Load the heaviest items and appliances into the truck first. You should have two people in the truck who will be the designated “loaders,” while the rest of the people will carry the furniture to the truck or hand it to them if it’s light enough. Pack these items into the front of the truck to maximize your space and to keep the truck from dragging if the back is too heavy. If the truck drags, you could be in a dangerous driving situation, so it’s best to avoid it.
The heaviest items include your appliances, such as the stove, washing machine, fridge, and dishwasher.
If you’re packing a fridge, don’t forget to defrost it at least 1 to 2 days before your move.
Keep these items in their upright positions and distribute the heavy items along the back wall of the truck. If you have a washer and dryer, position them on the opposite side from the fridge.
Next, load large pieces of furniture, such as sofas, living room chairs, and entertainment units.
Remember that you’ll be packing from floor to ceiling, with the heaviest items on the bottom. Pack 2–3 foot (0.6–0.9 m) tiers of items, and wrap a strap around the items when you’re done with each layer to hold them together.
Protect your remaining furniture. Though some people like to wrap their furniture in advance, it’s best to wrap the items as soon as you get them in a truck. When you move an item into the truck, you should put it on top of the paper padding, cover it in the padding, and then tape it down. Here are some extra tips for protecting your furniture:
For extra protection, after you wrap a mirror or painting, you can put it between your mattress and box spring, or surround it by cushions.
Wrap up your couch cushions and pillows.
Wrap your mattresses.
If you plan ahead, you probably have a lot of things that you need to move with you anyway that would make great protective pads in the truck. When packing your house, leave all blankets, sheets, towels and other linens unboxed and use them when packing.
Move the longer items into the truck. These will include your sofas, table-tops, headboards, long mirrors, and your box spring and mattress. Put them against the longest walls of the truck to save space and keep them upright. Secure these items to the side of the truck with ties if it has a place for them.
Your sofa, mattress, and box spring will provide cushion for other items.
Put dressers and desks against your mattresses so the drawers can have a cushion if they open.
Any item with drawers should be facing the truck walls so the drawers can’t open too much.
Pack your boxes into the truck. Choose boxes of similar size and strength so you can stack them on top of each other. Place the heaviest and largest boxes on the bottom, medium-weight boxes in the middle, and lighter items on top. You will be creating three layers of weight.
Make sure you have labeled the boxes to say which room they should go in.
Pack a layer of heavy, medium-sized, and light boxes, and repeat the process until the truck is mostly full.
Try to create tiers that have a similar height, so you can pack the boxes to create an even surface.
Move from the front to the back of the truck.
As you go along, place in items that are hard to stack in between crevices to save space. Items like cushions and strollers are great for this.
Put in any remaining items. Your goal should be to pack the truck as tightly as possible without squeezing the items together too tightly. Squeeze in any unwieldy items where you can, and place fragile items on top so they don’t get crushed.
Try to fit together the remaining parts as if you were working on a jigsaw puzzle. Everything will be able to fit together if you arrange it the right way.
Place items that don’t fit anywhere else in the front of the truck, such as grills.
If you rent a truck that is larger than you need and you do not fill the truck completely, you can minimize moving and jostling by leaving the empty space at the back of the truck and keeping the height of your packing low and even.