Essential Moving Supplies

We know that moving day doesn’t make many people’s lists of favorite things to do. Sure, the part where you’re really at home in your new place is great. But all of that stuff it takes to get there? It often feels like a never-ending process.

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We’ll let you in on a little secret. Ready?

Everything is much easier when you plan ahead. More than that, moving is a lot less stressful when you have all of the right supplies. Sure, you probably know that you can get free boxes at places like bookstores, liquor stores, or your local grocer. Or that you can use rags to wrap some of your delicate things. But if you’re really going to pack well and move with peace of mind, you have to be sure you have all of the essentials.

Pack Like an Expert

To ensure a smooth move, pack as you mean it. No, we don’t mean keeping a serious face while you shove things into boxes. Packing like an expert means coming prepared with all of the supplies you need to get the job done. We’ve put together this list of essential moving supplies to help you get started.

The Basics

Not everyone wants to collect things on a big shopping list. We get it, and that’s perfectly fine. What are the absolute basics you need to pack well? Start with boxes in a variety of sizes, grab some bubble wrap, and make sure you get a good packing tape. If you’re a minimalist, that’s your shopping list done. If you want to really take it up a notch, check out the rest of the list.


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When it comes to moving, boxes are your most important asset. If you choose to hunt for free boxes, make sure they’re in good condition and are sturdy. After all, they’ll be responsible for keeping all of your precious belongings safe and sound.

Here are a few tips, whether you’re repurposing boxes or buying them new:

  • Small boxes are best for heavier items
  • Large boxes suit bulky or lightweight items like bedding and pillows
  • Wardrobe boxes will help you transport your clothes without taking them off of the hangers or crumpling them up in the process
  • Dish boxes will keep your dishes from chipping or breaking
  • Specialty boxes for glassware will make sure all of your glasses make it home safe

Protection for Your Fragile Items

Bubble wrap is a good start, but there are other things available to make sure your fragile items `are well protected. Consider getting foam sheets to pad your dishes. Compostable packing peanuts can also provide some support for certain items. Newspaper is less effective but can be helpful in wrapping items before packing them. Be careful what you use it for, though. Porous material like your mother’s bone china may absorb the ink and end up stained.

Labels and Markers

Label. Label. Label.

Labeling is crucial not only for packing but for unpacking as well. When you label your boxes well, you’ll know how to handle them and, more importantly, how to stack them. Be clear about what’s in your boxes so you don’t end up with your book collection resting on top of your champagne flutes.

Well-labeled boxes are more likely to end up where they belong. Label your boxes on multiple sides and on the top as boxes shift in the moving process. If your labels are clear, your movers can leave the right boxes in the right rooms, saving you some sorting before unpacking.

Packing Tape

Don’t skimp on the packing tape. For only a couple of dollars more, you can get a quality tape that will do its job. Choosing the cheapest tape means your boxes will likely come unsealed, or the tape will split (as it’s often quite thin). If you really want to get professional, get a quality tape and a tape gun, and start sealing.

Don’t forget the utility knife when it’s time to unpack!

Some Handy Extras

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That’s your packing list covered, but there are a few other handy items you may not have considered:

  • Mattress bags to protect your mattresses from dust and dirt while in transit
  • Sofa and chair covers for upholstered furniture
  • A toolset for disassembling and reassembling furniture or electronics
  • Furniture pads to protect from scuffs
  • Cling wrap to keep drawers closed or protect wooden furniture from surface damage

Being thorough in collecting your moving supplies means you – and your belongings – will be much better prepared for the big day.

Skip the Supplies

Does all of that sound like a bit too much? It’s true, packing supplies are a to-do list all their own. If you want to scrap it altogether, you’re in luck: there’s an option for that.

Full-service moving companies will take care of all of the packing and moving supplies for you. They’ll bring all of the supplies you need and then pack everything for you. With experience and expertise, they’ll pack everything in the best way to ensure safe transport.

Not only that, they’ll unpack for you in your new home, too. Then, they’ll take all of the waste away with them, leaving you to your organization tasks. Skip the packing and moving worries, and let the pros take care of it all for you.