So more than a few weeks ago we had the house packed out. Since we’d never done it before, we tried to prepare the best we knew how. We made sure to eat all of our perishables and use all of our cleaning supplies and such. We set aside what we needed to take with us like our air mattress, a small tv, sheets, towels, etc; Our plan was to make sure we had enough of the basics to live off of after our stuff was packed and before it arrived on the other end. We also planned on staying at the house a week after pack out to clean it (so much easier!). During the pack out we learned a few things that I thought I’d share.
One: Some moving companies require you to take out the batteries from everything… from remotes to children’s toys. What a feat! We rushed around digging through children’s toys trying to find all the batteries, we ended up with almost 2 gallon sized bags full of batteries! Next time we will do this before the day the movers are there to pack… Better yet we may just not replace the batteries at all, the house seems to be so much quieter without them.. LOL
Two: Candles, Soaps, liquids, and anything in between can not be shipped by some moving companies, even in zip lock bags. Before I knew they wouldn’t ship them I had already put them in zip lock bags. When they didn’t pack them, I thought nothing of it and just threw it in with what we were taking with us. Then I realized why they wouldn’t take them, and I was so happy I had them in zip lock bags, some of them didn’t make the trip with us without melting, I could just imagine what would have happened in the shipment if they would have packed them as they were. Again, this is something I will make sure to set aside or use up next time so it’s not a concern during the move. I’d hate to get a company that allows them and then get my boxes covered in wax from the melted candles/soap. Yucko!
Three: Feed your movers/packers! We decided to feed them so they wouldn’t leave for lunch, and it paid off, I couldn’t imagine sitting around in the middle of packing day waiting for them to return from lunch. The first day we did chicken and fixins and then the second and third day we did pizza. Happy packers meant happy us!
Four: Expect tons of paper to be used, and boxes to be mixed between rooms. Sometimes the movers need something heavy in the bottom of a box or need just the right shape of something to finish packing a box, and they will drag a box from one room to the next. It’s easier to expect it then to get upset about it on the other end. And the paper, well I guess we will have tons of paper for the kids to color on after it’s all said and done.
Five: Expect damages; It’s a fact of life that things get damaged during a move, if you expect it then you won’t be as disappointed on the other end. Also you can request that things are wrapped better or have special packing crates or boxes to help protect them more. And in the end when you’ve unwrapped everything and you only have one or two things damaged you can feel much better because you expected the worst!
Six: Make sure your items are described correctly on the inventory sheets, it could really save you in the end if something goes missing. For example I had a $200 massage chair in a carry case and it was labeled as a black bag, and I have an elliptical that was labeled as exercise equipment. So I asked them to go back and correctly list the item and they had no problem doing so. It would have been a disaster trying to convince the Navy that my ‘black bag’ was worth $200! lol
Seven: Pay attention to the weather, if it’s going to be extremely hot outside make sure you provide water for your movers and if you can afford it have the AC on during the pack out (even though the doors may stay opened). You may have a higher electric bill than normal, but it’s much better than having someone have a heat stroke. Or if it’s going to be raining, see if you could find some old towels you could throw away for the packers to use on your stuff or on them selves.
Eight: Expect some arguing among the packers/movers. We had three days of packing and loading in the hot GA sun and by the last day everyone was at their wit’s end. My husband and I found it kind of entertaining actually, but I’m sure these guys were just ready to be done with the job. So expect a little bit of bickering, of course if it becomes more than that then be ready to call the company and have the problem resolved.
Nine: You can ask the truck driver to give you a call of the weight of your HHGs when he weighs the truck after he leaves your house. Some may say they can’t, but there is nothing wrong with asking. We were scared we were going to be overweight, so
we asked the driver to call us after weighing the truck and he was more than happy to do so.
Ten: Don’t forget to make sure the weight of the boxes, packing supplies, and pro-gear is deducted from your total weight if you are over your weight limit. Those things add up and could really save you a lot of stress and money in the end.
Ok so that is our list of the things we learned, hope it helps some of you if it’s going to be your first PCS (or your first PCS that you aren’t doing your self).