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Moving Supplies 101: The Checklist

MyApartmentMap - Nov 10, 2010

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Let’s take a look at the list of packing supplies you’ll need:

Boxes: Though this may seem a given, as we have mentioned earlier, movers tend to underestimate just how much stuff they have to move; so pick up as many boxes as possible. A good way to avoid spending more money than necessary is to visit local liquor and grocery stores. Both typically stack unwanted boxes at the front of the store just for your purposes. If they haven’t, ask if they have any available. You can purchase moving boxes, but wouldn’t you prefer free ones? Moreover, the boxes from liquor and grocery stores have been used to carry heavy breakable items, so as long as you tape up the bottoms of the boxes, your items will be just as safe. Note: it’s always a good idea to get a variety of sizes of boxes.

Bubble wrap/newspaper: Both bubble wrap and newspaper work great for protecting valuable breakables you may have. Typically, you won’t find free bubble wrap unless you do a little searching on local community sites. If you have few items to protect, it may be worth your time to purchase a small roll; however, if you are like most, you have full sets of dinnerware, vases, glasses, etc etc…and the more cost effective option would be to just start saving and collecting old newspapers. Newspaper will protect your valuables as long as you use enough and pack tight. 

Sealing tape: This is one product you do not want to scrimp on. Remember to buy more rolls than you think you will need (always overestimate), and buy sturdy packing tape. You can find packing tape at a moving supply store or discount department store…it’s all the same, as long as you stick to a good reliable brand that costs a bit more. When your personal belongings make it safe to your final destination, without a box bottom giving way, you’ll understand why it was imperative to spend a little bit more on tape.

Pre-printed labels and markers: Though you may think you’ll remember what you put in each box, even the most photographic memories will be at a loss after a few long, hard days of moving. Plus, if you have solicited some help from friends or family, they won’t have a clue what’s in what box or what box goes in what room. This is why it’s necessary to get either some pre-printed labels (at moving stores, discount department stores, etc) that say “Fragile”, “This End Up”, or “Kitchen”, etc; or just some heavy duty thick markers to write what you want on each box. This way, you and all concerned, will know how and where to carry a specific box.

Miscellaneous: Other items to consider that most people need but do not think of:

Box cutter: for easy opening after the move.

Mattress bag: Though mattress bags may seem extraneous, this small investment will save your mattress from being damaged due to rain, mud, and anything else it could come in contact with; either in the back of your truck, the roof of you car, or from vehicle to house.

Specialty boxes: for artwork, mirrors, and other fragile and awkwardly shaped items. Again, saving your artwork and mirrors from ruin is priceless compared to the cost a couple speciality boxes.

Air-filled bags, Styrofoam peanuts, and stretch wrap: are also extra protective moving accessories you can invest in if you are uncomfortable with just newspaper and/or bubble wrap. With all the moving supplies to begin, remember: start early and group items in boxes according to room. This way, during the chaos of moving day, you and/or fellow movers can pick up a box, read where it’s going, and place it accordingly. When it comes time to unpack…the items will already be organized by room; saving you needless hours of stress.