Category Archives: Packing Tips

Most Common Packing Mistakes

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Packing well is both an art and a science, and the people who hate packing (there are many) have forgotten this fact. Since many of us save our least favorite tasks for last, it’s no wonder that packing can quickly go wrong.

Most Common Packing MistakesPacking your things should never be an afterthought in your process of moving. It goes without saying that you need to pack smartly to protect your items in transit. You’ll also need to pack (and label) well so that unpacking is a breeze in your new home. The time you save in cutting corners comes back to you tenfold when it’s time to unpack, sort, and settle.

Here are some of the most common packing mistakes to look out for.

Procrastination

Whether you’re feeling a bit casual about the process or avoiding it as long as humanly possible, procrastination will come to bite you in the end.

You can follow all of the packing tips in the world, have all of your supplies together, and organize to a fault, but one thing is sure: if you delay to the last moment, all of your other preparations go out the window.

Start by assuming that you’re underestimating the time it will take you to pack. If you’re wrong, you’ll have bonus time left over. If you’re right, you’ll have given yourself ample time to pack without stress. Win-win, right?

This common packing mistake is so critical we could name it twice. Avoid procrastination, and the rest will more easily fall into place.

Winging It

Hand-in-hand with ample time is planning. Are you the breezy, in-the-flow, everything will work out in the end type? That’s great, for some things. When it comes to packing moving boxes, you need a bit more structure.

If planning and organization come naturally, you can skip this section. You’re probably already making lists, gathering necessities, and looking at a timeline leading to moving day. Keep it up!

For everyone else, take a note from the planners of the world. While it all may seem a bit neurotic, trust us: it will save you a lot of headaches. Going in without a plan may seem more comfortable at the outset, but inevitably things get missed, tasks forgotten, and you find yourself nearing moving day with a lot of stuff left on your plate.

Take the time to make to-do lists complete with dates to work toward. You’ll help ensure you don’t forget anything while saving yourself stress, time, and energy. Be sure to add the items you’re confident you’ll remember. You’ll either get a helpful reminder, or you’ll get an easy line to cross off.

Not Stocking Up on Supplies

When you get started with packing, make sure you have everything on hand. One of the worst things you can do in the packing process is to get on a roll, then have to stop and head out in search of more supplies.

Start with decluttering your home so you can get a good idea of what, exactly, you need to pack. Be discerning and sell, donate, or trash the things you don’t want, need, or use. There’s no sense in packing things that will just end up stashed in the back of closets or cupboards in your new home.

Once you’ve trimmed and organized your belongings, head out for all of your packing supplies. Sturdy boxes, quality packing tape, bubble wrap, foam sheets, and packing paper are a good place to start. Whatever you do: don’t forget the labels!

Labeling is crucial in the packing process. By clearly labeling your boxes (on multiple sides and the top, by the way), you’ll save yourself some time. Not only will you ensure they’re transported safely, your movers can also deliver the boxes to their appropriate rooms.

Packing Haphazardly

“I’m not going so far, this box will be okay.” Famous last words.

Don’t take for granted that your things will be safe in transit. Whether you’re moving down the block or across the country, you need to devote time and attention to how you pack your boxes. After all, moving day gets a bit hectic, and boxes do a lot of shifting between your current home and your new one.

Labeling helps tremendously (we did mention their importance, right?) but it’s no replacement for mindful packing. No need to overthink it and spend all of your time packing just so. Take the time to wrap your delicate items and use the right supplies for the right items.

Heavier items should go in smaller boxes. Lighter items such as linens, pillows, and clothing can go in larger ones. Specialty boxes are available for specific things, like dishes, glassware, and even wardrobe boxes for hanging clothes. Be deliberate about how you pack, and make sure your items arrive intact.

Save money with Pony Express Moving Services. Lower prices than traditional moving companies and you don’t have to drive! Free moving quotes.

How to Cut Your Moving Costs

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Moving can be a stressful time. With all of the little things to keep track of, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. And that’s before you even start tallying up the cost of getting to your new place.

Moving costs can often catch people by surprise. The desire to save money can also lead to some drastic and less comfortable decisions, like assuming you can handle the grunt work all on your own.

Before you decide to push all of your belongings to the roadside so you don’t have to deal with moving, check out our tips on cutting moving costs.

How to Cut Your Moving CostsCollect Free Boxes

If you want to save some money, start with the packing supplies. Rather than paying for moving boxes, try collecting free ones. Places like liquor stores, bookshops, and groceries are great places to find boxes that would otherwise be discarded. Be careful to collect boxes in relatively good shape, particularly if you have fragile things to pack. Make sure to reinforce the seams with packing tape for extra care.

For most (if not all) of your items, you don’t need to buy bubble wrap and packing peanuts. Try using rags, towels, clothes, and other soft items to wrap fragile and delicate items. Clearly label your boxes on multiple sides to keep them extra safe.

Choose Your Dates Carefully

The principles of supply and demand apply to moving and prices fluctuate accordingly. If you are able to plan your move to save money, consider moving in the lower season between late fall and early spring. Even if you don’t have the luxury to choose the time of year, you can (hopefully) still choose your day and time. Holidays and weekends are more expensive than mid-week moves. That means you’ll cut your moving costs by scheduling your move on a weekday.

Do Your Own Packing and Prepping

While full-service movers can pack everything in your house for you, it will cost you. If you’re looking to cut moving costs, handle all of the packing yourself. As most movers calculate cost based, in part, on the amount of time it takes for your relocation, the more preparation you do ahead of time, the better. Disassemble furniture yourself and collect boxes in an accessible place.

Pull in Favors

Other costs can add up, like cleaning and making repairs in your place before you leave. Call in some favors with friends and family and see if they’ll come for a bit of a practicality-centric going away party.

The same goes for child and pet care on moving day. Having your kids – the two- or four-legged kind – running around can be dangerous for both them and the movers. Enlist the help of a trusted person in your life and save the cost of daycare.

Downsize

Since movers charge based on how long the move will take, you can assume that the more you have, the more it will cost you. If you want to cut your moving costs, take a moment to do some downsizing.

We recommend doing a bit of a purge before every move. Why bother packing and unpacking things you don’t want or need? Relocating is an excellent opportunity for a fresh start. You might even make some money if you have things to get rid of that you could sell. Give yourself enough time to sort, evaluate, list, and complete the transaction without pressure.

Check for Tax Deductions

Save your moving receipts – you never know how they may come in handy. If you’re moving for work, you may be entitled to a tax deduction on your moving expenses so keep good (and official) records.

Save money with Pony Express Moving Services When Moving. Lower prices than traditional moving companies and you don’t have to drive! Free moving quotes.

How to Get Packing When You Don’t Know Where to Start

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Packing is not easy for everyone. It can be tough to get started, or to even know where to start. You may intend to do your own packing but find the task pretty darn daunting when you start with the first box. How do you get your whole house into boxes and then loaded into a single truck? If you’re not sure where to start, when to get started, or how to pack your stuff – you’re in the right place.
How to Get Packing When You Don't Know Where to Start
From managing your very first move to packing when you’re too overwhelmed to think, these simple suggestions from professional movers can help you start putting one box on top of another until your house is packed and ready to go.

Start with Boxes and a Permanent Marker

Start with that first box. Grab a stack of ‘Medium’ packing boxes and a permanent marker. Start with the rooms you use least, like the garage or den. Clear shelves into boxes (with padding, if needed) and label the box for its contents. Then start another box. Then another. Empty your off-season clothes into one box and your backup toiletries into another. Empty your bookshelves and desk drawers into one box and your less-used kitchen pans into another.

One box at a time, label by label, your home will get packed.

Break Up Your Packing into Manageable Chunks

If packing the whole house seems like a big task, break it up. Pack your office first, or everything in your closet you don’t wear weekly. Pack up your storage areas, they’re already half-packed anyway. Section your house into areas, leaving your most-used things for last. Tackle packing one evening and weekend at a time and congratulate yourself on hitting milestones.

Get Rid of Stuff You Don’t Need

Moving is the perfect time to purge your possessions of anything you don’t need or don’t want to bring with you. All those shirts you never wear, the pans you never cook with, or the furniture too shabby to be worth the truck space can get kicked to the curb or – even better – donate them. There might be a young couple who desperately needs an old sturdy couch or a family who could really use that extra mattress.

Get rid of things you don’t need. Anything you wouldn’t miss in the new house is now a candidate to lighten your load and reduce the amount you’ll need to pack.

Give Yourself Plenty of Time

If you’re not a professional mover, start early. Most people can’t pack their house over a long weekend, or even over three or four weekends. So, give yourself plenty of lead-up time to pack the house – and know when it’s time to call in the moving company reinforcements if you just don’t make enough headway before your moving date approaches. This is normal, not everyone is a packing machine.

Hire Professional Movers

Professional movers are an important resource when you’re planning a move. Many people hire movers to pack just their big furniture and most fragile objects, trusting their expertise to ensure these items make it to the new home safely. You can also count on a professional moving company to take you past the finish line if your personal moving efforts aren’t quite done when moving-truck weekend arrives.

Whether you need moving services to augment your busy schedule or because you’re not sure where to start, Pony Express Moving is here to help you get where you’re going. Contact us today to consult on your moving plans and schedule the professional moving services you need. We look forward to making your upcoming move a breeze.

Save money with Pony Express Moving Services. Lower prices than traditional moving companies and you don’t have to drive! Free moving quotes.

How to Pack Fragile Items For Moving

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If you’re in a rush to move, you can probably get away with throwing most of your belongings into a box without too much concern. However, chances are you want to protect your fragile items like your favorite mug, plates, or flat-screen TV. In order to ensure their safety during your Boston move, you should take the time to properly pack fragile items so that they are secure. It will mean you have to put in extra effort and attention into packing them correctly, but it will be well worth it when all of your items arrive intact.How to Pack Fragile Items For Moving

Gather Materials for Fragile Items

Before you start packing, you first need to get the appropriate materials. To prevent damaging fragile items, you need to provide some cushioning during transport. Boston streets tend to be quite bumpy, so if you don’t properly protect your glassware, they can easily shatter even if you just move a few blocks away. If you don’t already have some on hand, you should get the following items:

  • Moving boxes of different sizes
  • Bubble wrap
  • Packing paper or newspaper
  • Markers
  • Tape and scissors
  • Dividers
  • Towels or socks for cushioning

You can find many of these items for cheap or even free if you know where to look. For boxes, you can ask family, friends, or even a local store if they have any that they plan on throwing out. As well, you can go to sites like freecycle , craigslist or Facebook marketplace and see if there are any listings for the supplies you need. If you work in an office, you might be able to ask the mailroom if you can take any extra supplies they might have.

Pack Your Fragile Items

Once you have everything in one place, it’s time to get packing. Your first step starts with choosing a proper box. You should opt for smaller boxes for your fragile items so you don’t over-pack. Not only are smaller boxes easier to handle, they are less likely to allow items to shift inside during the move. With that said, make sure the small box is also very sturdy as you don’t want it breaking down during the move!

Once you have the perfect boxes, you should secure the bottom and sides with extra tape. This will add extra support and keep it from bowing under the weight of its content. After that, add packing paper, bubble wrap, packing peanuts, or even towels to cushion the bottom of the box. Now that you have your box prepared, it’s time to start packing your fragile items!

There are several steps you can take to reduce the chances of your items breaking. Whether you’re packing your plates or glassware, you should take the time to wrap each individual piece. More delicate items like china should be wrapped in bubble wrap and then secured with tape. Other items that are a bit sturdier can be wrapped in packing paper or even things like face and/or hand towels.

Once everything is wrapped up, layer all of the items from largest to smallest. This way, the base of the box will be well-supported and your smaller items won’t get crushed. If you’re packing glasses and stemware don’t stack them. Instead, separate them with cardboard dividers to keep each item from colliding during the move. You should also fill glassware and other hollow items with packing paper to soften any vibrations.

After everything is in boxes, fill the empty space with packing peanuts, towels, or paper to further prevent these items from moving around. Don’t forget to add a layer to the top before you seal up the box!

Label Your Boxes

Regardless of whether you’re hiring professional Boston movers or not, you should always label the boxes with your fragile items so that you know to handle it with care. Make sure to also include an arrow on the side of the boxes telling them which side is up so they’re not carrying your boxes out upside down! Reliable movers in Boston will generally load fragile items last and will pack them near the top of the pile to prevent any items from accidentally getting crushed. If you have smaller trinkets or maybe a mug you really like, you should carry them with you separately. That way you won’t lose or ruin it during a trip.

If you are putting your items in storage for a while, you should take the time to create a content list on each box. Chances are you likely won’t remember what is in each box after a few months, so just writing fragile or glassware won’t really help. Plus, writing everything out will help you keep track of your items after the move and can help you unpack once you’re in your new place.

Handling Broken Items

Even the best laid plans can often go awry. Even if you did everything right, something still might break during the move. If that happens, you should be very careful when unpacking the items. Remember, handling broken glass or ceramic items is dangerous so be cautious. If you are moving with roommates or family, inform them of what happened and then remove the large pieces first. After that, carefully remove the other unbroken items and carefully wipe it down to remove smaller pieces. You should also vacuum around the box to clean up any small particles that might have fallen to the ground.

If you hired Boston movers, you should be able to file an insurance claim if you can prove that the fragile items were in one piece and properly packed. Most moving companies provide basic insurance that will reimburse you $0.60/pound for each damaged item. Some companies will go the extra mile and might even reimburse you more depending on the cost of the item. If you have a lot of expensive and fragile items, it might make sense to pay the extra money for full moving insurance. This way you can get a full reimbursement for your damaged items.

Conclusion

Packing might be tedious, but if you want to give your delicate items the best chance of making it through a move, it pays to take your time and do it right. Of course, if you don’t have the time to do the packing yourself, you can always hire a full-service moving company that will do all the packing for you. Just make sure to let them know what items need to be treated with care, especially if it’s not obvious!

FAQ

Are there alternative wrapping materials I can use instead of packaging paper?

If you have a tight budget, any cost-savings can be a godsend. Instead of buying packaging paper you can use clothes, towels, sheets, and other fabrics. Just make sure everything is washed and cleaned. If something breaks, during the move, make sure the items you use are properly vacuumed and cleaned of any stray glass/ceramic.

I don’t want to use bubble wrap for moving. What else can I use?

Bubble wrap is great for protecting your fragile items, but after you move chances are you’ll end up tossing it in the trash. If you’re concerned about the environment, this might be the last thing you want to do. Instead, there are more eco-friendly options such as biodegradable packing peanuts, seaweed packaging, air pillow, corrugated packaging, and more.

What items should be considered fragile?

Glassware and dishware are the obvious choices, but other fragile items include: lamps, pictures/frames, TVs, antiques/specialty items, tiles, collectibles, and more. Basically, it includes anything you really don’t want damaged!

Save money with Pony Express Moving Services. Lower prices than traditional moving companies and you don’t have to drive! Free moving quotes.

Don’t Forget Your Outdoor Items

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When you are planning for a move, it is common to think about all the items inside your house that will need to be moved to your new home. However, many people have numerous items, such as grills and patio furniture, outside that cannot be overlooked. Preparing and packing outdoor items for a move can be like packing some of your indoor furniture, but like with all home items, it is important to take special care to do the job right. Otherwise, you may arrive at your new home with broken furniture and a dented-up grill.Moving Outdoor Items

Deep Cleaning

Even before packing a cushion, do some deep cleaning of the outdoor furniture and grill. If they aren’t clean for the move, you might end up with dirt and grime on other belongings that ride beside them in the moving van. Spray all surfaces of the patio furniture down with cleaner, wipe clean and rinse with water. Make sure and get all the cracks and crevices on the furniture. For the grill, remove the soot and ashes from the inside and clean the grease or ash catcher. Additionally, consult the manual to see if there is a suggested cleaning solution for the inside and outside of the grill and to see if they have further recommendations for cleaning.

Packing

After you have cleaned your furniture and grill, you can begin to pack it up for your move. Remove pillows and cushions from the patio furniture and set them aside. Take apart any furniture items that can easily be disassembled and make sure to keep track of all the hardware in a bag or box that you can label and tape to the frame. Wrap the furniture pieces in moving blankets and take care to cover all the sides with the blankets. Once they are securely wrapped, secure the pads with tape to prevent damage. Make sure that any pillows or cushions are completely dry before packing them in boxes. Label the boxes for easy identification at your new home.

Remove grates, trays and small parts from your grill and carefully wrap them in packing paper and place them in boxes. You’ll also want to remove the propane tank from the grill. Verify with your moving company if they can load the tank on the moving van. You will likely need to transport it yourself or leave it behind and purchase a new tank after arriving to your new house, as most professional movers will not move anything flammable or combustible. Wrap the grill in moving blankets and secure with tape for safe moving.

Remember that a professional mover can assist with the packing and moving of your patio furniture and grill (minus the propane tank). If you want to forego the hassle of packing your outdoor and indoor items, Pony Express Moving Services would be honored to assist with your move.

Save money with Pony Express Moving Services. Lower prices than traditional moving companies and you don’t have to drive! Free moving quotes.

Packing Tips And Tricks

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Packing Tips And TricksDe-clutter so you can pack less.

A crucial packing tip is making sure you don’t move anything that you no longer need. Lighten your stress and workload by de-cluttering before you enter the packing stage, which means figuring out what to toss, keep, sell, or donate. Take measurements of your new home and get rid of any furniture that won’t fit or you know you won’t use.

Invest in quality moving boxes.

It’s tempting to go to your local grocery store and try to score some boxes for free. However, moving boxes are relatively inexpensive, and the added durability can be worth the cost in the end.

Grocery boxes and reused moving boxes can be compromised due to wear and exposure to moisture or worse, a bug infestation. The last thing you want is a box falling apart in your hand while you’re trying to move it into the house.

Set a timer and pack for an hour a day.

Don’t bite off more than you can chew. When it comes to packing, break down your packing into steps. If you procrastinate and try to pack everything the night before, you’ll likely become overwhelmed with stress.

Tackle one room at a time and spend an hour each day packing up items into boxes. Pack pairs or sets together and make sure your box is the appropriate size to hold a complete set of belongings.

Pack a moving essentials tote.

When you first move into a new home, it’s unlikely the first thing you’re going to want to do is to unpack clothes, do laundry, and go grocery shopping. Moving can take a lot out of your family, which is why creating a moving essentials tote ahead of time is tremendously helpful.

Give each room a different color packing label.

To stay organized, print off multi-colored packing labels or use different colored masking tape and give each room its own color. Label the contents of each box and include the room it belongs in. Then in your new place, use colored tape to mark entrances to rooms. This moving tip will save movers a ton of time. Instead of needing to read the label explicitly or play the room guessing game, they can just match color to color.

Don’t over-pack a moving box.

One mistake a lot of people make when moving is trying to cram all of their belongings into a few cardboard boxes they have around the house. Use as many boxes as you need to create easy-to-lift loads. Keep your largest boxes to no more than 50 pounds.

Use the right size boxes.

Place heavy items like books, in small boxes, and lighter items in larger boxers. This makes it easy for movers to organize and pack boxes into the moving truck. Be sure to pack heavier items on the bottom and lighter items on the top to avoid damaging breakables.

Don’t leave empty spaces in boxes.

Fill in any gaps with packing paper, clothing or foam peanuts to prevent items shifting around during the move. Use tape to close the bottom and top seams and around the edges where stress is concentrated.

Bundle the breakables.

For any fragile items you pack, use plenty of bunched-up paper and padding. Never place these items in boxes freely without some extra cushion. Spend the time packing these items correctly to save you stress in the long run.

Re-purpose household items for packing.

Think about how you can re-purpose things you have — like hampers, suitcases and laundry bins for storing some of your clothes and household items. To help take up as little space as possible, use vacuum sealing for your clothes.

Save space when packing clothing.

Clothing can be one of the most time-consuming elements of packing. The important thing is to save as much space as possible with clothes because excess clothing can take up most of the moving truck if you’re not careful.

Space-saving packing hacks for clothes:

  • Pack hanging clothing in garbage bags by cutting a hole on top of the bag then placing the garbage bag over a grouping of hangers.
  • Roll clothing instead of folding to save space.

Save money with Pony Express Moving Services. Lower prices than traditional moving companies and you don’t have to drive! Request a Free Quote Online.

Moving Guide During COVID-19

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Moving Guide During COVID-19Relocating in the Time of Coronavirus

The novel Coronavirus and the disease it causes, COVID-19, have changed our entire world in a matter of a few weeks. What was once routine is now more difficult and requires more forethought. Still, some things in life will go on. If you’ve sold your home or are relocating for a job, you might still have to go through with it.

This blog is meant to be a guide to keeping your family and your possessions safe no matter whether you’re moving locally or cross-country.

Moving yourself might not be the best idea right now. Driving a big truck full of your stuff can be a lot more hassle than driving your personal vehicle. While people are working hard to keep themselves and everyone safe, the less time you spend out in the world the better it will be.

Hiring professional movers, for local or long distance moves, will increase your ability to maintain social distancing while still making your move easy and smooth.

Packing up

Most of the information available shows that the Coronavirus doesn’t survive well on porous surfaces, like cardboard. This study says that it doesn’t survive more than three days on any surface.

So, pack your boxes and let them sit for a few days before the movers arrive.

There are many general moving guides out there, but the basics are to keep out what you’ll need for the first day or two in your new home. Personal items, things like coffeemakers, and more all make sense.

One thing that can help everyone is to wrap your furniture in plastic. This will give you a removable coating around your furniture that you can discard immediately.

Try not to be there when the movers arrive to take your things away. While they should be wearing masks and gloves, good social distancing would dictate leaving before they arrive. Preferably, a day or so earlier. Otherwise, try to sit outside to minimize contact.

Mark everything well. It’ll be easier to distribute when you arrive at your new home.

You might want to wait a couple of days after delivery to give the virus time to die off. If everyone is taking the proper precautions, you shouldn’t need this, but if someone in your house is in a vulnerable group, it might be worth doing.

Moving the Family

The key to moving the family is to keep everyone together and out of public spaces as much as possible.

  • Plan your route to avoid densely populated areas. The higher concentration of population, the more likely you are to enter a so-called “hot zone” where the virus is very common. Stay as far out in rural areas as you can, even if this puts you out of your way a bit. Gas prices are low, so it won’t be a huge expense.
  • Pack snacks and meals. Some things, like sandwiches, fruit, and even fried chicken, travel very well. Pack all the food and snacks you’ll need for the first day or so. If you choose a drive-thru for fast food, choose a national chain. They’ve all put in place measures to keep you safe. Every time someone uses a restroom, make sure they wash their hands well.
  • Wear masks in public. Wearing masks protects others from you in case you have the virus. It might feel strange at first, but most reasonable people will appreciate it. See the latest instructions from the Centers for Disease (CDC), but as of this writing, even bandanas are acceptable protection. Plus, the kids will think it’s fun.
  • Staying overnight. If you decide to stay in a hotel, even if your move was local, choose a national chain. Look at how they’re cleaning their rooms. Many hotels are taking extra precautions to clean rooms more thoroughly than ever. If possible, depending on where you’re traveling, camping in your own tent might be an even better option. Take extra precautions in public spaces, but there are possibilities for being safer outdoors. You can sleep in your own sleeping bags on the bed for added precaution.

Arriving at your new home

Almost everyone will clean their new home before they settle in. With the possibility of the Coronavirus, it’s even more important to clean well now.

  • Time – If the house, condo, or apartment you’re moving into hasn’t been occupied in the last week or so, there’s a good chance that the surfaces are safe. Again, check current CDC guidelines, but the information as of this writing is that the virus can only survive on surfaces for about three days.
  • Use soap and water – According to this article from the New York Times, soap and water are the best tools for killing the Coronavirus and most other germs. There’s a long chemistry lesson, but it appears to work. So, wash all the hard surfaces with a little bit of soap in water. For carpets, you can use a rug shampooer or hire someone to come in, if they follow social distancing procedures. Curtains can be washed in a washing machine with laundry soap.

Moving your household

The best way to move right now is to let the professionals do it. In fact, you can get a quote from a pro here.

A professional moving company can pick everything up, store it if needed, and deliver on exactly the day you request. This means you can have it delivered before you arrive or on a day and time that you’re not home.

The biggest advantage to having professionals handle the moving is that you don’t have to have extra contact with a truck rental agent, picking up or dropping off. You can get to where you want to be without having to take the extra contact that a rental usually takes.

Often, it’s less expensive than you might think once you factor in rental, gas costs, food, additional lodging, and more incidentals.

Safe moving in the time of the Coronavirus

With proper precautions and a little cleaning, you can get everything, and everyone, moved safely. This situation won’t last forever, but, according to experts, we can expect to have to change how we live for at least the next few years.

Please contact us if you have concerns about specific Pony Express Moving Services safety precautions, procedures, or hours of operation. Please note that the COVID-19 situation is changing rapidly. Accordingly, Pony Express Moving Services must adjust its processes to best serve our communities and ensure the safety of our employees and customers.

Packing Books For a Move

Packing Books For a MoveThere are a few predicaments all book lovers can relate to.

One, the overwhelming desire to buy or borrow new books when you already have a huge to-read list at home.

Two, hours at a time vanishing when you don’t realize how long you’ve been reading.

Three, cursing your book-buying habit when it comes time to move.

Moving books is tough! They’re heavy, often fragile, vulnerable to water damage and tough to keep organized. You might own hundreds or even thousands of books. You might be able to appreciate how poetic your favorite habit becoming such an albatross during your new chapter in life would be… if you weren’t in such a bad mood. Luckily, moving books doesn’t have to be frustrating! In fact, packing books and moving your collection efficiently and safely is easier than you think! All you have to do is follow a few of these helpful book-moving guidelines:

Go through your collection.

Moving is the ideal time to take a long, critical look at all the books you have. Culling your book collection means you’ll have fewer things to pack and move. Start this process a month or two before your move is scheduled. Go spine by spine, and look at each book you have. Ask yourself if you’ve read it, if you plan on reading it or if it has sentimental value to you. Be honest. You didn’t read Absalom, Absalom when it was assigned in college, and you probably won’t read it now.

If you can’t answer ‘yes’ to any of these questions about any particular book, it’s time for that book to go. Don’t leave it sitting around so you can go back on your choice, either. Instead, take the books you’re passing on to a used bookstore or one of many other places that take book donations. Seeing those books off may hurt a bit now, but your movers (and your back!) will thank you later. Plus, you’ll have more room to buy new books!

Go for small boxes.

One of the easiest mistakes to make when packing books is packing boxes too full. Books are heavy, and their bulk adds up quickly. Go for boxes that are smaller than 16″ by 12″ by 12″, even if those are the common measurements for small ones from hardware stores.

Re-purpose smaller banana boxes, apple boxes, or old shipping boxes. If you have no choice but to use larger boxes, don’t fill them all the way full. You can fill them halfway with books and use the other half for clothing, linen, or other lighter items. You want to avoid the potential disaster for both you and your books that heavy boxes can cause. Spread out the weight of the books, even if it means packing more boxes.

Take the time to prep each box.

Heavy, overloaded boxes filled with books break more easily than others. If you need to pack boxes full of books, you’ll have to prepare them first. Cover all the seams on the box with a double layer of packing tape. When you tape the center flap on the bottom, make sure the tape runs at least halfway up the box on the sides.

Extra tape crisscrossed across the bottom of the box is never a bad idea. If you want to be especially cautious, cut additional pieces of cardboard to place inside the bottom of the box. This will add additional protection and weight disbursement.

Pay special attention to the way you pack both paperbacks and hardcovers.

There are certain techniques you can take when packing both paperbacks and hardcovers so they remain safe.

Tips for Hardcover Books

  • Hardcover books should be placed upright, with their spines against the side of the box.
  • You want to pack hardcovers tightly, but not so tightly that you won’t be able to get them out of the box.
  • If you’re packing moderately valuable editions, wrap those in packing paper to protect their covers.
  • If they’re especially valuable editions, use cardboard slotted between volumes to keep them from shifting during transport.

Tips for Paperback Books

  • Paperbacks can be packed in multiple ways. You can stack them flat or spine first so that their paper edges face upwards. Don’t pack them so the edges of the pages face down or they’ll bend and warp. If you leave the boxes this way long term, they’ll be permanently damaged.
  • Fill empty spaces with wadded-up paper to help limit any shifting in the box. You want to keep the books from falling onto their sides or bending.

Now that you  know how to pack your books like an expert, you still have to worry about moving them.

Save money with Pony Express Moving Services. Lower prices than traditional moving companies and you don’t have to drive! Request a Free Quote Online.

Load a Moving Truck Like the Pros

Load a Moving Truck Like the Pros - Pony Express Moving Services

Want to know how to load a moving truck the professional way?

Yes, there are an infinite number of ways to pack a moving truck. Much of it is common sense. But the purpose of this blog post is to provide some serious step-by-step guidelines to load a moving truck properly. The information you need to know is segmented into three parts: general guidelines for packing furniture and the equipment you’ll need; packing specific furniture pieces; and step-by-step packing the truck.

General Guidelines

  • Safety first! Any moving truck you rent will have a ramp and you need to make sure it’s fully engaged, clean of debris and dry, and covered with non-stick matting if necessary
  • During the loading process, ensure the weight of all items is distributed evenly from front to back and side to side
  • The truck should be loaded in layers, each self-contained and independently secured. The goal of any layer is to avoid hitting or rubbing into an adjacent layer
  • All furniture should have blanket pads draped over exposed surfaces. The majority of damage done to items is by them rubbing against each other during transport. For added protection, use Plastic wrap in addition to blankets for fragile or hard to move items
  • If your truck is too big for your items, ensure each piece of furniture is strapped independently to the back or side wall of the truck with blanket pads protecting exposed surface areas.

Packing specific furniture pieces

The following items have been singled out as the common household pieces that require special attention.

  • Aquariums should be emptied with pads placed inside and out and then stretch wrapped. Place them on top of a box
  • Bed frames should be strapped toward the back of the truck
  • Chairs should have legs individually wrapped or bubble taped before wrapping the entire chair
  • Couches should be loaded on top of a blanket pad, on the floor of a truck, with the feet faced toward the side wall and the back faces out to protect incoming items
  • Drawers should be loaded faced toward the side wall to ensure they do not fall out during transport. All loose drawers should be secured with rubber bands
  • Grandfather clocks. Remove weights from inside the clock. Wrap and label pendulums. Wrap the clock in plastic or blanket pads
  • Hide-A-Beds should be secured using a strap so the metal insert doesn’t prop open during transport
  • Metal should not be loaded close to furniture as it has the potential to tear through plastic wrap during transport
  • Mirrors and glass should be wrapped and put between the mattress and box spring and strapped in
  • Wooden furniture should be wrapped well with plastic wrap, paying close attention to the edges and sides. This is especially important for cherry oak wood!
  • Rugs should be rolled up and taped
  • TV’s should be wrapped and faced against a box and strapped. Flat screen TVs should never sit sideways or on their backs.

How to load a moving truck

  • Your boxes will be your first layer, stacked high against the back wall of the truck to maximize space. Load the heaviest boxes on the bottom. Stack vertically with the lightest, most fragile on top
  • Lay a blanket pad on the floor and load mattresses and box springs next. Stand them vertically. Loose glass pieces should be placed in between (as per above). Strap to the side wall. This, with your boxes is the first layer
  • Next, lay another blanket pad on the floor and load couches vertically with feet toward the side wall, pillows removed. Secure each couch by straps to the side wall. Pillows can fill the empty space. Furniture pieces, such as dressers can be placed in between with blanket pads draped over.
  • The next layer is more furniture, covered in pads and/or plastic and secured to the side wall when complete
  • Appliances and wardrobe boxes are loaded last and will be the first items off the truck.

Ensure you close the back of the truck properly, replace the ramp securely and push safety pins into place. Happy Moving!

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Estimate Packing Time for Your Move

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Estimate Packing Time for Your Move
Why does it seem that the last 10% of packing can seem like 90% of the job? When estimating the time it will take to pack your apartment, condo or home, you always want to err on the side of more time than you think you’ll need. Even if it seems like an outrageous amount, better to plan to have the time available than be caught short on time when you really need it. So how can you estimate how long it will take to pack your belongings? We are glad you asked – because THAT is what this post is about.
From those intent on packing themselves to those who see the wisdom in hiring a professional to pack their belongings, the bottom line is getting your items packed up in a way that allows for safe transport to the new location. As human beings, we are generally optimistic about our ability to accomplish certain tasks. What we often forget is that there are all sorts of little things that add up over the course of the packing process. And if we are not careful to leave a buffer, we can get stuck needing more time than we budgeted.<
Things like running out of packing supplies, the added time to label things properly and pack things well. The time it takes to find used boxes or tape new ones together. The time it takes to move and stack packed items so the boxes are out of the way and still easy to access come moving day.

Three Ways to Estimate Packing Time

Packing Time Method 1

Roughly estimate the “worst case” time scenario you can think of. Then add another 50% to that. Yep, we are serious! It

Packing Time Method 2

Figure out how long it would take to pack ONE average box – start to finish – Include taping the box together, wrapping the contents, packing the box full, taping it shut and labeling the contents on the outside (top AND end). Then, if you are good at mentally calculating volume, walk around your entire home and estimate how many PACKED boxes per room. Do the same for closets, attic/basement, garage, storage, etc. ADD the boxes together and add 20% to the total (just in case). Then, multiply the number of GRAND TOTAL number boxes by the time per box. Take the total time and add 20% more time to it. NOW you have an approximate number of boxes AND the rough time you will need to pack them!

Packing Time Method 3

Unless you have moved several times or are one smart cookie when it comes to estimates like this, it may even take you more time than you calculate.If you can, it makes sense to pay a professional to pack your house for you. Professional packers are both fast and efficient. They pack your belongings with care and understand how to pack for efficient loading of the truck on moving day and for the safety of your belongings while in transit.As soon as you try a whole house packing service, you’ll see what we mean!

For a quote on packing as part of a move with Pony Express Moving Services , request a Free Moving Quote.