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  • Book your removal company in advance

Removal companies, storage units and hire vans book up months in advance so it is advisable to make a provisional booking as soon as you know you are moving. If you book with Your Smooth Move, we pencil in your provisional moving date and do our best to accommodate any date changes, even if that means working late into the night. Once you have paid a deposit we accept to 2 date changes without any charge or loss of deposit.

  • Plan ahead and give yourself plenty of time
I always loved the film 'The Sound of Music' as a child, especially when Julie Andrews sang 'if you start at the very beginning, it's a very good place to start'. This really sums up all aspects of house moves. Allow plenty of time to organise every aspect of your home move, especially packing. When you allow enough time and start packing in the weeks preceding your move, you will feel less stressed come moving day.  On the flip side, packing early means it's easy to forget where you have packed an item so it's important to label your boxes and include a list of the contents of each box. We suggest you make a list of any items, clothing, paperwork, prescription medication, and toiletries that you might need over the coming weeks so you can set these aside. If you want to take the hassle out of packing, please take a look at our home removal packing services.
  • Identify items you no longer need or use
We all have those items that have sat in the back of the cupboard for years. Moving is a great opportunity to clear out unwanted items and declutter. If you are very organised, you could sell the items prior to moving and put the money towards items for your new home. If you would like support with decluttering or you would like to have the items taken away for you, please ask us for a quote for our decluttering service or our  licenced waste carrier service.

  •  Ensure you have adequate packing materials

It's not uncommon to underestimate the packing material that is required for a move. Moving can be stressful enough without having to run around at the last minute hunting for packing supplies. We suggest you take a few minutes to list everything you need for packing prior to starting the task. In our experience, most homes will require the following materials: room labels, scissors, pen, good quality tape, double wall boxes in at least two different sizes, bubble wrap and foam. If you are packing exposed paintings, glassware or delicate items you will also require additional material, such as glassine paper, packing void or tissue paper. We do not advise using printed newspaper as the ink can transfer to your belongings.

  • Book annual leave or arrange your work schedule around your moving date

Moving can be emotionally and physically draining. If you are able to book some leave or arrange your work schedule to fit around your moving date, it will take some of the pressure off you. If you are able to give yourself at least 1 day off on either side of the moving day, this will give some time to carry out any last minute packing and cleaning, and to make a start on unpacking essential items. ​

  • Register for essential services

If you are moving to a new area you might wish to register with a new GP and register children at a new school.​ 

  • Capture memories

If you have enjoyed living in your current home or it holds some significance to you, please don't forget to take photos in each part of the home. These photographs might be greatly appreciated in the future when you are reminiscing about times that were shared at the home or to settle a disagreement about the colour the walls were painted!​

  • Aim to use any fresh or cold food items in your home a few days prior to moving

Once your refrigerator and freezer are empty you will have time to clean and disconnect both appliances. Make sure you allow enough time to defrost the freezer.

  • Make sure the small details are agreed with the vendor

When moving house there is little time to stop and consider all scenarios, so the focus naturally falls to the bigger issues or concerns. However, while any smaller issues will not be your primary concern, they can certainly put a dampener on what should be an exciting (and busy) day. It can be quite disheartening to arrive at your new property and find you need to spend the whole day cleaning before you can contemplate unpacking your belongings, especially if you have already exhausted your energy on ensuring you leave your current home clean and presentable for your buyer. So while they say 'don't sweat the small stuff' these small things can result in a lot of extra sweat! This is just one example, but hopefully it will get you thinking about some of the smaller issues that might be important to you.

  • If you are reliant on home Wi-Fi

Pay any upcoming bills, send any urgent emails and write down any critical information or contact details before your internet is disconnected.

  • Make care arrangements for pets and children

It's important to keep pets and children safe during a move. Knowing that your children or pets are happy and safe on moving day will make the day less stressful for you and give you some time to focus on any final moving tasks.

  • Ensure you have notified everyone of your move

Whether it is a family member that sends you a card once a year or your electric company, it is worth spending time identifying and contacting any companies of individuals that will need to know of your move. If you are concerned that you may forget to notify someone, please don't panic as you can always register for the royal mail redirection service. Once you are in your new property, remember to update your address with any online ordering platforms or publications too.​

  • Take meter readings

Take meter readings when you vacate your current property and on arrival at your new property.​

  • Disassembly and reassembly

Set aside any instruction manuals for furniture that requires disassembly and reassembly. If you do not have instruction manuals, take photos or make notes of the steps you take when disassembling the furniture as this will aid you when you rebuild the furniture later. The same principle applies to any electronic set up, such as the cables and connections at the back of a television. If you do not have a camera to take a photograph of the cable set up, coloured labels are a good alternative.

  • Take a moment for yourself

It may sound obvious, but take time to relax in the run up to the move. Moving can take a lot of energy and planning even when you have help from a removal company.  


Choosing boxes:

  • To reduce the risk of damage to your belongings we recommend using double wall boxes.

  • Seal the box using a strong packing tape. Ensure the tape is high on both sides of the box and that more that one strip is used, especially if you are packing heavy or fragile items.

  • Single wall boxes are only suitable for light and non-fragile items.

  • If you decide to use free or used boxes, try to opt for boxes with lids so they can be stacked in the moving vehicles and at your new property.

  • If you have retained the original packaging for electrical items, tools or machinery, it is best to repack the items in this packaging.

Labelling boxes:​​

  • We suggest that our customers label boxes as follows: note which room the box is going into at the new property so we can put them in the correct rooms for you, add a very brief description of the items so you can easily locate items, and add an obvious warning sticker or bold lettering to alert us to fragile or heavy boxes. Whether you are using a professional removal service or moving yourself, this will save you some time and effort once you get to your new property.

  • Add a 'this side up' and arrow on any boxes containing fragile or electronic items. 

Fragile and special care items:

  • Where possible,  pack fragile or heavy items into small and medium double walled boxes.

  • Ensure the bottom of the box is secured with a strong tape. Seal at the midpoint and at the edges.

  • Packing void is essential when packing fragile items. This can include anything from layered bubble wrap to scrunched up void fill paper. The more you scrunch up the paper, the more shock it will absorb.

  • Add layers of protective packing material between items. Depending on the item, this could be foam sheets, acid free tissue paper or bubble wrap. Choose the most appropriate material for the item being packed.

  • Avoid using news papers or coloured paper as the colour can transfer.

  • Any glassware, china and ornaments with weak points should be wrapped with layer of soft packing material, followed by bubble wrap. You are aiming to produce a solid shape so there is less movement and a reduced risk of breakages. If you are packing any fragile items with unusual shapes we recommend that you mould foam or tissue paper to the shape of any gaps, such as an area between the body and arm of a china figurine, or the stem of a champagne glass. Carefully and gently place the foam or tissue into the gap or around the fragile area as this will help to reduce the risk of breakage at these weak spots. It is better to use a little and build up, than to use too much and add additional pressure in the area.

  • Pack the heaviest and most robust fragile items at the bottom of the boxes and the more delicate fragile items in the top half of the box.  

  • Boxes containing fragile items such as glass ware, small ornaments or vases should be labelled appropriately. The bigger and bolder the 'fragile' label or tape, the better!

  • Artist tape/decorators tape/masking tape can be placed in an X shape on mirrors and glass frames. This process helps absorb shock and reduces the risk of injury if the item is broke during transit. However, there is a risk of residue if the items are left in direct sunlight or storage for an extended period of time. These two factors need to be balanced. Alternatives such as blankets and strapping can work well if you are confident about the correct amount of pressure to use with strapping.

  • We suggest that exposed art work is handled using cotton gloves and that a sheet of glassine paper is used prior to any other packing material as it is grease, air and water resistant, and acid free. This helps to preserve the painting and reduces the risk of any damage to the art work. Once the painting is wrapped with glassine paper, wrap the painting with bubble wrap, with the smooth side against the painting. Following the bubble wrap, you might also need to place the painting in a cardboard box, use a strong cardboard sheet or wrap with corrugated card to further protect the art work - this will depend on the distance being travelled, the other items being transported and if the item is going into long term storage. If you are placing paintings in storage for an extended period of time, we suggest you check on the paintings regularly due to the risks presented by temperature changes and moisture within storage units. As with electronic items, the risk can be reduced by using a temperature controlled storage facility.

Heavy items:

  • Heavy boxes that do not contain fragile items should be labelled as 'heavy' and placed closest to the door so they are first on the van.

  • Heavy items should be packed in small or medium boxes.

  • Use strong boxes and make sure the bottom of the box is well taped.

Electrical devices and appliances:

  • Allow adequate time for your electronic devices to cool down prior to packing and transporting.

  • Remove any inks, batteries, disks, or loose items that are contained in or connected to electronic devices.

  • Remove detachable cables and secure them with cable ties or masking tape. Put them in the same box as the corresponding electrical item.

  • Use the original box and packaging if you still have it. It has been designed to fit the product perfectly, thus offering optimal protection. 

  • Smaller electronic items can be packed in carry cases as these have been designed to offer protection to your devices.

  • If you do not have the original packaging, select a box that will allow you enough room to place anti static packing protection and packing void around all sides of the item. If you do not have packing void, you can wrap the electronic item with packing paper and use cushions, towels or clothing inside the box. This will keep the item dust free and reduce movement during transit. If you are opting for the latter, ensure the electrical item has been fully cleaned prior to packing so that your fabrics will not be marked.

  •  If you are placing your items into storage for an extended period of time, consider the impact of any temperature fluctuations on your electronic devices.

Sheds and garages

  • If you are using a removal company, there are a number of items they cannot carry and these are often found in garages or sheds. As a general rule of thumb, if a liquid item has a warning label, then it is most likely to be a prohibited transport item.

  • Drain the fuel from any power tools, garden appliances and equipment so they are safe to transport. 

  • Test the clasps on any tool boxes and secure the boxes with rope or straps if they are flimsy, loose or broken.

  • Cardboard boxes are not suitable for tools as they might cut through the packaging and cause an injury. Pack tools in plastic boxes or tool boxes and wrap any sharp points of garden tools with thick and strong packaging. Once you have safely covered any sharp gardening tools, tie the handles together to reduce any movement during transit.

If you would like any further guidance or support with packing for your house move, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our team.

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