Pack your stuff in the right box when you move

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    The foundation of relocating from one home to another is the box. However, you must pack your stuff in the right box when you move. Most belongings are packed into a cardboard box during a move, and the box chosen for each item significantly impacts how easily that item can be relocated. If you expect to move soon, here’s what types of boxes different belongings should go in.

    Packing a “First Night” box

    Arriving at your new home after a move can be exhausting. To ease this transition, packing a “First Night” box is a practical step. This box should contain essentials for the first 24 hours in your new space. Essentially, the goal is that you don’t need to rummage through multiple boxes on day one. Here’s what you should put into it:

    • Basic toiletries: Toothbrush, toothpaste, soap, shampoo, and toilet paper.
    • Essential electronics: Phone chargers, laptops, and necessary cables.
    • Snacks and beverages: Bottled water, easy-to-prepare meals, and utensils.
    • Clothing: A change of clothes and pajamas for each family member.
    • Bedding essentials: A set of bed linens and pillows for a good night’s sleep.
    • Medications and first aid: Any daily medications, pain relievers, and basic first aid supplies.
    • Important documents: Identification, moving documents, and any immediate paperwork.

    Also, don’t forget to clearly label this box and load it last, so it’s easily accessible upon arrival. The objective is to make your first night as comfortable as possible, providing immediate access to items you’ll need without the stress of unpacking everything at once.

    Fancy clothes go in a wardrobe box

    One of the most specialized box styles that movers use is the wardrobe box. This is a rectangular box that stands so it’s taller than it is wide, and it has a metal pole that sits in two cutouts at the top of the sides. The pole is there to place hangers-on, and the box is tall enough that dress shirts and skirts can be hung without wrinkling.

    Because this is a highly specialized box and comes with a metal bar, this is one of the more expensive boxes that you’ll use in a move. Often, these boxes cost around $12 each. Because they’re so much compared to other boxes (which can cost as little as $2.75 each), wardrobe boxes should only be used for their intended purpose — to hang clothes.

    In particular, only fancy clothes you own should go in a wardrobe box. You don’t need to hang every T-shirt you have. Focus on the dry-clean-only articles. Also, if you can’t easily iron out wrinkles in a certain article of clothing, put that article in a wardrobe box too. That way you don’t need to have it dry-cleaned after the move just to take out creases that folding would cause.

    an elegant dress hanging near the window
    If you want to pack your stuff in the right box, pay special attention to delicate clothes.

    Linens and lampshades go in large, regular boxes

    While wardrobe boxes might seem well-sized for linens and lampshades, you can get a comparably sized (or larger) box for less money. Large boxes run around $3.75 each, and even extra-large boxes cost only about $4.75 for each one. The latter is especially well-suited for large and bulky items that won’t fit in a smaller box.

    For example, you might use an extra-large box to pack up the following items:

    • Pillows
    • Comforters
    • Afghans
    • Table lamps
    • Floor lamp shades

    In short, any lightweight item can be loaded into this type of box. Just don’t put denser items in an extra-large box, because the items could make the box too heavy for one person to move.

    pillows of various sizes you should consider if you want
    Pillows and other large items that are lightweight should go into large boxes.

    Books go in small boxes

    If you want to pack your stuff in the right box when you move, pay special attention to books. Any books that you have should go in the smallest boxes you use, for books are surprisingly heavy. A textbook weighs a little more than 4.5 pounds on average, and even smaller paperbacks weigh a lot once they’re packed together. If you fill a box that’s too big with books, it’ll be hard to carry.

    If you purchase small boxes individually, you should expect to pay between $2 and $3 per box. Boxes for books, however, aren’t where you want to skimp on quality. Pay the higher price if you’ll get sturdier boxes for the added cost, as you can stack sturdy boxes without worrying that they’ll fall over — and boxes of books are perfect to stack since they’re evenly shaped.

    Packing electronics safely

    When moving, electronics demand special attention due to their fragility and value. Whether you’re relocating across town or using interstate movers Northern Virginia offers, ensuring your gadgets arrive intact is a priority. Start with the original packaging if you still have it. These boxes are tailor-made to protect your electronics. If those aren’t available, sturdy boxes with ample padding are your next best option. The bubble pack is ideal for cushioning and protecting screens and delicate components. For smaller items, such as remote controls or cables, use sealable bags to keep them organized and prevent loss. It’s also wise to label each box clearly with its contents and a ‘fragile’ warning. Bear in mind that investing time in packing your electronics correctly can save you the cost and inconvenience of replacing them. Taking these steps will help ensure that your electronic items are well-protected throughout the moving process.

    Dishes go in dish boxes

    For your dishes, especially if you have heirloom pieces, the best option is a dish box. While most moving boxes have one layer of corrugated cardboard, dish boxes double up with two layers. This adds extra protection against bumps and jostles that could crack your dishes. Moreover, to make sure your dishes don’t move around within a dish box, pack them in tightly. You can use paper to pack them up, or you can stuff dish towels around them.

    elegant dishes and cups that deserve special consideration if you want to pack your stuff in the right box when you move
    There are special dish boxes where you can put your delicate heirlooms in.

    Special considerations for fragile and valuable items

    Packing fragile and valuable items requires extra care and attention. Apart from using dish boxes for delicate possessions such as heirloom dishes or glassware, consider getting custom crating.  It is recommended for extremely valuable or oversized items, ensuring they are well-protected during the move. It’s also wise to consider insurance for these items, providing peace of mind in case of unexpected events. If you’re unsure about how to properly pack these items, companies such as Fairfax Transfer and Storage can offer professional advice and assistance. The key is to ensure that each item is snugly packed without room for movement, using ample padding and secure closures. It’s the best way to ensure that your most prized belongings arrive safely at their new destination.

    Essential packing supplies and where to find them

    A successful move hinges on having the right packing supplies. Boxes are just the beginning. You’ll also need a bubble pack for delicate items, strong packing tape to secure boxes, and markers for labeling. For those overwhelmed by the prospect of gathering supplies, consider a packing service in Northern Virginia, which can provide these essentials. For a more hands-on approach, hardware stores and online retailers are excellent sources of quality materials.

    Don’t overlook the opportunity to recycle too — local stores often have gently used boxes free for the taking. When packing, remember that the right supplies can make a world of difference in protecting your belongings. This is especially true for long-distance moves where items are in transit longer.

    two people leaning on a cardboard box
    There are some additional packing supplies you’ll need apart from boxes.

    Strategies for efficient packing

    There can be no smooth move without efficient packing, whether you’re doing it yourself or enlisting local movers in VA. Start by categorizing your belongings. Group items by room or by type – this makes unpacking much easier. Begin with items you use less frequently; seasonal decorations or off-season clothing are good places to start. When packing, use space wisely. Fill gaps in boxes with smaller items or soft materials like socks or scarves to prevent shifting. Remember, heavy items like books should go in smaller boxes, while lighter items can be packed in larger ones. Label each box clearly with its contents and the room it belongs to. This not only helps you but also guides any movers you might hire. An inventory list can also be invaluable, especially for keeping track of valuable or sentimental items. Following these strategies can help you make the packing process more organized and less stressful.

    Pack your stuff in the right box when you move and nothing will get damaged

    A well-planned and organized packing process is one of the requirements for a stress-free move. Also, if you pack your stuff in the right box when you move, your new life chapter will start in a much more orderly manner. The tips you’ve just read have two goals – for your items to arrive undamaged and for the people handling them to finish the job without injuries. With these insights and preparations, you can focus more on the excitement of settling into a new environment and less on the hassles of the move. Whether you’re moving across the street or the country, a well-organized approach to packing can transform a potentially chaotic experience into a series of manageable, orderly steps. If you need help with a local move, contact Fairfax Transfer and Storage. If not, good luck with your journey and may all the items find their perfect box!

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