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8 Packing Tips for Moving: Easy Shortcuts to Save You Half the Time (and ALL of Your Sanity)
By: Coral Noyd ~ 5/21/2013

Most of us dread preparing for a move. It can feel like an overwhelming task to compress an entire household into stacks of boxes. The following list of packing tips should help to keep your move organized and mitigate some of the stress.

Start Early
Moving is stressful enough. Try to avoid last minute panic by starting at least 6 weeks in advance. Most people find that they have more to pack than originally anticipated. It's common for the process to take twice as long as the time allotted.

Have a Moving Sale or Donate your Excess
You can use this move as an opportunity to lighten the household load. Get rid of things you haven't used in a while and don't foresee using in the future. Purging now will mean less to unpack later and a fresh, organized beginning in your new home.

Where to Find Free Boxes & Packing Paper
Local grocery stores, home improvement stores or any large merchandise store often have an abundance of empty boxes to give away regularly.

Craigslist listings are another source for moving boxes. People who have just finished a large move will list an ad looking for someone to pick up their numerous boxes.

Another packing tip that people often don't think of is to request end rolls from a local newspaper or printing company for use when wrapping delicate items. These rolls are usually given away for free (if not, you may be asked for a few dollars donation).

Tips to Keep Your Boxes Organized and Identified

  • Remember to label the side of the box as well as the top. When your boxes are stacked, you will be able to quickly & easily identify them and find what you need. It's also a good idea to label boxes with the room they will need to be unpacked in.
  • Seal your boxes with different color duct tape. Choose a color or pattern to represent the boxes from each living space. After your move, they will so much easier to locate for unpacking.

Pack a Box with Important Documents to Keep on Hand
This usually includes the following:

  • Medical Records
  • School Records
  • Birth Certificate(s)
  • Social Security Information
  • Documents for the sale/purchase of home
  • Any documents that are of importance

Pack a Box of the Most Needed Items from Each Room
This would include essential kitchen items, toiletries, and changes of clothes, sheets, blankets & towel. Label it "Unpack First" and set it aside to be loaded last.

Invite Friends, Neighbors, or Your Church to Help Pack
Enlisting the help of friends and family can be a great opportunity to turn a stressful situation into a festive farewell celebration.