Things you should pack first when moving

three boxes in which to place things you should pack first before the move

When planning a relocation, it’s so easy to get caught up in the logistics part of the job. However, organizing and executing a successful move are two different things. Unless you’ve hired professional packers, you’ll find packing is a much more complicated task than it may seem. Seeing as all your stuff needs to be taken apart, neatly wrapped, and put into boxes, where do you start exactly? How do you plan in what order to pack and decide exactly what things you should pack first? Worry not, as we’ve got a couple of methods to help you tackle this dilemma.

Before you start packing, create an inventory list

Of course, before you can start filling the boxes, you need to sort your things in some way. It’s never a good idea to just pile them on top of one another and mixing them randomly. Each box should contain a similar type of belongings, like glassware, clothes, etc. But, you can’t know what are the things you should pack first if you don’t at least categorize them. The best and also the simplest way to do this is simply by writing them down. Essentially, this is the inventory list that your movers will make before they load your stuff, but it’s much better to create your own. You can choose whether you’ll divide it by rooms, drawers, type of material, etc. One of the best tips for first-time movers is to use different colored markers to make it easier to revise.

Only once you have a complete inventory on paper, you can start thinking about different packing strategies. The main reason for this preparatory step is the fact that we tend to forget what we own, especially when it comes to stuff in the basement or attic. By putting everything on paper you’ll get a clear picture of what’s ahead of you.

pen and paper

Using different colors on your inventory list will make it easier to read

Pack everything you won’t be bringing with you

Wait, what? This may sound illogical, because why would you start by packing items you don’t even need? After all, this is supposed to be an article about things you should pack first when relocating, right? Yes, but hear us out. It’s going to be much easier to sort through the stuff you’re bringing with you once those you’re leaving behind are out of the way. Basically, everything that can still be used can be donated. So, by packing up all the old clothing you want to say goodbye to, you’ll be cleaning the space in your wardrobe. This type of downsizing is especially useful if you plan to move into a tiny house. Not only that but by not throwing them away, you’ll be doing a good deed too.

Some of the items you can even offer to give to your neighbors or friends. Look at it like this – you get to have a fresh start in your new home while your old appliances are used to their potential. It’s a win-win situation, right?

Starting with storage areas

One of the most common methods when it comes to moving is to start with those items you use the least. It’s quite logical, really, as you won’t need them during your last couple of days in your old home. So, whether it’s a garage, a basement, an attic or a closet – prepare to clean them out. Another reason why these areas should be the start of your packing journey is that they turn out to be the most complicated ones. Let’s face it – we’ve stored all sorts of things over the years. Plus, these spaces tend to be disorganized in most homes. When you take all this into account, it’s easy to see how it can turn out into a time-consuming task. That’s why starting it on time will make your packing process much smoother down the road.

Some other things you should pack first which aren’t officially in the category of storage space are unoccupied rooms. You’ll feel much lighter once you clear out these items and it will be all the simpler to tackle the rest of the packing.

storage items as things you should pack first

Storage space is usually disorganized and cluttered, which is why it has so many things you should pack first

Non-essentials as things you should pack first

Okay, but what happens if you were never a hoarder and don’t really really have all that surplus stuff? Yes, your packing will surely be much easier, but it still doesn’t solve the question of what things you should pack first. Still, no matter how minimalist your lifestyle is, you surely have some décor in your home. In order to clear enough space to tackle rooms, you need to start small and build up from there. This means that you’ll get all the details out of the way in order to see the bigger picture. Right now you may not be able to see the forest from the trees, but packing up your shelves will help.

These collectible items and artwork pieces are usually easily breakable, so it’s very important to be careful during packing. When it comes to transport, you’ll want to ensure you found the best movers online that will take keep them safe. Also, make sure you pack jewelry and other valuables in a separate box that you’ll transport with you. No matter how much you trust your movers, you’ll worry less if they stay with you during the move.

a box with pictures

By packing your collections and memorabilia first, you get to free the space in your apartment

The room by room approach

In the end, you’ll be left with just the rooms – but this doesn’t simplify the process. You still have to decide in which order you’ll pack them, as well as which things you should pack first in each one. To make it easier for you, here’s the most preferable order in which you’ll want to do it:

  • Kitchen – Because they usually have a large number of items, many of which are fragile (glassware, appliances, etc.), they tend to be tricky to pack. If you start with the toughest room, the rest will be much easier.
  • Living room – No matter how much you use it, it’s still probably the largest room in your home. With that in mind, it will probably have a lot of stuff, so pack it on time.
  • Bedroom – Other than bedroom furniture which is usually left to the movers, you can pack the rest the day before the move.
  • Bathroom – The last room to go is always the bathroom. Practicing good hygiene is a must, so packing it too early would be unpractical for obvious reasons.