How to Clean, Pack, and Store Your Belongings Before a Move

Moving to a new place brings a mix of excitement and anxiety, especially when it comes to the scary task of packing. It’s not just about boxing up your stuff; it’s a strategic process of deciding what to keep and how to store your belongings for the move. A well-organised move can set the tone for your new beginning. This comprehensive guide will walk you through each step of cleaning, packing, and storing your belongings, making your move as smooth as possible. We’ll explore effective decluttering techniques, cleaning tips, and packing strategies. You’ll also learn how to choose the right storage solutions for your needs. Whether you’re moving across town or the country, these insights will help you manage the process with ease and efficiency.

Preparing for the Move: The Essentials

Decluttering: The First Step

Decluttering is the cornerstone of a successful move. It’s more than just a way to reduce the volume of your possessions; it’s a chance to revaluate what’s important. Start by categorising your belongings into four groups: keep, donate, sell, and discard. Items that haven’t been used in a year or more or don’t hold significant emotional value are prime candidates for decluttering. This process makes packing easier and ensures that your new home isn’t cluttered with unnecessary stuff. It’s also an opportunity to give back through donations or earn a little extra cash by selling.

Gathering Supplies

Acquiring the right packing supplies is crucial for protecting your belongings during the move. Start with different-sized boxes for various items. Sturdy boxes are essential for heavier things, while smaller boxes are perfect for books and delicate stuff. Bubble wrap, paper, and packing peanuts provide cushioning for fragile items. Don’t forget to label each box with its contents and the room it belongs to. For an eco-friendly move, consider using recycled boxes and biodegradable materials. Also, keep a few extra supplies handy for last-minute packing. Investing in quality supplies can make a significant difference in keeping your belongings safe and organised throughout the move.


Cleaning Before Packing

Room-by-Room Cleaning Strategy

Begin with a comprehensive room-by-room cleaning plan. Start from the top of the house and work your way down. In each room, focus on areas usually overlooked during regular cleaning, like behind appliances, under beds, and inside cabinets. It’s important to deep clean as it also gives you a chance to inspect each room for things you might have missed during decluttering. Don’t forget to clean items like window treatments, light fixtures, and ceiling fans. This thorough cleaning approach prepares your items for packing and leaves your current home in good condition, which is especially important if you’re renting and aiming to get your full deposit back.

Cleaning Items Before Packing

It’s vital to clean all items before they’re packed and moved. This prevents the spread of dirt, dust, and potential pests to your new home. Start with clothing and fabrics, ensuring they are washed or dry cleaned. Electronics require careful dusting and wiping with appropriate cleaners. Furniture should be vacuumed or wiped down. For kitchen items, ensure that all appliances and utensils are clean and dry to prevent mould growth. Books and other paper items should be dust-free. Toys, especially those used by children, need thorough cleaning and sanitisation. This step might seem time-consuming, but it is essential for a fresh start in your new home and the long-term preservation of your belongings.

Smart Packing

Effective packing starts with organised categorisation. Group your belongings by room or type, such as all kitchen items together. This approach simplifies the packing process and aids in efficient unpacking at your new home. Use clear plastic bins for things you need to access immediately upon arrival, like toiletries, a change of clothes, and essential cooking utensils. For clothes, consider vacuum-sealed bags to save space. Label each box clearly with its contents and the room it’s destined for. This method keeps you organised and helps movers place boxes in the correct rooms, saving you time and effort during the unpacking process.

How to Store Your Belongings

Choosing the Right Storage Solutions

When it comes to how to store your belongings, choosing the right storage solution is crucial. If you’re downsizing or need to put items away temporarily, you have several options. Self-storage units are a popular choice, offering various sizes and climate-controlled options. Portable storage containers are convenient; they can be delivered to your home for loading and then transported to a storage facility. When selecting a storage solution, consider factors like the duration of storage, accessibility, cost, and the types of items you’re storing. A climate-controlled environment is essential for delicate items like electronics or antiques to prevent damage from temperature fluctuations and humidity.

Organising Items for Storage

Effective organisation is key in storage. Start by creating an inventory of items going into a storage unit. This list aids in organisation and is useful for insurance purposes. In the unit, use shelves to maximise vertical space and keep items accessible. Put heavier boxes on the bottom and lighter ones on top. Disassemble furniture to save space. For clothing and other fabric, consider wardrobe boxes or vacuum-sealed bags. Label each box clearly and create a map of the unit’s layout to locate items later easily. Remember, the goal is to maximise space while ensuring your belongings are safe and organised.

How to Store Your Belongings for International Moves

When preparing for an international move, the steps of cleaning, packing, and storing your belongings become even more critical. This is the perfect moment to team up with trusted movers, especially when facing the complexities of an overseas transition. For instance, if you’re moving from Canada to the UK, the right moving company can provide invaluable assistance in navigating international packing standards and requirements. These experienced movers bring a wealth of knowledge in efficiently packing your belongings for long-haul relocations, ensuring that everything from your delicate items to bulky furniture is securely and appropriately packed. They also offer short- or long-term storage solutions, which can be crucial if your new home isn’t immediately ready.


As we’ve explored, a successful move requires more than just boxing up your items; it’s about carefully planning how to clean, pack, and store your belongings. From selecting the right storage solutions to organising your items efficiently, each step is vital in ensuring a stress-free move. Keep this guide handy as you embark on your moving process. With these tips, you’re on your way to an easy relocation into your new home. Good luck, and here’s to new beginnings!