5 Moving Tips for Packing Safely

With the excitement and anticipation of home buying, planning, choosing moving companies and moving itself, it’s easy to forget personal safety. To make sure you and your stuff get to your destination in one piece, remember these five safe packing tips.

1. Remove clutter.

People usually make unsafe decisions when they feel rushed and overwhelmed. A few weeks before you start packing, downsize your stuff and declutter your garage. Not only will you have less to pack, but when you do, you’ll be more organized and have room to move around unencumbered.

  • Go through each room of your home and put unneeded items into one of four piles: discard, sell, donate and return
  • Discard unneeded papers, old mail and items that are not in good enough shape to sell or donate
  • Sell items of value online or in a garage sale
  • Return borrowed items before they accidentally get packed up
  • Donate gently used goods to local charities, hospices or homeless shelters—call to see which items may be in high demand

Before you make the trip to the charity drop-off or garage sale, take one more look through the items you’ll be moving. You might decide that some won’t work in your new home or just aren’t worth moving.

2. Pack boxes so one person can lift them safely.

As you pack and begin moving, avoid lifting heavy items. Weight is something you can control by the way you pack. Books and other items that are heavy for their size should be packed in small boxes. Before the box is full, test it to make sure it can be easily lifted. When the box is just heavy enough for one person to lift safely, time to seal it up.

3. Use the right equipment.

Another way to avoid heavy lifting is to make sure you have the proper equipment on hand. A great safety investment is a dolly, which helps in handling large items such as appliances and furniture. Make sure the dolly is in good shape and the straps are in good condition. Higher-quality dollies are easier to maneuver up and down stairs and through tight spaces.

4. Use care when packing large glass items.

Before wrapping large pictures and mirrors, use masking tape to form an “X” across the glass. Wrap these items generously, and make sure any empty space in the carton is filled with paper or other material that minimizes movement.

5. Avoid packing hazardous materials.

Hazardous materials aren’t safe to move, and most moving companies don’t accept them anyway. Firearms must be emptied of all ammunition before moving. Drain lawnmowers and equipment of all oil and gas, and collect any containers of charcoal starter, kerosene, propane or anything else flammable. Other items considered hazardous when moving include cleaning products, candles, pesticides, plants, fire extinguishers and batteries. Some of these items can explode or cause fires when jostled.

If any of these items are usable, try to give them away to friends and neighbors or simply discard them at a hazardous materials collection facility or event.

6. Ask for help.

Recruit friends and family to help you move. If you can’t find many volunteers or have a lot of large, heavy items, get some quotes from moving companies. Professional movers have the knowledge, equipment and experience to load heavy items without injury or damage.

With these packing tips, you can have an organized and safe moving experience for you, your family and your personal belongings.

Feel free to contact us about your upcoming move or storage project.