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10 Things To Do Before Professional Packers Arrive

republished from

So, it’s finally happening – you’ve done an extensive research on various top-rated moving companies and you’ve chosen a full-service mover that happened to give you the best offer in terms of price and conditions. And if you’ve opted for the extra service of having your home packed up by professionals, you may be now wondering what tasks you are supposed to complete before those moving experts arrive at your home.

Are you expected to do anything at all before your packing crew makes an appearance on the scheduled day and time? And if yes, how to prepare for professional packers in such a way as to make Pack day and Move day easier for everybody, especially for yourself and your family?

It’s important to remember that although the process of moving from one home to another is brimming with move-related tasks of all sort, it’s the packing job that matters the most as it is, without a doubt, the most time-consuming and laborious task you’ll need to take care of in order to have a fairly successful house move.

So, if using professional packers is the right decision for the sake of your prized possessions, and for your own sake too, then preparing for professional movers the right way should be your number one priority.

Here are the top 10 things to do before packers come to pack up your things.

1. Purge your home of useless items

It won’t make much sense to pay for having items packed professionally and then transported safely to your new home only to never use them again. Since the total weight of your shipment will determine, to large extent, the price you’ll need to pay in the end, you must get rid of all things that you won’t ever need again before professional packers come knocking on your door. The majority of experts agree that if a person has not used an item for over a year, then that person should seriously consider parting with that item as its uselessness is becoming more and more obvious with time.

Don’t waste money and time if you can help it – go through your things and set aside the stuff you shouldn’t bother moving to your new place. Decide on the spot what you will do with each item – sell the ones that still have any market value, give away some of them to family members and close friends, donate still usable things to various charitable organizations, or throw away for recycling the worthless stuff.

2. Dispose of anything packers won’t pack

Just don’t tell your packing crew you have more than 50 types of house flowers waiting to be packed up.

Another way to prepare for professional packers is to part with any items that your packing crew won’t agree to pack for you. That’s right – even though you’re paying for the professional packing services you’re about to receive, there are a number of hazardous items that moving companies are not allowed to pack up and transport for safety reasons. It’s the law, so there’s no point in trying to persuade your packers to make an exception. And you shouldn’t either as such non-allowable goods could really endanger the safety of the entire relocation operation.

There are three major categories of household items your team of professional packers will refuse to deal with:

  • Hazardous items such as corrosive, explosive and flammable materials, including weapons and ammunition, chemicals, oils, cleaning fluids, paint, etc.
  • Perishables such as frozen, refrigerated or fresh foods. Don’t forget to use up your food supply prior to the arrival of your packing team.
  • Plants – due to their extreme fragility, the transportation of your leafy friends is your sole responsibility. Consider gifting your plants to friends or donating them to local hospitals, schools, nursing homes, etc.
3. Inventory all your possessions

Now that you’re left only with the personal belongings you will be moving to your new house or apartment, it’s time to create an itemized checklist that will detail everything that is quite ready to be packed up by the pros. A household inventory will prove to be a great idea for two main reasons: 1) you will have a detailed list of all the items in your shipment and will check the delivered items against it in search of missing or damaged things, and 2) you will be able to file an insurance claim with your insurer, if any, or file a damage claim with your mover if you do find any of your delivered goods damaged or missing.

You can create a home inventory list by either using the traditional pen-and-paper method (mark down the type, quantity and current condition of each item, and leave and extra column for comments), or taking advantage of modern technology to complete your house inventory checklist in no time .

4. Establish a No-Pack Zone

What to do before movers come to pack? One of your priority tasks is to select one room where you will place all the things that will be traveling with you to your new home. Clearly, that room will be a no-pack zone for your professional packers – make sure you let them know that you intend to pack and move those items yourself before they begin work.

Just to be safe, write DO NOT PACK on a piece of paper and attach it to that room’s door. If you can’t afford to spare an entire room for whatever you’re planning to take with you, at least cordon off one section of a room, and again – make sure it’s easily identifiable as a no-pack zone.

The usual things that people choose to pack and move by themselves include mostly essential items /see below/: important documents, electronic devices, valuables of all kind, medicines and so on.

5. Prepare those essentials boxes

When moving there's so much to do that hiring a professional packing service might be the way to go. Keep in mind that there are lots of options available, from packing your entire household to packing selected things only.

If cost is not an issue, then consider hiring professionals for both packing and unpacking. There are many services that provide everything from packing up your household to unpacking and setting up your new home.

But before you hire or even decide to hire, you'll need to weigh your time and energy versus the cost involved in hiring professionals to pack and unpack your home.

Home Assessment

First, the company will send out a surveyor to assess the details of your move. They'll list each item that needs to be packed, including furniture, cupboard contents and kitchen drawers. This is not only a way of costing out your move, but will help determine what's of value and may need extra special care.

Valuables, including paperwork, artwork and jewelry will be discussed during the household survey, determining how these items should be handled. Usually, items that can be taken with you on moving day, instead of being loaded in the moving truck, will be packed separately by the company and set aside for you to take with you.

Full Service Packers

Full service packers will make sure all furniture is taken apart, properly wrapped and secured using padding and protective packing.

Pictures and frames are removed from walls and carpets are rolled and ready to move. Boxes are labeled and sorted according to room and placement.

The company will also provide you with a time estimate on how long it'll take them to pack your goods and the cost involved - usually, they can do it in a day.

Depending on your time frame and how much stuff you have will also determine the price. If you're in a rush to move, more staff will be needed to get your home packed. Make sure you arrange for babysitters or petsitters to ensure that children and pets are kept busy when the company is packing.

So, should you hire a full service? As mentioned earlier, this is a decision you need to make based on time versus cost. A packing service could add a couple of thousand dollars to your moving budget. 

However, if you need to take two weeks off work in order to get the house packed and organized, it may be worth the price. Packing takes a lot of time, and you need to add in the preparation that comes with packing, too, such as purchasing packing supplies, organizing before you pack. Remember, when you pack yourself you'll need to first pack items that you won't need over the next few weeks - this takes time to plan and the inconvenience of living without things can take it's toll, too.

Most packing services can pack your home in one day. This saves not only time, but the hassle of living with and out of boxes.

Packing Specialty Items

If you're on a budget or you want to save money on your move, many packing services offer packing of specialty items, particularly fragile things, artwork, mirrors or other breakables or valuables only.

The company will come to your home to do an assessment then provide you with a quote.

Other items you may want to consider hiring a professional packer for are chandeliers, antiques, china, vases, valuable artwork and fragile furniture pieces. We always have a professional packer protect a handmade rocker that we cherish. Because it's made without any metal fasteners, it's quite fragile and susceptible to climate changes. It's worth it to pay an extra charge to ensure it's safe arrival.


Moving appliances often have to be handled by specialty movers. Many moving companies will suggest that you hire a professional to prepare and move large appliances such as refrigerators, stoves, washers and dryers. If appliances are not properly prepared, the moving company will not take responsibility if they don't work in your new home.

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