Ensure you arrive in your new home with your belongings (and sense of humour) intact, by following our seven smart packing tips.
Draft a moving budget
A budget doesn't just help you manage the cost of moving, it can also act as a useful way of knowing nothing has been overlooked. Along with removalist fees, storage costs and utilities connection, allow for less obvious outgoings like mail redirection.
Hire a reputable removalist
The process of moving can be as cheap as offering a few cold beers to a mate with a ute. But your belongings are valuable, and it pays to shop around for reputable furniture removalists.
When comparing quotes, ask about additional fees that may apply such as higher rates if the move takes longer than expected. Ask too about the availability of free storage boxes to save on costs.
Importantly, check the firm is insured in case anything is damaged in transit.
Talk to the boss about taking a day off work to complete the move. Book childcare for the kids or boarding kennels for the family pets if necessary.
Minimise the load
Moving offers a useful opportunity to offload any unwanted or unused items – it can also cut down removal costs. Go from room to room (don't overlook the shed and garage) and take anything you don't want to the local charity shop. Or hold a garage sale -you could earn extra cash to offset the cost of moving.
Newspaper makes great fill for packing boxes so start stockpiling papers for several weeks before moving day. Tea towels and dishcloths can also be useful for packing – use them to fill gaps to prevent items shifting.
Pack boxes with the heaviest items at the bottom and lighter items at the top to reduce breakage. Resist the urge to overfill a box – take note of weight limits written on containers.
Where possible, dismantle furniture like tables to save space in the removal van.
Keep a list
Label and number every box as you pack to maintain a list of the items in each box. This is essential if anything is lost and you need to claim on your removalist's insurance. Boxes containing breakable items should be marked ‘fragile'.
Save with a bit of DIY
If you're given the keys to your new home early, get a head start by moving smaller items in your car in the days or weeks before official moving day.