Doing Your Own Packing:  Click Here to download PDF

Gather Together Everything You’ll Need


  • Various sizes of sturdy cartons with flaps that can be closed completely.
  • White paper, tissue paper, paper towels, newsprint – good for all purpose wrapping and cushioning.
  • Bubble wrap.
  • Furniture pads.
  • Tape.
  • Scissors/sharp knife.
  • Felt-tip marker for labeling cartons.
  • Notebook/pen for itemizing cartons contents.
  • Sandwich bags to hold furniture hardware and other small items.



Good Packing is Essential For a Good Move


  • Limit cartons, when possible, to a maximum of 50 pounds to make handling easier.
  • Wrap all items carefully.
  • Provide plenty of cushioning to absorb shock.
  • Use sturdy, high quality cartons.
  • Make sure cartons are packed firmly – cartons should not have space for items to move around and should not bulge outward or bend inward.
  • Do not mix items from different rooms in the same carton if possible.


Ready, Set, Pack!


  • Start packing a few weeks before the actual move. Plan on packing 2-3 boxes per hour. If you have a spare room available, consider making it your packing headquarters.
  • Start with out of season items. Next, pack things that are used infrequently. Leave until last the things you’ll need until moving day.
  • Pack similar items together. Do not pack glassware in the same carton with cast-iron frying pans for example.
  • It is OK to leave blankets, sweaters, bath towels and other light weight items in drawers.
  • Build up layers with the heaviest things on the bottom, medium weight next and lightest on the top. As each layer is completed, fill in the empty spaces firmly with packing material to make a level base for the next layer.
  • Cushion well with crushed paper. Towels and lightweight blankets make good padding and are good for cushioning items. The more fragile the item the more cushioning needed.
  • Seal cartons tightly with tape. As you finish with each carton, list the contents on the side of the carton and in your notebook. Also list to what room that the carton should be delivered at destination.


China, Glassware & Silverware


  • Wrap all pieces of china and glassware individually in clean paper. Using several sheets of paper start from the corner wrapping diagonally and continuously tucking in overlapping edges.
  • A generous amount of paper padding and cushioning is required for all china and glassware.
  • Pack flatware on edge.
  • Label cartons “FRAGILE – THIS SIDE UP”.


Lamps & Décor


  • Remove all bulbs and lamp shades.
  • Never wrap lampshades in newspaper because the ink will rub off and stain the shade.
  • Smaller shades can be nested in larger ones. 
  • Package bulbs and shades in their own cartons and label “FRAGILE”.
  • Wrap décor items first in tissue paper, paper towels or facial tissue. Then, wrap carefully in newspaper. Be sure all items are well protected with plenty of cushioning.




  • Wrap furniture with furniture pads. Be careful not to stick tape on finished surface of furniture items.
  • Remove all legs if possible. Secure hardware in plastic bags and tape to the underside of the furniture.
  • A coat of wax on fine furnishings prior to moving day will help protect the surface from minor scratches.
  • It is OK to leave light articles of clothing in dresser drawers. Secure all drawers so they do not open in transit.


Major Appliances


  • Clean and thoroughly dry major appliances in preparation for moving.
  • Remove broiler pan and racks from the oven. Tape burners and coil elements securely for transport. Tape down all knobs.
  • Coil and attach all electrical cords to the appliance.
  • Disconnect all hoses from washing machines and dryers. Store the hoses inside the machine. Secure washing machine tub with braces or towels.




  • Whenever possible pack in original factory packaging.
  • Wind and secure all electrical cords.
  • Plasma and LCD TV’s may require crating and third party services to protect them properly.
  • Software and CD’s do not survive high temperatures. Consider keeping these items with you.


Garage Items


  • Drain gasoline and oil from all power equipment; mowers, weed eaters, chain saws, etc.
  • Poisonous and/or corrosive chemicals may not be shipped (refer to do not pack list)
  • Bundle long handled garden tools together for easier transport.



Moving Day


  • You might find it helpful to reserve a carton for last-minute items to

           be packed on moving day. Include such necessities as:

  • Soap
  • Toiletries
  • Towels
  • Facial and toilet tissue
  • The same carton can serve as an instant aid box for things

          you might need immediately upon arrival at your new

          home, such as:

  • First-aid kit
  • Instant coffee/tea
  • Sugar
  • Powdered milk/creamer
  • Instant soup mixes
  • Light bulbs
  • Paper plates and cups
  • Plastic eating utensils
  • Plastic trash bags
  • Screwdriver and hammer
  • Snacks
  • Small pan or electric coffee pot for heating water