It's Almost Moving Time Again - Be Prepared And Keep It Stress Free
By Steve L. Madsen
It won't be long before the grip of winter begins to break, the weather warms up and the tradition on moving over the 3 day Memorial Day holiday weekend is upon us. The stress of this big event is enough to strike fear in the heart of almost anyone, but the anxiety can be minimized and kept under control with some simple planning ahead of time.
Once the new location has been found and secured, the next step is planning for the move itself. Before you start boxing everything in sight, sit back and plan it out.
Use some of these tips and techniques to help make things go more smoothly and reduce the chances of something going wrong and your belongings being damaged.
- Set aside any items you may need between the time you pack and unpack. Items such as medications, toothbrushes, soap, important papers, etc. If you will need to make overnight stops along the way, make sure you make a list of the things you will need. Pack these items separately and pack them last - this way they're not buried and you can find them.
- It may be a good idea to do the same thing with some items you will need on the first day.
- Before starting to pack, make sure you have made an inventory list of high cost items such as computers, cameras and other electronic equipment. Make sure you also have the serial numbers written down as well.
- Make sure you have the following handy as you get ready to start packing - a supply of different size boxes, tape, scissors, markers, bubble wrap, newsprint(preferably blank), packing peanuts and maybe some stretch film.
- Pack one room at a time, keeping the weight of boxes at a reasonable level. Mark each box with its proper room and contents. Some people will number the boxes instead if they are having a moving and storage company load, store and then unload the boxes. This might reduce the chances of valuables disappearing during the move if the boxes don't announce their contents. Keep your own list of what is in each numbered box and which room it will go into upon arrival.
- Pack books on end and keep the weight in mind.
- Use stretch film to hold doors, drawers and cushions in place. 5" clear stretch film on a handy dispenser is ideal for this. Don't forget to make use of any empty space in the drawers - fill them with light weight things so as not to overload. It can also be used to wrap rugs, fishing rods, golf clubs and other long items that need to be kept together.
- Pack valuables such as jewelry, coin collections and stock certificates separately and keep them with you.
- If you are loading the moving truck yourself, plan how you will need to do this. Think about how you would want to unload everything at your new location. Remember - first on, last off. Begin by loading the truck with the things you will want to have come off last. When you're done loading the truck, the items you will want and need first and/or most will be right there, ready to come in.
- If anything needs to be disassembled to make the trip, bag the hardware and attach to the item or put in a drawer.
- Foam or cardboard can be used to wrap around table and chair legs or arms to protect the finish. NEVER apply tape directly to furniture surfaces as the finish can be ruined.
- Depending on the distance and time that will be involved in your move, you may want to also have a short term provisions plan. Things such as paper plates, paper towels, plastic knives, forks and spoons, snacks, beverages, trash bags, first aid kit including pain relievers and some moist towelettes can go a long way in getting you through to the end.
A little common sense and some pre-planning will not only help reduce the stresses of moving but will also help get everything to its new location in one piece and without incident. Take some time to plan out as much of the move as possible and have what you will need at hand when the time comes. Plan for the packing and pack with a plan!
About The Author
Steve Madsen is the owner of a Suffolk, Virginia based packing and shipping supply company that ships throughout the US and Canada. He has written numerous articles to help business owners with their packaging operations and participates on several internet forums answering questions and offering advice.