Professional Packing Services: What to Know

When moving house, competence and expertise are required in order to perform a move that is smooth and efficient. This is why it’s no surprise that hiring a professional moving service to help you relocate is the optimal way to get the job done right. But what about packing? As the most laborious, time-consuming and nerve-wracking part of your move, opting for professional packing services is the best way to ensure all of your belongings are packed safely – and quickly. With their rich experience and expertise in relocations, their services will prove very beneficial come moving day. Here are some things to know about professional packers:

When to Hire Professional Packers

There are times when you may be able to handle packing your belongings on your own, such as for a local move or if you’re familiar with safe and efficient packing techniques. But in most circumstances, a solo move is simply not a good idea. Here are some times when hiring professional packers is your best bet:

  • If you’re moving cross-country. A long-distance move like this means your possessions will be on the road for a long time. They will endure many stops along the way, potential exposure to adverse weather conditions, etc. To avoid the high risk of damages, all of your belongings will need to be packed as safely as possible. This means immobilizing them inside moving boxes as well as protecting them from extreme temperatures, moisture, and the many bumps and turns during transportation.
  • If you have too many items to relocate but not enough time to pack everything carefully and safely.
  • If you’re moving difficult-to-pack items, such as:
    • Fragile or delicate pieces like fine china, crystal, artwork or musical instruments
    • Expensive electronics
    • Large household appliances
    • Heavy furniture
    • Awkwardly-shaped and/or valuable antiques or heirlooms
  • If you lack quality packing materials and/or are unsure how to safely pack them.
  • If you aren’t up to the challenge.
  • If you’re too busy with other moving tasks and are unable to spare the necessary time to pack an entire house.

How Professional Packers Pack

So what approach do professional packers use that makes them so efficient?

1. They work quickly and systematically. Thanks to training, professional packers have the technical know-how to organize and pack household items and personal possessions with excellent speed and efficiency.

2. They use proven packing strategies and clever tricks. The result? Optimum efficiency and space utilization. Check this out. Professional packers can pack twice as much stuff into one box as an inexperienced home mover can. Impressive, right?

3. They use quality packing materials. From brand-new moving boxes to quality packing paper and bubble wrap, professional packers know what supplies to use and when to use them.

4. They are aware of common problems and potential risks. Being able to foresee certain problems that may occur during the moving process allows professional packers to better take the necessary precautions to prevent accidents and damages to your belongings.

How to Prepare for Professional Packers

After researching moving companies in your area, you will probably wonder what to expect from them and how to get the best out of their services. To best prepare for when your hired packers arrive on moving day, here are some things to do ahead of time.

Sort out your possessions and get rid of unwanted items. Your packers have no idea as to what possessions you want and don’t want to take with you to your new home, which means whatever they find in your home will be put into moving boxes. For more efficient and timely service from your packers, it’s a good idea to purge your home in advance. This will make it so any unwanted items won’t be brought to your new home; it will also save you money. Final moving cost is based on the weight of your shipment, the time it takes your packers to pack your belongings, and the amount of packing materials used. The less belongings that are packed, the less costly it will be.

Decide what to do with non-allowables. Non-allowables are specific unsafe items that your moving company will not permit you to place inside their moving trucks. Before your packers show up, go ahead and decide what you plan to do with these items and find efficient ways to transport them. Examples include: disposing of hazardous substances, using up perishable food, etc.

Create a moving inventory. By creating a moving inventory list, you will be able to keep better track of your possessions. It is also a good way to have proof of the condition of your items prior to your move in case something gets damaged. To learn how to create the ultimate inventory checklist, click here.

Clean and organize. As you know, dust and dirt easily collect on your belongings. And most times, you don’t realize how dirty something is until you move it or start cleaning it. Before your packers arrive, it’s smart to go ahead and clean and organize your household items and personal belongings. This will save both time and stress.

Label high-value and/or fragile items. To ensure your high-value and/or fragile items are handled with extra care, label them before moving day.

Pack a box of essentials. After your move, you will want quick access to certain belongings so you can easily make it through those first few days in your new home. For all of your immediate must-haves, gather them and place them inside a specific box or container. Don’t forget to label it so it doesn’t accidentally get loaded onto the moving truck!

For more moving tips, click here. To learn more about our professional packing services, check out our website or contact 800.771-0151.

Common Moving Superstitions and Good-Luck Rituals

When moving house, you will most likely be flooded with well-wishes, like “Good luck!” or “Best of luck in your new home!” You’ve done the organizing, the prepping, the packing. You’re probably asking yourself, “What does luck have to do with it?” Well, it depends on how superstitious you are. But whether you take superstitions seriously or are the kind of person who prefers to make your own luck, you may want to consider some good-luck rituals when moving into a new home. After all, with such a serious life step, do you really want to risk any negative energy? There are many traditions and superstitions about moving into a new house, and you never know, some of them may even work for you! Here’s a look at common moving superstitions and how to bring good luck to your move.

Common Moving Superstitions

According to old wives’ tales, here are the most common causes of an unlucky move.

Choosing an “unlucky” moving date. Moving takes so much planning, preparing and doing that when moving day finally arrives, a mountain of things can go wrong. So it makes sense to pick a lucky day to move on, right? Here are some days to avoid if you are looking to dispel bad luck.

Rainy days. Moving on a rainy day is considered to be a bad omen, so consulting the extended weather forecast is a good idea when scheduling your move. Even if you bump superstitions aside, rain and other unfavorable weather conditions can really ruin your moving plans, so it’s always good to check the weather in advance.

Fridays. Another common superstition in Western culture is moving into a new home on a Friday. Supposedly, moving on this day means you will never be able to fully settle into your new home. Moving on a Thursday, however, is believed to be the luckiest day of the week!

Choosing unlucky numbers. What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the number 13? Most likely, you think of bad luck. So, if you’re moving into a number 13 house, or an apartment located on the 13th floor, you may be pushing your luck.

Another way numbers play a role in your moving luck is the number of steps you have leading to your new home, as well as the number of steps on your staircase. According to tradition, the number of steps on your staircase should not be a multiple of three.

But there is some luck in certain numbers, too. For instance, any number that ends with its top rather than its bottom when written (zero, eight, etc.) is considered to bring good luck and prosperity!

Stepping over the threshold. To ensure good luck on moving day, be sure you step over the threshold the right way, otherwise bad luck will occur. When you arrive at your new home, enter through the main door. The first time you need to leave, be sure to exit by the same door. Ignoring this simple ritual will cause you to never fully settle into your home.

Home Blessing Rituals

When entering your new home for the first time, you would also be wise to bring certain symbolic items with you. Bread, salt, honey, wine, rice, candles, and other similar tokens of abundance, prosperity, happiness, hospitality and good fortune are believed to please the domestic spirits, bringing a blessing to your new home.

No matter their specific type or origin, home blessing rituals are performed as a way to ward off evil and summon positive energy to your life. Here are some to know.

Lighting a candle. The act of lighting a candle on the first night in your new home is a house blessing ritual that’s been performed in various cultures around the world since the dawn of civilization. The purpose of burning a candle is to bring light to your new home and cast out darkness – literally and symbolically. This will bestow a blessing upon the occupants of your home, chasing away shadows of evil, sorrow and pain.

Lighting a fire in the fireplace of your new home also has allegorical meaning. Fire is a powerful symbol that means strength, purity and stability. A fire’s flame is believed to absorb any malignant energy from the home, purify your house and protect it from evil.

Burning sage. Burning or smudging sage is another house blessing widely practiced in the U.S. Derived from Native American traditions, the burning of dried safe is a popular method for cleaning out negative energy and protecting a home from evil spirits. To perform this ritual, you will need a bundle of white sage wrapped with thread and accompanied by lavender or other fragrant herbs. In a fire resistant bowl, light the sage and let it smoke on its own. Then walk around the house clockwise (starting at the front door), waving the smoke in the air. Make sure the smoke gets into every corner of every room. Why the corners? Because this is where negative energy accumulates.

Ringing a bell. Another blessing ritual to perform when moving into a new home is to ring a bell. This is because the sound of bells is said to scatter negative energy and summon good fortune.

Ways to Bring Good Luck to Your New Home

Whether you already believed in superstitions or are just now becoming curious about them, here are some interesting examples of how to bring good luck to your home and ensure a smooth and trouble-free transition into your new life.

Leaving an old broom behind. To start life fresh in your new home, you will need to get rid of your past troubles first. One way is to leave your old broom behind. Here’s why:

Old brooms (mops, vacuum cleaners, etc.) that were used in your old home are believed to carry physical dirt and dust, along with all negative aspects of your life from your previous home, into your new one. If all the negativity you’ve experienced thus far is embodied into a simple item, such as an old broom, then it makes sense to throw it away before your move, in an attempt to rid yourself of the bad in your life.

Even if it doesn’t work, it doesn’t hurt to replace old cleaning tools to avoid bringing any dirt and bacteria from your old home into your new one.

Painting the porch blue. Have you ever noticed that a lot of homes – or at least parts of them – are painted blue? Whether it be porch ceilings, fences and shutters, doors and windows, or some other area, there is a good reason for this new-home superstition. The tradition holds that spirits cannot cross water, so painting your home blue is a symbolic way to keep evil spirits away.

Another nice perk is that the color blue is supposed to deter mosquitos and other insects. Warding off annoying pests? Who wouldn’t want that!

Check out more moving tips and tricks, here.

Childproof Your Home: A Room-By-Room Guide

Life with a baby, or babies for all you twin parents out there, is a lot of work! Anyone who denies it … well, they obviously haven’t ventured into a life with kids! If you’ve recently moved to a new home with a baby in tow, congratulations are in order, because you have accomplished two very difficult tasks! But as you unpack and decorate your new home, there is one more vital step to conquer – childproofing! Ensuring your little one’s safety should be done as soon as possible after your move, as it will require some careful planning and proper execution. Once done, you will officially be able to relax in your new home. So how do you tackle this important parenting task? Childproofing is all about identifying potential household hazards, then effectively eliminating them by employing the necessary safety measures. The best way to start is by going into each room of your home and making a list of anything that may pose even the slightest risk to your baby’s well-being. Don’t forget, your child doesn’t see the world the same way you do, so you’ll need to try and see your home through his/her eyes. You may have to crawl or roll around on the floor to best spot potential dangers to your child, but it will be well worth it if it keeps them safe.

For a room-by-room guide to childproofing, read on!

Nursery

The nursery should be your first stop when childproofing, as it’s the room where your baby will be spending most of their time. The leading causes of accidental death in babies under age one is suffocation and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). Here’s how to reduce the risks:

  • The only things that should ever be in your child’s crib are a mattress with fitted sheet and your child, so empty your crib entirely of all toys (especially stuffed animals), bumpers, blankets, comforters and pillows.
  • Cribs must now meet stricter federal requirements, so you may want to try and get a bed that was built post 2011 for stronger safety.
  • As sturdy and stable as your child’s changing table appears, there is still a chance that it can tip over, injuring both you and your baby – especially when your child begins wiggling all over the place during diaper changes. To avoid dangerous situations, secure your changing table to the wall.
  • What looks like a simple plug outlet to you can look quite intriguing to an adventurous child. To protect your child from electric shock, install electrical outlet protectors. (This should be done for every plug outlet in every room of your home – even those you don’t think they can reach.)
  • Do your child’s nursery windows have blinds? If so, the strings used to draw them up and down pose a strangulation hazard. Make sure to keep them out of your baby’s reach, or install cordless blinds for better protection. You may also want to consider mounting window guards to completely eliminate any risk of accidental falls out the window.

Bathroom

One slip in the bathtub and serious injury and death can occur. This is why drowning is another leading cause of injury-related child deaths in the U.S. For infants under age one, the bathtub is the most dangerous place in the entire house. Babies can drown in as little as an inch of water. This is why we must state that you should never, not even for a second, leave your baby unattended while in the tub! If for some reason you absolutely have to leave the bathroom, take your baby with you. Also:

  • Keep your baby as far away from faucets as possible.
  • Place non-skid strips on the bathroom floor to prevent you from falling and dropping your child.
  • Install a toilet lock.
  • Install a baby gate to keep baby out.

Kitchen

The kitchen is the room in your home where it is all too easy to get distracted. It’s also a place where infants are known to get into trouble! From hot stoves and boiling water to chemicals and food, it’s important to take the necessary steps to properly babyproof it.

  • Household chemicals and cleaning supplies are typically stored under the kitchen sink. Dishwashing and laundry pods are particular dangerous, as they resemble candy. You have two options:
  1. Securely latch the cabinet doors under your sink (and all other low cabinets that hold dangerous items) with a childproof lock.
  2. Move all chemical supplies to a top cabinet where your child can’t reach them.
  • When not cooking, cover stove knobs with protective covers to prevent them from being turned on by mistake.
  • Use the back burners on your stove, to discourage brave attempts to reach for scalding food. If using front burners, turn pot handles inward so your child won’t be tempted to reach up and grab them.
  • Always keep an operational fire extinguisher in your kitchen, and make sure you know how to use it!

Living Room

At first glance, your living room probably doesn’t appear to pose much of a threat. But it is actually filled with a number of hidden dangers that must be addressed to ensure your child’s safety.

  • Statistics show that every three weeks, a child is killed by a TV tip-over. This being said, you should mount your television set on a wall or place it on a stable piece of furniture and anchor it safely to the wall.
  • Secure all bookcases or other bulky furniture items to the wall. Also, distribute the weight of their content by placing heaviest items at the bottom. This will make them less prone to tipping over, and minimize the risk of something heavy falling on your child.
  • For all furniture pieces – tables, chairs, etc., with sharp edges, protect them with soft corner guards to lower the risk of puncture wounds.
  • Keep all remote controls and other battery-operated items out of your baby’s reach. If swallowed, batteries pose a great risk to your child’s health.

Stairs

If your new home has stairs, even if it’s only a few, it’s important to childproof them properly. The best way to do this is to mount safety gates at the top and bottom of your stairs to prevent child access. Be sure to install them so that they open out and away from the staircase.

For more moving tips and tricks, click here for all you need to know.

Moving Mistakes to Avoid for a Less Costly, More Efficient Move

From simple mishaps to serious blunders, moving mistakes can ruin your moving adventure – especially if they result in lost money and valuable time being wasted. Moving house is a major event. It takes lots and lots of careful planning, packing and organizing. It also requires many helping hands. The last thing you want to do is create complications and suffer extra expenses by making mistakes that could have easily been avoided. To eliminate emotionally and financially draining mistakes during your move, here are some things to avoid.

Hiring the First Moving Company You Find

Google “moving companies” and you’ll be provided a mega list of choices – each company claiming to be “the best in the business” in order to compete and attract more customers and to make a greater profit. But are they really the best in the biz? All moving companies offer moving services, of course, but their services may be radically different in terms of rate, quality, reliability and terms. Their level of competence and experience, along with equipment used, will also be different. This is why thoroughly researching a moving company before actually hiring one is so important. Hiring the first moving company you discover can lead to money lost and huge disappointment, so take the time to consider all of your options so you will pick the best company for your specific needs and requirements. Here are some important steps to take before hiring movers:

  • Ask for several moving quotes;
  • Interview several selected movers;
  • Request onsite written biding estimates; and
  • Compare and analyze offers.

When contacting moving companies, be sure to give them all relevant information – the number of household items to be moved, the final destination, any potential obstacles and requirements, and so on. Clearly stating your wishes and preferences is necessary in order to get the most accurate quote. Also ask about discounts, specific conditions, guaranteed pick-up and delivery date and time, etc.

Costly Mistakes to Avoid:

  • Believing an estimate given via phone or email is accurate;
  • Withholding relevant, must-know information your movers should know;
  • Hiring movers at random.

Choosing the Moving Company with the Lowest Estimate

As the moving expenses pile up, up, up, saving money is definitely going to be at the forefront of your mind. But don’t let the fear of expenses cause you to make an unwise choice when choosing a moving company. If a moving estimate is too good to be true, then it probably is. You may be dealing with:

  • Rogue movers who plan to disappear with your money and your valuable possessions.
  • Incompetent movers who want to secure the job but will do it poorly.
  • Scam artists who will demand a much greater amount of money than previously stated, for alleged accessorial services. (In this situation, they will not deliver your belongings until you pay these extra fees.)
  • Moving brokers who will sell your move to a third company that has its own tariffs.

All of these scenarios will cause you to pay large amounts of money. To avoid situations like these:

  • Before signing a contract, check the legitimacy of your chosen movers by verifying their USDOT number.
  • Look for any complaints regarding their services by calling the FMSCA safety violations and consumer complaints hotline.
  • Learn how disputes and conflicts have been settled in the past.
  • Read the fine print before signing a contract.

Costly moving mistakes to avoid:

  • Not thoroughly reading/comprehending movers’ paperwork;
  • Not checking movers’ credentials;
  • Signing blank or incomplete documents.


Hiring Movers at the Last Minute

If you have a big move ahead of you, one of the worst things you can do is procrastinate. This means everything, from signing a lease or mortgage on a new home to packing mountains of moving boxes. It also includes waiting too long to hire a moving company. As often as people move, moving companies are quickly booked up, and the longer you wait to sign a contract with one, the bigger the risk of:

  • Restricted available moving dates;
  • Limited moving crews;
  • Limited access to moving equipment and supplies; and
  • Higher price.

Moving at Popular Times

If you want your move to be as flawless and cheap as possible, it’s all about good timing. Here are some moving times to avoid:

During peak moving season. Between the months of May and September, moving costs dramatically increase. This is because more people are moving during this time. The result is paying more to secure a moving crew and vehicle.

On weekends. It’s a lot easier for most to move on weekends when they are off work and have a larger chance of getting help from family and friends. Unfortunately, your weekend free time can mean higher moving costs.

At the beginning or end of the month. There are several reasons why moving mid-month can lead to savings. This is because things like payday, end-of-lease agreements, and starting a new job typically fall at the beginning or end of the month. Because more people move during these times, moving companies are in higher demand, which, in turn, causes prices to skyrocket.

On holidays. National holidays are an extra busy time for a relocation, with moving companies pushed to their limits. The busier the time, the more you’ll pay.

For all your moving needs, contact us or visit our blog.

Top Items to Never Entrust to Movers

When tackling a major move, hiring experienced movers is the ideal choice. This is because professional movers have the training and equipment to perform a smooth and trouble-free relocation. However, no matter how competent and reliable your chosen movers are, it is strongly recommended not to entrust them with certain possessions. Here is a complete list of the valuable items you should always move yourself:

Important Documents

There are many important documents you’ll need to keep track of during your move – passports, driver’s licenses, medical and school records, birth and marriage certificates, insurance policies, bank statements, car registration papers, mortgage papers, etc. While no one will necessarily want to steal or damage your documents, you never know what may happen or how soon you will need them after your move. For all moving-related papers, it’s a good idea to store them in a binder, small safe or lockbox and keep them with you at all times. If you opt for a safe or lockbox, be sure you have the keys to unlock it, and keep them in a safe spot.

Valuable Jewelry

Pieces of jewelry are small and expensive – two elements that make them prone to mysterious disappearances during a move. One, you may lose or misplace an item, and two, someone can easily take it, especially when left unattended during chaotic moving-day activities. To help lower the risk of valuable jewelry being lost, be sure to do your research on moving companies and only hire those movers with an excellent reputation.

Because delicate jewelry pieces can be easily damaged during transport, be very careful when packing these items, and take the time to move them yourself. You will handle them with much more care than anyone else, and you can ensure to get them to your new home safe and sound.

Electronics

You probably won’t be surprised by this, but expensive state-of-the-art electronics top the list of stolen items during a move. This includes everything from flat-screen TVs and computers to stereo, headphones and popular video games. If items like these are stolen, it is obviously a very sad and frustrating event. Not only will you be out a lot of money – and a prized or favorite possession – but you are also put at risk of identity theft if the item stolen has personal information digitally stored on it. To ensure the safety of your most expensive electronics – laptop, digital camera, smartphone, etc. – keep them with you at all times during your relocation. A good way to protect yourself in case of stolen electronics is to secure them with a password (and avoid easy ones like “1234”).

Another problem seen when moving expensive electronics is a high risk of damage. This is especially true during long-distance moves in mid-summer and mid-winter. Why do these times increase the risk of damage? Because of the extreme temperatures and weather conditions – a situation that can lead to irrevocable damage to sensitive devices. Your best bet when moving these items is to store them in a temperature-controlled environment at all times.

Family Heirlooms

The loss of family heirlooms can cost you dearly in many ways. The most obvious one being deep emotional stress because no amount of time or money can ever bring them back again. No matter the object, items of high sentimental value are irreplaceable and should be given special attention during a move. To avoid having them stolen or damaged, pack them with care and keep them with you at all times.

Antiques, Artwork and Collector’s Items

If you own antiques, there is a good chance that many of them are rather large and will need to be placed on a moving truck. To keep these items well protected, wrap them in materials like bubble wrap and packing paper.

Art pieces are much too valuable and delicate to be loaded into a moving truck. But for large items that cannot be transported by car, package them in custom wooden crates that are specifically designed to hold artwork. Be sure to use plenty of bubble wrap, foam sheets and corrugated paper.

If you are a collector, no matter what the item is that you collect, it is something that holds some sort of value to you. If possible, take these items with you during your relocation to avoid having these prized possessions lost or damaged.

An important thing to remember to do before your moving truck departs from your old property is to check to ensure nothing important has been forgotten, misplaced or mistakenly loaded onto the moving truck. It is also a good idea to remember that even if you have hired trustworthy movers, anything can happen. Opting for a liability protection plan is a good way to ensure you are compensated if your belongings end up missing or damaged during your move. For those items of high sentimental value that can never be replaced, don’t risk it, and move them yourself.

For everything you need to know about moving, click here.

Helpful Tips to Move Your China Cabinet with No Cracks, Chips or Broken Pieces

Just looking at a china cabinet can leave you feeling tense. All of those delicate items just waiting to break at even the slightest rattle or shake. The worry of breakage is even worse when preparing for a move. One careless step and you risk some of your most valuable items being shattered into thousands of sharp, dangerous pieces. Not only that, but your china cabinet itself is breakable too and can suffer major damage during the moving process. Luckily, there are ways to tackle the fragile process of moving your china cabinet and all of the precious items inside with no cracks, chips or broken pieces. So let out those worried breaths and steady those shaky hands, and check out the following tips.

Must-Have Supplies

Before you can begin the process of packing your china cabinet, you will need to gather all of the necessary supplies. Here’s a list of all of the must-haves:

Dish boxes. To provide the best protection to your breakables, you will need to invest in dish boxes. While similar to typical moving boxes, dish boxes are better for breakables because they are made of a double layer of thick corrugated cardboard. They can also be found with specific slots to provide extra protection around each individual dish. If you are unable to find boxes specifically designed for dishes, you can still use regular moving boxes, but just be sure to include extra padding to compensate for the weaker protection of their single-layered cardboard walls.

Bubble wrap. The air-filled sacks bubble wrap provides is a must-have supply when packing breakables. For delicate items, like china, it will ensure the ultimate protection needed to keep everything safe during the moving process.

Steps to Pack Your China and Breakables

Now that you have the necessary packing supplies, follow these steps to pack your fine china when moving house.

Step 1: Reinforce the bottoms and sides of dish/moving boxes with quality, heavy-duty packing tape. Breakables, like fine china, can become very heavy when packed together. Providing your boxes with extra security is a vital step to ensure your boxes – and the contents inside – won’t break.

Step 2: Layer wads of crumpled paper on the bottom of your boxes before filling them up.

Step 3: Position one fine china plate – or other items – in the middle of several sheets of packing paper. Two or three sheets should suffice. One by one, pull the corner of the sheet stack over the plate until it ends up completely covered. Secure paper edges with packing tape.

Step 4: Using a single sheet of bubble wrap, use the same method as the previous step to wrap your item. Secure with packing tape.

Step 5: Repeat steps 1-4 for each individual piece of chinaware from your china cabinet.

Step 6: When all items are properly wrapped, you can place them inside their designated boxes. For plates, place them in boxes on their edges. Stacking them flat can cause damage to those plates on the bottom due to too much weight bearing down on them.

Step 7: When your box is unable to fit anymore pieces of chinaware, fill any remaining spaces inside the box with packing paper or newspaper. You can also use bubble wrap or old, clean pieces of clothing. The goal here is to make sure nothing moves inside the box during your move. To check, give each box a gentle shake. If you feel, or hear, movement inside, add more padding materials before sealing the lid.

Step 8: Use words like “BREAKABLE”, “FRAGILE”, and “CHINAWARE” to label the top and sides of each box.

Steps to Prepare Your China Cabinet for a Move

Packing the contents of your china cabinet is just the first half of the moving process. The second half is to get the china cabinet itself ready for the big move. China cabinets are very fragile. This being said, the best way to move them is to hire experienced professionals who will do a great job of safely packing and transporting your china cabinet in a way that only experts know how. If hiring a professional mover isn’t in your budget, however, the following steps will help you move your china cabinet safely and efficiently.

Step 1: Empty Contents. Before you can even think about preparing your china cabinet for a move, the first step is to empty all of its contents. (If you skipped the step-by-step guide above on how to pack items from your china cabinet, scroll up!)

Step 2: Handle Glass with Care. Once your cabinet is completely empty, you will need to focus on its glass elements. If your china cabinet contains fragile glass doors and shelves, for instance – as most do – it is crucial to handle these areas with particular care.

Glass Doors. During a bumpy, jostling move, the doors of your china cabinet are bound to swing open – a problem that can lead to damage and even injury to those moving it. The best way to secure doors, especially those made of glass, is by removing them and packing them separately. Remove all doors one by one, slowly and carefully. Then, wrap each door in thick packing paper, followed by a layer of bubble wrap. The final protection step is to wrap doors in furniture blankets and secure them with packing tape. *Be sure to keep all screws, hinges and other small parts in a sealed plastic bag – and don’t forget to label it!

Glass Shelves. Just as you removed the glass doors to your china cabinet, you will also want to remove any glass shelves. Using extra caution, take each shelf out of the cabinet one at a time. Then, wrap them in packing paper and cover them with several sheets of bubble wrap. Be sure to take the same final packing precaution as you did with the doors, and wrap shelves in a final layer of thick furniture blankets. Old, clean blankets you already own will also work.

Step 3: One-Piece or Two-Piece Cabinet? Does your china cabinet have one piece or two? If it is a two-piece china cabinet, it will have two
sections – an upper section where china is displayed, and a lower section with drawers for storage. If there are two sections, be sure to separate them for better packing and protection during your move.

Step 4: Wrap Cabinet in Furniture Blankets. When all pieces – including drawers – have been removed, wrap the entire cabinet in furniture blankets. Be sure all areas are fully

Step 5: Secure Cabinet Legs. If your china cabinet has legs, they are highly susceptible to damage during transportation. To protect these protruding parts, wrap them in thick blankets or multiple sheets of bubble wrap, then use plenty of tape to secure them. Even better, if the legs of your china cabinet can be removed, take them off and pack them accordingly.

Step 6: Move Your China Cabinet.The final step of moving your china cabinet is both tricky and risky. You have to be able to lift it and also know how to use proper moving equipment to move it. An appliance dolly is the best tool to move your china cabinet without damage or injury to those moving it. Make sure the cabinet is adequately secured and immobilized on the dolly with rope or straps before trying to move it.

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Pack Your Desktop Computer with These Tips

Whether a person is old, young or somewhere in between, computers are an essential part of daily life. They offer entertainment, education, and an easy way to instantly connect with others. So when you’re preparing for a move and it’s time to pack your precious computer, you want to take every precaution in order to avoid something bad happening to it. From specific packing supplies to packing preparations, below you will find everything you need to know about how to pack your computer safely to protect it during the bumpy journey ahead.

Packing Supplies

The first rule to packing (no matter what the item is) is to ensure you have the proper supplies to keep your belongings safe and protected. When packing something as valuable as a computer, the process of packing gets a bit trickier – especially for desktop computers because they come with a number of parts (monitor, hard drive, keyboard, mouse). Here are the essential packing supplies you’ll need:

Computer packing boxes. The optimal choice when packing a computer for a move is to use its original packaging. This is because it is professionally designed to provide adequate protection to a computer during travel. But let’s be real … if your computer is more than a few weeks old, any original packaging is most likely long gone. But don’t worry; there are ways around this.

First, ask friends and even IT employees where you work if they have any spare computer boxes you can use. If not, opt for a regular cardboard box. Make sure it’s the right size, and use lots of cushioning materials around the computer.

Bubble wrap and packing paper. Along with boxes, you will need bubble wrap and packing paper to safely pack your computer. Several layers of these two items should be wrapped and secured around your computer in order to help eliminate damage during a move.

Styrofoam inserts, packing peanuts, and air-filled plastic bags. Along with wrapping your computer in bubble wrap and packing paper, it is also a good idea to fill the moving box with extra protection, like styrofoam inserts, packing peanuts or air-filled plastic bags. Supplies like these will provide the necessary protection required during your relocation by absorbing vibrations and negating direct hits that may occur while traveling on the road to your new home.

Packaging tape. Once your computer is safely packed inside a moving box, it’s important to use quality packing tape to seal the lid shut. You will also want to secure sides and seams, along with the underside of the box, for extra reinforcement.

Sealable plastic bags. Computers come with several small parts (cords, screws, etc.). For small items like these, use sealable plastic bags to store them. Be sure to label all bags so parts aren’t lost during the chaos of your move.

Steps to Prepare Your Computer for a Move

Once you have all of the supplies needed, there are some things to do before you can actually use them to pack your computer. Here are some important steps to follow:

Step 1: Backup data. As important as the outside of your computer is, the data it stores inside is just as vital – if not more so. If your computer was to endure damage during your move, if you have a backup of all of your data, you will still have all of your photos, important documents, etc. To backup your data, there are several ways to do it – we suggest using at least two of the following methods, just in case!

  • Upload data to a cloud storage service.
  • Transfer files to an external hard drive.
  • Save information to a flash drive.

Step 2: Measure your computer. Before you can properly pack your computer inside of a box, you will need to know what size packing box you will need. To find out, measure your computer. For desktops, this means measuring both the monitor and computer tower.

Step 3: Remove cables. When it’s time to pack your computer, the first thing you should do is take a picture of how all of its cables are plugged in. This will save you time and confusion when hooking your computer back up after the move. Next, remove all cables from the wall and the computer itself, and pack them accordingly.

Step 4: Keep Your Computer in One Piece. Before you start taking apart and removing important pieces to your computer, opt for the better route and don’t disassemble your computer at all! Taking your computer apart in order to pack it for a move is not necessary. In fact, disassembling then reassembling your computer poses a much greater risk of damage than simply leaving it intact and packing it as is.

For more tips and tricks, click here.

Must-Know Tips for a Successful Pre-Move Garage Sale (Part 1 of 2)

There’s no doubt that over the years you have accumulated a great deal of possessions. From clothes and kitchenware to office supplies and more. But what if you are faced with an imminent move? What will you do with all of the things you own? There are, of course, items that you won’t want to part with, but moving house requires a lot of time and money – and the more things you move with you, the more time and money will be spent. If you have enough time before moving day, you may want to consider having a garage sale. Having a garage sale is the easiest and most efficient way to transform your unnecessary items into less packing and more money to spend on the move. But if you’re going to have an organized, profitable and stress-free sale, you will need a plan. Continue reading for must-know tips for a successful pre-move garage sale.

Organize and Categorize Belongings

The first step to follow when organizing a garage sale is to designate a space in your home where you can gather all the items you want to sell. This area should be kept clean and organized in order to eliminate confusion and stress.

The next step is to take the time to go through all of your belongings and put them into categories:

  • Belongings you only use on rare occasions;
  • Gifts and souvenirs that have no particular monetary or sentimental value;
  • Old magazines, posters, CDs and DVDs that are no longer used;
  • Comic books and old textbooks that you and your family have outgrown or no longer use;
  • Children’s clothes and shoes that no longer fit;
  • Toys your child(ren) have outgrown;
  • Musical instruments and sports equipment that are never used;
  • Tools – lawn mower, etc. that you will not need in your new home; and
  • Clothes, pieces of furniture, kitchenware, appliances, etc. that you don’t care for or use, or that will not fit in your new place.

Once you have sorted all of your possessions and organized them into categories, it’s a good idea to make a detailed list of all items you intend to sell. You may also consider noting the corresponding price for each item. This handy list will be extremely useful on the day of the sale when price tags fall off or get mixed up, and when shoppers ask a lot of questions and insist on making a deal.

Important Questions to Consider

When organizing your garage sale, there are several questions to ask yourself to ensure its success:

What is the condition of the things you are selling? When shopping, do you want to buy belongings that are in poor condition? Our guess is no, you don’t. This being said, you won’t make a very good profit at your sale if the items you are selling are dusty, dirty, wrinkled or damaged. In order to make a maximum profit, take the time to make your items shine! Wash and iron clothes, polish wood surfaces, and thoroughly clean equipment, old kitchenware, and so on. The better your stuff looks, the more profitable the outcome!

How much are your items worth? Pricing your belongings can be tough. Something that holds a bit of sentimental value to you may seem like it should be tagged with a price that’s much higher than garage sale shoppers will ever pay. As a result, overpricing the items you plan to sell will leave you with minimal sales. So do some research on the market value of things you intend to sell – then assign prices according to the demand for the objects, its brand, and especially its current condition.

On the other hand, you also don’t want to underestimate the value of items you are selling, like antiques, vintage objects, or high-quality products. Doing market value research prior to your sale will ensure you price your possessions accurately and make sure you aren’t taken advantage of.

When should your garage sale be held? If there is enough time before your move, it’s important to schedule the date of your garage sale wisely. The ideal date to have a sale is the first weekend of a month, just after payday. It’s also a good idea to check the weather forecast, because gloomy, rainy days or storms will bring less customers.

There’s no set rule to what time your garage sale should begin, but typically, the earlier you start, the better. Having a start time of 8 or 9 a.m. will leave you with a whole day to sell and plenty of time in the afternoon to clean up and organize everything after the sale ends.

These tips are just the start of how to throw a successful pre-move garage sale. To learn more must-know tips, continue on to our next blog!

Continued … Must-Know Tips for a Successful Pre-Move Garage Sale (Part 2 of 2)

As you learned in part one of this blog series, having a pre-move garage sale is a good way to lower time and money spent on moving. You also found out a few first-step tips to make your sale a success, like how to organize and categorize your belongings for sale, the best date to have a sale, and even some pricing how-tos. But there’s more to know, so read on to learn even more tips on how to make your sale a success.

Advertise

In order to have a successful pre-move garage sale, you have to make it known that the sale is happening. The best way to do this is by advertising. Here’s how:

Word of Mouth: Via mouth is a good way to advertise your upcoming garage sale. Tell your friends, neighbors and colleagues about the upcoming sale and ask them to help you spread the world.

Social Media: Another way to advertise your sale is by posting about it on social media, especially sites like Facebook that have designated sell pages where people looking to buy used items are likely to visit.

Signs/Posters: It’s also a good idea to tune in to your craft side and create signs/posers promoting your sale. Place them at strategic places in your neighborhood and on busy roads nearby, several days before the sale (on trees, telephone poles, bulletin boards, etc.). Be sure to make signs big and brightly colored with large print so those driving by can clearly see them. Also consider drawing arrows on your signs so visitors will be sure to know which direction your sale is.

Whatever method you use to advertise your garage sale, be sure to do these things:

  • Clearly state the date, time and address of the sale;
  • Entice customers by including pictures of items for sale or by listing highly desirable merchandise.

Display Items Just So

You may think that all you need to do is place your belongings on some tables in front of your house, but if you want to make your garage sale profitable, then you should mind how you display your items. Here’s how:

  • Place similar goods together. This makes it easier for people to find exactly what they are interested in. It will also ensure they won’t miss something that’s jumbled in a large pile of random stuff. Being able to easily browse means they are more likely to keep shopping, which means more cash flow for you;
  • Group baby clothes and other clothing items by size and type to make shopping easier for visitors;
  • Lay smaller objects on tables or shelves. This allows them to be seen clearly;
  • A messy pile or box of clothes will discourage customers from looking through your stuff and it limits how many people can look at once. Hanging them up, however, is a great way to draw people in. Doing so will make them look cleaner and allow for much more organized browsing; and
  • An inviting and pleasant atmosphere is an excellent way of attracting visitors to your sale and will lead to more money in your pocket. So make your sale attractive. Try colorful signs and tags, even some music to help gain a crowd.

Be an Active and Reasonable Seller

As you’ve learned so far, there are many ways to make your pre-move garage sale a success, but one thing not to forget is that you also need to be an active and reasonable seller. Check out the top ways to do this in the list below:

  • Actively participate in the sale and be flexible. This means talking with customers, negotiating, offering last-minute deals, and more. The more invested you are in tending to these needs, the more efficient your sale will be;
  • No one wants to spend time at a garage sale where they feel unwelcome. So, be friendly! Welcome visitors with a smile, and encourage them to feel comfortable. Also, avoid losing your temper if faced with frustrated situations;
  • Don’t tackle a sale alone. Instead, arrange for family members and friends to help you;
  • Be sure to have plenty of change and cash before the sale begins;
  • To get rid of several items at once, and to better satisfy buyers, sell belongings in bundles; and
  • Collect paper and plastic bags and boxes of different sizes to place purchased items in. This will make sales more organized and make it easier for big buyers to tote things to their car. Also consider having some spare wrapping and packing materials to help protect fragile items.

Ensure Safety

The last thing to remember when hosting a pre-move garage sale is to ensure safety for everyone and everything.

  • Remove any obstacles and potential dangers from your property prior to your sale;
  • Animals can become scared by unknown people, and some people are also scared by animals. To avoid any potential injuries or problems, keep animals away during the sale;
  • Eliminate access to your home. Lock doors and secure entrances.

For more tips and tricks to make your move a success, check out our blog.

Top 5 Tips for a Last-Minute Move

Getting your home and belongings organized and ready for a relocation can put a great deal of pressure on your shoulders. This is especially true if you are moving at the last minute. You may have a limited amount of time, but the job must still be done. No matter the reason for your speedy move – getting a new job, a home eviction, a natural disaster, etc. – you will need to prepare for your move quickly, and still manage to do it efficiently. When every moment counts, here are the top five tips you should use in order to make your last-minute move a success.

Separate Belongings

Since time is at stake during a last-minute move, you won’t have time to sell any belongings you don’t care to take with you. But it is still a good idea to organize and separate all items between those you plan to take with you and those you intend to donate or throw away. The more you decide to leave behind, the less time you will spend packing and moving, and you will also save a pretty penny in shipping costs.

Gather Packing Supplies

Once you know what you are taking with you, you will be able to plan what items need to be packed. You will also get an idea of what sort of packing materials you will need. Gathering all packing supplies in advance, and at once, is the ideal choice. If you have to stop packing to buy new boxes, tape, etc., you will lose a lot of valuable time. It will also ruin your concentration, which can be hard to get back into.

Pack “Open First” Boxes

For the first couple of days after your move, you will be met with piles of boxes to unpack and lots to clean. You will also more than likely be exhausted – body and mind – after such a long day of moving (not to mention the fast-action efforts you powered through to make your move happen). To get yourself through those first few days post-move, be sure to pack a box or two with all of your essentials, like clothes, toiletries, cosmetics, cell charger, and so on.

Label Everything

In your rush to pack by a very soon move-out date, you may feel there is no time to be spent on labeling boxes. During the chaos, you may even simply forget to do so. But labeling your boxes will actually save you time overall. Labeling boxes with their destination room will make moving day simpler and more organized, which are both excellent time savers. Also, marking boxes with special instructions (e.g., “fragile”) can save time by avoiding broken items that have to be cleaned up.

Stay Focused and Avoid Distraction

Staying focused can be difficult, especially when packing can feel boring and endless. Not to mention, there are so many distractions surrounding us daily – TV, cell phones, computers. But if you are going to get your belongings packed efficiently, and super speedy, you will need to keep your focus intact. To do this, distractions, like those previously mentioned, should be avoided at all cost.

Following these simple tips and hiring last-minute movers can make your relocation fast and smooth. Don’t lose another minute – get started now!