Moving to a new house can take anything from eight to 22 weeks depending on housing chains and other factors. The actual moving part, however, can take anything from one day to two weeks. If it is your first home, or you are moving into a bigger house because of your expanding family, this experience should be celebrated. And with a comprehensive plan and the right materials, you can be settled into your new home in no time.
We spoke to Lyndsey, who works for professional removals service Pickfords, for her advice on how to make a house move as simple as possible.
Where is the best place to start the packing process?
The earlier you begin, the better. If you start planning a few months before the move takes place, you can pack gradually. Pack one room at a time, starting with the rooms you use the least. You can then store your boxes in these rooms or opt for storing them elsewhere so they are out of the way.
If you hire a professional removal company, they will pack everything for you in one go, typically in one day. Before the removal crew arrives, take everything out of your loft, attic and chests of drawers and keep cupboards doors open to ensure nothing gets missed.
What are the essentials when it comes to packing?
Every move needs the basics: packing tape, bubble wrap, boxes, labels and tools for dismantling furniture. There are also materials specially designed for certain items, such as sofa and TV bags, mattress bags and wardrobe boxes. These are more difficult to source yourself, but a professional removal company will provide such materials as part of your move. If packing yourself, we don’t recommend using newspaper, especially for glasses and plates as the ink can be transferred and stain.
What do you suggest for larger furniture – such as a sofa of an oak table?
For moves in the UK, we wrap most large furniture in a recyclable 4-ply paper wrap, carefully sealed with brown tape. Moving internationally, however, requires additional protection. Our solution is a plastic bubble wrap designed for maximum protection in shipping containers. Large oak tables and other furniture with sharp ends are further covered with foam edge and corner protectors.
Again, you can source some of these items to do your own wrapping, but ensuring best protection for your furniture means hiring professionals.
Are there any packing myths you can dispel?
A lot of people don’t fill their packing boxes because they are worried it will make them too heavy. What they don’t realise is that half-full boxes run the risk of being too heavily weighted on one side and falling over in transit. It is better to pack heavier items into smaller boxes and lighter items in larger containers.
Speaking of storage – any tips here?
If you are storing items at home or in a self-storage facility, encourage ventilation by stacking your boxes away from the walls. Be sure to clean all white good thoroughly and leave fridge and freezer doors open to prevent mould. Finally, leave seasonal items, such as Christmas decorations, towards the front of the room or storage unit so you can get to them easily.