Are you moving soon? Are you dreading packing? We can help! While we are happy to pack for you, we also want to offer some tips and tricks to help you with your upcoming move.
- How long does packing take?
- How to pack clothing
- Other tips to pack clothes
- How to pack your books
How Long Does Packing Take?
No one can give you a definitive answer on how much time you’ll need to get ready for moving day, but the information below should give you a rough idea. You may want to add an extra day or two to your estimate just to be on the safe side, and start planning early. The more time you spend planning and preparing for your move ahead of time, the less stressed you’ll be when it’s actually time to pack your home.
Your Home’s Size
As a starting point, plan on spending one day packing for every room of your home. For example, if you live in a studio apartment, it should take you one day to pack your belongings. If you live in a two-bedroom home, assume it will take you at least three days, depending on the size of the rooms. Add an extra day or two if you’re packing for the first time, and don’t forget to dedicate at least a day to packing the garage.
When calculating the number of days, treat each day as an eight-hour chunk. In other words, if you estimate it will take you three days to pack for your move but only spend four hours a day packing, you’ll obviously need to set aside six calendar days.
Take into account the actual size of your rooms, too. A three-bedroom, 1,200-square-foot home will usually require less time to pack than a three-bedroom, 3,000-square-foot home. Even though basic layout may be similar, the larger home likely has larger bedrooms with larger closets and much more stuff.
Your Home’s Contents
The more stuff you have, the more time it is going to take to pack it. As you count the number of rooms, consider what’s in each room. You may only need an hour or two to pack a nearly empty guest room, but the garage—with its cabinets, drawers and shelves—could alone take several days. It just depends on how much you have to pack.
Your lifestyle and interests also factor into determining how much time you need to pack for a move. For example, a minimalist who owns less stuff will have less to move than an avid sports memorabilia collector. The collector will not have only more items to move but those items will require extra attention during the packing process.
Also, consider the number of people living in your house. It may not look like it, but if you have two children sharing a room, they probably have more stuff in that room than one child would. This idea applies throughout the house. For example, if you live alone, you probably own far fewer plates and glasses than a family of four.
Finally, plan on moving taking extra time if you are downsizing since you’ll need to sell, donate, trash or find new homes for the items that won’t fit into your smaller space. This will take time. How much? That depends on how much stuff you’ve accumulated over the years and how drastically you’re downsizing.
How Organized You Are
Your move will take less time if you are organized. For example, a craft room with neatly packed totes of supplies will require much less effort to pack than one brimming with scraps and unfinished projects. Take stock of what’s in each room and estimate how long it will take to sort through its contents.
You’ll want to add a day for each unorganized room. Have a bedroom with a mountain of toys and clothes blocking the door? Plan on spending a day going through it and discarding what’s broken or doesn’t fit. What about that “junk” room you always close off whenever anyone visits? Add a day to organize it. You’ll also want an extra day to hold a garage sale or take items to Goodwill once you’ve organized.
Whether You Have Help
With help, you can shave hours or even days off your move time. If you estimate it will take four, eight-hour days to pack your home, divide that in half if a spouse or friend lends a hand. Even if that person only helps for one day, that one day still reduces the amount of time you need to devote yourself to the task.
Depending on your kids’ ages, they can contribute, too. Older kids can almost entirely pack their rooms themselves. Subtract a day off your estimate of how many days you need. You may even be able to enlist them to help with packing other parts of the home and subtract more time. Younger kids can help, too, by sorting through toys or clothes. Whatever they don’t want, you don’t have to pack.
How to Pack Clothing
Step 1: Organize, declutter and launder clothing.
Before you pack your clothing and wardrobe items, you should be sure they are clean and free of stains. Wash all of your things and let them dry completely before folding or hanging them. Resist the temptation to pack stained or damaged seasonal items without having them treated or repaired. Now’s the time to assess your entire closet and leave behind items that don’t make the cut.
Consider the following packing tips:
- Organize clothing by season and family member.
- Create piles of like items and match a packing box with the size of the pile.
- Discard as much unused clothing as possible to avoid packing more than necessary.
- Separate out seasonal clothing that you won’t need during the move.
Step 2: Pack off-season clothing ahead of time.
Once all your clothing is organized, start packing off-season clothing well in advance. This is clothing you won’t be using within three months of your moving date. Label these boxes, so you know that these don’t need to be unpacked right away. If you’re storing them for longer than a couple of months, make sure to protect the garments from moisture and pests.
Step 3: Create a “moving week” box of clothing.
Grab a suitcase, duffel bag or box for each member of your family and set aside a “moving week” wardrobe. After a long move, unpacking could take weeks or even months to complete. Give yourself a cushion by packing clothing you can wear during that first week. Be sure to include all the essentials like enough socks, underwear, and pajamas.Moving is stressful enough. Let us help you!
Other Tips to Pack Clothes
Try these eight other hacks to help your packing go smoothly:
- Use wardrobe boxes. Hanging clothing should be stored in enclosed boxes or garment racks when traveling a long distance in a moving truck.
- Leave clothes in their drawers. For clothing within a dresser drawer, consider leaving all clothing in its place and seal the drawers and doors, so they don’t fly open when they’re moved. This technique works best if you have professional movers who are used to moving heavy furniture. If it seems safer, remove the drawers, seal them with plastic, and move them individually
- Wrap hanging clothes. If you’re moving a short distance, hanging clothes can be piled onto a cart or draped over a box right on the hanger. Just be sure to tie hangers together and move them in groupings of 5-15. Cover each grouping completely with garbage bags or sheets to protect from dust and dirt.
- Vacuum seal off-season clothes. If you are only packing away your off-season clothing for a short period, consider vacuum sealing to save space during the move. Clothing needs air circulation when being stored for a long period.
- Pack delicates and shoes separately. It’s important to keep all your delicates and shoes separate from other clothing to prevent damage. Take extra care to wrap silk and other delicate fabrics in tissue paper to add a layer of protection.
- Create clothing bundles. The bundle packing method makes it easier to move clothes in and out of boxes in an organized way. Lay one large item across a flat surface, like a jacket. On top of this item, layer a smaller piece. Then put an item smaller than that. Once the jacket is full, wrap it around the other clothing to create a bundle. Toss this and other bundles inside a cardboard box with the heaviest on the bottom.
- Use small boxes: clothing is heavy. It’s tempting to load up a large cardboard box with as much clothing as you can stuff it with. Clothes can get very heavy, which will make a move much harder on your back. Resist this urge and use smaller boxes or totes instead.
- Use luggage to move a wardrobe. Think of how you pack a suitcase when you go on vacation. To make space, you might roll clothing into small bundles. Use this technique to move your most used clothing.
How to Pack Your Books
Packing books is hard but not impossible. Here are a few tips and tricks to help pack your books in the most efficient and effective way:
- Trim your collection. This one is hard, but it’s a good reality check. Are you really going to read all those books? Ask yourself this question and answer earnestly. If you know you’re not going to, donate it! Local schools and secondhand bookshops are always looking for donations.
- Work ahead of time! Packing is awful, and books in particular take a lot of work to fit into boxes. If you know you need to move, start packing ahead of time! It will save you time and energy in the near future. Perhaps do one shelf a day for a week? Eventually, you’ll see lots of empty spaces and want to get it all done.
- Organize! Store boxes in books based on how you want to unpack them later. That may be by size, color, genre, or alphabetic order. No matter what you choose, however, make sure you stick to that order. Most importantly, LABEL YOUR BOXES!
- Boxes, boxes, boxes! Make sure the boxes you use are sturdy enough to handle heavy loads. These can be durable boxes from your local grocery or liquor store, or they can be professional boxes that are designed to handle books and heavy weight. Another option is to use plastic totes with lids or your rolling suitcases.
- Unpack books early. Often when we’re moving, unpacking books can be really daunting. Getting them out of the way is the best option. Out of sight, out of mind! And you can start reading faster!
At Advance Moving and Storage, we are movers who are here to help you have the best move possible in Greenville, New Bern, Kinston, NC, and surrounding areas. We’re dedicated to making sure you get everything you need on your next move. Large and small moves welcome – whether you’re local, intrastate, or interstate – our courteous, experienced personnel are ready to help. With over 20 years of experience in the industry, no matter what you need, our dedicated staff is ready to help. Call Advance Moving and Storage, Inc. for all of your moving needs in Eastern NC.