What To Expect & What Not To Do When Movers Pack For You
Packers are generally highly experienced employees of a moving company. They have years of experience in packing household goods; they move very quickly and efficiently; they are tasked to pack tightly and carefully; and their goal is to pack each carton to capacity without either over packing it (making it too heavy) or under packing it (more paper than needed). They have been trained to meet high industry standards and, in most cases, can make packing look easier than it is. When packers enter your home, they will walk with you and listen to any concerns you may have for special care items. Once they have a good understanding of what needs to be done, they will move to pack your home quickly.
Here are some common questions about the process:
What will they do?
The first step is to protect your home. They will normally start by protecting your floors. Next they will bring packing material, cartons, tape and paper inside your home. They then will most often split into different rooms of your home. One person may work in your kitchen while another may begin in one of your bedrooms. The packers will not mark individual items on the cartons; they will only identify the room of the house the carton comes from. If you want to notate items on a carton for your own convenience, that’s something you’ll need to do. At the end of a full day, two professional packers should be able to effectively pack between 100-150 cartons.
Will my things be damaged?
Good packers have been trained to wrap and protect items by specific placement inside a box or carton. This does not mean that items are never broken, as many different circumstances can influence whether or not something ends up breaking, but damage is much less common when using a professional packer than when you pack yourself.
How do they pack so fast?
Packers do not have any sentimental attachment like you do to your items, so they are able to function in their roles much like a robot – very systematically. Emotions, memories and decisions on what goes and what stays is not something that concerns them so they can effectively complete their job in a much shorter period of time. It will be important that you have a clear idea of what is going and what is not going prior to packing day because, if not, it becomes virtually impossible for packers to adjust and it becomes a costly process to you if you are changing your mind on what to take and what to leave behind while packers are working in your home.
Do I need really need to be there while packers are packing?
Simply, yes. You do need to be present for your packing. You should also make sure that children and pets are not in or around the packers as this can slow the job and create unsafe distractions. There are also often parts and pieces that will be lying loose while in the process of disassembly and packing. This could be considered hazardous to the safety of children and pets, so it’s best to make sure they’re occupied somewhere else.
How do they know what to pack and what to leave?
It is important to understand that packers will never try to determine what is trash or which items that should not be packed. They will enter your home and pack it as they find it. It’s best, then, that you are ready for their arrival by ensuring that all trash, newspapers, magazines and items for Goodwill that you do not want to move have been removed from your home prior to the day of service. You’ll also want to make sure your laundry is clean and removed from the washer and dryer, and that your dishwasher is empty. Remember, packers pack what they see throughout the home so packers will not check the washer, dryer or dishwasher. Lastly, If you intend to take any items with you personally, set aside a room or closet for those items and label that room as “do not pack” or “going with us.”
How do they fill every box?
There may be times when your packers have completed the packing in a room they are working in and will not have filled the carton. In this case, they will continue to place articles from another location into that carton to properly fill the carton to capacity. This is standard and customary, and helps to prevent damage to items inside the box. You may notice this when you are unpacking your items at your final destination, so just know that it’s all part of the process.
Who determines when everything is done and packed?
At the end of the day, it is your responsibility to ensure that everything that needs packed has been packed prior to releasing the packing team. In order to do this, you should walk through your home with your team lead and open all cupboards, cabinets, closets and drawers. Look at all shelves in the pantry and closets. Once your packing team has left, any unpacked items are then your responsibility to prepare prior to the driver’s arrival. If you ask your driver to pack items, he or she will normally require payment for it; these are services that are normally considered to be above what was quoted for your packing team.
Will I like it?
If you are prepared properly, you’ll love the experience. How great is it to not have to pack before you move? Simply put, it’s awesome! In order to maximize the stress-reduction effect, though, it requires your advance preparation because it may not happen exactly like you thought it might. Any moving company wants you to be ready for their arrival and you should feel free to communicate openly with your moving consultant and/or relocation coordinator with any questions throughout the process so they can help you make the most of your upcoming move.
Lastly, and just to help make each packing job the best it can be, here are some pro tips:
- You may want to label the bedrooms with children’s names or other names that mean something to you so that the packer will know the name to place on cartons packed into that room.
- Consider having some zipper bags available for screws, nuts and bolts needed for any items that are disassembled. Packers will normally provide a box for parts, so aside from the nuts and bolts from disassembled articles, this carton is a good place to put all remote controls and a cordless telephone so that you will know where to find them when the driver delivers your shipment.
- If you have items that are of special significance to you, address those items with your moving consultant and your team leader upon their arrival so they can be prepared to handle them with special care.
- Be prepared to identify items that cannot be packed and remove them from your home prior to packing day. Examples include fingernail polish remover and liquid cleaners. Your moving consultant and/or your coordinator will review this complete list with you. Should you have any questions they can address them with you in advance of packing day.
Nancy Blegen is an experienced customer service manager for Bailey’s Moving and Storage, which serves customers looking to move to or from Utah and Colorado.