Packing & Storing Valuables

By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group 

Moving - Moving BoxesFor most everyone, at some point, you're going to have to pack and move or pack and store, all or part of your things. When that time comes, it is imperative that you've grasped the skill of packing valuables and delicate things--you don't want your favorite mug coming back smashed, or your wool sweaters with lots of moth holes. Packing for storage in Colorado Springs, even for a short while, requires some attention to detail.

One of the first details that must be attended to is the location to store your possessions. If your storage needs correspond with a household move, when you are drifting down the street contemplating which storage facility is right for you, keep driving. You have already selected a mover for transporting your belongings to a new home, why don’t you check with them to see if they provide storage, too? Many professional moving companies offer warehouse storage--with the same seasoned staff to help you organize your stored boxes and furniture that packs and loads the truck for your move.

If you're moving out of the country, or your move is not long-term, you will want a place for any boats, jet skis, or motor homes that are too big to go with you. You can store those vehicles with your moving company, and again, you can simply park them on the premises or park them inside—it's your decision.

Even if you are not moving, you may still need extra space--if you've inherited some things, if you have an adult child who is boomeranging back to your houseback in the nest—numerous things can happen that requires more space for some time. Or, if you're thinking of moving and decluttering your house, you'll want to form the illusion of hardly-lived in space, so everything on the counters, small furniture you trip over at night, and the items you need to generally live your life, all should go into storage until after your move in Colorado Springs.

Moving - Moving BoxesAfter you have decided where to store your items, the next chore you need to ponder is how to pack all of your things for safe storage. The technique to packing crystal, glass, and other easily breakable things is to wrap every item by itself. You can do that with a few different kinds of padding or insulation, it is really up to you which you prefer—so long as each piece is sufficiently protected against knocking against each other, use what works for you. Newsprint (not newspaper, newsprint is the plain tan paper that comes in large sheets at any moving supply or big box store), bubble wrap, Styrofoam peanuts, foam padding--any and all will work, but you'll realize that mixing and matching determined by the individual item works best. Use small, heavy duty boxes for fragile items. Take care that you don't wrap too tightly; items must have some air space inside the wrap.

Some further things that need special consideration when going to storage aren't always things that you'd realize.

Here is a short list:

  • Albums--Yes, they are making a rebound. If you are a collector you know how prized they are, and if you're a casual listener who likes listening on a record player you know how tough it is to find replacements. Albums that are going to storage for any length of time in the spring or fall must be in a climate and humidity controlled facility.
  • Clothing--Cotton clothing and most synthetic blends are hard to damage. You will need to wash and iron any items that you store, but most of the time it comes out in the same condition it went in. Wool and wool blends need to be packed with an overabundance of mothballs, cedar blocks, or both so you do not unpack hole-filled sweaters and coats. Moths are not as big of a presence in colder climates, but tossing in a few mothballs is still a good idea.
  • Shoes--Leather shoes should be in a humidity controlled place, particularly in a locale where humidity is high. They will mildew when it is damp or humid, and when it's dry and cold the leather cracks.
  • Art--Art is in the eye of the beholder, so you will be as cautious of your children's 1st grade paintings as the curator at the Met is of his on-loan Picassos. For the kiddo's art projects, obtain a sizeable flat plastic box, and layer the pages between acid-free paper. (You can get it at a craft store.) For framed prints, you can either stand them up against the wall and wrap them with sheets, beach towels, or moving blankets, and they will be okay. When your art is the real thing, have the paintings professionally crated and packed, and use climate and humidity controlled storage. Because the frames of many antique pieces are as valuable as the paintings themselves, protecting them is crucial.
  • Mirrors--Like art, lots of antique mirrors are in very valuable frames. Treat them like the works of art that they are.
  • Chandeliers—Remove the crystals, and wrap them in a big zip lock bag. Secure the hanging hardware and crystals in a box, and either have the lighting itself crated, or wrapped for transit and then hang it in storage--most units have hangars across the ceiling specifically for that.

And by all means, we are aware that you have the best intentions of sorting through all those stacks of college papers and junk mail from 1997 and shredding all the junk. Fortunately, A-1 Freeman Moving Group will always have storage in Colorado Springs for you, until you can get that done.