- The secret to a successful move, with minimum stress, requires proper planning and organization.
- Realistically estimate the time available for proper preparation.
- Define areas of responsibility with your mover.
Westchester Movers can accommodate anything from a “bare-bones” move, to a full service move…and anything in between.
WANT TO SAVE MONEY ON YOUR MOVE?
“TIME COSTS MONEY”. The less the mover has to handle, the better packed and prepared you are, the less expensive your moving bill will be. Moving is the best opportunity to rid yourself of accumulated “stuff”. Decide what you want to take with you and what you can live without. Re-upholstering chairs, sofas or refinishing furniture? Cleaning carpets or curtains? Send them out now, have them delivered to your new home and save the cost of moving. Transporting smaller fragile items will also save you money. Beds, wall units, owner assembled furniture, and other items may require disassembly and reassembly. The less your mover has to “do”, the better packed and prepared you are, the less expensive your moving bill will be.
Some General Notes on Packing
Packing is a time consuming process requiring a lot of pre-planning and thought. If time permits, start early enough to pack a few boxes each day. A thorough job of preparation will make settling into to your new home much easier.
Here are a few general rules to keep in mind:
- Size of Box: Pack heavy items in small boxes: Books and canned food are examples.
- Save some linen, sheets, towels to wrap around lamps and ornaments. Don’t pack all of the sheets into a box. Wrapping them in sheets and towels will provide delicate items (i.e., lamps) with good protection, and pack your linen at the same time.
- DO NOT PACK: Aerosol cans of any kind, paint or paint thinners, fuel of any kind or any dangerous chemicals, liquids and/or dangerous items such as firearms
There are several reasons for these restrictions. First, by the letter of the law, it is illegal to transport any “dangerous goods” in any quantity without a permit. There are over 5,700 items classified as dangerous goods. Chances are; they won’t bother you about the can of liquid weed-eater in the back of your truck. However, propane tanks on barbecues or gasoline in lawn mowers pose a more realistic danger. Vibrations in the truck can cause valves or caps to open. This fills the closed moving truck with dangerous fumes. If you are moving yourself, you might take a chance. If you have a moving company move you, chances are they will refuse to take these items, so you will have to dispose of them or leave them behind.
In general, liquids do not travel well. Depending on where you are moving to and when, watch for freezing temperatures. Backs of moving vans are NOT heated. Cans or bottles of pop can explode on a cross- country trek.
One of the biggest reasons not to pack these items relates to INSURANCE. Just about every policy to cover furniture in transit has a clause that absolves the insurer of liability if damage is caused by…..dangerous goods; It seems logical. If bleach spilled out of a box onto your teak dining table there’s a good chance you won’t get any compensation. You should not have had bleach in the truck in the first place. Refer to insurance for more details.
Valuables such as securities, furs, jewelry, coin or stamp collections, and legal papers should not go into the moving van. Take them with you or make arrangements for their safe shipment. The same goes for items of great sentimental value, like baby pictures or your grandfather’s pocket watch. Keep them with you, just in case.
Never pack a blank box. Before you do anything else, write the room name on all sides. Once you’ve finished packing a box, seal it well and then write a description of the contents on the outside. A box labeled Mary’s Bedroom could also say winter clothes, summer clothes, toys, records, etc. With this information, you can find things without opening every box, leaving contents protected until you unpack them. Incorrect packing is a prime cause of damage. When you’ve done it right, the box should weigh no more than 50 pounds and shouldn’t rattle when moved. The sides shouldn’t bulge, and the top should close without caving in. Use paper to fill empty spots, and don’t hesitate to take out items if the box is too full.
The heavier the items, the smaller the box should be. Keep this in mind when you’re packing books and records.
There are two things you can do to protect breakable items. First: don’t mix them with heavy items. Second: cushion them well.
The bottom of each box needs a layer of crumpled paper, with additional cushioning layers in the middle and on top. Fragile items can be given extra protection by boxing them individually before packing. Make up or obtain “FRAGILE” stickers, to mark the outside of appropriate boxes. If a box must be kept right side up, indicate on the outside with stickers marked “THIS END UP.”
Before you pack any rooms, take a few boxes and mark them “NEW HOME SUPPLIES” or “OPEN THIS BOX FIRST.” What you pack in here will be a lifesaver when you arrive at your new home. Instead of having to rifle through boxes looking for various things, they’ll all be in one place. Make a copy of our list, and add your own ideas to it. When you come upon an item for the box, put it in and mark it off the list. When the list is complete, remove everything and pack the boxes carefully. You will find your “NEW HOME” boxes to be the most useful ones you pack.
Things to put in the “NEW HOME” box:
- Bedroom and Bath: sheets, pillows, blankets, shower curtain and hooks, lightweight curtains (not drapes), tension rods, light bulbs, fuses, candles, alarm clock, towels.
- Toiletries: bar soap, shampoo, toothbrushes and paste, toilet paper, First aid kit: aspirin, tweezers, adhesive bandages, antiseptics, prescriptions.
- Household/Kitchen Supplies: bottle/can opener, paper/plastic cups, plates, utensils, trash bags, paper towels, dust pan, broom, all-purpose spray cleaner, sponges, liquid soap, coffee maker, tea kettle.
- Tools: flashlight, hammer, pliers, screwdriver, wrench, scissors, utility knife, thumbtacks, nails, screws.
- Personal: change of clothes for everybody, baby things, pet supplies.
A good packing job does more than protect your belongings; it can actually make settling into your new home much easier. If you don’t have the time to pack, or if your company is willing to pick up the cost, let the movers handle the packing. Professional crews are fast and careful. If you’re on a limited budget, it makes sense to pack yourself. If you have some delicate or fragile items that you are nervous about, consider having the mover pack them. For a few items, the charge is minimal, and it can give you real peace of mind.
Since this is the busiest room in the house; it is usually left until last. That can lead to haphazard packing, so start with all those things you rarely use- special china, the Thanksgiving platter, that big coffee urn. Get them out of the way early and you’ll cut down on the size of the job later. Get together all your dish towels and pot holders; use them for extra padding.
We strongly recommend you purchase the special cartons designed to protect dishes, usually called Dish packs. Pack plates standing on their edges- never flat. “Nest” bowls, cups and glasses inside each other after wrapping. Be sure to fill any empty spaces with appropriate packing material. Think twice before you move any opened food containers.
With spices and grains, first consider their age. If you’ve had them for a year or more, don’t take them. If you must take opened containers, tape them shut securely and enclose in plastic bags before packing.
Appliances should be clean, dry and disconnected for moving day. This means defrosting and airing freezers and refrigerators, and contacting the gas company to disconnect any gas appliances. Internal motors must also be secured. If you come upon appliance operating instructions while packing, either put them in your moving accordion file or tape them to the inside of the appliance. Otherwise, they could easily be misplaced.
The Dining Room
Delicate crystal, china and bric-a-brac need extra protection. Consider boxing some things up before putting in packing containers. If you seal napkins and tablecloths in plastic bags, you can use them for additional padding. Make sure everything is snug and mark the boxes “FRAGILE.”
If you have fine silver, avoid discoloration by making sure it’s clean, and don’t wrap using rubber bands. If you have a case for it, fill in all the empty spaces with soft cloth or tissue, seal shut with wrapping paper and tape and then wrap in toweling. Otherwise, wrap each piece in soft cloth or special silver paper before packing. This will protect it from tarnish and scratches.
The Living Room/Family Room
Mirrors and framed pictures need to be packed in special cartons which you can obtain from your mover. Lamps should be taken apart, bulbs removed, and the shade wrapped carefully and boxed. Use the right size box and DON’T USE NEWSPAPER for packing. Use as little paper as possible to avoid denting.
Dried flower arrangements should get the same treatment as lampshades, and make sure to label the boxes with “THIS END UP.” Electronic equipment should be moved in original packing cartons when available. Secure all parts prior to packing. If you are moving in the summer, certain items can be damaged by the heat. Candles, CDs, records, tapes and floppy disks are all at risk. Consider taking them yourself, or shipping in a way that will reduce transit time.
Clothing can either be folded and packed or hung in wardrobe “closets” or cartons, available from your mover. Try to keep out-of-season or special occasion clothes together. When unpacking, you’ll be able to leave those for last. Dresser drawers may be packed with lightweight clothing, but be sure to remove any liquids or breakables first.
For conventional beds, strip beds completely, but leave them assembled. They will be dismantled by the moving crews and reassembled at your new home. If you have a water bed, empty it the day before the move. For canopy or “four posters” beds there may be an additional charge for dismantling and assembling. Toiletries that are flammable or aerosol cannot be moved in the van, so you should throw them out or take them with you.
Before you move anything that’s been in a storage area, clean it well and make sure it’s in sound condition. Drain garden hoses and empty and wash any plant containers or garden equipment using soap and water. You don’t want to risk moving insects or disease.
Gasoline powered equipment, such as lawn mowers, motorcycles or snow blowers must be emptied of all fuel and oil a few days before the move to assure complete evaporation.