No matter how you approach it, a house move is certain to put your organizational skills (and your nerves) to the ultimate test – all the more so, if you have set your mind on a DIY move. Moving by yourself is quite a challenge that requires plenty of time and effort on your part. To handle your relocation without professional moving help, you will need every ounce of energy, determination, and focus you can muster, as well as a good moving strategy and proper moving equipment. So, if you are planning on a self-move, make sure you have:
- the patience, willpower, and agility of mind to take proper care of all the aspects of the arduous moving process;
- quality packing supplies (and the required know-how) to ensure the safety of your belongings;
- appropriate means of transportation to take your belongings to your new home;
- strong and reliable friends to lend you a helping hand on Moving day;
- the right tools and moving equipment necessary to perform a safe and efficient relocation.
More specifically, the list of specialty moving equipment and essential supplies you can’t do without when moving by yourself includes:
When moving house, you’re going to need an appropriate moving vehicle to put your belongings into and transport them to your new home.
You can always ask a friend with a pickup truck or some other kind of spacious vehicle to help you relocate, especially if you are moving locally and don’t have too many items to move. However, if the vehicle is not big enough to accommodate all your things, you’ll have to make several trips between your old home and your new one. This may not be an option (in case you are moving long distance) or even if it is, it may turn out to be too expensive (you’ll have to budget for fuel expenses, road tolls, and parking fees) and too time-consuming.
In this case, renting a moving truck of an appropriate size is your better option. Just make sure you choose an affordable and reliable moving truck rental company to work with and pay meticulous attention to the details.
Moving dollies are indispensable when it comes to transporting heavy items (such as furniture, appliances, or large boxes) between your home and the moving truck. Dollies come in different shapes and sizes:
- The upright utility dolly has two wheels and allows you to stack and move several boxes at once. It is also ideal for transporting tall, lightweight furniture pieces like bookcases and filing cabinets;
- The heavy duty furniture dolly has four wheels and a wide, low base made of wood or steel. It is a great furniture moving equipment that makes the transportation of large furniture pieces and other bulky items much safer and easier;
- The appliance dolly is specifically designed for moving big, heavy appliances, such as refrigerators and stoves) in a safe and convenient manner. Some models include straps or a locking auto-recoil mechanism that can be used to secure the items on the dolly, making it the perfect appliance moving equipment.
Using a dolly not only eliminates the risk of accidentally dropping (and breaking) a furniture piece or a heavy box (or damaging the floors when sliding weighty items across them), but also helps reduce the strain on your body and saves you plenty of time and headaches. Just make sure the items on the dolly are well secured to prevent possible accidents.
Furniture pads and moving sliders
Furniture pads and moving sliders provide a safe and easy method of sliding large and heavy items across the floors without scraping and denting them. The little disks (or felt pads) not only help avoid damage to the floors, but also save you from heavy lifting and straining your back. They are affordable, easy to attach, and very convenient to use, so make sure you have several sets of moving sliders or furniture pads when moving by yourself (have in mind, though, that there are specific sliders for carpets, hardwood surfaces, tiles, etc.).
Moving blankets and specialized furniture covers provide excellent protection to your furniture and appliances during a move. They not only protect your items from scratches and dents (as well as from dust and dirt), but also help prevent damages to the floors and walls when moving furniture in or out of your home. Moving blankets can even be taped around banisters and railings to protect them on moving day. They are also very useful for providing additional cushioning between the items in the moving truck.
You can use old blankets or comforters instead of moving blankets and furniture covers, of course, but they won’t be as durable and reliable as the professional materials.
When wrapped around an item, shrink wrap protects it from dirt, dust and moisture. It sticks only to itself and leaves no residue on the delicate surfaces of fine furniture pieces. Plastic warp can also be used for securing furniture pads and moving blankets wrapped around large items, for bundling boxes or oddly-shaped items together, for keeping drawers and cabinet doors in place, for packing drawers without emptying their contents, etc.
Straps and ropes
Moving straps make it possible to carry heavy objects in a safe and convenient way. They allow for weight distribution and leverage, so that the object feels lighter and can be lifted and carried without undue stress on your muscles. Besides, your hands remain free and you can maneuver the item more easily. Moving straps are especially useful when moving items up stairs, around corners, or on uneven ground. You can use strong ropes in a similar way, but the specialized moving straps are more effective and easier to use (they are adjustable, better fitting, and more secure).
You also need straps and ropes to secure your items and boxes. They can be used to:
- prevent boxes from opening;
- secure wrapping materials around large items;
- hold furniture doors and drawers in place;
- tie furniture pieces and appliances to a dolly to prevent them from falling;
- secure your items inside the moving truck to keep them from shifting or toppling over during the transportation;
- keep any items transported in the roof of your vehicle from falling off while you are driving.
Property protection materials
To prevent damage to your property when moving in or out, you need to take proper precautions. Use plywood sheets, carpet film protectors and/or floor runners to ensure adequate floor and carpet protection (large cardboard pieces or old fabrics taped together can also do the trick). They create a non-slip surface and protect the flooring underneath from dings and dents, as well as from mud and dirt (this is especially important if your move is taking place in poor weather conditions like rain or snow). Neoprene floor runners may be your most advantageous option when performing a DIY move – available in a wide range of sizes and colors, they are affordable, reusable, durable, washable, and can be cut to fit for a customized cover.
Using corner guards and foam padding is also a good idea – they will help keep the walls and corners, stairs and banisters, door frames and windows in your property intact during the chaotic moving procedures.
Personal protection gear
To ensure your safety and avoid injuries on moving day, you are advised to wear sturdy shoes with anti-slippery soles and comfortable clothes according to the current climatic conditions (have in mind that baggy garments and long jewelry may get caught into a piece you are carrying and cause you to fall). Wearing work gloves is also a must – they will provide a better grip and adequate protection for your hands.
You’re going to need a variety of hand tools during the different stages of the moving process – when disassembling and reassembling furniture pieces, repackaging and securing boxes, removing doors from the hinges, measuring the dimensions of your belongings and the available space, etc. Therefore, you won’t be able to do without screwdrivers, pliers, a pair of scissors, a box cutter or a razor blade, a utility knife, a hammer and a wrench, and a measuring tape.
Needless to say, you can’t handle your move without sufficient amounts of packing supplies (cardboard boxes, mattress bags, bubble wrap, packing paper, cushioning materials, etc.) to ensure the safety of your items during transit, quality packing tape to seal and secure the boxes, and labels to better organize your stuff and facilitate the unpacking process.
Some cleaning equipment will also come very handy as you will certainly want to leave your old property in excellent condition, as well as to make your new home clean and tidy.
You can rent professional moving equipment from any local or nationwide moving company at quite favorable terms. So, if you are up to the challenge and have firmly decided on a DIY move, make sure you have everything necessary to ensure an easier, safer, and smoother relocation!