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Top 5 Packing Tips to Help Make Your Move Less Painful

September 16, 2019

Congratulations! You’ve just purchased a new house or sold your old one.

Now comes the hard part.

Packing up and moving into a new home can be incredibly stressful and time-consuming, especially if you’ve lived in your current one for a long while. Clothes, furniture, and other knick-knacks have a way of accumulating over the years.

How do you know what to take, what to throw away, and what to leave behind?

I have helped many Seattle residents buy and sell their homes over the years and have seen first-hand the challenges they experience when moving. I want to share with you some tips and tricks that can help make your move a little less painful and a whole lot easier.

Document and Take Photos

No matter if you’re hiring a moving company, or packing everything into the proverbial family station wagon, be sure to take lots of photos before you start boxing things up.

Some furniture pieces, such as the dining room and coffee tables, can be taken apart for easier transportation and storage. Take some pictures of how they look before you start taking them apart. Once in your new home, you might have to refer to the images to help put them back together.

If you’re using the services of a moving company, take as many photos as you can of your property. Televisions and other items will sometimes get damaged during the move, and you’ll need these photos to help bolster your insurance claim.

The $20 Rule 

How do you determine what to take with you and what to throw away? While you can pack every single one of your possessions into a car, truck, or moving van, keep in mind that the more you box, the more you’ll have to unbox in your new home.

A good rule of thumb is to throw away items that you can easily replace for under $20. 

For example, do you really need to bring the grungy toilet plunger, that half-used bottle of bleach under the kitchen sink, and the various knick-knacks in your garage that haven’t seen the light of day in over five years?

You’d be surprised how much space you can save by throwing away things that you can replace for $20 or less when you’re finally settled in at your new home. While this method may seem like it’s going to cost more, you’ll probably wind up saving money by not having to pay the movers to load up extra boxes filled with junk.

Towels and Blankets 

Packing supplies are one of the hidden costs of moving into a new place. You’d be surprised at how much bubble wrap, Styrofoam peanuts, and packaging costs once you add it all up.

You can save some money by using your bathroom towels and bedroom blankets as packing materials. Tape your comforter around your big screen television to save on bubble wrap. Bathroom towels of various sizes will fill in the extra space inside your cardboard moving boxes and prevent the contents from shifting about and potentially breaking something.

Moving Liquids 

Shampoos, body wash, and even that unopened paint can find a way to somehow open and spill their contents during your move. The spilled liquid will easily soak through the cardboard box and ruin your clothes or electronics. 

To prevent spills from happening, uncap each item and then take a small sandwich baggy, plastic grocery sack, or Saran wrap and place it tightly over the hole. Then tightly screw the cap back on and double bag each liquid bottle or can with two plastic bags. The plastic acts as a secondary barrier in case the cap comes off.  

If you’re really concerned about spilled liquids, take a cardboard box and line it with some heavy-duty tarp material that you can buy at any home improvement store. This way, if anything spills, it won’t destroy or damage your clothes or other items.

Keep the Small Things Together

“Which box did I put the t.v. remote in?”

Smaller items, such as remote controls, electronic cables, and little trinkets, can easily get lost amidst the shuffle. Most people will have a designated box for each room in the house but will inevitably forget to pack the t.v. remote in the living room box. Designate a box for small items and be sure to seal up the bottom flaps with enough packing tape, so stuff doesn’t slip out.

The same goes for various small hardware parts. People will often unscrew the feet on couches and the stand that allows their t.v. to stay upright and then forget where they placed the screws, nuts, and bolts. 

To avoid having to run down to the hardware store and find a particular type of screw that you lost, simply take a small plastic sandwich bag and put the various hardware pieces inside. Then label it with a permanent black sharpie marker and put it in your little things box. 

Seattle Real Estate Agent

My name is Scott Haveson, and I’ve helped countless people buy and sell their Seattle homes. If you’re planning on moving, give me a call at (206) 953-8311 or contact me via my website. I’m one of the hardest working Seattle Realtors out there and will go extraordinary lengths to help you buy or sell your home.

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Scott is more than just a realtor: in the short time that I have known him he has become a trusted advisor and friend.  I first had the pleasure of working with Scott when I decided to sell my property on the East side.  He went well beyond what I came to expect from other brokers and helped me in every aspect of getting my house ready for sale.  He also gathered the most up-to-date market intelligence so that we could set the right offering price.  Once the sale was done, Scott gave me the education I needed to purchase my new home in Seattle with confidence.  Throughout the process he provided personalized service and had a team of specialists on standby to assist in every aspect of the transaction.  If you’ve spent any time looking at real estate in Seattle recently, you know that every advantage counts.  In today’s competitive market, you need a person like Scott on your side. ~ Mark M.

Buying or selling your perfect Seattle home?

shaveson@windermere.com • (206) 953-8311
214 W McGraw St. Seattle, WA 98119