If you're thinking about buying a home, this list can help get your search off on the right foot. While the number of rooms, the condition of the kitchen, and the size of the yard are important, there are other things to think over before you make an offer. Consider these factors.

 

The Location

They say that the three most important things to think about when buying are home are location, location, location. You can live with almost any imperfection in a home if you love the neighborhood and your neighbors. You can change almost everything else. But, once bought, you cannot change your home's location. When you go house hunting, consider any potential home's proximity to your work, the charm of the neighborhood, how the home is situated on the lot, ease of access, noise from neighbors, traffic, and pets, as well as access to parks, shopping, schools, and public transportation.

 

The Site

Beyond location, look at the site of the home. If the home is on a hill, does it have a view, a walkout basement, or lots of stairs to climb? Do neighbors' windows look directly into the home? Is the yard suitable for kids, pets, gardening, or other uses? Is access to the property safe regarding driveway elevation or stairs to the front door?

 

The Neighborhood

Be sure the neighborhood, and not just the house, meets your expectations. They say that you should own the smallest home in the nicest neighborhood that you can afford. You'll have a great view! Drive around on weekdays and weekends, during the day and in the evening. Are homes in the neighborhood consistent in size and features? Do the neighbors keep the yards clean and tidy, or are there old cars and trash around? Is the neighborhood safe enough for people to walk, run, or bike, and are there children playing in the yards?

 

The Home's Curb Appeal

Your home should reflect your lifestyle. Do you live a laid-back life? Then you might not want a formal Victorian or Tudor-style home. Something simpler and more contemporary might be in order. Look at the exterior features. A brick home is easier to maintain, unless, of course, you live in an earthquake-prone area. Ask yourself whether the roof in good condition. Is the landscaping attractive and are the sidewalks leading to the home safe?

 

The Size and the Floor Plan

You may be thinking about buying your dream home. But is your dream home impractical? Do you need four bedrooms and four baths when you live alone? A large home can give you the extra space you've always wanted for a home office or crafts or art projects. But you'll pay higher heating bills and have higher taxes. It will take more furniture to fill it and money to decorate. Think about how the new home space will be used and whether it will fit your lifestyle now and in the future.

 

The Bedrooms and Bathrooms

Decide how many bedrooms and bathrooms you need, and only look at homes that meet your criteria. It would be a shame to fall in love with a cozy, charming cottage that isn't big enough. An extra bedroom is always a plus, as it can be used for a home office, craft studio, or guest room. If you think you'll be adding more room later, be sure to consult an architect who can advise you on space planning, lot usage, and city regulations.

 

The Kitchen

If the kitchen is the heart of your home, don't settle for a home with a kitchen that won't work. You can always remodel, but it's very costly. Can you replace cabinet faces and countertops? Will an inexpensive makeover be sufficient? Don't worry about appliances, as they can usually be easily replaced.

 

The Closets and Storage

Older homes tend to have little closets and not a lot of storage space. If you have lots of sports equipment, craft supplies, out-of-season clothes, and holiday decorations, be sure you know where all this will go in your new home. Newer homes tend to have big closets and lots of storage. You can always add storage space, but you might have to sacrifice living space in your rooms.

 

The Windows and Lighting

Do you love a bright sunny room or do you love privacy? Look at home with light and sunshine in mind. Look at the locations of electrical outlets and fixtures. Will they accommodate your lighting needs? Is there recessed lighting in the kitchen, cove lighting in the family room and a lovely chandelier in the dining room? If not, you can add them later, but it's nice to have it in place when you move in.

 

The Finishing Touches

Sometimes the simplest home looks spectacular thanks to the installed moldings, hardware, and fireplace. If these elements are important to you, look for them while house hunting or be ready to add them after you move in.

 

If you keep these specific elements of a home in mind, your house hunting will be more successful, and you'll likely end up with the home of your dreams.


Source: The Spruce 

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A home improvement project should upgrade your house with features that add convenience and extra functionality to your living space.

Too many homeowners, however, make the mistake of not adding home features buyers want the most when it comes time to sell their house.

It’s natural for anyone to look more to a home improvement project’s impact on their family’s life over the next 5, 10, or 15 years.

While you’ll get plenty of use out of the home upgrades over that period, casting an eye towards the future should also be a factor in your renovation decisions as well.

Choose home features buyers want and need

Certain renovation projects have a poor return on investment that can significantly affect the back-end value of your expenditure. Experts agree that for potential buyers, these renovations don’t add value to a home:

  • removing closets
  • converting the garage into a living space
  • adding a sunroom
  • turning a spare room into a home theatre
  • adding a pool

These remodelling projects are considered too niche or just not practical for the average homebuyer.

And the first two examples completely go against the second-most important factor that goes into a homebuyer’s decision – available storage space. Not surprisingly, a home’s location was the most important factor.

Do your research to find out which home improvement projects provide a good balance of fulfilling an everyday need and will also be desirable in the eyes of anyone home shopping years from now.

7 of the home features buyers want the most

Certain home features buyers want the most virtually never change.

At the top of that list is storage space. Garage parking space and updates to kitchens and bathrooms also consistently rank highly with buyers.

We’ve looked at numerous studies, surveys, polls, and expert opinions to come up with a list of seven of the home features buyers want the most when they’re searching for a house.

1. Walk-in closet

A recent extensive Canadian Home Builders Association study found that a walk-in closet was the most valued asset of the 3,000 homebuyers surveyed.

A Braun Research survey of 500 realtors found that 97% of them said their clients valued closet storage space more than attic and basement storage space. And a 2013 National Association of Realtors survey shows that a walk-in closet in the master bedroom was the second-most important feature to homebuyers.

For many buyers, a large walk-in closet (also known as a dressing room) is an absolute essential. The absence of one may very well prove to be a dealbreaker for them.

A spacious walk-in closet doesn’t just provide a lot more space to store your clothes (although that’s one of its best benefits). They also:

  • provide a private, relaxing space for getting prepared or unwinding after a long day
  • make it easier to manage your wardrobe and keep it organized (saving you time)
  • provide a stylish and elegant space to showcase your wardrobe and accessories

A walk-in closet (also known as a dressing room) is considered one of the most essential features for homebuyers.

2. Energy efficiency

The 2017 Canadian Homebuyer Preference National Study shows that better energy efficiency is another of the top home features buyers want and will pay more for.

That Canadian Home Builders Association study also cited energy efficiency as one of the most desired home features for buyers.

This can include everything from a home having energy efficient appliances, energy efficient lighting, and modern windows and doors that will keep hydro bills lower. More energy efficient heating and air conditioning systems are also valued by homebuyers.

Buyers also place a higher priority nowadays on how well-insulated a home is. Are the attic, garage, and the rest of the home outfitted with high-efficiency insulation that’s actually been properly installed to deliver the best energy efficiency?

3. Master bathroom

Whether or not a home has a master bathroom is another important factor for many buyers. A master bathroom is defined as a bathroom with a sink, bathtub, and shower that is accessible from the largest bedroom (also known as a “master bedroom”).

The terminology for this room can vary. Some people may refer to it as an “ensuite master bathroom” or simply “ensuite”. It can also be written as “en-suite” (just to make things even more confusing).

When referring to bathrooms and bedrooms, you can expect to hear less usage of the word “master” in the coming years, however. Homebuilders and realtors are phasing it out due to the word’s negative gender and racial connotations.

Bathroom features buyers are looking for most are a custom bathroom vanity/makeup area, two sinks, and a separate shower enclosure. Forward-thinking buyers in their forties and fifties want the latter, in part because they’re considering its ease of use a couple of decades down the line.

Surprisingly, linen closets topped the list of the most desirable bathroom features for new home buyers surveyed in 2013 by the National Association of Home Builders.

4. Two-car garage

For both older homes and newly constructed homes, two-car garages are another feature buyers consider essential. 80% of buyers factor in the garage when making their decision, according to an Impulse Research survey.

And while that Braun Research survey found that 97% of buyers valued closet space more than attic and basement storage space, the garage ranked a close second. Realtors surveyed said that 96% of buyers valued the garage over the attic and basement as a home storage space.

Garages provide valuable storage space not just for tools and items there’s no room for elsewhere in your home, they also allow you to park vehicles indoors. That protects your sizeable investment in your vehicles.

There’s also the convenience of parking indoors. That’s why 55% homeowners use the garage as their house’s main entryway, according to a Chamberlain Group study.

Garage makeovers are also a hot home improvement trend. As Garage Living’s Linda Fiore Ceolin explains it, “There is so much potential in every garage space, large or small. More homeowners have realized the importance of upgrading their garage to make it a beautiful, functional extension of their living space.”


96% of homebuyers view the garage as a more valuable storage space in a house than the attic and basement.

5. Hardwood floors

The National Association of Realtors survey shows that just over half of homebuyers are willing to pay more for wood floors. The main reasons are its contemporary look, durability, and how much easier wood floors are to clean than carpeting. 

Hardwood is most preferred, especially original hardwood flooring found in older houses, which can be a real home seller. Authentic hardwood flooring is easier to refinish compared to engineered wood flooring. It should also theoretically last a lifetime. 

Engineered wood flooring is less expensive and not as durable as original wood flooring. However, it does nicely replicate the look of hardwood with a hardwood veneer over layered fibreboard and structural plywood.

A higher percentage of homebuyers under the age of 54 look for a house with wood floors than older buyers. This is attributed to the fact that older generations tend to find carpeting a little cozier and warmer than wood floors.

6. Laundry room

Look at a variety of studies and surveys on the home features buyers want most and a dedicated laundry room will assuredly rank highly on most of them.

In fact, last year’s report from the National Association of Home Builders on the home features buyers desire most had “a separate laundry room” at number one.

92% of buyers surveyed considered a laundry room essential. An increasing number of homebuilders agree and are incorporating laundry rooms into their building designs.  

Those in the aged 35 to 54 demographic placed a high priority on having a laundry room. Millennials especially favour owning a laundry room, preferably upstairs close to a bedroom or on the main floor, off the kitchen. Space-saving stacked washers and dryers are also popular with younger generations.

Laundry rooms are considered a must-have feature for many buyers because of the convenience and high functionality they add to homes. A dedicated space to take care of all of the ironing, sorting, folding and other tasks that go along with laundry duty helps to simplify and speed up the process.


7. Modern/open concept kitchen

Concluding our list of the home features buyers want most is the open concept kitchen. Once again, younger buyers favour open concept kitchen designs more than baby boomers.

The Canadian Home Builders Association reports that 85-90% of consumers in Ontario and the Toronto area prefer this more modern type of kitchen design.

An open concept kitchen that includes a kitchen island and inclusive eating area is also considered an attractive selling feature, particularly to buyers with kids. 

Realtors and designers widely agree that modern kitchen updates yield better returns come resale time than a bathroom remodel.

Additional modern kitchen upgrades that appeal to homebuyers include:

  • double kitchen sinks
  • high quality stainless steel appliances
  • walk-in pantry
  • granite, marble, or quartz countertops
  • stylish cabinetry with modern hardware

Do you have the home features buyers want most?

Is your home keeping up with the modern design trends that can make your life more comfortable and pay off when you sell your home?

Organized Interiors specializes in bespoke home organization and storage solutions for the entire home. We can improve your living space with many of the home features buyers want and need the most



Source: Organized Interiors 

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Lately I’ve been quite impressed with the house prices in our area but at the same time know that if we sell the cost to renovate and buy weigh heavily on our minds.

Not only that but the real estate market in Canada might be hot right now but if you have renovating to complete that might set you back with missed money opportunities.

The top 3 questions next to time-frame that you need to answer before putting your house up for sale are;

  1. Should we renovate our home to get better return?
  2. How much will our renovation budget be?
  3. Do we want to upgrade or downsize buying a new house?


WHO IS BUYING THESE HOUSES?


Most of the home buyers that have moved in are in their late 30’s and up with and without children. It’s near impossible for the Millennial generation to buy a house in Toronto most of which start in and around the million dollar mark. Most of these houses could do with upgrades and renovations which means more work and more money.

With University and College loans and a war of an employment market finances can become a struggle. If it’s hard to pay for rent you’ll never make it through a mortgage. This is why more and more younger adults are opting to rent instead of buy. They can’t afford it.

Everywhere we look house prices have skyrocketed especially in our area. In our net worth update you will see we have our house set at $365,000 but a comparable home just sold for $575,000 on our street.

That number would certainly boost our net worth over one million dollars however we know that we still have to live somewhere. Owning a home is like sitting on an egg and when it hatches you’ll either make a mint or cry all the way to the bank.

Even moving to smaller neighbouring cities might not get us much more than what we’ve already got unless we’re prepared to pay more. Living in a small village appeals to me more than the city but these days even the country properties are into the millions. Pair all of this with increased commute time and stress level waiting in traffic longer than needed every single day.

A fan wrote to me looking for some advice about renovating his house before selling it or just sell it as is? Let’s see what he had to say first.


RENOVATING OR RUN


Dear Mr.CBB,

My wife and I have lived in our house for 10 years now and have done minimal renovations. We bought the 4 bedroom 1500 square foot bungalow for near one million dollars knowing that it needed some work doing to it. We have 2 bathrooms in the house both with shower and a tub, single garage and parking for 2.

At the time the price was right and we needed somewhere to live close to work and renting was not something we wanted to. Sadly we know that was a silly mindset to cling to as it could have ended terribly had we not had a budget.

I’m the type of guy that fixes stuff as it’s needed or hires someone to do it. The other day my wife and I got talking about types of renovations we should complete before we put the house up for sale. We’re just not sure if we should bother with renovating the house or just sell it and move on. We’re in no hurry but the real estate market seems to be HOT in our area.

Ideally we’d like to move somewhere close to where we are now in a Toronto Suburb but somewhere cheaper. This means that getting the most out of our house when we sell it is important to us. What we’re not sure about is whether it would be worth it to renovate or let the new owners do this?

Do you or any of your readers have any personal experiences they want to share with us?

Thanks,

Craig.

Hi Craig,

First off, talk to you’re real estate agent and see what he/she has to say about renovating a house in the area you live in.

If your house has potential then I’d certainly invest in making sure that the key rooms in your home get a face-lift including a fresh coat of paint. Whichever rooms you want to renovate depend on your renovation budget plus your motivation.


Buying from big box renovation stores such as Rona, Lowes or Home Depot will yield you the more affordable kitchen and accessories. However, remember that what ever you spend on a kitchen, you’ll only see a certain percentage back from your initial investment.

Most people will shop at those stores when renovating their home. Don’t go to high-end stores to frost your renovations but keep the budget reasonable so that the new owner isn’t dealing with a crap job and paying for it.

Most of the houses around here have had minimal renovations and yet still yield sale prices higher than the original asking price. A hot market can pretty much sell any house.


RETURN ON INVESTMENT


In other words, Is It Worth It? Will you make any money back from it if not more is up to you and the real estate market at the time of selling.

Not one person I know wants to spend the time and money to renovate a house they want to sell unless they are trying to hook more money from the buyers. There are plenty of buyers who fancy a house renovated top to bottom.

Return on investment doesn’t just include the financial aspect of the deal either but also the physical investment. Renovating a house is not a small undertaking unless it’s a quick fix. When renovating the name of the game is to “Do it right the first time” however trusting someone else’s work is another story.

Not all home inspectors catch things that are wrong with a house during inspection nor do they check everything. There’s always that risk of buying a renovated lemon which has to be torn down and the renovating process to start over.

Personally, I’d like our dream home to be a dream project that I can get finished. If we had the money I’d rather go for a custom-built home from the get-go although I do like older homes but they come with greater financial risk depending on age and how well it was taken care of.

What does this mean for you?

This means that if you want to renovate your house before selling you have to face living through it not just once but potentially twice if the new home you buy is in need of repair. The main goal of renovating is to make money. How long are you willing to live through renovating and possible renovations of your new home?

There are many questions that must be answered BEFORE you sell and BEFORE you buy a house.


LIVING THROUGH RENOVATIONS


When you’re already living in the dwelling that you will be renovating there are inconveniences that you and the family would have to endure. This might force speed on renovating which causes mistakes to happen. They might not fail for you but the new home owner. If your renovation does fall apart you will end up paying for it twice.


  • Noise
  • Mess
  • Dust

With contractors in and out of your house that turns into a mess zone with dusty air can become an environment you might not want to keep your family in. Some people move into their basements while the main level of the home is having renovations done. This is a great option but you’re still not free from the above inconveniences.

Opting to move into a temporary accommodation such as a hotel or short-term rental lease may be the ideal option. Keep these expenses in mind when deciding on your renovation budget. Don’t be in a mad rush to move in with family unless you’re prepared to deal with potential for arguments. It happens to the best of us although if rent is free or inexpensive that might be the best option for you.


HOME RENOVATIONS THAT ADD VALUE


Home improvements such as a garage addition, stamped concrete driveway, pool or even a metal roof might not bring you the return you were hoping for when you sell your house. What will sell your house is how big your property is and the size of your house.

You can easily add more money to your real estate investment by making the right moves when upgrading or renovating your home for sale. Not all renovating projects will give you a 100% return if any but there are certain ones that score bonus points with buyers.

Fix the obvious stuff if you really want to make an impact when the For Sale sign goes up.

What you want to avoid is overbuilding for your neighbourhood. Right now we have a friend who is struggling to sell a gorgeous home in an area with older homes. It’s clear the house is different because it’s still a young house and it looks out-of-place as it’s modern looking and bigger than every other home. This will be a home they will struggle to sell for that reason.

Now that we’ve seen what’s inside some of the homes on our street we know that the renovations we want for our home might be a bit much right now. We aim to keep it simple and save our money for renovating that appeals to us.


BEST TYPES OF RENOVATIONS


Enhance your home renovations by sticking to the main rooms that cause the most fuss for potential buyers. Almost every buyer gravitates to the kitchen and bathrooms. The flooring and tile work is another renovation that will not only bring the house to life but call on the buyers to bid.

The worst thing you can do is renovate a house to sell without keeping the renovations neutral or current. Any buyer will see that they will have to renovate again to update the house and honestly people don’t have the time nor money to do so. Don’t imagine living in the house dream about selling it and the green in your pocket.

Now that I’m a dad I’m struggling to get any renovating done around our house. Our son keeps me busy as does both my jobs. I could do some rush renovation to add more sex appeal to our house if we had to drop everything and sell it tomorrow.

Where the money is at:

  • Kitchen
  • Bathrooms
  • Flooring

You will almost always recoup your money for the above 3 renovations for the competitive housing market in your area. If you over-renovate you risk recouping less money because your house compared to Joe’s house across the street where he renovated for half the price and selling for a high price-tag.

Catch my drift? Don’t emotionally invest in your renovations if you plan to move.

This is one of the main reasons your neighbours scout through open houses. They want to see what you did to your home and how much they need to renovate their own to see similar return if not more. Be mindful of the home renovation products used as well.


There’s no point buying hardwood to renovate the floors if the entire neighbourhood is laminate or carpet. Yes, you may get a bit more money but odds are you’ll get what everyone else is getting and that’s a comparable of the houses with laminate or carpet. Then again the right buyer might pay the extra for the luxury of hardwood. Will you risk it? Choice is yours.

Keep your dream home renovations for your final home and keep your nose out of fancy renovation magazines unless you’re prepared with a healthy renovation budget. What looks nice might not fit what everyone else has.

Quality home renovations don’t come cheap and if you do get an unusually low renovation estimate I’d put the brakes on and investigate further. If you have a carpenter, plumber or electrician in the family call on them maybe they can help you out for a discounted price or you could help them in return for free renovating.


RENOVATIONS TO DITCH


If you don’t plan to stay in your house stay away from invisible renovations and those that are custom to your home that will narrow your selling potential.

All those little fixes you do around the house likely won’t matter much. I won’t walk into your house and say oh look there’s a new furnace. These are more home maintenance types of renovation projects you will see limited return if any.

Blowing more insulation into your attic, installing new plumbing, duct work or other bits and bobs will likely go undetected when you go to sell your  home. Fix what everyone can see unless of course you must repair what you can’t.

Even then a massive landscaping project might sell a home but it won’t yield returns like other areas of the home. Spend your money wisely. I’m not saying to cover up repairs I’m simply suggesting that you to put your budget into areas that will make money for you.



Source: Canadian Budget Binder

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Moving—like getting a tooth pulled or driving a very long distance through uninteresting landscapes—is one of those trials almost everyone must face. It’s sometimes unpleasant, it’s never exactly fun, but it usually leads to a positive outcome. Of course, particularly with moving, the success of the endeavor really depends on avoiding moving mistakes and planning ahead to make the process as smooth as possible.

Fortunately, and likely because almost everyone does end up moving at some point, there are plenty of tried-and-true moving tips out there to make the whole process easier. Following a moving checklist can help you make sure everything’s in order before, during, and after the move; another good moving tip is to commit to having a good attitude about all the change to come. Some moving tips focus on packing advice, while others offer reminders to cancel various services or arrange for things to be prepared at the new house; still more focus on smaller details, such as how to care for pets during a move or what to do when the movers are late. The most important moving tips, though, may relate to the physical move itself.

 

A lot can go wrong during a move. (A lot can go right, too.) With all the details and moving parts, there’s no one-size-fits-all guide with moving tips for every single scenario that could come up during the moving process. Different people will have specific needs or concerns—an antique china collection, valuable wood furniture, delicate heirlooms—that may require special accommodations, but for most cases, this general list of moving tips and tricks will help.

For more moving tips or advice for particularly stressful moving scenarios, turn to dedicated moving resources, such as The Art of Happy Moving by Ali Wenzke ($13; amazon.com). For now, take a look at these tips, and prepare for a smoother, quicker, easier move.


Moving tips, tricks, and advice

1. Get rid of everything

Packing all your possessions into boxes, bags, and more can be overwhelming. Make it a little bit easier on yourself by cutting back on excess and clutter as much as possible. Before you pack a single box, do a merciless purge of unused or unnecessary items. You’ll have less to pack, less to move, and less to unpack—and you’ll start life in your new space with a clean slate.

 

2. Make a moving folder

Start collecting new addresses, rental or purchase papers, moving contracts, and more in one folder. (Consider a hard copy, rather than a digital one, in case the computer or phone batteries die during the move.) If any questions come up during the planning process or the move itself, you’ll have the answer (and records of agreements, payments, and more) on hand.


3. Pack as far in advance as possible

Ideally, you’ll know about a move (even if you’re not sure of the final destination) weeks or even months in advance. Start by packing off-season items and the items you won’t miss. When it’s time to pack everything up, many items will already be ready to go. In the stressful final weeks and days just before the move, you won’t be worried about not getting everything packed in time.


4. Book early

If you’re hiring moving services, renting supplies, or having services such as painters or cleaners work on the house, book early. Waiting to do so could mean paying a higher price or not being able to get a truck or movers at all, particularly if it’s peak moving season.


5. Schedule utilities for your new place

Once the dates are finalized, contact your utility providers to schedule service at your new home. You don’t want to arrive there, tired from the move, to find that the electricity, water, or heat is off. Schedule it ahead of time, and keep records of your requests in your moving folder. At the same time, request service stops for your move-out date at your current home.


6. Keep the essentials with you

On the night before the move, tuck everyday essentials—a change of clothes, a toothbrush, must-have stuffed animals or toys for the kids, medications, paperwork, etc.—into a suitcase or bag you’ll keep with you in the car, the truck cab, or on the plane. If catastrophe strikes and the moving truck gets lost, at least you’ll have some essentials with you.


7. Invest in Equipment

A few days before the big move, stock up on supplies. The last thing you want is to have to make a run to the store while loading boxes or making sure everything is out of the house. Order or purchase box cutters, adhesive bandages, permanent markers, packing tape, paper towels, and garbage bags. If they aren’t all used during the move, they’ll still be useful afterward, especially during unpacking.

For larger moving equipment, considering renting moving tools from a moving company. (If you hire a moving service, they’ll likely have their own.) If you move very frequently, you may be better off purchasing these tools. Either by buying, renting, or borrowing, make sure you have a furniture dolly, furniture pads or covers, and tie-down straps or rope at your disposal during the move.


8. Get a truck with a loading ramp

If you’re a DIY mover, you absolutely need a truck with a ramp. It may be cheaper to rent a truck without one, but the hassle (and struggle) of lifting every box and piece of furniture high enough to get it into the truck will add hours—plus sore muscles—to your move.

Packing tips for moving

1. Use the right size boxes

Put heavy items, like books, in small boxes; light items, like linens and pillows, in bigger ones. (Large boxes packed with heavy items are a common complaint of professional movers. They not only make the job harder but also have a better chance of breaking.)


2. Put heavier items on the bottoms of boxes, lighter items on top

And if you’re loading the truck yourself, pack heavier boxes first, toward the front of the truck, for balance.


3. Don’t leave empty spaces in the boxes

Fill in gaps with clothing, towels, or packing paper. Movers often won’t move boxes that feel loosely packed or unbalanced.


4. Avoid mixing items from different rooms in the same box.

It will make your packing quicker and your unpacking a lot easier, too.


5. Label each box with the room it’s destined for and a description of its contents

This will help you and your movers know where every box belongs in your new place. Numbering each box and keeping an inventory list in a small notebook is a good way to keep track of what you’ve

packed―and to make sure you still have everything when you unpack.


6. Tape boxes well

Use a couple of pieces of tape to close the bottom and top seams, then use one of the movers’ techniques―making a couple of wraps all the way around the box’s top and bottom edges, where stress is concentrated.


7. If you’re moving expensive art, ask your mover about special crating

Never wrap oil paintings in regular paper; it will stick. For pictures framed behind glass, make an X with masking tape across the glass to strengthen it and to hold it together if it shatters. Then wrap the pictures in paper or bubble wrap and put them in a frame box, with a piece of cardboard between each framed piece for protection.


8. Bundle breakables

As you pack your dishes, put packing paper around each one, then wrap bundles of five or six together with more paper. Pack dishes on their sides, never flat. And use plenty of bunched-up paper as padding above and below. Cups and bowls can be placed inside one another, with paper in between, and wrapped three or four in a bundle. Pack them all in dish-barrel boxes.


9. Consider other items that will need special treatment

Some movers treat TVs like any other piece of furniture, wrapping them in quilted furniture pads. Plasma TVs, though, require special wooden crates for shipping if you don’t have the original box and can be ruined if you lay them flat. If you’re packing yourself, double-box your TV, setting the box containing the TV into another box that you’ve padded with packing paper.

 
 
Source: Real Simple
 
 
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