Moving can be very stressful as most of us know. It can also be very expensive and by the time we come to arranging the packing, some of us choose to cut costs by doing it ourselves.

Before you decide to pack, it is important to have a major clear out of unwanted items as this will result in fewer things to pack (and less money spent on packing!).

Be organised
Decide how many boxes and containers you will need and where you intend to get them from. There are many high street stores that sell boxes and many stores sell it online. Compare prices and get the best deal. You can also try friends or work colleagues who have recently moved or try popping down to your local supermarket to see what they have to offer. It might be worth asking your local supermarket to put some of their boxes aside for you when they receive large orders. Being cheeky might pay off!

Boxes can come in different shapes and sizes. When buying boxes think about the burst strength of a box and the strength of the bottom of the box. Boxes that are made of corrugated cardboard are generally the strongest type.

It is essential that you use lots of bubble wrap for fragile items such as framed pictures, mirrors or ornaments – you don’t want any family heirlooms breaking. Don’t use newspapers where the ink tends to rub off. Newspapers can be used for lining boxes. You will also need lots of strong tape (preferably PVC) and string.

Labelling of boxes
For anything to be successful it has to be well planned. For example begin at the top of the house and make your way down. Be organised by packing room by room and keeping all boxes for each room together. Label them with a felt tipped marker. Labelling will make your life easier when it comes to unpacking and ensure everything is put in the correct room.

As you pack, make up a list to help you to know what is in each box – keep it simple.
Boxes with fragile items should be labelled accordingly and marked ‘this end up’ where appropriate. If you are super organized then you can number all the boxes or use a colour code system and keep a list that they can be checked off against.
All ‘essential’ items should be in one box clearly marked as you want to unpack this first when you get to your new house.

Packing etiquette
Wrap delicate items individually – spend time doing this.
Pack similar items together, do not put delicate items with non delicate items
The heaviest items should always go on the bottom.
Not to overfilled boxes as they will be too heavy when you try to move them. Also there is the risk of the box collapsing and your item ending up broken on the floor!

Packing furniture
This is very difficult – dismantling an article (and reassembling it when you get to your new home). Make sure you keep all the parts together and screws etc should be put into a bag and taped securely to the article to which they belong.

Packing Liquids & hazardous materials
Ensure that paint and other liquids are packed in plastic bags and put in boxes to minimize the effect of any spillages. Put all hazardous materials such as bleach in a clearly marked box.

Utility bags
You can put anything like blankets, duvet and other squashy items in a bag which are a lot cheaper than boxes.