Use these techniques to get your possessions safe and undamaged to your new home.
The process actually starts before you pick up the moving truck. Pack your goods in sets of boxes that are about the same size – this helps with stacking and stability. Find out whether (and how many) furniture pads and moving straps are included with the truck rental. You’ll want a pad to wrap every furniture item that might get scratched, plus a few extra if you need to wrap corners on big items. Mirrors and pictures should also be wrapped in furniture pads. Tip – tape the pads, but be careful not to get any tape on your furniture, as it strips finishes.
On moving day designate one person to be inside the truck and be the stacking master. Couches and oversized chairs should be the first items in. They should go on top of the cab box at the front of the truck. Put the first one right side up, then the next one upside down on top of it. Load boxes around your padded couches and chairs and then fill any “holes” with items that don’t stack, like lamps. Tip – it is easier to wrap furniture in the truck. Spread the pad on the floor, place the piece of furniture on top of it, then gather up the corners, make sure the item is covered, then use tape to hold the pad together.
Next bring in any big, square furniture (dressers, sideboards, etc.), and put them against the cab wall. On top, put the medium-sized furniture. Then put heavier boxes, then lighter boxes, leaving some room at the top of the stacked tier for fragile and odd-shaped items. When everything is nice and tight, secure the tier with a rope or moving straps to keep it from shifting during the drive.
Repeat the process – big, solid, heavy items go on the bottom and, as the tier goes higher, the items should get lighter and more fragile. Dining room chairs get stacked on their side at the top of a tier. Tables should be upside down with padding to protect their finish and boxes can be stacked between the legs. Strap down each tier as it is finished. If you don’t have mattress bags, at least put a furniture pad down on the floor to protect them.
Keep the back of the truck for big, non-stacking items like treadmills, bikes, snowmobiles, etc. Don’t forget to drain any fuel from mowers and BBQs before you load, as the heat and jostling inside the truck box can cause spontaneous combustion. Once you’ve closed and locked the truck’s doors, you are ready for the road.