Make packing easier by planning ahead. Gather up plenty of sturdy, corrugated boxes, packing paper, bubble wrap, sealing tape and marking pens, along with any furniture covers.
Seal boxes tightly with packing tape. This will prevent dust from entering while in storage or transit.
Wrap furniture legs with protective bubble wrap, furniture covers or pads to prevent scratching. Leave slipcovers on upholstered chairs and cover them with plastic chair covers. Mark bed rail pieces for easier assembly later, then tape or tie them together. Place covers or plastic bags on mattresses to keep them clean during storage.
Label boxes on all sides for easy identification. Keep a list of their contents (as well as pictures and descriptions) at your home or office for reference. Clearly mark all boxes containing fragile items and make sure they are placed on top of heavier, less delicate boxes.
Use valuable space inside dresser drawers and larger appliances. Empty spaces in stoves, refrigerators and drawers are perfect places to store small items such as towels, linens and small, fragile items. Secure items in drawers by filling empty spaces with towels or packing paper.
Use the same size boxes whenever possible for easier stacking. Fill boxes tightly, but take care not to over- or under-pack (bulging boxes tip when stacked, while half full boxes tend to collapse). Use wadded up newsprint, bubble wrap, rags, towels, or blankets to fill in empty spaces. For maximum protection seal boxes with tape.
Pack heavy items like books and tools in small boxes. For easier handling limit the weight of all boxes, regardless of size, to 30lbs. or less.
Clean and dry appliances before storing. Secure all movable parts or wedge and wrap a paper pad around each item for protection. During transport tape all doors shut, but remember to wedge them open for storage.
Pack books flat to protect their spines. Line boxes with plastic and fill empty spaces with packing paper.
Use plenty of paper to pack dishes and glassware. Place a layer of packing paper along the top and bottom of boxes. Wrap each dish and glass separately and cushion them with crumpled paper. Plates are best stacked on edge.
Hang clothes and draperies in wardrobe boxes. These specialized boxes will save you hours of ironing when you arrive at your new home.
Pack lamps and lampshades in individual boxes. Use plenty of clean paper or clothing for padding.
Pad mirrors and paintings with paper. Avoid newsprint as the ink could transfer to your artwork. Place them in special mirror packs or large boxes and label the packaging accordingly.