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CHECKLIST: Everything You Need to Pack Properly

Your stuff will never survive the truck ride on shoeboxes and Scotch tape. Here’s a list of all the supplies you need to properly pack your entire home.



Purchase clean, dry cardboard boxes in a variety of sizes if your moving company doesn’t already provide them.


Special Containers

Order wardrobe boxes, partitioned “dish pack” boxes and other containers designed for specific items.


Bubble Wrap

Buy a large roll, and cut sheets for padding boxes and wrapping breakable items.


Plastic Storage Bags

Use gallon-size bags for grouping small items, and snack-size bags for rounding up screws and fasteners.


Packing Paper or Plain Newsprint

Avoid using newspaper for stuffing and wrapping fragile items; the ink may stain some materials (and your hands).


Bright Tissue Paper

Use it to wrap small items that are easily lost or may be mistaken for trash.


White Tissue Paper

Use it for stuffing and wrapping lampshades; packing paper is too stiff.


Packing Tape

Buy multiple rolls, and at least one dispenser for each person who will help you pack.



Mark each box with its contents (except for valuables) and the room where it belongs.


Permanent Markers

Choose thick-tipped markers for strong, clear labeling.


Small Colored Stickers

Use them for labeling electronics cords, color-coding boxes and more.


Trash Bags

Corral throw pillows and stuffed animals inside bags, and label them like boxes so they’re not mistaken for trash.


Box Cutters

Half-empty boxes don’t stack properly; trim boxes to fit their contents.



You’ll need an assortment of screwdrivers, wrenches and fasteners for disassembling and reassembling furniture.


Plastic Stretch Wrap

Wrap it around furniture to secure drawers, or use it to bundle curtain rods and other awkwardly shaped items.


Mattress Bags

Purchase ones sized to fit your mattress; they’re easiest to carry.


Drop Cloths or Old Sheets

Drape them over furniture for protection.


Quilted Pads

Wrap large furniture to protect it inside the truck.


Measuring Tape

Measure odd-shaped items to find a box that fits.


Notepad & Pen

Jot down directions, measurements and notes.

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