The Checklist of Moving Supplies You Really Need

A successful move is a move that is well thought out.

For this, you’re going to need to know everything there is to know about moving supplies.

This article will get into what moving supplies you really need, what the supplies are for, and things you should know about them.

With our comprehensive checklist of moving supplies, you can stop your research and get started on your shopping.

Let’s get into it.

Essential Moving and Packing Supplies Checklist

No matter the size of the move you need to make you will need the following:

Sturdy moving boxes of varied sizes. Different items in your home fit in different boxes. A mix of small, medium and large cardboard boxes accommodates this need
Packing tape. Sealing moving boxes with strong packing tape ensures contents stay intact during the move
Tape gun. A tape dispenser helps you efficiently seal boxes quickly and easily
Packing paper and peanuts. Keeping fragile items protected will require a soft fill material
Stretch wrap or bubble wrap. Protecting furniture from dings starts with a protective coating of plastic
Wrapping paper. Dishes and other fragile items need to be individually wrapped in paper
Furniture pads. Furniture pads can be rented from your mover or truck rental company and help prevent scuffs and other damage to furniture.
Permanent Markers. Labeling your moving boxes with contents clearly is a must-do to stay organized during the move
Boxcutters. Once you arrive at your new home, box cutters are essential from unpacking.
Cleaning supplies. You will want to leave your last residence spotless and make your new home move-in ready
First Aid Kit. Accidents happen especially during the commotion of moving day. The last thing you want to do is have to tear into packed boxes looking for a band-aid.
Snacks and Water. It’s amazing how quickly you can become dehydrated during the move. Keep your energy and hydration levels up with a supply of snacks and drinks
A Basic Tool Kit. You will be surprised at how often you suddenly need a screwdriver. Keeping basic tools handy helps prevent delays.
A Hand Truck. You can get this from your movers or truck rental company. You can efficiently move many boxes at one time.
Rope. Rope secures furniture on the moving truck. The less movement, the less likely you will end up with damage.

You may also be interested in our moving checklist, where we dive into everything you should do to prepare for your move.

Specialty Moving Boxes

Specialty boxes help make moving certain items easier. They can cost more but may be worth the investment.

Mirror/Picture Boxes. These perfectly sized boxes secure mirrors and artwork
Wardrobe Boxes. Wardrobe boxes feature a hanging rod that lets you remove clothes right from your closet and hang them inside the box so they arrive wrinkle-free. They can be pricey but solve a large walk-in closet packing issue.
Dish and Glassware Boxes. Barrel dish boxes keep delicate china secure and protected. Glassware boxes feature separators that keep individual stemware secure so they never clink together during the move.
Flat Screen TV Boxes. Moving your TVs can be easier with a flat-screen TV box. You can also keep the box that came with the TV if you think you may be moving in the near future.

How Many Boxes Do I Need?

The easiest way to estimate your moving supply needs is by evaluating your residence per room. Fifteen moving boxes per room is a good measure. The size of those boxes matters so you will need a good mix.

Small boxes are ideal from items like books and personal items. Small boxes are easily stacked onto a hand truck for easy transport
Medium boxes are perfect for cookware and dinnerware. Use packing peanuts to secure electronics like computers and stereos
Large boxes are best for clothes, toys and textiles. Don’t pack large boxes with heavy items as they will be too difficult to lift. Focus on high volume lightweight contents like linens and bedding.

Investing in Moving Kits

To make packing and moving easier, you can also get a moving kit that’s based on the number of rooms in your house. The kit comes complete with an assortment of boxes and supplies. Shipped to your door, moving kits are one way to take the hassle and guesswork of moving supply lists.

Where Do I Get Moving Boxes?

For those on a budget, supermarkets are a good source of free moving boxes. However, they are usually already heavily used, so their integrity may be compromised. There is nothing worse than the bottom dropping out of a worn-out box during a move. See our list of places to find free moving boxes.

New boxes are available online or through storage and rental companies. They can cost more but provide lasting reliability. If you move often, then a set of new moving boxes that are reusable are big cost savings.

Tip: Supplies That Help Coordinate Your Move

Along with supplies for packing and unpacking, colored dots are the go-to for keeping your move organized and on point. Whether you use a interstate moving service or have your friend helping out, marking boxes with colored dots ensures that while the boxes are being unloaded, they will end up in the rooms where they belong.

For example: Green dots are kitchen, red dots are master bedroom. Create a color code chart so you can supervise where boxes go by color.

General Advice for Moving Supplies

Communicate with your moving company before getting too DIY with your supplies. Some may require you use professional supplies or their moving valuation won’t cover items that you pack yourself.
Before booking the cheapest moving option, consider the price of moving supplies. The more of the move you DIY, the more supplies you’ll have to provide yourself. You’ll spend anywhere between $50-500 depending on the type of move and how many supplies you already have available.

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