Regardless of whether you’re moving out of a rental unit (you need your security deposit back, remember?) or you’re moving out of your own house or apartment (thinking of selling your place anytime soon?), it’s very important that you leave that home in good overall condition to save yourself from perfectly avoidable problems later on.
Following a detailed moving out cleaning checklist will help you leave behind a clean place, but the last straw that could break the camel’s back, and thus get you in possible financial troubles, is accidental property damage on moving day.
You surely don’t want to break, damage or ruin something while you’re moving away, and your best bet is to hire the services of a top-rated moving company. But if you plan to do part or all of the moving job without the expert help of the pros, then you should definitely know how to protect your floors when moving.
Why floor protection matters
One of the major challenges when moving out of a house is the handling of super heavy home appliances and furniture pieces – the ones that can easily damage your flooring if you’re not careful enough. Trust us, after the busy moving preparations the last thing you would want is to burden your stretched moving budget with having to pay for repair works on floors.
Just think about this: floors and walls will suffer the most damage during a house move. Floors, for example, tend to endure scratches, scrapes and dents each time a heavy and awkwardly-shaped item is being moved across the room. Polished hardwood floors usually have delicate top layers that might get ruined in an instant. Tiled floors may literally break if something of considerable weight is dropped onto them.
The thing is that it takes only a bit of proactive planning and a number of simple precautionary measures to protect floors during a move and keep things running smoothly during the most important day of your residential relocation.
How to protect hardwood floors when moving
Effectively, you have two lines of defense when it comes to protecting floors when moving house – take advantage of both and you won’t have to worry about possible property damage at all.
First line of defense
The first line of defense is about using the right type of moving equipment when you’re taking your household items out of your home and getting ready to load them onto the waiting moving vehicle.
- Furniture dolly. Furniture dollies have large rubber wheels that inflict zero damage to floors regardless of whether those floors are hardwood, tiled, or carpeted. Make sure you secure safely your heavy and big furniture and appliances on the appliance dolly via suitable straps, rope or stretch tape. Also, check to make sure the wheels of the dolly are not wet and are free of dust and mud. Dollies not only minimize the risk of dropping whatever it is that you’re about to move, but they also reduce considerably the strain you will put on your body.
- Furniture sliders. These small pieces of equipment can work wonders when it comes to protecting floors when moving furniture and appliances. They are made of durable plastic with surfaces of hard rubber and will let you slide huge and heavy items without inflicting any damage to your floors. Simply place a slider under each leg or corner of the furniture piece or household appliance, and start gliding it across the room with minimum effort. Be mindful that there are separate furniture sliders for wood floors and carpets.
Second line of defense
The second line of defense is all about protecting your floors directly before the house move gets under way. How to protect wood floors on moving day?
- Plywood sheets. The best way to protect floors when moving is to place hard covers over them. It is not secret that hardwood floors and tile floors are very susceptible to damage on moving day, so if you have the chance to use plywood sheets along the moving line, don’t hesitate to do it. However, such protective sheets can be fairly expensive so you may be forced to look for cheaper alternatives, such as cardboard.
- Thick cardboard. One thing is sure – you won’t be short of cardboard during your house move. Take a few big boxes made of thick cardboard that you won’t be using anyway and break them down into large pieces which you should use to cover the intended path in your home. Create a safe pathway for your heavy items, and if necessary, use tape to fix the cardboard pieces in place. This way, your floors, including carpets, will be protected against dirt and mud as well.
- Furniture blankets. Furniture blankets provide excellent protection for your floors and household items alike. They always prove to be very versatile, and you are encouraged to use their safeguarding ability as temporary floor protection as well. Place thick protective blankets on strategic places to eliminate any chances of getting your floors damaged during one of life’s most transitional periods.
SEE ALSO: How to move heavy furniture by myself?
How to protect your carpet when moving
Now that you are familiar with the best way to protect floors when moving (hardwood and tiled floors, that is), it’s time to say a few words about safeguarding carpeted floors as well.
Here are the top 3 things to remember if your floors are covered with carpets on moving day.
- If possible, roll up the carpets and remove them before the actual moving process begins. Yes, this is the best way to protect carpets when moving! Once your floors are carpet-free, use any or a combination of the protection methods explained above to keep property damage away.
- If removing your carpets is not an option, make sure you use a furniture dolly with 100% clean wheels or a suitable set of furniture sliders to prevent untimely damage to your carpets and area rugs.
- Special carpet film protectors are ideal for providing a tear-free and non-slip surface over your expensive carpets. The protection of such plastic films is a great idea but they can also be kind of costly. If your budget is limited, stick to large pieces of cardboard to protect carpeted stairs or carpeted room floors when moving house.
Ultimately, the only guarantee you can have for completing the move with zero property damage is to hire the services of properly insured movers who just know that it takes to keep things damage-free from start to finish.
MUST READ: What mistakes to avoid when hiring movers?