By Nancy Mattia, CTW Features
Packing for a move to a new home involves time, a good attitude, and lots and lots of bubble wrap. It’s easy to make a gaffe, like not buying enough tape dispensers for your packing crew. Take a look at errors people often make so you can avoid them when it’s your time to purge and pack:
Emptying out every closet and drawer in your current home into cardboard boxes isn’t anyone’s idea of a good time. But it’s something that needs to be done, and eventually, your moving deadline will be just days away and you’ll have to pull a few all-nighters to get the job done. Instead of creating such stress for yourself, create a moving timeline with realistic goals, such as giving yourself a few days to pack up the living room. After a while, you may even enjoy the experience when you see how many boxes you’ve filled.
2. Putting heavy items in big boxes
This gets a thumbs-down because the boxes will likely be too heavy for the average person to carry and may even fall apart if they’re too weighty. Instead, it’s better to put your hardcover books and other heavyweights in small boxes. How best to use a big box? For lightweight items such as curtains and pillows.
3. Labeling boxes improperly
To keep track of what’s where, assign each box its own number and write it on the box with a permanent marker like a Sharpie, along with what room it goes to. Write the info not just on the top of the box but on each side too, and write big. Also, use a notes app or paper notebook to jot down what’s in each container so you’ll be able to find something like aspirin in a hurry.
4. Going cheap with the padding material
Dishes, glasses, and other fragile items should have plenty of cushioning around them to reduce the chance of breakage during transit. Create a thick base on the bottom of boxes with scrunched packing paper or bubble wrap. After placing wrapped items in a box, fill any empty spaces with more paper. Place another layer of paper on top of the items before closing the box.
5. Running out of boxes and tape
Dashing to the store for supplies whenever you run out will eat up time that should be devoted to packing. Use an online calculator, available at moving.com, homedepot.com, and uhaul.com to name a few, to estimate how many boxes and rolls of tape you’ll need. Plan on getting boxes in different sizes plus specialty ones for dishes, mirrors, and clothes.
6. Not designating a spot for completed boxes
Rather than leaving boxes wherever you closed them, move them to an out-of-the-way space like the guest room or a corner of the living room.