inside the moving boxes.
Step 35. Make sure your bath towels are dry before you pack them for moving. Also, pack all bathroom items tightly inside the moving containers so that your fragile possessions don’t come into contact with one another during transport. Label the packed boxes appropriately /BATHROOM, FRAGILE, HANDLE WITH CARE/.
How To Pack A Garage For Moving
Step 36. It’s a big mistake to leave your garage, as well as any other storage areas you have in your home /attic, basement, tool shed, etc./ for last when packing for a move. Have in mind that packing your garage for a move is a huge packing project which you need to get underway as early as you can.
Step 37. Sorting a storage area usually takes forever, so do it without delay. Do not pack any items forbidden for transportation /flammables, corrosives and explosives substances/ and get rid of any goods that you don’t plan to use in the near future – sell, give away or dispose of all unwanted garage items.
Step 38. How to pack a garage for moving? Remove all detachable parts from power tools, including the batteries, and pack them in their original boxes or similar moving containers. Keep the power cords to the main bodies and pad with bubble wrap or old towels.
Step 39. Group hand tools according to their size and purpose, and place them in their dedicated toolboxes or strong small to medium-sized moving containers. Use plenty of old pieces of clothing to protect the irregular-shaped and usually sharp-edged hand tools during transit.
Step 40. Bundle together all your long-handled garden tools, wrap them in old blankets, protect their cutting edges with useless pieces of old clothing and tape them in place. If you’re having your car or motorcycle shipped to your new home, contact a reliable vehicle transportation company.
How To Pack Furniture
Step 41. Packing your furniture for moving is never a joke. Furniture pieces are usually rather heavy, bulky and sometimes too oddly shaped to conform to any packing standards. The number one rule when moving furniture is to disassemble the pieces as far as they can go.
Step 42. Keep track of all disassembled furniture elements and small connecting elements for a quick and problem-free re-assembly later. Safeguard all tiny parts in safe Ziploc bags which you can tape to the furniture piece itself or carry in a separate moving container.
Step 43. Get as many moving blankets /old home blankets are fine too/, wrap them carefully around your disassembled furniture and secure them in place with strong tape or adequate lengths of rope. Blankets will not only keep your prized furniture intact, but they will protect your property as well.
Step 44. Get as many helping hands as you can for packing up your furniture and later for moving it out of your home and loading it into the moving truck. Experienced professional furniture movers are your best option for safely packing and transporting your heavyweight beds, wardrobes, closets, sofas, couches, tables and so on.
How To Pack Clothes
Step 45. Packing clothes for a move is a rather time-consuming packing mini goal which you should not delay any longer. Jump-start your clothes packing marathon by sorting through all your clothes and getting rid of the pieces which are already out of fashion, outgrown or too worn out to be used again.
Step 46. The secret to a fast clothes packing experience is to group your garments according to their material, size, purpose and season, and then to pre-pack the ones you surely won’t need until or on Moving day.
Step 47. Use specialized wardrobe boxes to keep your clothes in perfect condition /pack your clothes without wrinkles/ or use garbage bags to wrap them straight from your storage area to save valuable time. Take advantage of all suitcases which you can find throughout your home.
Step 48. Only pack clean and dry clothes, use vacuum seal bags that are supposed to save space, and don’t be hesitant to kill two birds with one stone and use some selected pieces of clothing as padding materials in other moving containers.
Step 49. Take advantage of some little-known yet advanced clothes packing tips and tricks, such as nesting dolls, clothes rolls, furoshiki, and other clever packing techniques. As far as shoes go, clean them thoroughly, match them in pairs and fill them in with socks to keep unwanted deformations.
How To Pack Books
Step 50. Books are heavy, much heavier than you probably think. Go carefully through your collection and leave only the books you truly love and would hate to not have them around. The rest of your reads you can sell, gift to friends, or give away to charity.
Step 51. How to pack books for moving? You can choose between 3 book packing methods: 1. Pack your books standing upright with their open parts facing the box sides; 2. Pack the books with their open parts are facing you; 3. Pack your books flat and stack them tightly along the box sides.
Step 52. Make a mental note to never pack your books with their spines facing you as that wrong packing approach may damage the bindings of your windows to other worlds and have them warmed up under their own weight.
Step 53. Heavier books should always go first inside a moving box and no pages of one book should be in direct contact with the pages of another one. Once you’re ready, fill in any remaining space with a suitable filling material (crushed packing paper works best).
Step 54. Books of high monetary or sentimental value should be wrapped up individually in a couple of layers of soft and clean packing paper, and then placed inside a box with other valuable books.
Step 55. Books are heavy, remember? Keep packed boxes under 50 lbs. to avoid avoidable accidents on Moving day. If you own travel suitcases with wheels on their bottoms, you’re in luck – rolling suitcases are just perfect for transporting books to a new home.
How To Pack Jewelry
Step 56. Your expensive jewelry pieces should be packed with extreme care so that they survive the cross-country move in one piece /literally!/. Do not entrust your valuables to your moving company but remember that the safe transportation of your jewelry rests with you.
Step 57. How to pack jewelry for moving? Your necklaces and bracelets are extremely vulnerable to moving houses due to their long chains. Use unorthodox packing helpers such as drinking straws and toilet paper rolls to keep their chains from getting tangled and ultimately broken. Use wrapping paper to wrap them, rubber bands to tie them and Ziploc bags to transport them.
Step 58. Your earrings can get hooked together and maybe even get broken during transit. Take advantage of strong cardboard cards to hold your longer earrings, pill organizers to accommodate the smaller ones and Ziploc bags to keep them safe on the road.
Step 59. Unless you have the Ring of Power, use proven alternative methods to keep your rings safe, such as egg cartons (yes, they work!), hard sunglasses cases, and day-of-the-week pill cases. Still, the best way to pack jewelry for a move is to use a suitable jewelry box.
Now your house is packed for a trouble-free move across the country. For more practical packing tips and advice, refer to our highly informative moving blog with other great packing-related articles.
Thank you for reading!