How to Pack Valuables: The Ultimate Guide
Are you preparing for a new move soon and worried about packing your belongings? Breakable items are at risk of being chipped, scratched, and damaged.
If you’re considering moving on your own, you want to make sure your valuables are well packed. Fragile items such as drinking glasses, artwork, and mirrors are some of the most commonly damaged objects during a move.
In order to prevent this, wrap and store your belongings the correct way using the right boxes and protective padding.
From the best tools and boxes to expert packing tips, this ultimate guide will prepare you for the big move.
Make a List of Valuable Items
The first thing you want to do before packing anything is to take inventory of all your valuables. You can either write it down or type it out, but having a list in front of you will help you plan.
Take photos of your expensive jewelry, artwork, breakables, and other important possessions. It’s also recommended that you know the value of your items before you move in case you need to file a damage claim.
Contact your insurance company and ask about coverage for your items. The next step is to ask your moving company if you need to buy any extra insurance. If you don’t get the extra coverage, consider moving certain items in your own vehicle.
Pick the Right Moving Supplies
Once you have an idea of what you need to pack for the move, you can buy the supplies you need. Unless your moving company does this for you, these are the basics you will need:
- Moving boxes in varying sizes
- Box partitions and dividers
- Wardrobe boxes
- Packing paper or newspaper
- Bubble wrap
- Shipping tape
- Labels or a permanent marker
- Blankets or soft cloths to protect your furniture
- Stretch wrap (wrapping plastic)
- Masking tape for mirrors
These are optional supplies that can make moving easier:
- Hand truck (dolly)
- Felt pads to protect the floor when moving heavy furniture
- Tape dispenser with handle
- Gloves (lifting gloves)
If you plan on packing everything yourself, you need to pack your possessions the right way.
General Tips and Tricks for Packing
You want your fragile items to be secure, so make sure to store them right in their boxes.
To prevent items falling through your box, double tape the bottom. This is useful when moving fine china or glass stemware.
To absorb shock, place a layer of bubble wrap on the bottom of the box and on top when you’re done packing. This helps hold your items in place.
When packing electronics such as laptops and televisions, use their original boxes. These boxes keep your electronics from moving around and provide ample support.
Packing Breakables and Glass
Breakables such as ceramics, fine china, and glass need plenty of padding to protect them from chips and cracks. Separate your heavy glasses from your lighter ones and store the heavy ones on the bottom.
When wrapping glasses and mugs use extra tissue paper or packing paper around fragile areas such as handles and stems. With small items such as figurines, wrap paper around vulnerable areas that may snap off or crack.
Once the delicate areas have been padded, place the item on its side on the edge of the paper and wrap it several times. Stuff paper inside glasses and mugs for extra padding.
Packing stemware is easiest if you use a glass kit with dividers, but you can use a small box as well. Packing dishes is similar to packing glass.
Packing Large Artwork and Mirrors
When packing artwork, it’s best to use an artwork shipper or box filled with foam inserts. Your artwork is safe between padding so you don’t have to worry about punctures or scratches.
If you don’t want to buy a specialty box, make sure that you wrap your painting in blank paper. Newsprint will leave ink and markings on your artwork. Add extra padding to the corners or buy corner protectors.
Store artwork in a large box with a divider between each piece. Foam inserts or bubble wrap work well.
Mirrors are heavy and need to be moved carefully. Make a large X shape with masking tape on the surface to prevent shattering. A blanket or soft pad protects your mirrors from scratches.
Unlike breakables, the biggest concern you face when moving jewelry is losing it. If you have a jewelry case, keep everything inside and wrap the entire box with stretch wrap to keep it secure.
Consider taking your expensive jewelry with you in your own vehicle when you move. It doesn’t take up much room and this way you know it’s safe.
If you decide to let the moving company transport your jewelry, consider purchasing moving insurance. Learn more about extra insurance and speak to both your insurance agent and moving company.
Moving Large Furniture and Specialty Items
Large pieces of antique furniture such as a bed frame or dresser need a delicate touch. These pieces are usually heavy, and if you move them yourself you may damage them.
If you have to move them, measure your doorways and ceilings to make sure it can be moved safely. Use strong movers and consider using a dolly for the heaviest pieces. Pack the furniture in padded blankets and stretch wrap.
Other heavy items you need to consider are pianos, chandeliers, and safes. These items may best be left to professionals to prevent damage.
Prepare for the Move by Safely Packing Your Valuables
Now that you know how to pack your valuables, you can prepare your possessions for moving day. Remember to write what each box contains along with a fragile warning.
Wrapping delicate items in paper and bubble wrap will protect them during transportation. Additionally, dividers help keep glasses and other breakable items from banging against one another.
When it comes to large specialty items such as pianos, pool tables, and safes, it’s best to leave those to the professionals. For more moving advice, please contact us!
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