Packing your home for moving can be quite the challenge, especially if you’re not sure which moving supplies you need or where to even begin. There’s a whole house to pack, after all! Instead of stressing, consider applying these moving and packing tips. This guide is full of tips and tricks designed to help you efficiently pack your belongings and prepare them for transit. It also provides moving supplies recommendations that will make your job easier. Here’s our room-by-room moving and packing guide to get you headed in the right direction.
General packing and moving tips
Begin by purchasing all the boxes you will need. You can order moving boxes of various sizes on uhaul.com. You can even get your moving boxes delivered to your home. Before you start tossing your belongings into boxes, there are some general packing and moving tips you should be aware of so you can stay organized and do with as little stress as possible.
1. Start packing the things/rooms you use least.
Make a mental note of everything you might need in the days leading up to your move, like clothing, toiletries, kitchen items, electronics and some cleaning products. Leave these things for last and start with spare rooms, closets, decor and anything else that isn’t a necessity.
2. Pack one room at time.
It’s easier to stay organized when you focus on packing one room at a time. It also helps to keep items from the same rooms in the same boxes. That way, you can accurately label your boxes and unload them into the correct rooms at your new place.
3. Pack heavy items in small boxes.
It’s easier to manage heavy, bulky items when they are packed in a smaller box than a large one, as it minimizes shifting. If you only have larger boxes available, use Furniture Pads, towels or a few small, soft items to fill the space.
4. Pack an “open first” box and load it onto the truck last.
Any essential items you might need during your first day/night at your new home should be packed in this box. It might include a phone charger, basic bathroom items, change of clothes and other necessities. Pack and load this box last so you have access to the items quickly and easily.
5. Keep medication or anything you need to use throughout moving day in the cab
This includes wallets, cell phones, important documents of any kind and medication. Pack these items in a box or bag and carry it with you so you can access it at any time. You won’t have easy access once the truck is loaded and moving.
6. Don’t use duct-tape to seal boxes. Use packing tape instead.
You may have some duct tape or masking tape lying around that you want to put to good use, but try to refrain. Instead, use moving or packing tape to secure your boxes. These varieties of tape are specially designed to hold cardboard boxes together under stressful conditions. Duct and masking tape, on the other, can peel off in heat or moisture.
7. Dissemble furniture and save small pieces in a bag taped to the piece of furniture.
Kitchen tables, TV stands, bed frames and more; many of these items can be disassembled, making them easier to pack and move. If you have the time, take everything apart and store all the screws, nuts and bolts in bags taped to the furniture.
8. Pack heavier items at the bottom of the boxes.
Another packing hack for heavy items: keep them at the bottom of the box! This keeps your boxes from being too top heavy and toppling while inside the truck. This rule applies to loading the truck as well: place heavier boxes on the bottom of the stacks. See more tips on how to load your moving truck here.
How to pack a living room
There are few items most people have in their living, including sofas, a television and probably a coffee table. But beyond those, living rooms vary quite a bit. These are some general tips that will accommodate most living rooms.
2. When possible, pack small electronics (gaming consoles, DVRs, cable boxes and stereo) in their original boxes. If you don’t have the original boxes, Enviro-Bubble® can be used to protect these items.
3. Video games, books and movies can be stacked and stored in Small Boxes.
4. Dissemble any furniture you can for added packing and moving convenience. Wrap with Furniture Pads for protection and store small pieces in plastic bags taped to the furniture.
5. Use a Furniture Dolly to move couches, coffee tables, shelves and other large furniture.
6. Roll up your rugs and protect them from dirt and dust using Mover’s Wrap.
7. All fragile decorations and picture frames should be wrapped in Packing Paper or Enviro-Bubble® before being placed in a box.
How to pack my bathroom
Packing a bathroom for moving can be tricky because there are a lot of small items, many of which have the potential to spill if they’re not packed correctly. With many different-sized boxes for sale, it is best to choose smaller boxes so that items don't shift under too much stacking. By effectively using the recommended moving supplies and implementing these tips, your bathrooms can be packed quickly and efficiently.
1. Remove the lids from all shampoos, lotions and oils, place a piece of Mover’s Wrap over the opening, then put the lid back in place.
2. Place all small items – nail clippers, razors, tweezers, etc. – in clear plastic bags. Place the bags in Medium or Small Boxes.
3. Roll towels up and place them in a Medium Box.
4. Wrap picture frames and other fragile decorations in Packing Paper then place them in your boxes. You can use rolled up towels to fill empty spaces and provide cushion.
5. Store cleaning supplies in a Medium Box using a Cell Kit so nothing topples and spills. Make sure these are sealed tight – use Mover’s Wrap if necessary.
6. Make a note of any cleaning supplies or liquids that need to remain at room temperature. These may need to be safely discarded before moving.
7. Seal all your packed boxes with Box/Packaging Tape so there are not spills if a box topples in transit.
How to pack my garage
Packing and moving a garage can be a somewhat daunting task, considering this part of the home is often used to store all the extra stuff you may have forgotten about. Luckily, there are ways to minimize clutter and pack your garage neatly. Here’s how:
1. Time permitting, try getting rid of things you don’t need before you start packing. Have a yard sale, donate to a local charity or simply put items on the curb with a sign marked “free.”
2. Keep a large trash receptacle on hand. Use this for anything that can be thrown away so it doesn’t end up in your boxes.
3. If you have a tool box, use Mover’s Wrap to hold the drawers in place and to secure tools inside. Tools are often too heavy to pack in cardboard boxes, so keep them in the toolbox where possible.
4. Drain your power tools of gasoline before packing them. Any sharp tools, like saws and lawn sheers, should be wrapped in a Quilted Pad.
5. Small, loose tools and other handheld items should be wrapped in Mover’s Wrap and placed in their original box if you have it. If not, wrap in Paper Pads and pack in Small and Medium boxes.
6. Anything already in a box – seasonal decorations, old clothing, anything in storage, etc. – should be left in the box and secured with Box/Packaging Tape. Don’t create more work for yourself!
How to pack my kitchen
Packing your kitchen requires some extra care and kitchen-specific supplies. There’s a lot to pack if you’re counting food, appliances, décor and cutlery, which can feel overwhelming. However, by implementing these tips and using the right supplies, packing your kitchen can be a piece of cake.
1. Stop buying perishable food a week or two prior to moving so you can cut back on wasted food when you pack. Donate unwanted non-perishable and sealed foods to a food bank so you have less to pack.
2. Pack extra dishware, cutlery, pots and pans, decorations and anything you won’t need in the days leading up to the move first. Leave only a few cups, plates, bowls, silverware and pots and pans.
3. Pack your glassware using Cushion Foam and the Dish Saver Kit. The kit includes foam pouches for your plates and a cell-divider for glasses. Keep like-sized items together and stack where possible.
4. Use a Glass Pack Kit for glassware, crystal, stemware and porcelain. Wrap each item in Packing Paper before placing in the box for added protection. The Dish Barrel Box can be used for extra fragile items.
6. Use Mover’s Wrap to seal all silverware in the flatware organizer. Place this in a box.
7. Use Enviro-Bubble® to wrap small kitchen appliances and place them in a Medium Box.
8. Wrap large kitchen appliances in Furniture Pads and Mover’s Wrap for protection against dents and dings. Use an appliance dolly load them onto the truck.
9. If possible, disassemble your dining room furniture for more convenient packing and moving. Wrap the pieces with Furniture Pads and secure the small pieces in a bag taped to the piece of furniture.
How to pack fine china
Fine china requires extra protection, especially during a move. There are some simple things you can do to safely move china, starting with having the right supplies. We recommend a Dish Saving Kit, Cell Kit, Dish Barrel Box and Glass Pack Kit. Those supplies plus these packing techniques will assure your china makes to your new home in one piece.
1. Work on a flat, soft surface, like carpet or an area rug. If you have a tile home, lay down some blankets.
3. When wrapping glasses, mugs and bowls, crumble Packing Paper and place the crumbled balls inside the hollow areas. Do this before wrapping the outside.
4. Use an appropriately-sized box for your collection. If the box is too large, the items are more likely to shift. If it’s too small, you won’t be able to comfortably fit everything. Glass Pack Kits work well for protecting fragile items and mimimizing shifting.
5. Stack plates face up in the bottom of the box. Avoid placing items inside one another and instead, create single layers. Use extra Cushion Foam between layers for added protection.
How to pack a home office
Home offices are somewhat underrated in terms of being a pain to pack. Not only are there expensive electronics, there are also a lot of important documents that need safely packing. There are also books, decorations and some furniture. Avoid feeling overwhelmed by gathering the right moving supplies and following these tips.
1. Organize your documents. Start by making a pile just for documents to shred or recycle. It doesn’t make sense to pack more than you need, so try to thin your document piles as best you can.
2. Start packing your remaining documents. Try to organize these documents based on a system. For example, keep medical records together, financial paperwork together and so on.
3. If you have a file cabinet, be sure the drawers are shut tightly using either the built-in lock, or by wrapping the cabinet in Mover’s Wrap.
4. For loose documents and folders, organize into categories and create stacks. Place your stacks in a Medium Box and tape the lids shut with Box/Packaging Tape.
5. For electronics – Wi-Fi routers, keyboards, computer towers, monitors, paper shredders, etc. – use Enviro-Bubble® to keep them safe in transit and load these into a Large Box.
6. If you have hired movers, designate a Small Box for your most sensitive documents and take this with you in the car. This includes birth certificates, social security cards and other crucial information.
How to pack dress shirts (and other clothing)
Dress shirts and clothing in general have their own rules for packing. In general, you want to keep them in their usual position, whether that’s folded a certain way, hanging up or otherwise. Keep these tips in mind when packing dress shirts and other garments for moving.
1. Go through your clothing and pull out anything you no longer wear or need. Use a trash bag or extra box to collect these items. You can take them to a donation center, sell gently-used articles to a thrift store or give them away to friends. This will lessen your packing load.
2. Be sure your dirty clothes are clean before packing. Even seemingly clean clothes can carry dust and odors that may contaminate other clothing when packed together.
3. Make sure your clothes are completely dry. Damp clothes densely packed in a tight space can lead to mildew growth.
4. Pack your hanging clothing using a Wardrobe Box; the Shorty Wardrobe® Box works for dress shirts, the Wardrobe for a variety of garments, Grand Wardrobe for dresses, suit and long jackets and the Laydown Wardrobe for seasonal items.
5. Don’t remove the clothes in your dresser. Instead, use Mover’s Wrap to keep the drawers shut during the move and move the dresser as is.
6. When packing non-hanging clothing in standard cardboard boxes, remember to avoid over-stuffing. Not only does this make your boxes easier to carry, it prevents the bottom of the box from collapsing.
7. If desired, line your cardboard boxes in Packing Paper. This will provide additional shielding for your clothing from rain, dust and debris during the move.
8. If you have suitcases and duffle bags handy, you can use them in addition to small and medium boxes to pack your non-hanging clothing. Both the rolling method and flat fold are useful folding techniques.
How to pack a bedroom
Most bedrooms have many of the same items, like mattresses, bed frames, dressers, vanities and closet organizers. It doesn’t matter so much where you start, just that you follow these packing tips to stay organized and use the correct supplies.
1. Use a Large Box to pack and store sheets, bedding and other linens. You can fold these items flat or roll them up to save space.
2. Use a Mattress Bag for both the mattress and box spring.
3. Disassemble your bed frame if possible. Keep the small pieces together in a sandwich bag and tape that to one of the large pieces of the bed frame so nothing is lost.
4. Don’t completely empty your dresser! Instead, using Mover’s Wrap to keep the drawers shut so you can conveniently move your dresser and clothing at once. If you have heavy items in the drawers, you may want to remove them and pack in a Medium Box.
6. Use sandwich bags to pack small items like jewelry. Pack these backs into a Small Box.
7. Wrap picks frames and other fragile decorations in Enviro-Bubble® or Packing Paper and place them in a Medium or Small Box.
8. If you have a television in your bedroom, pack it in a Flat Panel TV Box. Click here if you need help assembling your Flat Panel Kit.
9. Place your laptop in a protective case (if possible). If you don’t have a case, wrap in Enviro-Bubble® and place it in its own Small or Medium Box.
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