Moving day is an extremely busy, stressful, and chaotic period that will surely test you how ready you are for your move.
Being mentally ready for the Big day is important but it’s definitely not enough to have a smooth, stress-free, and problem-free move-out day that will let you stay sane until you reach the haven of the new place.
That’s right, you’ll also need loads of moving essentials on Moving day to guarantee a successful end to your relocation story.
Here’s a list of the top 20 moving out essentials that you’ll need to have on the day of your move:
1. Cardboard boxes
A house move is simply unthinkable without the usefulness and versatility of cardboard boxes. The thing is that you’re going to need lots and lots of moving boxes to pack up your things safely for transport. In fact, the average number of boxes to pack a house is roughly 60.
Moving boxes are the top packing essentials when moving house. If you can afford to purchase brand-new packing boxes, then that’s great. But if you’re moving on a budget, then you’d best find free moving boxes to keep your packing expenses to a minimum.
Just make sure the cardboard containers you get for free are strong, clean, and dry.
2. Bubble wrap
Another must-have packing material when packing for a move is bubble wrap. The air-filled plastic material provides excellent protection for fragile and breakable items by forming thick protective padding around them.
Pieces of discarded bubble wrap can be also used to fill in empty spaces inside boxes, thus preventing the packed items from shifting during transport.
Bubble wrap is not cheap – a box of Enviro-Bubble (150′ x 12?, 150 FT) costs around $20, but finding most of your fragile items broken after the move will be much more expensive, so don’t skimp on bubble wrap when packing your breakables.
3. Stretch wrap
You may not consider stretch wrap to be one of the moving essentials but using it during the packing process will make your life so much easier.
Shrink wrap can be extremely useful when packing for a move: you can bundle clothes with it, you can use it to close up plastic containers, you can contain the contents of drawers with it, and you can also keep furniture drawers and doors from opening during transport.
Stretch wrap is great for protecting furniture against dust and moisture, and it does not leave any harmful residue like packing tape does.
4. Packing paper
Wrapping paper is another packing supply that you can’t do without – in fact, paper will be the major packing material that you’re going to use for packing almost any item in your home.
Make sure you use soft, white, acid-free and print-free wrapping paper as the first layer of protection for your belongings. You can also use paper to line up cardboard boxes and fill up gaps inside the containers.
The best thing about packing paper is that it’s very versatile and can easily be wrapped around objects of any shape and size. Since white print-free paper leaves no marks on delicate surfaces, it’s always the first line of defense when packing very delicate items.
5. Packing tape
You may not think much of packing tape and take it for granted… but tape has always been in the list of essentials for moving out for the first time. Without tape, you wouldn’t be able to seal a single box, thus creating additional problems for yourself.
While packing up your home, you’re going to need a lot of packing tape to reinforce the bottom and sides of second-hand boxes, to secure bundles of wrapping paper and/or bubble wrap, and to close the boxes securely for the road.
Make sure you purchase high-quality packing tape – coupled with a tape dispenser for best results – to make things easier and safer on Moving day.
6. Permanent markers
Some people underestimate the importance of labeling your boxes, thinking that the task is a waste of valuable packing time. You don’t have to make the same mistake, and you shouldn’t.
A set of permanent markers (but one black marker is good enough) will introduce structure and organization during a typically chaotic packing process. Even the shortest pencil (marker in your case) is better than the longest memory, so don’t rely too much on your memory during a house move.
Once you pack up a box, write its contents, destination room, and handling instructions, if any, on at least two of its sides. After the move, you’ll be thankful that you did.
7. Moving dolly
Our moving essentials checklist continues with the pieces of moving equipment that you must secure when moving without hiring professional movers.
It’s not a secret that every house move involves heavy lifting to some degree, and even if not a single furniture item is being moved between the two homes (unlikely), there’ll still be tons of heavy moving boxes to lift and carry.
Save your back and rent (or purchase) a moving dolly for your upcoming DIY move. In addition to saving you plenty of effort, using a moving dolly will prevent any property damage and will keep you injury-free throughout the move.
8. Furniture sliders
One of the essential things for moving out is the so-called furniture sliders – small pieces of hard rubber or plastic that will help you slide heavy furniture and heavyweight appliances across the room easily and without any floor damage whatsoever.
It’s very easy to use furniture sliders – just place one slider under each leg or side of a heavy item and start sliding it almost effortlessly across the floor.
Before you purchase a set of sliders, bear in mind that there are two types: sliders for hardwood floors (with felt on one side) and sliders for carpeted floors (with hard rubber or plastic on one side).
9. Moving blankets and pads
When moving by yourself (without movers), one of the most important moving essentials that you should have with you is moving blankets – quilted pads (most often sized at 72? x 80?) of durable non-woven fabric that are ideal for wrapping and padding large surfaces such as furniture, appliances, and so on.
Moving blankets provide excellent protection of delicate surfaces against accidental damage – scratches, dents, etc. They also protect items from dust and moisture during the move.
Furniture blankets are not cheap (starting from $70 for a pack of 12 blankets) but they can be used multiple times, which makes them a good investment for the future.
10. Protective gloves
High-quality work gloves are another important item in the moving essentials list. Due to the repetitive task of lifting and carrying heavy items for hours on Moving day, there’s always an elevated risk of injury to the fingers or hands.
And that’s exactly where thick protective gloves come in – to keep you injury-free during the move.
Also, quality gloves will give you a better grip onto whatever it is that you’re carrying, thus minimizing the chance of dropping that load onto the floor or worse – onto your feet and toes.
11. Toolbox with basic tools
Without a doubt, you’re going to need a number of basic tools on Moving day for various purposes. That’s why a toolbox will always be one of the moving out essentials to have nearby during a house move:
- Measuring tape. Will your large furniture fit through the door?
- Scissors. For cutting the packing tape and pieces of cardboard.
- A box cutter. For opening up boxes and cutting up cardboard.
- Screwdrivers. One set should be enough, especially if you decide to disassemble partially your big furniture.
- A pair of pliers. Pliers are always handy for various jobs.
When moving out, you’ll have to create a special essentials box for moving which you will fill with various super-important items that will help you survive a few days until you get access again to your regular stuff.
Interestingly enough, some of those moving essentials won’t be survival items but rather things that you shouldn’t entrust to your movers if you do choose to use professional moving services. For example, your movers shouldn’t get access to your personal documents such as IDs, passports, driver’s licenses, medical records, birth certificates, and so on.
Also, all move-related paperwork should stay with you at all times.
Medicines are definitely moving house essentials and they do belong in the Moving day essentials box that you’re strongly advised to pack before moving out.
Take all prescription medication with you – the medicines you take on a regular basis for one reason or another. Then, there’s the first-aid kit because you just never know what will happen during the most unpredictable day in a move.
Pack your painkillers as well, for Moving day can provide many reasons for strong headaches. If you use any allergy medication, have those with you as well.
If you happen to wear contact lenses, then make sure the contact lens solution stays with you.
You’re going to need some basic toiletries on Moving day, and then to pack them up into the moving essentials kit. Speaking of Moving day necessities, don’t pack these bathroom items and toiletries into your regular boxes where you won’t be able to use them until the move is over:
- Toothpaste and toothbrush (for each family member);
- Comb or hairbrush;
- Shampoo and hair conditioner;
- Moisturizing cream;
- Liquid soap or a bar of soap;
- Deodorant and other personal care items;
- Paper towels;
- Wet wipes;
- Toilet paper.
Some of your small electronic devices will be truly essential on Moving day – your smartphone, for example, while other gadgets you just won’t trust anybody but you to move to the new home – your portable computer, for instance.
Your smartphone will let you stay in touch with the moving company you’ve chosen, or be in regular communication with your family, friends, estate agent, or landlord. Also, the smartphone will let you take photos of the items for moving or the condition of the place you’re leaving. Make sure you have its charger with you as well.
Your laptop and standalone digital camera are other electronic devices that you’ll wish to keep by your side as part of the moving out essentials items that you own.
16. Food and drinks
Moving day always proves to be a rather exhausting period where a lot of energy is spent on moving heavy items out of your home and loading them into a moving vehicle. That’s why one of the Moving day essentials are appropriate food and refreshing drinks for everyone involved in the move.
Even when you have professional movers taking care of the move for you, you’re going to need some tasty snacks and a variety of beverages to keep everyone’s energy levels up and running.
When it comes to food, sandwiches, nuts, dried fruits, cookies, and fruits are always a good choice. As far as drinks go, coffee, tea, bottled water, and soft drinks should be enough to keep everyone hydrated.
17. Extra clothes
This moving essentials checklist continues with a change of clothes for each family member – something that often proves extremely practical right after moving into the new house.
Of course, what type of clothes you pack into your essentials boxes will depend on the season in which you’re moving – warmer clothes when moving in winter and light clothes when moving in summer. Also, your choice of what clothes to set aside should be influenced by the climatic conditions of the destination area.
In any case, it’s always a good idea to pack extra socks and underwear.
18. Essentials for kids
When moving with young children, you’re going to have to prepare a separate essentials box just for them. As a parent, you know well enough that your kids’ safety and well-being is your number one priority, especially during a chaotic period such as a house move.
Pack the items that are specific for your children’s age: baby items, toys, games, craft supplies, books – anything to keep them occupied and content during the trip to the new home. Don’t forget to take any prescription medication that they might need, or any other specialized items specific to their needs.
Throw in a change of clothes too.
19. Essentials for pets
If you’re a pet owner, it means that you’ll also need to think about the safety and health of your pet during the house move as well. To ensure your pet’s comfort, prepare enough food, water, a pet carrier of the right type, bedding, and so on.
Also, to make your dear pet feel more secure and less stressed out, it’s a good idea to take their favorite blanket, chew toys, and other well-familiar items that will provide them with a sense of comfort and security during the car trip and on the first few days after the move.
20. Cleaning supplies
After your movers leave with your items loaded onto their truck, you’ll likely find out that the home you’re about to leave is a mess. And in order to restore its normal look and feel, you’re going to have to clean the place before you yourself move out.
Surprisingly, cleaning supplies prove to be truly essential things when moving out. After all, you do wish to get back your security deposit from the landlord (when you’re a renter) or sell the house or apartment quickly and with a profit (when you’re an owner). That’s why it’s time to take out that cleaning equipment and cleaning products and get to work.
In most cases, a broom and a mop, a few types of cleaning products, and loads of trash bags should be enough to get the job done.