How to Pack
How to Pack for relocation
Moving homes can be an emotional moment; leaving memories and friends behind can be overwhelming, especially if you are moving farther from one’s current home or moving cities even. There can be a thrill even, of exploring new places and cultures but finally it all boils down to one thing – Panic! It can open a key to the Pandora’s Box to the troubles of relocating. Those who have relocated before can vouch for the paranoia that sets in when you think of all the excessive shopping that you would have indulged at seasonal sales. And images continue to haunt you. Well ….been there, done that!
But how does one begin?
The task on hand looks so mammoth that it is easy to get overwhelmed not knowing how to tackle the problem.
Look below for some pointers which might enable you to have a better grip of the situation.
The very first thing that one should do in such a case is start early.
Give oneself a good heads up time so that you have enough time to do things at a leisurely pace, in an organized manner without disrupting your daily routine.
A minimum of two months would be ideal.
Chart an activity chart wherein you designate yourself tasks and demarcate things to be done at macro level so that your time is well spent attending to the tasks that have to be carried out.
You can delegate work to members of the family and friends even so as to make things easier and manageable.
Pick up materials required for Packing
Shortlist stores which will be able to provide you strong similar sized (to help in stacking) cardboard boxes required to pack away material.
Small boxes, middle sized boxes, big sized boxes would be required along with bubble wrap roll, cellophane/masking tape, stretch wrap for furniture, old newspapers, markers, labels etc.
Hire a moving Van
It makes good sense to call and negotiate and fix in advance with a reputed firm to provide you a vehicle for moving out. Depending on the number of things you have you might be able to determine the size of the vehicle.
Be sure to list out the number of items that you will have especially furniture pieces with sizes and electronic gadgets, vehicles etc so that there are no last minute surprises on the size of the vehicle.
A trusted one may be a little more expensive than the many options you will have at hand but atleast you are sure your goods are in safe hands.
Check if they offer any insurance too.
Start with the least used room
It is a good idea to start with the least used room so that things which are not used on a daily level can be sorted out and packed away faster.
You could proceed to the store rooms, bedrooms and lastly to the kitchen. Cutlery and dinnerware could also get packed away just leaving aside a few which you might use till the last.
Declutter Declutter and Declutter!!
Please go through your belongings and make an honest attempt to segregate things that you MUST take and things that you can let go off.
Make piles of items that can be donated / given away specially when it comes to clothes, books, furnishings that have become way too old or not in your size and which there is no point holding onto.
Giving away to charity is a good idea.
And this also takes ensures you have lesser things to worry packing for.
Good condition items but which you have no use for can be sold in reselling /used item groups or gifted off to deserving friends.
Do not exceed a weight limit of more than 30 pounds per box.
Exceeding which might be plain disastrous.
You might not find it easy to lug it around and chances of injuring yourself are higher.
One tip is to pack lighter things (pillows/cushions etc) in bigger boxes and also same holds true for the reverse i.e. heavier things in lighter boxes.
Packing it right.
Use lots of newspaper either rolled or shreds to use in your packing boxes so that it fills up existing gaps and keeps your items snug in place.
Less movement ensures less breakage. Bubble wrap each breakable item like glasses, bowls, plates etc. separately and tape the loose end tight so it stays in place and don’t rub against each other damaging or chipping edges. Furniture surfaces also need to be properly bubble wrapped and taped ensuring the taping doesn’t leave the sticky gum on surfaces.
Further thick cardboard can be used over furniture parts.
You can enlist the help of a carpenter who will help in unassembling larger pieces of furniture and also it will make sense to number or label the furniture parts so that when you assemble it together again you will know which part goes where.
Make sure you place the unassembled pack parts together.
Labelling and colour coding
It makes sense to have your items labelled and numbered boldly along the sides so that it is visible even while stacked.
Colour coding can be done room wise and help of kids in the house can be enlisted thus delegating work effectively. Also FRAGILE in bold so that you yourself will be reminded to handle breakables carefully.
Put heavier boxes at the bottom
Though this may sound like common sense mentioning it is very important.
By keeping the heavier boxes underneath the lighter boxes you ensure that breakable items don’t get crushed during the ride.
Boxes full of books and furniture parts are examples of what should get loaded first.
Dispose off hazardous materials
It is important to follow this without exception for very obvious reasons.
Also it makes sense to remove batteries from appliances so that they don’t leak in transit.
A list of things which will give you a pointer for hazardous materials is given below.
Boxes of Paint
Cleaning products containing bleach or acid
o Fuel in vehicles ( most of the times only a bare minimum is allowed to be left inside vehicles which are transported)
Prepare a box of essential items
It is very important to make a box of essential items, things that you would need immediately once you move over.
It is surprising how thoughtful this tip could be, as inspite of all the organizing it does take a while to get things in control.
This box could have
• Snacks, canned or boxed food,
• Electric stove,
• tea leaves / coffee , sugar etc and utensils needed to make it,
• eating utensils
• towels and dishcloths
• baby essential supplies
• Food for the Pet if any
• Instruction Manuals for Electric Appliances with remotes
• First Aid Kit
• Tool Box
This should more or less keep your needs in check wherein you don’t have open up and rummage through various boxes to locate things required immediately after you touch base.
You will find these tips more or less useful and given adequate time for packing you fill be thoroughly organized and equipped to handle the stress better.
Who says relocating needs to get chaotic and difficult!
So go get going……