Good planning is the key to success for most things in life, and packing efficiently for removals and storage is no exception to this rule. From creating a priority list and budgeting the time it will take to pack into your day, to determining the amount of boxes you will need for each room before you start, planning can help turn a difficult time-consuming task into a manageable endeavour with a light at the end of the tunnel.
Begin by reviewing what you have and working out what you want to move into storage. Pack anything that you don’t need on an immediate basis – toiletries and important documents ought to stay with you for example, where as a set of encyclopaedias are perfect for storage. If you can determine any items you no longer want to keep in either circumstance, consider taking them to a charity shop or engaging your sales skills at a car boot sale.
Start with the essentials
When it comes to moving, make sure to pack an essentials box for the first few nights. In an ideal world you would not have to work during the moving period, however most people will only have a day or two as a luxury in which to pack, move, and unpack on the other side – not to mention organise which boxes are going into storage too! Therefore in the essentials boxes, include basic implements which you need to live such as: crockery, utensils, any foodstuffs appropriate for transport and any useful appliances such as a kettle. Label it clearly and if possible have it packed into the removals van or lorry last.
Be careful not to bury important documents in a mound of non-distinct possessions. They should be kept separate, in folders, and left out of the packing process until later. When it comes to loading a van, you’ll want to start with the items you need least. Make sure you label boxes and keep them in their appropriate room until it comes time to move. Keeping an inventory of boxes and their contents per room will be invaluable if anything goes missing.
Put heavy items in small boxes, or half fill larger boxes with one part heavy and one part light items.
Blankets make good filler, and help protect fragile objects.
Socks, pillowcases, stuffed toys – these things are great for filling gaps and protecting your other possessions from the bumps they might receive along the way.
Wrap items and layer boxes with newspaper sheets for added protection.
Invest in some heavy-duty black bags, rather than risk having to re-pack on the road-side when a standard bag splits.
Involve everyone: make a task list, delegate, and make sure no two people are doing the same job or stepping on each other’s toes – although if you’re moving alone or employ a removals company to do this for you, you can just sit back and relax!
Packing for Storage
Packing for storage requires many of them same steps as packing for removal. You’ll again need to get rid of clutter, create an inventory and clearly label boxes. The key difference is to make sure no restricted items go into storage; this includes the obvious like pets and flammable materials such as fireworks. In addition to this you might want to check the rules for the individual storage unit, for example some self-storage companies will allow garden items like a lawn mower, whereas others might, so it is always worth checking before you take on your packing task.
TVs, sound systems and computers can be awkward if you don’t have the boxes they came in. Resist the temptation to wrap the TV in a blanket and invest in a new box of the right size that you can fill with something like Styrofoam. The process for packing appliances is again the same, with the additional task of making sure everything is clean before it’s boxed. At all times be mindful of what you will need in your new home, a wide screen television might be a wonderful luxury, but it if it doesn’t fit into your new home pop it into self-storage.