Depending on your budget, you may be evaluating whether to pack yourself or hire a professional to do it.  Having the professionals pack is a great option if you can afford it.  However, there may be alternatives that may suit you and your budget better.  Be honest with yourself and evaluate what you can and can not do.  Consider packing the things that you can handle, like your clothing, christmas decorations, kitchen and linens.  For the more difficult items or high valued items, hire the professionals.  This way you can enjoy the best of both worlds.  You can save some money, protect your high-valued items and still save your back.  

If you are going to pack yourself, make sure to get the right materials to transport your things.  Unless you are a college student packing your stuff in garbage bags, you really want to find the right packing materials to protect your things.  There are ways to save money on get what you need.

Here are few tips that can help:


Take inventory.  

Take inventory of all of your things.  Identify what you can pack easily and what you will need the professionals to do for you.  Get rid of the things that you don’t need and itemize your things that are expensive or have sentimental value.  This is important to make sure you give them the attention they need.


Go online.

Once you have identified what you can pack, go online to find packing materials.  There are various resources at your disposal.  Keep in mind that some moving companies will sell used and new packing materials to you.  You can also find some great supplies on Craig’s list.  Be sure to review any used materials carefully.  Packing materials can only be used so many times before they will no longer hold up.  Take the time to inspect what you are getting.


Go shopping.

You will need to visit your neighborhood store to get permanent markers and tape.  The best tape is shipping or packing tape.  You may want to consider getting a tape gun.  These are very useful and will make quick work of preparing your boxes.  They are relatively reasonable and are a huge time saver.  Most tape guns will allow you to replace the tape when you are out.  Keep in mind you can never have enough tape and markers so be generous.


Have a party.

Host a packing party.  When you take inventory, identify a room in the house where you will need extra help and hold a packing party for that room.  Get some beer, wine and food and whatever you can to coerce your friends into helping you pack.  This works especially well for the kitchen and garage.  Just make sure that the friends you invite are not practical jokers and label your contents something ridiculous or limit the ‘beverages’ until most everything is packed.


The garage is always a royal pain to pack.  If you can’t get your friends to help you with this task, you may want to give to this to the professionals.  Remember that anything flammable for obvious reasons can’t be packed.  These include what you may expect like gasoline and propane.  However, it also includes items you may not expect like fertilizer, paint and pressurized contents like aerosol containers.  Therefore, you will want to have these items sold, donated or given away before the day of your move. Make sure your propane tanks are included.  Your mower should not have gasoline and your barbecue should have an empty propane tank.  Leave all of your left over paint to the new owners because you will not be able to move those items, plus you really don’t need that at your new place.   

Time to plan will help you tremendously.  Therefore, start as early as possible.  It will offer you more time to address all of your needs.