family moving themselves box head

If you’re like me and move every single year then you’re probably moving yourself instead of hiring a moving company. There is definitely an art to this kind of nomadic lifestyle and if you’re ready for the challenge then it’s not very difficult.

Here is a list of moving tips and tricks for people who are moving themselves.

Moving Tip #1 – Use What You Have

Linen Closet

Instead of buying bundles of packing paper or finding newspaper, use your towels and linens to protect your breakables. You can also use clothing and other soft materials to help protect these fragile items.

Moving Tip #2 – Acquire A Dolly

moving hand carts and dollies

Dollies can do a lot of work that your back shouldn’t. Dollies carry up to 5 boxes at a time and are very easy to use. Consider renting one from a friend or from a moving equipment rental place. Uhaul and other moving truck rental places rent them. How To Use an Appliance Dolly

If you are moving large appliances or very heavy furniture by yourself then get an appliance dolly with strap.

How to move a refrigerator in a pick up truck
How to move and protect heavy furniture items.

Moving Tip #3 – Sell or Donate Stuff


Anything items you absolutely do not need, consider selling them or donating them. Every year, a few months before my lease is up I start to shed off all my unwanted items.

Moving Tip #4 – Get The Best Boxes

office moving tape-less box

Tape-less boxes are best to use if you are moving yourself frequently. I have been using the same 20 tape-less boxes for a few years now and they fit nicely in my closet. They are usually meant for office moving but you can use them however you like. They are pretty hard to find so ask some local moving companies if they will sell them to you.

Home Depot or Lowe’s are great places to get new boxes for very cheap. Do not buy other packing supplies there, they are very expensive.

Moving Tip #5 – Prepare The New Home

Home Sweet Home

Prepare your new home or apartment before you move in. Such tasks include: Cleaning, painting, minor renovations, and pest proofing. This way you do not have to re-move all of your furniture. I have written a more in depth article on 9 Pre-Move Home Chores Before Moving In.

Moving Tip #6 – Take Photos Before Disassembling

preparing television moving tips

Before disassembling furniture or unplugging electronics, take a photo with you phone or camera so you have a way of putting everything back together.

Moving Tip #7 – Hazardous Materials and Cleaners

moving cleaners and hazardous materials

All cleaners that are almost empty should be thrown away. Any that remain should be transported in a box with an open top. This way it won’t accidentally be turned upside down during the move. If you are hiring movers then remember that movers DO NOT move any type of hazardous materials and when moving yourself be very careful during transport.

Moving Tip #8 – Change Locks At New Location

Changing Door Lock

It is very important to change your locks when you moving into your new place. Any previous owner can still have a key. How To Change A Door Lock Yourself

Moving Tip #9 – Be Ready For Friends Help

moving tips friends helping

Remember, you need your friends to help lift heavy stuff, not pack your silverware. Make sure that before your friends come over that you are already packed and ready to move.

Make sure you provide a free lunch or offer them something for there help.

Moving Tip #10 – Keep Clothes in Dressers

You can just keep most of you clothes in the dressers when they are being moved. Of course if your drawers are really full then take some out to help lighten the load.

Moving Tip #11 – Using Your Packing Tape

The most annoying part of using packing tape is always losing the end when finished. Fold the corner before finishing so you can find it again later. Also, a good place to keep your packing tape is on your wrist so you do not lose it.

Moving Tip #12 – Your Hanging Clothes

An easy way to protect your hanging clothes is by wrapping a trash bag around them. Wardrobe boxes are the standard when it comes to packing your clothes but when moving yourself, they are not necessary.

Moving Tip #13 – Load Smart

Loading Pickup Truck

If using a pickup truck to load your things, back it up in the gutter of a slanted driveway to allow for a shorter lift.

Moving Tip #14 – Know High Demand Moving Dates

moving truck

If hiring a moving company or renting a truck, know which dates are their most high demand. Usually high demand days will result in more expensive services.

Moving Tip #15 – An Easy Way To Protect Your Pictures

Moving Tip #16 – Consider Box Weight

moving heavy boxes

Don’t think you can just throw everything into one giant box. Heavy items should go into small boxes and light items into big boxes. Heavier boxes lead to injuries, and are much more likely to break at the bottom when lifted.

Have any of YOUR own moving tips that you would like to add? Please let us know in the comments below.