8 Common Packing Mistakes

Buying a new home is stressful in many ways and packing can be one of the more stressful processes involved. People are tired, overworked and tend to schedule a short amount of time for it. Below is a list of 8 common packing mistakes and how to solve them!

Packing Electronics

Today we have dozens of electronic devices in our homes used on a daily basis. It is important to understand that when moving, you cannot always just stick these items in a box and load onto the truck. Many need to be properly packed and stored to prevent damage and preserve performance.

If you have a flat screen or plasma television it is very important to, if possible, pack your television in its original packaging. Always store them upright and never on their backs. If you do not have the original packaging, pad and protect them as much as possible. Other electronic devices such as computers, and DVD players should carefully have their wires disconnected.

Tip! It helps to take a quick picture of how the devices are connected for easy reference when you reassemble and move into your new home.

Packing Heavy Items in Big Boxes

We should pack our large collection of books in large boxes right? Wrong! Packing heavy items in large boxes makes it very difficult to lift and also risks the chance of the boxes ripping open. Pack heavier items in smaller boxes. So instead of using one big box for all of your books, pack them in several smaller boxes. Canned goods are another example of heavier items to pack in this way.

Packing Cleaning Chemicals and Potential Hazardous Items

Never pack chemicals and flammable materials in boxes that will be moved and stored away. This is a hazard and danger to not only yourself but to those involved in the moving and storing of the product. If you wish to transport these items, do so safely in your own vehicle, taking care that all lids are securely tightened. Firearms, and fireworks are other items that should never be stored and moved in boxes. Like the chemicals mentioned above, they should only be transported with you in your vehicle.

Related: 10 Common Mistakes of First-Time Home Buyers

Forgetting to Label (or thinking you’ll remember)

Labeling is a simple task but is often forgotten in the shuffle of packing. A good rule of thumb is to label the sides of boxes not on the top, this way if the boxes are stacked, it is easy for yourself and the movers to read the labels. Label them with the room the items were in, what the contents are, AND what room it should go in at the new house. If items are fragile clearly state that on the box! When you arrive at the new home, have the boxes put in the appropriate rooms that you noted on the boxes.

Underestimating Heirlooms and Large Appliances

Things like grandfather clocks and pianos have a lot of complicated moving parts that most people do not have experience in taking apart and prepping for moves. It is highly recommended that if you have these items in your home, hire a professional to disassemble and prepare them for moving. The same goes for larger appliances like stoves, dishwashers, and refrigerators. These items may have water and gas hook-ups that need to be properly disconnected for safety purposes and future preservation.


Packing and timing are crucial for successful moves. Underestimating the time it will take you to pack up your home will end up in some stressful setbacks. Set aside as much time as you possibly can to begin packing your home. Start with packing a couple boxes each day and one room at a time. As mentioned above remember to label clearly! If all else fails and you are running short on time, call a couple friends, order a pizza and have a packing party!

Moving during the summer? Check out my tips!

Insufficient Packing Materials

Packing materials can be pricey so people tend to re-use boxes from grocery stores or ones lying around the house. This is fine to do, just ensure that the boxes are sturdy enough to store things. If you are choosing to use newspaper as your padding, the ink from the newspapers can transfer on to other items. Keep this in mind, especially when you are packing dishes and china.

You can purchase boxes and packing supplies from your local self-storage facilities or from your local home and repair shops. Some boxes like dish packs or book cartons may be worthwhile to invest in as they are specially corrugated to hold heavier and more fragile items. Always use enough filling material in your boxes to cushion the items. You can never have enough packaging tape. Tape is used to secure the bottom of boxes and to close them up.

Unpacking Too Quickly

I’ve covered the bases for how to pack your home, but unpacking in your new home also has its challenges. Unpacking takes time and trying to do it all in one or two days will be very difficult and may lead to chaos! Unpack the boxes with the essentials in them like clothes, toiletries and kitchen items first. After that do a little each day, this gives you time to figure out which room each box should go in and where items can be properly placed. It is a good idea not to assemble large pieces of furniture until you know for sure which room of your new home it will go in. This saves time and energy shuffling the items from room to room.

Related: Budget Friendly Ways to Personalize Your New Home

Moving is one of the top stresses a person will have during their lifetimes. Follow these tips to help make your move a successful one!

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