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Can anyone describe moving house using a packing service?

(36 Posts)
StuntNun Sun 08-Sep-13 12:53:09

We are moving house at the end of the month, from a three-bedroom to a four-bedroom house in the same road. I am in the process of getting surveys from companies to do the packing and moving for us. Can anyone give me any information or tips on using a packing service? For example are there any specific things I should pack myself such as undies or jewellery? Do they unpack at the other end or just leave you with a big stack of boxes? What's an appropriate amount to tip? Do I stay out of their way or will they need advice on anything? Are they going to be happy to pack up children's toys and book shelves or should I do that myself?

Last time we moved by ourselves and it was absolutely awful so I'm glad to let someone else do the work this time but some tips would be very helpful.

LIZS Sun 08-Sep-13 13:03:16

They will pack everything if you choose although you may prefer to do some personal items yourself. Insurance only covers what they physically pack so if you did jewellery or breakables and there was an issue it wouldn't be covered. I found them packing ok but was frustrated by the unpacking and sent them away early. If you decide to have them pack make sure items destined to be together are ready for them to pack together, otherwise you spend ages looking for something and moving it around afterwards, and mark clearly with where it is going. Have post its on all the room doors at new house so boxes get put in correct room.

OnePlanOnHouzz Sun 08-Sep-13 13:07:57

the only time I've used a company they literally came in - packed everything into boxes and plonked it in a similar room at the new property still in the boxes - ie kitchen stuff in kitchen - bedroom stuff in a bedroom etc . I wasn't there so couldn't tip - but similarly - wasn't in their way at all - so bonus for them ! lol ! was arranged over the phone and paid on account . was a few years ago - but so painless i'd totally recommend it !

doglover Sun 08-Sep-13 13:37:58

Stress-free. DEFINITELY worth every penny smile

BerthaTheBogCleaner Sun 08-Sep-13 14:38:09

You need to tidy your house first - they will pack every tissue they find under the beds. And then you need to organise your house, so that when you need to find something later you'll have an idea which box it might be in. You should probably also go through your kitchen cupboards and tape up the flour bags.

On packing day, you provide regular cups of tea, and jealously guard your "do not pack this" pile.

They don't usually unpack for you - that'd be a nightmare, you'd spend months wondering where they'd put stuff.

Sunnyshores Sun 08-Sep-13 20:06:07

No move is stress free, but the packing/unpacking definitely helped. Agree, they do pack everything, so some decluttering of magazines, out of date food etc is a good idea.
They unpacked clothes (into wardrobes), anything from drawers (back into the same drawers), reconnected TVs, computers and put remaining boxes into the right rooms.
I was there with them while they packed, but dont think I exactly helped!

CMOTDibbler Sun 08-Sep-13 20:14:03

They will pack everything - we found carefully wrapped empty wine bottles in one move.

Stay out of the way. One move dh sat in the garden, last move I got them to empty the bedrooms first so I could start cleaning them behind them. They don't ask, they just pack.

I don't tip, but provided cake, biscuits and lots of tea.

DreamingAlice Mon 09-Sep-13 10:33:53

It's worth it in that it saves a lot of physical stress. But I found I did need to occasionally stick my head in to see how it was going. They had a habit of leaving certain random things out of the boxes which I then had to find a home/box for. Also they did pack my do not pack pile, which was all the instructions for the applicances I was leaving behind!

BlueChampagne Mon 09-Sep-13 15:06:46

Totally recommended - reduces stress by loads. Fed ours loads of coffee. Probably pack jewellery and computers yourself and take them yourself. Ours even rebuilt the beds for us.

Also less expensive than I thought it would be!

SunnyUpNorth Mon 09-Sep-13 15:17:48

It is AMAZING!!! Our move was totally stress free, the guys we used were so good.
We were moving from London to the northwest so we left our flat there on the Tuesday morning with an overnight bag each. They spent the whole day packing and met us at the new house at 9am on the Wednesday morning up near Manchester.

I did a vague go through of things like the ingredients cupboards where you tend to find random things that went off two years previously. I also threw away almost empty toiletries and cleaning products. Other than that I just decluttered as I unpacked.

They didn't unpack but did put boxes into the equivalent room in the new house, ie kitchen to kitchen etc.

Like others say they literally pack everything, even actual rubbish. Oh it's also worth emptying the fridge out.

There are other threads on here about this so have a search. I think I tipped ours about £20 each as they worked so hard and were amazing. We didn't have a single breakage. They were really embarrassed and grateful, clearly didn't expect it at all.

exexpat Mon 09-Sep-13 15:17:49

Packing services are great. Only thing to watch out for is that they do pack absolutely everything including the contents of bins (not great if everything is going to be shipped halfway round the world and held in storage for nine months...), so you have to do all the decluttering/clearing yourself, and label very clearly anything that should not be packed.

I'd also pack valuables (jewellery, vital documents etc) myself, just for peace of mind, and also do a couple of boxes of 'wanted on voyage' things you may need immediately - overnight stuff, kettle, mugs, essential toys etc.

You can usually choose whether you want them to unpack as well. I have usually got them to do the basics - unwrapping furniture, reassembling flatpack furniture and so on - but chose to do things like unpack kitchen stuff and books myself, because I find it easier to start with crockery etc in boxes, and empty cupboards and shelves, and work out new arrangements myself, rather than having everything put away in random order by the movers so that I have to take it all out and start again.

SunnyUpNorth Mon 09-Sep-13 15:18:12

Ps we only paid £200 for the packing service in London for a 3 bed flat.

PennieLane Mon 09-Sep-13 16:04:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

StuntNun Mon 09-Sep-13 18:14:47

This is very reassuring, thanks for the feedback. I have had one phone quote and a couple of people coming out to do surveys on Wednesday.

Glittertwins Mon 09-Sep-13 20:48:16

It's the only cost associated with moving I would happily pay for!

SunnyUpNorth Mon 09-Sep-13 21:48:01

Also just remembered I packed one box of stuff like documents, passports etc just in case for some reason everything went missing like in an accident on the motorway etc.

I also packed one box of stuff like loo roll, kettle, and cleaning products we would need at the new house so I could crack on and not have to unpack to start getting the house ready.

BananaPie Mon 09-Sep-13 22:01:35

You might want to pack the bathroom stuff yourself / throw out loo brushes before they get started. I narrowly rescued the used loo brush from a box of other bathroom items.

They also packed the fruit in the fruit bowl - not so fresh when it was finally located and unwrapped!

Other than that, absolutely brilliant. Worth every penny

Bakingnovice Tue 10-Sep-13 13:44:09

Sunny - which firm did you use? We are looking for a good company up in the north west too.

Rockdoctor Tue 10-Sep-13 13:45:49

Agree with what everyone has said. In particular the bit about them packing everything - including shelves from the cooker and keys for window locks, which then had to be returned to the new owner of the house.

I think you usually choose whether to have them unpack or not. Make sure you have rooms labelled so that boxes end up in the right place. I found that once they started bringing boxes into the new house they were moving pretty quickly and I didn't have time to give directions.

I have always made sure I have a DO NOT PACK room or cupboard, which can include whatever you need straight away at the new house - kettle, mugs, wine, nappies...

Some movers refuse to pack items such as aerosols, matches, paint etc. (but that was overseas and may not apply here)

Bear in mind that things you pack yourself will not be covered by their insurance.

Worth every penny.

mistlethrush Tue 10-Sep-13 13:49:50

Ours unpacked all the kitchen stuff and books etc too. Chests of drawers were simply lifted up fully laden and stuck on the lorry and 'unpacked' in a similar manner. They dismantled and remantled things like beds.

scurryfunge Tue 10-Sep-13 13:58:28

Would recommend a packing service. The only thing they would not take was the gas canister from the BBQ.
Ours built everything up the other end but didn't unpack any of the boxes (I didn't want them to).

Samsean Tue 10-Sep-13 17:27:35

Which company did you all use? Any recommendations?

Samsean Tue 10-Sep-13 17:29:08

Sunny, which company did you use?

scurryfunge Tue 10-Sep-13 17:45:44

I can't recall the name. It was organised as a company move. I think they were based in Cheshire.

Samsean Tue 10-Sep-13 17:48:58

Thanks scurry! Anyone else? I need a company in the south

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