You are a Packing Pro Now
Now that you've gone through a mountain of boxes and tape, your garage looks like a warehouse, and you're eating off of with forks leftover from your last fast food meal, the easy part is over. Now that you're all packed up, a day or two prior to the truck arriving, it's time to work on the last few items.
You will likely need a ladder for this part, along with the tools listed in our last post. If you've had big window treatments you will likely need some wood filler, in addition. If you are moving yourself, you will need moving blankets, baggies or small containers, and plastic wrap on a large roll for furniture, mirrors, art and lighting.
Roll with the Punches and Plan Ahead
Packing for a move takes quite a while, and you need to plan for that if you are going to handle it yourself. A large dry-erase calendar should help keep you on schedule, and you can edit it as changes occur. There are three stages of a move--purging, packing, and the move itself--and staying organized with steps 1 and 2 will make step 3 a lot less stressful.
One of the worst errors you can make as a pack-it-yourselfer is putting too much in boxes. Books are a big offender; they are relatively not large but they weigh a lot. Four or five hardbacks is adequate for a small box, so fill in the rest of the box with lighter weight accessories--coasters, photos, magazines--that will go back in the same room or bookcase with the books themselves.
The Day Prior to the Big Move in Houston
Considering the big day is tomorrow, it is time to tackle the pantry and the fridge. Unless your move is close by, it’s advisable to take all the unwrapped non-perishables to a food pantry, and toss the rest. For a short trip, you can place perishables in coolers containing dry ice, but food is a lot like everything else--is unpacking those half-empty jelly jars worth your time?
Movers most of the time want the art and mirrors protected in bubble wrap or crated before they load them. If not, you still need to cover each piece (flannel sheets, beach towels, etc. work great between pieces) and move them in your car instead of the moving van. You can secure lighting with a seatbelt if you're moving yourself.
If you put any of your furniture together, now's the time to take it apart. Most furniture can be dissembled using a slot or Phillips head screwdriver and a small hammer. Keep the bolts, screws, and other hardware in a baggie or container and label it, and tape it to the inside of a bed rail or a drawer so you can put it all back together again without having to run out to the hardware store up the street. It is a smart idea to take photos of the hardware in case something gets misplaced--and it will.
Pack up your cleaning supplies and plan on taking them to the new residence in your car--the chemicals can't go on the truck.
Cover furniture in the moving blankets and hold the blankets in place with the plastic wrap. The wrap won't mar finishes and keeps drawers in place when chests are moving around.
Moving Day in Houston
If you've spent the last night in your residence, you probably slept on mattresses on the floor, because your beds are in pieces. You have also packed a small bag with necessities for the day since all your clothes are in boxes. Toss your linens and towels in a large box or bag, and away you go. Movers schedule their days in blocks, so a bigger move could take multiple days. They will likely be at your house first thing and ready to get started—the clock starts when they get there, not after you've had your coffee. It's going to be a strenuous day, so respect their time and expertise by being prepared for them.
Follow these tips for proper packing and you'll be very pleased with your new residence—particularly when you can find the coffee pot.