10 Tips for Packing & Unpacking with Purpose

Packing & Unpacking with purpose

Packing and unpacking are time consuming and can be a hectic mess. But that doesn’t have to be the case if you take the right steps to packing and unpacking with purpose. Here are 10 tips to help you get started and keep the process running smoothly and efficiently.

1. Create an Inventory

First things first, you need to keep track of everything you are moving. This should be a detailed, organized list of all the items/boxes you are packing up. This inventory will be especially helpful if you have hired professional movers but is also handy while unpacking.

Use this article as a guide from My Move. It also includes a downloadable template for your inventory!

2. Plan your Help

Are you DIY moving or hiring a professional moving company? Either way, you are going to need a lot of help packing up your belongings if you want to stay sane. Consider asking the kids for help or offering some family/friends pizza for their help with the packing process.

If you’re hiring a pro mover, we suggest getting a quote from at least three before choosing. Also, some mover truck/trailer rental companies we love are U-HaulPenske, and Budget.

3. Protect Your Valuables

Taking photos of your valuables will be important if you have to file for insurance on a broken item after the move. We suggest that you pack your valuable items last and move them with you rather than the moving truck if possible. For added protection, it is wise to consider moving insurance from a 3rd party for these valuable items that have a chance of getting shaken and broken during your move.

Make sure you ask your pro mover the details of their coverage options. Ordinarily there are 2 options: Release Value Protection and Full Value Protection (click here for more details)

4. Purge BEFORE You Start Packing

There is nothing worse than bringing unnecessary clutter to a new home. Donate all of all the items you won’t need or sell the more expensive items before you move to lessen the work load.

Here are 2 of our favorite guides to help you declutter from Budget Dumpster and A House Full of Sunshine

5. Heavier Items = Smaller Boxes

Items that are heavy are only made harder to handle when in large boxes. Sticking to this rule will save you from injuring yourself while loading/unloading the moving truck.

If available, use rolling suitcases for your heavy but small items such as books.

6. Label the Specifics

Clearly label your boxes by room, content, and give each a priority number for easy and organized unpacking. Add a priority number to boxes (1, 2, or 3) depending on how essential is it that you have the box unpacked.

We love these box labels from U-Haul or these more detailed, printable ones from House for Six.

7. Pack How You Will Unpack

This is an easy adjustment to your packing plan that will make a HUGE difference when it comes time to unpack. The last items to be unpacked, pack first. The first items to be unpacked, pack last.

8. Pack a Moving Day Box

This is a box for everything you might need on your very first day. This box should include both personal necessities as well as some items to help you begin unpacking.

Examples: Box cutters/scissors, garbage bags, snacks, soap, disposable utensils/plates, personal toiletries, basic cleaning supplies, air mattresses, water, toilet paper, bath towels, first-aid kit, basic tools, light bulbs, chargers, pet food, pillows, blankets, sheets

Redfin has a more detailed list that can help you pack all the essentials for the first couple days after your move.

9. Clean First

Deep clean your new home so you can get all the hard to reach areas before your furniture is all moved in.

Get our best and most creative cleaning tips from out Pinterest board: [ Cleaning / Decluttering ]

10. Unpack Efficiently

We suggest tackling 2 to 3 rooms/areas of the house per day. It is important that you COMPLETELY unpack a room before moving on to the next. This will help you feel more accomplished when you complete a room. Furthermore, leaving rooms half done will make your home feel cluttered.

One of the best unpacking guides (well, videos in this case) is from At Home With Nikki on Youtube. Start the video at 1:30 if you want to skip the intro.

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