You’re moving. It’s an exciting, but also dangerous, time in your life. Dangerous? Yes. While many Australians use taxi trucks to haul their belongings from their old home to their new home, there’s the inherent risk of damaging your belongings during the move. If you hire movers, the risk increases exponentially. Here’s how to limit the damage and keep most of your stuff intact.
Get The Right Packing Materials
The right packing materials make all the difference. In general, the lighter the packing material, the better. So, opt for foam peanuts or air bags. But, when it comes to protecting large pieces of furniture from dings and scratches, use special mover’s blankets or just buy really thick padded blankets.
Mover’s blankets are special blankets that contain sections of padding that won’t bunch up in one part of the blanket. When you cover your furniture with this stuff, it will prevent minor and even moderate scratches, chips, dings, and other damage.
Hire The Right Taxi
Getting the right taxi for the job is another important step in the moving process. Not only do you need to hire a taxi truck service that can accommodate your move, you need a taxi that’s big enough to haul all of your things.
Some taxi services don’t do a very good job with long-distance moves. Other services will actually provide land, air, and sea (as well as customs) services if you’re moving out of the country. The taxi itself needs to physically accommodate you too.
If you get one that’s a bit too small, you’ll be cramming your stuff in there and hoping it doesn’t break – better to buy one that’s slightly oversized than undersized.
Prep The Cab
Pack the cab of the taxi with tools for taking down and reassembling furniture. You’ll want to have a lot things like screwdrivers and socket wrenches as well as sockets and allen wrenches. Also, put anything that’s super-delicate up front so that it doesn’t get smashed in the back accidentally.
Use Clothes To Pad Furniture
Another idea that will greatly reduce the number of boxes you have to pack is to use clothes to pad other items. Let’s say you’re moving a lot of trinkets and other delicate items. Rather than buy additional padding, use your clothes as padding. Simply wrap up delicates in a t-shirt or two, and you’ve saved yourself the added expense of additional boxes, padding, and possibly reduced the size of the taxi you need.
Move The Furniture Yourself
You can hire movers, but moving the furniture yourself is going to be the least expensive option. Of course, if you are physically incapable of moving the furniture, then by all means hire a professional. For example, a couch might be tough to move yourself unless you have a few friends to help you. But, a full-sized piano is nearly impossible to move unless you’re very strong.
Load The Heaviest Items And Appliances First
Load heavy items, like refrigerators, stoves, and dishwashers first. Put them at the back of the taxi, near the cab. Why? Because, if you have to stop suddenly, it will lessen the probability of these things shifting and sliding.
Always Buy Insurance
Even the best packing in the world won’t guarantee all of your belongings a safe passage to your new home. Renter’s and homeowner’s cover often doesn’t apply to moving, so you’ll have to buy a special moving policy.
Some moving agencies, and even taxi rental agencies, will tell you it’s unnecessary. But, as will anything else in life, it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Katie Coupp is married to a serviceman and moves a lot. When she finally gets settled, she likes to blog about her hectic life in the hope that it helps others to also cope.