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Packing is the easy part… Right?

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Whether you’re packing for a move, or packing up decorations, or even following that New Year’s resolution to clean out the attic and donate all your gently used belongings that you haven’t seen since last year, it can be difficult to even know where to start. Better yet, do you have all the packing materials you need?

Sturdy cardboard boxes of different sizes (They make boxes specifically for almost anything these days).

Packing/Duct tape (You will probably need both, and using different colors is a great way to separate what goes where once the box is closed).

Bubble wrap (Preferably some that you haven’t popped all the bubbles out of, hard to resist).

Old newspapers ­­(You could even use old wrapping paper if one of your resolutions is to recycle).

Sharpies of different colors (You’ll need as many as you have rooms in your home, or places to donate, etc).

Pen & Paper (For your inventory list).

Plastic baggies (To collect screws and small parts that go with furniture. Tape each bag onto the corresponding piece of furniture.)

Heavy-duty garbage bags (For items that aren’t as fragile that you are donating or throwing away).

Tools (To take apart furniture and put it back together; don’t forget your screws, nuts, and bolts).

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Movers Tips for Cleaning the New Home or Old Home

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When moving a lot of the focus is set on actually moving all of your belonging from one place to the next but don’t forget about cleaning as you leave and maybe once you get to the new place. Being in the moving industry you pick up a few cleaning tips along the way. First and foremost it’s always easiest to work your way from the deepest point of the home out towards the exit, that way no one is walking back through a clean area to re-clean. Start from top to bottom when cleaning anything for the same reasoning, there’s no sense in re-cleaning what was you just cleaned.

Removing a Carpet Stain: A mix of hydrogen peroxide and blue dawn dish detergent will get out most any carpet (and mattress) stains.

Toilet Bowl Rings: Cut a corner off of a Mr. Clean Magic Eraser and put it in the toilet bowl overnight, no scrubbing necessary, just a flush.

Household Odors: Put two cap fulls of Vanilla Extract in a coffee cup, place it in the oven at 300 degrees for one hour. Also take baking soda and sprinkle it on the carpet, let it sit for 15-30 minutes then vacuum.
Scuff Marks: Using WD-40 and a scrub brush should take those scuffs right out.

Dishwasher Stains or Deposits: Run a packet of Kool-Aid brand Lemonade flavor through and empty cycle and it will knock out lime deposits or rust stains.

Unclog a Drain: Pour ½ a box of baking soda dry down the drain, grab a towel and a bottle of vinegar, pour the vinegar down the drain and stuff the opening with the towel tightly. Wait 30 minutes, take the towel out and then take a pot of boiling water and pour it down the drain.

Dirty Showerhead: Take a rubberband and a big Ziploc bag, place the showerhead in the Ziploc and fill it with vinegar just enough to submerse the showerhead, use the rubberband to hold the Ziploc bag in place and wait an hour.

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Don’t Get Wrapped Up In Packing

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Most everyone knows that feeling of overwhelming defeat when they walk into a room to begin packing. When just two days prior, when speaking with a mover, you had insisted you really don’t have that much. Professional packing is the most expensive part of moving, so if you can – go for it.

Know that you are in the majority when you find yourself wondering where you even got all of your stuff.  JUST DON’T PROCRASTINATE. Chances are you don’t have to finish all of the packing in one day. Set goals for packing, maybe the attic one weekend and then next weekend start the kitchen. For some packing room by room helps, others start with what they use the least often, and a few just completely go through everything and de-clutter their living space.

Be honest with yourself. There is a common method for cutting down what you bring from one home to the new one, you should have three designated boxes and one trash can. The three boxes are divided into “Keep & Use”, “Keep & Store”, and “Sell or Donate”, the trash can is for anything that doesn’t belong in the three boxes.  Anything you haven’t used in a year, donate or sell it. If you held onto a teddy bear as a keepsake but can’t remember who gave it to you, donate or sell it. If it is broken or you wouldn’t lend it to a friend or family member in that condition, trash it.  

Almost every aspect of moving is overwhelming, but if you get organized early and plan ahead it can be an exciting time. When in doubt, call your mover to ask how to prepare or pack safely.  If it isn’t furniture – it needs protected via a box before professional movers handle it.

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Five Significant Moving Mistakes

Making mistakes are a part of human nature and the process of moving is no exception.

Making your list and checking it twice? The inventory list is exceptionally important. It’s the main way of checking that everything from the first home was packed up as it should be and got on the truck. It’s easy to be exhausted from the move but don’t mentally check out just yet and rush through the list. It’s easier to locate a missing item the day of the move than a month later when you discover you can’t find the box with your video camera and holiday tapes. Before signing off on the inventory sheet on delivery day, make sure you understand the process for filing claims for missing items. From the beginning be certain you understand the valuation option you assigned the company, in case of any loss or damage.

No survival kit? Smart movers make sure they have a personal moving survival kit that stays with them on that move-in day (and night) ensuring it goes smoothly for everyone in the family. This might include must-haves such as scissors, a screwdriver, address book, a flashlight, Johnny’s can’t-sleep-without blanket or  your toiletries, dog food, soap, coffee, toilet paper, water bottles, cleaners, paper towels, a television remote control and necessary medications for the whole family. Remember to have enough handy cash, too, so that you’ll be able to pay for that pizza delivery you’ll most certainly need.

Forgot the special care items? Not everything is able to be moved by movers. Ask your movers if there is anything they can’t transport ahead of time to prepare. For example, typically hazardous materials are a no no.  With all of the other things you’re worrying about, it’s easy to forget that the family pet needs to move too, something no mover can toss in a box. Visit your vet before moving day to make sure your pet has current shots, tags, certificates, and proper identification. Make sure you carry the animal’s papers with you, especially if you cross state lines.

Want to DIY? Even a move across town can be very complicated, and takes extensive advance planning. There are a huge number of potential pitfalls, from the wear and tear physically and potential damage to household goods, to unexpected or underestimated fuel costs. In the end, a do-it-yourself move may not be as “cheap” or as fun as figured (that would be about the time you drop the TV on your foot or discover the truck is fully loaded but a third of your house is still on the sidewalk). Leave plenty of time to research how you want to move and review movers to find a truly professional team.