14 Packing Tips for Moving From the Pros

A few secrets to help you make moving less awful.

Is moving one of the most stressful activities ever? This study from E.ON says that 62% of respondents listed moving as the most stressful life event. In our line of work we interact with people moving quite often, and throughout the years we’ve learned some great ways to make the process smoother and less stressful... and we want to share this gold nuggets of information with you!

1| Size matters. Put lighter items like sheets and clothing in larger boxes, and heavier items like small appliances and books in smaller boxes. That way, you’ll be able to comfortably carry everything.

2| Fill in gaps. Don’t leave big spaces between items in your moving boxes. Instead, pack the gaps with clothing, towels, or sheets to keep items from shifting.

3| Pack boxes according to room. Keep like items together and label by room. Many sources suggest color coding boxes by room, too.

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4| Nest breakables together. For example, wrap a small bowl in packing paper, then place in a cereal bowl and wrap the cereal bowl in paper. Nested items will help brace each other during the move.

5| Allot extra time for the kitchen. The kitchen, with all its breakables, will take the most packing time. Plan accordingly!

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6| Ask family, friends, and neighbors for boxes. More often than not you’ll find that someone around you has many boxes in great condition that you can use, saving you some money by not having to buy your own.

7| Tape is your friend. When taking apart furniture and electronics, tape small pieces to the largest item or its box so you don’t lose small items during the move.

8| Assemble a moving essentials basket. With everything you own going in boxes, you’ll need certain essentials to be within your grasp. Assemble this essentials basket from Life Storage, which includes clean bedding, cleaning supplies, a toolkit, writing supplies, tape, and scissors.

9| Repurpose items. See what can multitask as a moving box. Pack hampers, suitcases, purses, baskets, and storage totes and use them as moving boxes. Two birds, one stone!

10| Pack for an hour a day. If you can break up your packing sessions, do it. But, don’t skip a day, either. Pack for an hour every day leading up to your move. You’ll feel accomplished but not overwhelmed.

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11| Save on space with clothes. Try rolling clothes instead of folding—they’ll take up much less space.

12| Avoid spills. Have lots of toiletry bottles? Screw the caps off of lotion and shampoo and place a layer of plastic wrap on the opening. Replace the cap ... and avoid spills!

13| Take pictures. Before you take apart anything complicated (like a TV or stereo setup), take a photo so you will remember later how it’s supposed to be assembled.

14| Play music. Stay motivated with your favorite psych-up playlist or podcast. We believe in you!

Need more packing tips for moving or real estate advice? Our blog is a trustworthy resource, with new content written regularly by real estate pros. Here are some of our recent moving posts:

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