If you are like most people, you will find moving houses and packing to be a real headache. Perhaps it is because there are simply too many small and trivial items in your home and you don’t know how to downsize your home effectively. However, if you really think about it, moving house is the perfect time to do some spring cleaning. With some strategic packing tips, you will be done in no time.
First, divide items into two categories – one for items you will be taking to your new home, and the other for items you wish to discard. The second category may also include items you wish to donate, pass on to friends and family or keep in self storage.
Before you start packing, make a list of all the items you need and then sort them by quantity before packing. Just keep these downsizing home tips in mind and you will never have a hard time packing again:
- When loading items, start with the heaviest first. These go at the bottom and the smaller items can be placed neatly on top.
- Try to pack items in the same category together and sort them by room. Kitchen utensils go together, as should bedding, clothes, and so on.
- Basic toiletries, cosmetics, and medicine should be placed in a carry bag for easy access when you need them. They will get you through the first few days after the move without having to ransack big boxes to retrieve them.
- Make use of rags or newspapers to fill gaps in the box to prevent damage to fragile items. Ensure you label the box appropriately so you (or the movers) know to handle them with care.
- Valuables such as antiques, collectables, and jewellery should be kept in safe storage before the move. You can retrieve them afterwards when you need them again.
- Always label every box with the room they belong to so movers know where to place them. The contents of each box should also be labelled on the boxes itself.
Now, let’s get to the more intricate details of packing. With some clever packing tips, you can do more with less effort. Let’s downsize your home with these tips:
1. Clothing and Shoes
Clothes are sorted by category or type and placed in boxes or bags. Pack 2 to 3 changes of clothes to last you the first few days after the move. The rest can be gradually unpacked as and when you need them – Learn the best folding clothes technique!
For coats, dresses, and anything that are prone to wrinkles, place them in clothing covers and hang them on a roll-away hanger. Shoes should be placed into their original boxes to prevent damage and you should dedicate a box just for shoes.
Any clothing or shoes that you have not touched or worn in at least 6 months should be donated because it’s very likely you don’t need them anymore and they are just taking up valuable space.
2. Kitchen Utensils and Fragile Tableware
The kitchen has the largest number of fragile items, so use filler packaging materials like bubble wrap and newspaper for extra padding. Cups and dishes can be stacked after they have been wrapped with enough padding between them. When stacking, try not to overdo it and use appropriate packaging materials. Sharp tools such as scissors and knives should be wrapped tightly with cloth and tape, or covered with thick cardboard.
3. Small Clutter
Pile magazines and books, then bind them together with raffia string. Place them in a medium-sized box that won’t become too heavy to lift when it’s full. Toys, CDs, small furnishings, and other small clutter items should be sorted before they are packed. Once they are placed in their respective boxes, ensure to label them.
4. Large Furniture
Large pieces of furniture such as bookcases, wardrobes, lockers, and such should be disassembled in advance, if possible. If it isn’t, remove all contents into a box and secure the cabinet’s doors and drawers with rope or tape to avoid bumps during handling.
5. Electrical Appliances
Large appliances such as TV and refrigerators do not need to be packaged, but precautions should be taken before the move. Wrap the screen of the TV with a soft cloth to avoid scratches. Unplug the refrigerator the day before the move and empty the contents. Other smaller electrical appliances can be packed into its original box, or otherwise, bubble wrapped and taped.
Moving to a new home should be a joyous occasion for the whole family. If you need more space for those unused seasonal clothes, cutlery and appliances, check out Minibox’s storage service in Hong Kong – a safe and convenient solution for all your home storage needs.