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Packing like a pro: How to pack fragile items when moving house

When moving house, the key to keeping your fragile items safe from damage is getting your packing method right and taking your time when you pack.

In between finding enough moving boxes and hiring the right movers, moving house can be a stressful experience. Of many of the emotions that come with moving house, that sinking feeling of opening a box to see your favourite vase smashed to pieces can be avoided with some planning, a little know-how and a stack of packaging!

Here are some packaging tips to ensure that your precious, fragile items are kept safe while moving house or into storage.

Take your time

Rushing the process when you pack means that you won’t have the time to make good choices with your packaging. If you don’t allocate enough time to pack, you’ll end up throwing things into inappropriate boxes and cutting corners on the packaging. Remember that cutting corners with packaging usually results in breakages, so ensure you start packing well before your move and dedicate plenty of time to the process in order to get it right.

Stock up on packaging items

One of the biggest keys to ensuring that your fragile items stay safe in a move is having an arsenal of packaging items that will cushion your breakables. Now is not the time to save money and cut back on how much packaging you buy. From collecting old newspapers, to buying rolls of bubble wrap, butchers paper, tissue paper, packing foam and packing tape (to ensure boxes are safely sealed and don’t come apart), packaging is your friend.

Make use of what you’ve got

Common household items like rolled up tea towels and beach towels can assist with cushioning and limiting the movement of items within a box.

Keep it separated

Separating all your breakable items like vases, ceramic mugs, fine china, wine glasses and porcelain doll collections ensures that they don’t accidently end up being packed into boxes with heavy items that could damage the delicate items. Mixing heavy items like irons and copper figurines in with fragile items like crystal perfume bottles is a recipe for disaster, so keep fragile items out of boxes with heavy items.

Provide plenty of cushioning (especially in weak spots)

Ensuring that fragile items are surrounded by several layers of cushioning is key. Wrapping mugs in tissue paper, then newspaper, then placing in a box cushioned with packing foam is a good way to ensure packing success. Stuffing tissue paper in and around crevices like handles and stems of glasses and mugs ensure the weaker parts of the vessel are supported and cushioned.

Label it

Labelling all your boxes is a good idea when moving house, because it speeds up the unpacking process on the other side. Labelling your boxes containing fragile items doesn’t necessarily guarantee a complete avoidance of breakages, but it does signal to your movers that those boxes need extra care and thought, and should be placed in the best possible position in the van to avoid breakages. They may even choose to tie those boxes down with cords to avoid shifting while on the road.

Save your boxes

Saving the original box and packaging of larger items like televisions and stereos is a good way to ensure the next time you move, you have the ready-made, original packaging ready to go.

Insure it

There’s no point worrying about fragile items if you don’t have home and contents insurance. Before moving house, get a quote for home and contents insurance to ensure you’re covered from your very first night in your new home.

Get professional help

Moving house can be a challenge so enlist the help of professionals to make navigating everything from carpet cleaning to the connection of utilities and finding storage solutions easier.