If you’re anything like most of us, there are piles of laundry just waiting to be folded. Maybe you’re among the growing list of people who have resorted to the dig-through-the-pile approach when it comes to finding that special T-shirt.
But there’s a point in time when it just makes sense to fold all of your clothes. That time is when you’ve sold your house, and are ready to pack the clothes for moving.
Are you the lucky duck who’s stuck packing the clothes? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.
The Best Way to Pack Clothes When Moving
You may have seen viral videos showing best practices for packing a carry on. These videos show everything from stuffing your clothes in bags and in your shoes, to elaborate folding techniques that involve piling the clothes on top of each other to somehow fit in a super small space.
This is not like that video.
Packing your clothes to move isn’t quite so intense and is not nearly that complicated. Use these tips, and you’ll arrive at your new place with fresh clothes neatly waiting for you to pick out your next outfit.
Don’t pack what you don’t need to. Start early and declutter your closet and chest of drawers. A good rule of thumb is to get rid of anything you haven’t worn in the last year.
You can gauge this by sticking all of your clothes in a certain spot of your closet or drawers after you wear them. If there are still clothes left over at the end of that season, it may be time to toss it.
If it’s been a while since you last folded your clothes, take a second to fold them and sort as you go. Get rid of socks with no match. Give back clothes you may have borrowed, and really return the items you’ve been meaning to for weeks.
2. Wash, Dry, and Fold
You’ll thank us for this one later. Go through every piece of clothing that you are planning to keep and wash them, dry them, and fold them— with as small a gap as you can get between the dry and fold stages.
This process will not only allow you to have neat piles of fresh smelling clothes at your new place but will also help you to weed out the pieces of clothing that have old stains and holes. You can attempt to remove tough stains but if they won’t budge it may be time to toss them.
3. Off-Season Clothes First
Start early and pack your off-season clothes first. By packing these ones first, you take away the risk of unpacking your boxes to find an outfit you forgot you needed.
It’s also a good idea to vacuum seal the piles of clothes. There are several companies that sell vacuum sealing bags, but your local dollar store has a variety of sizes for a great price as well. Make sure you fold the clothes before sealing them, though. You’ll be able to fit more in the box if you do this.
4. Save a Box
Set aside a box for the clothes you plan on wearing the days leading up to the move, and even a few days after the move. Doing this will save you the major headache of having to search through boxes–or worse–not having any boxes left for your clothes.
5. Moving the Clothes
Clothes are heavy– remember this. When packing clothes, many people often feel pride at the amount they’re able to fit in one box. This is a bad idea. It leads to boxes breaking and dumping clothes all over. Use a small box instead.
You don’t have to use a box to move your clothes, however. There are several other options to choose from.
The first is to fold up your clothes neatly and place them in their drawers. Then, either shrink wrap your dresser drawers or tape them shut to prevent your clothes from falling out. This method is a favorite because you can just cut the tape when you arrive at your new place and have your clothes all put away.
Another great way to pack your clothes is to put it in your luggage. You have to pack your luggage anyway, so might as well get some use out of it. With its wheels and handles, it makes lugging your clothes around much easier.
As with the drawer method, you’ll want to fold your clothes before placing them in luggage. It will help you fit more into the suitcase.
Yet another way of packing clothes for moving is to buy a wardrobe. There are several fairly inexpensive options that allow you to hang all of your clothes in an enclosed container for easy transport.
This option would not work so well with items that cannot be hung, however, like socks and underwear.
Off to New Adventures!
Whether you’ve bought a new home or are living somewhere else for a while, moving is an excitingly stressful time.
Taking the time to pack your clothes in the best way will reduce the post-move stress and help you feel right at home in your new space.
Byline: Andrew Schmeerbauch is a blogger, serial organizer, and Director of Marketing at Clever Real Estate, a real estate startup helping home buyers and sellers save thousands in real estate agent commissions.