32 of the Best Moving Hacks We Could Find Across the Internet

What do a dentists chair and a desert island have in common? Theyre both preferable to the absolute chaos and agony of moving. Research shows that 6 out of 10 people rank moving as the most stressful life event. More stressful than a divorce, even! And no amount of coffee runs, to-do lists, or yoga breaks will 100% alleviate the pain of getting your stuff from points A to B.

However, there are ways to work smarter, not harder, over the course of a daunting move. Lots of people have survived this before. Some of them have even shared their lessons and secrets, like tricks to avoid a shampoo-related crisis or how to use household items as packing material (how kind of them!).

So we scoured different corners of the internet including chat boards, YouTube videos, and moving and organization blogs to bring you this amazing list of 33 moving hacks, or simple tricks and shortcuts, to make some of the challenging parts of your move a little easier.

1. Pad heavy boxes with toilet paper and paper towels at the top

Toilet paper used as moving hacks.
(Source: Emma Diehl)

Ideally your boxes shouldnt exceed 50 pounds. But when youre moving, box space is precious, and you want to use up every inch before moving on to the next box to save on cardboard.

So instead of packing a large box filled to the brim with heavy items alone, put your books or gym weights or massive rock collection in the bottom half of the box, do a test lift to get a feel for how heavy it is, and once it starts to feel unmanageable, pad the top of the box with extra rolls of toilet paper or paper towels from the economy pack taking up space in your bathroom and pantry shelves.

Youll make the most of every box you have, and youll be happy when you dont need to designate a separate box for paper products. Plus, this arrangement protects the heavier box contents by cushioning them during the move. Just be sure to set aside some TP and paper towels for your first day box with essentials for your first 24 hours.

Source: Reddit

2. Shrinkwrap lightweight objects together

Shrink wrap used as a moving hack.
Source: (msbcc/ Shutterstock)

Use vacuum-sealable bags or industrial strength stretch wrap also known as movers wrap to pack light, bulky items. Shrinkwrap piles of pillows, blankets, and bedding into small manageable bundles which you can carry in a single trip.

Source: Reddit

3. Cover toiletry bottles with plastic wrap

Containers used as moving hacks.
(Source: Emma Diehl)

Unscrew the lid of toiletries and other liquids, cover the opening with plastic wrap, then reattach the lid. This keeps liquids from breaking open or slowly leaking all over items during the move.

Source: Buzzfeed

4. Pack your toaster in a bag to catch crumbs

A tote bag used as a moving hack.
(Source: Emma Diehl)

Put the toaster in a bag before packing it with the kitchen appliances. This will keep crumbs from making a mess in the box.

Source: Simply Self Storage

5. Pack dishes sideways so theyre less likely to break

A box used as a moving hack.
Source: (Kristen Lewis/ HomeLight)

Pack plates vertically, like a record collection, to evenly distribute pressure across the box and make it less likely that the dishes will break in the move. Line the box with bubble wrap, then wrap each individual plate with packing paper, laying a foam sheet between each plate in the box.

Source: Apartment Therapy

6. Keep necklaces from tangling using a toilet paper roll

(Image Source: TalkBeckyTalk)

String necklaces through an empty toilet paper roll before packing them to keep tangles at bay during the move.

Source: TalkBeckyTalk

7. Use coffee filters to cushion bowls and cups

Coffee filters used as moving hacks.
Source: (Kristen Lewis/ HomeLight)

Coffee filters are inexpensive, easy to find, and likely already take up real estate in your cupboard. Use a few filters as padding between each stacked bowl and cup to avoid breaks and cracks during transport.

Source: Millennial Moms

8. Label the tops and sides of boxes to make them easy to identify

Labels used as moving hacks.
Source: (Kristen Lewis/ HomeLight)

Labeling the tops and sides of each box or container makes it easier to identify them throughout the move. Movers wont have to twist the box to the side to see a label on the side or pull it out of a stack to find a top label.

Source: I Heart Planners

9. Use pool noodles to protect picture frame corners

Cut spare pool noodles or foam pipe insulation down their sides and slide them on the exterior frames of mirrors or pictures. The extra padding keeps frames from banging together and cracking or shattering while in the moving van.

Source: Whats Up Fagans?

10. Tape an X across mirrors to prevent them from shattering

Tape used as a moving hack.
(Source: Emma Diehl)

Tape an X across a glass surface to strengthen it and absorb shock. Use masking, painters, or washi tape for easy removal.

Source: Movers.com

11. Use binder clips to guard razor blades

A binder clip used a moving hack.
Source: (Kristen Lewis/ HomeLight)

If your razors protective travel cover is long gone, use a binder clip over the blade to prevent accidental nicks and cuts during the move.

12. Remove toner and ink cartridges from the printer

Bags used as moving hacks.
(Source: Emma Diehl)

Take the toner and ink cartridges out of your home printer and pack them in their own plastic bags. In the event they burst, break, or leak during the move, they wont damage any other home office supplies.

Source: iMove

13. Buy boxes online to save money

Shopping online for boxes is a moving hack.
Source: (My Life Graphic/ Shutterstock)

You can find free boxes on Craigslist in the free section under For Sale or from the produce manager at grocery stores, but if youre looking for high-quality moving boxes, you can save money by purchasing them online. Sites like uboxes.com are an average 20% cheaper than office stores or moving companies.

Source: Real Simple

14. Cut handles into boxes to make lifting easier

A box used as a moving hack.
Source (re-sized): (HornM201/ Wikimedia Commons via Creative Commons Legal Code)

Transform regular boxes into easy-to-carry banker boxes: simply cut handles into the cardboard using an X-ACTO knife. Just be sure not to cut too close to the top to avoid rips.

Source: Houselogic

15. Use IKEAs industrial shopping bags for last minute knick knacks

An ikea bag used a moving hack.
Source: (Kristen Lewis/ HomeLight)

IKEAs recognizable FRAKTA bags can hold up to 55 pounds, and cost under $2 each. Use them to move large quantities of dry food from the pantry, or last-minute knick-knacks that didnt find a home in a box. The bags reinforced straps make them easy to fill and carry.

Source. Dolly

16. Protect your floors with furniture sliders

Furniture sliders used as moving hacks.
Source: (Kristen Lewis/ HomeLight)

Put furniture sliders under any heavy or bulky items in your home to easily move large items across carpets, rugs, linoleum, wood, and tile floors. Sliders keep you from scuffing up the floor during a move and make it easier to push items around. Use them in the new home as well while you figure out where furniture fits in each room.

Source: Apartment Therapy

17. Use packing tape for hassle-free box assembly

Paper packaging tape is great for building and sealing boxes. Its easy to find the edge of the strip on paper tape, and you can tear it without the need for metal teeth tools. Its self-sticking, but it lifts off surfaces, too. You dont have to worry about ripping the boxes to shreds when you inevitably open and reopen them for repacking (like you might with plastic packing tape).

Source: Soothing Sista

18. Pack your toolbox last, and make it the first thing you unload

A toolbox used as a moving hack.
Source: (Charles MD/ Shutterstock)

Moving truck logic goes as follows: the last thing out of the van is the first thing youll unpack. Make your toolbox the last item to go into the truck, and the first to come out. Chances are, youll need it for assembly or other moving needs.

Source: Complex

19. Throw towels in the washer before you move it

A washer used as a moving hack.
Source: (Kristen Lewis/ HomeLight)

Before loading the washing machine into the moving truck, stuff towels inside it. This will keep the tub from rotating in transit so it stays balanced all the way to its new destination.

Source: JDM Packing Supplies

20. Dont forget about Moms Attic for your fragile items

An infographic used to explain moving hacks.
(Source: Moving Insider)

U-Hauls and other popular moving trucks feature a small storage space above the driving cabin, called Moms Attic. Use this space to store boxes of fragile items like glassware, antiques, and electronics. This space above the cabin has the smoothest ride in the van.

Source: Moving Insider

21. Use the I formation

An infographic used to explain moving hacks.
Source: (Penske Truck Rental)

Theres a right way and a wrong way to load a moving truck. The I formation, when properly executed, forms an uppercase I in the trucks cabin. That means:

  • Heavy objects, including appliances, are at the top of the formation
  • Desks, tables, and heavy boxes take up the middle portion
  • Mattresses and box springs are outside the formation, to the left of the middle column
  • Sofas and couches occupy the right side of the truck, outside the formation
  • Additional heavy boxes go in the back center of the truck, a bottom part of the I formation
  • Small boxes flank either side of the heavy boxes on the bottom of the I to complete the shape

Source: Penske Truck Rental

22. Sandwich your mattress with fitted sheets


(Source: Radoslav Bali / Unsplash)

You dont need an expensive mattress protector to keep your bed clean during the move. Protect it with a pair of old fitted sheets covering the top and bottom.

Source: Bed, Bath, and Beyond

23. Follow the 20% rule to calculate truck travel time

A calculator used as a moving hack.
Source (re-sized): (Marco Verch Professional Photographer and Speaker/ Flickr via Creative Commons Legal Code)

Using professional movers, you can expect pricing to start at $1,000, but renting a van on your own, youre only on the hook for the daily rental cost ($20 to $30/day) and the mileage fee. But dont underestimate travel time! In the truck, youll typically drive slower, so tack an additional 20% onto your travel time.

If youve never traveled this route before, use this formula:

Total miles / Maximum Speed Limit + 20% = Estimated Travel Time

Source: Sparefoot

24. Carry more with the Camel Clutch


(Image Source: Moving Connections)

Use the camel clutch when carrying loads from the moving truck to the home. Instead of holding the items in front of you, youll carry them on your back, with your arms behind you. This carry puts less pressure on your back.

Source: Moving Connections

25. Avoid a lockout with rubber bands

A rubberband used as a moving hack.
Source: (Kristen Lewis/ HomeLight)

On move-in day, cover the tongue of any doors that youll be opening and closing frequently with a criss-crossed rubber band or hair elastic. That way, you can open the door hands-free without letting in the heat, cold, or any unwanted critters!

Source: Updater

26. Make plans for doggy daycare

A dog in daycare as a moving hack.
Source: (Matthew Henry/ Unsplash)

Anxious animals have a way of getting underfoot during the move, making it both harder to move heavy objects around the home. If you can, have pets stay with friends or family the day of the move-in.

Source: Moving.com

27. Tip your movers or offer them refreshments

Money used as a moving hack.
Source: (Sharon McCutcheon/ Unsplash)

Moving is expensive, but that doesnt mean youre off the hook for tipping. Seventy-one percent of movers tip their moving help (39% of these tippers give at least 10% of the moving costs).

At the very least, offer your moving pros some refreshments, especially after they move something heavy like a bulky platform bed frame.

Source: Apartment Guide

28. Never lose track of your cleaning supplies

Cleaning supplies used as moving hacks.
Source (re-sized): (Nick Youngson/ Picpedia via Creative Commons Legal Code)

Each room should be pristine before moving things in, and the cleaning caddy should be one of the first things out of the van. Use HomeLights exhaustive deep-clean checklist as a guide.

Source: Your Modern Family

29. Hang art at the proper height

An infographic used to explain moving hacks.
Source: (Splendid Actually)

Follow these guidelines to prevent a crooked art conundrum: Hang art at eye level in the home 56 to 60 inches above ground. Multiple frames should be clustered together, with the center of the cluster 56 inches up from the floor. When hanging a frame above furniture, there should be between 4 and 8 inches between the top of the furniture and the bottom of the frame.

Source: Splendid Actually

30. Put down doormats, or insist that everyone wear booties

A mat used as a moving hack.
Source: (Hombre/ Unsplash)

Dont damage the floors of a new home before you get the chance to enjoy them. Put down doormats at each entrance when the move-in begins. If the weathers particularly messy, such as rain or snow, use disposable booties in the home to protect flooring.

Source: My Moving Reviews

31. Create a home base for your cat during move-in

A cat home used as a moving hack.
Source: (Sun De_An/ Unsplash)

Cats under stress during a move can wreak havoc in a home by tearing up carpet and ruining rugs. Create a space away from the main area in your new home for the cat to feel comfortable during the move. Include favorite toys, beds, food, and fresh water to help your pet feel at ease.

Source: iheartcats

32. Save floors (and your back) with a rubber wheeled dolly

Source (re-sized): (HireAHelper/ Flickr via Creative Commons Legal Code)

Lugging in heavy box after box during your move in is bound to put a strain on your back, and dragging them will damage the floor with scrapes and dents. Save time, and protect the finish of your floors, with a rubber-wheeled dolly. Daily rental is just $20, and youll be able to truck three to four boxes into the house in the time it takes to carry one.

Source: Easy Movers

Now its time to build some boxes, and practice lifting from your knees!