The Ultimate Room-By-Room Packing Guide

Packing room

Everyone looks forward to settling into their new space, but the packing process? Not so much. Fortunately, creating a room-by-room game plan and mastering a few key packing techniques can make all the difference. We’ve gathered our top tips for packing each room in your home, so you can kick back and relax in your new space even quicker. Ready? Let’s make your move as smooth as possible.

General Packing Tips

Before we get into the room-by-room details, here are some simple packing tips to help make your move a success:

Like With Like

It wouldn’t make sense to use your socks in the kitchen or your spatulas in the office, so make sure you keep things separated by room when you’re packing. This will make unpacking that much easier. Plus, you’ll know exactly where to find everything when it’s time to settle into your new space.

Pack Practically

Start with your least used items and rooms and work to your most used. Jot down an ordered list of items and rooms to work through as you start packing. A great place to start is with out-of-season clothing, decor, and other seasonally used items.

Make a List

Create a detailed inventory list of all your belongings. Your inventory doesn’t have to include every single thing you own, but it should definitely include big-ticket items or those that are important to keep track of. Organize this by room and make sure you mark the items as they are loaded and unloaded on moving day.

Label, Label, Label

Labeling boxes with room names and contents will save you time and headaches when unpacking. Be as specific as possible, including any fragile items that may need extra care.

Start Early

Don’t wait until the last minute to start packing. Begin at least a few weeks before your moving date so you have enough time to pack everything properly. This will also help reduce the stress and overwhelm of trying to pack in a rush.

Take Care with Sensitive Items

Certain items require special care and attention when packing. This includes fragile items like glassware, artwork, and electronics. Make sure to wrap these items carefully in protective materials like bubble wrap or packing paper. It’s also a good idea to pack them separately in sturdy boxes labeled as “fragile.”

Know the Non-Allowables

Before you start packing, it’s important to be aware of non-allowable items that cannot be transported by moving companies. These include hazardous materials like chemicals and flammable substances, perishable food items, plants, and valuable documents or sentimental items. Make sure to properly dispose of these items or find alternative ways to transport them.

Pro tip: Check ADSI’s full non-allowables list ahead of time so you can plan accordingly.

Essential Packing Supplies

Having the right tools can make all the difference. Here’s what you’ll need:

Quality Moving Boxes

Boxes are key! Make sure you have quality boxes that are sturdy and free of any damage to ensure that your items will be well-protected.  You can purchase new boxes from a moving supply store or ask local businesses for any spare boxes they may have. You can also use plastic bins or totes for items that need extra protection.

Unprinted Newspaper or Packing Paper

Use unprinted newspaper or packing paper to wrap items and fill in any empty space in boxes. Avoid using regular newspaper as the ink can transfer onto your belongings.

Bubble Wrap

For those items that need a little extra protection, make sure you have some bubble wrap on hand. It’s great for wrapping your fragile items, filling space in boxes, and protecting framed photos or art.

Permanent Markers

Make sure to have a few of these on hand so you can label all your boxes with their room and a list of contents. This will make delivery and unpacking much easier!

Packing Tape (Dispensers and Refills)

Don’t forget to stock up on packing tape dispensers and refill rolls. You won’t want to choose a cheaper option for tape, as it can make the process longer and more frustrating in the long run. Make sure to have plenty on hand and a dispenser always comes in handy for quick sealing and cutting!

Box Cutter or Scissors

These will come in handy when you’re ready to unpack. Whether it’s opening up boxes or cutting tape, a box cutter or scissors will be useful to have on hand.

Room-By-Room Packing Guide

Now that you have your packing supplies, let’s dive into the details of how to pack each room in your home.


The kitchen can be one of the most challenging rooms to pack. Here are some tips to make it easier:

  • Start with the Non-Essentials: Begin by packing items that you won’t need immediately, such as seasonal kitchenware and appliances that are used less frequently. As you get closer to your move date, start packing less frequently used appliances, dishes, and pantry items.
  • Wrap Dishes and Glassware Separately: To prevent damage during the move, wrap each plate and glass individually in packing paper or bubble wrap. Stack them vertically in a sturdy box with additional padding between layers.
  • Be Careful with Fine China and Glassware: Use a dishpack carton for china, glassware, or other fragile items less than 18 inches in size. Wrap each piece in a generous amount of clean packing paper and use bubble wrap if needed.
  • Bundle Your Silverware: When packing silverware, bundle the pieces together by type. Wrap each bundle with paper and place it back into your silverware tray, a Ziploc bag, or other container. If using a tray, wrap the filled tray with paper, tape it closed, and mark the top. Then, pack it into the bottom of your kitchen items box.
  • Double-Wrap Knives: If you don’t have sleeves or cases for your knives, be sure to double-wrap them or wrap them in towels. Always alternate the direction of the blades if you’re wrapping multiple knives in one bundle. Secure with tape in multiple spots and clearly label the bundle.
  • Pack Pantry Items Carefully: For non-perishable items, use sturdy boxes and pack them tightly to avoid shifting during transit. Use bubble wrap or packing paper for extra protection for anything breakable. For perishable items, consider donating them before the move.
  • Pack Pots and Pans:  Stack your pots and pans together with paper, using clean packing paper or towels to wrap them. Then, nestle them into a medium-sized box. Glass lids should be wrapped in paper and packed separately.
  • Prep Appliances: For smaller appliances like mixers and blenders, wrap them in towels or packing paper and place them into a box with other kitchen items. Some larger appliances like microwaves and toasters may need their own boxes.
  • Plan Ahead for Large Appliances: Large appliances like ovens, washing machines, and refrigerators require careful consideration. Work with your moving company to make sure they are properly prepared.
  • Pack a Kitchen Essentials Box: This box should include everything you’ll need for your first few days in your new home, such as utensils, plates, cups, coffee pots, and pots and pans. Mark it clearly so that it’s easy to find.

Living Room

Packing up the living room can feel like a breeze compared to the kitchen, but it still requires some careful organization. Here’s how to get started:

  • Start With Decorations: Begin by packing any decorations such as picture frames, vases, and knick-knacks. Wrap them individually in bubble wrap or packing paper and label the box clearly.
  • Wrap Electronics: For larger electronics like TVs and gaming consoles, use their original packaging if possible. Otherwise, use plenty of bubble wrap or packing paper to protect your electronics before placing them in boxes. It’s also a good idea to take photos of the wiring setup for easy reassembly later.
  • Pack Books: When packing books, make sure to distribute them evenly across boxes to avoid making them too heavy. Use smaller boxes for books and line the bottom with packing paper or bubble wrap for extra support.
  • Wrap Lamps: Remove light bulbs and lamp shades before wrapping lamps in protective material. Use a sturdy box and fill any empty space with packing paper or towels.
  • Pack Lamp Shades Individually: To save space, you can nest a small shade inside a larger one, but avoid overpacking boxes. Pick a box about two inches larger than the largest shade and fill any empty space with plenty of packing paper to protect the shade. Be sure to label these boxes as fragile!
  • Disassemble Furniture: To save space and make transporting easier, disassemble any large furniture like couches or tables. If you have any ready-to-assemble, modular, or quick assembly furniture, take it apart and wrap the individual pieces for transit to better protect the items. Be sure to bundle any shelves and hardware together for easy reassembly. 
  • Cushion Couch Cushions: Wrap couch cushions in plastic wrap or covers to keep them clean during the move.
  • Label Cords and Remotes: Use masking tape to label cords and remotes so they don’t get lost or mixed up during the move. Be sure to bundle all the parts and pieces together so you have everything you need to set them up with ease in your new home.


The bedroom is often one of the last rooms to pack since you’ll need your bed until moving day, but it’s important to start packing early and create an organized plan. Here are some tips for packing up your bedroom:

  • Start with Out-of-Season Clothing: Pack them in boxes or suitcases that are clearly labeled so they can be easily identified when you arrive at your new home. Use vacuum-sealed bags to minimize the space required for bulky items like bedding or winter coats.
  • Pack Clothing on Hangers: For a super easy move, consider using wardrobe boxes. These tall boxes come with a metal bar at the top and are perfect for hanging clothes. If you don’t have wardrobe boxes, leave clothes on hangers and place garbage bags over groups of 20-30 hangers, using them as garment bags.
  • Pack Shoes Separately: Wrap individual shoes in packing paper and pack them tightly in a box. Be sure to fill any empty space with crumpled paper or towels.
  • Pack Clothes by Category: Sort your clothing into categories such as tops, bottoms, dresses, and socks, and pack them in separate boxes for easier unpacking.
  • Label Your Boxes: Clearly labeling boxes will make it easier to unpack and know which room each box belongs in. Use labels such as “bedding,” “shoes,” or “accessories” to make it clear what is in each box.
  • Protect Linens: To prevent damage to delicate linens during the move, use acid-free tissue paper. You can also wrap them in clean sheets or towels before placing them in boxes.
  • Protect Fragile Items: Use bubble wrap or packing paper to protect delicate items like jewelry, mirrors, and picture frames. Pack them carefully into sturdy boxes and clearly label them as fragile.
  • Pack Your Mattress: Invest in a mattress bag or use plastic wrap to protect your mattress during the move. This will prevent it from getting dirty or damaged. Your moving company may be able to provide you with a mattress carton.
  • Disassemble Furniture: Similar to the living room, disassemble any large furniture in the bedroom to save space and make transporting easier. Be sure to keep all hardware in labeled bags for easy reassembly.
  • Keep Bedding Accessible: Make sure to pack a set of sheets and pillowcases in a clearly labeled box so that you have bedding ready for your first night in your new home.


Packing up the bathroom might sound like a chore, but with some strategic planning, it doesn’t have to be. Here’s how to get started:

  • Start by Throwing Away Old Items: Before you start packing, go through your bathroom and throw away any expired or unwanted items. This will not only save space but also make unpacking easier.
  • Pack Toiletries Separately: Keep toiletries separate from other bathroom items to avoid spills or leaks. Consider using a plastic storage bin to keep them contained, or place them in sealed plastic bags.
  • Wrap Fragile Items: Use bubble wrap or packing paper to protect fragile items like mirrors, glass containers, and ceramic pieces. Label these boxes as fragile and pack them carefully in sturdy boxes.
  • Use Small Boxes for Heavy Items: To avoid making boxes too heavy, use smaller boxes for heavier bathroom items such as towels and bath mats. Line the bottom of the box with packing paper or towels for extra support.
  • Protect Your Shower Curtain: Use a garment bag to protect your shower curtain during the move and prevent it from getting dirty.
  • Separate Cleaning Supplies: Keep cleaning supplies separate from other bathroom items, and be sure to label the box as containing cleaning supplies so that it can be easily identified and kept separate from other boxes. NOTE: Be cautious of packing hazardous materials such as bleach or ammonia, as these can be dangerous when mixed with other cleaning products.
  • Pack Towels Together: Keep towels together in one box, using them to fill any empty spaces in the box. This will provide extra padding for fragile items and also save space in the moving truck.
  • Take Care of Your Medicine Cabinet: Pack all medications separately in a clearly labeled box, and be sure to keep it with you during the move rather than packing it on the moving truck.
  • Wrap Your Toilet Brush: Before packing your toilet brush, use plastic wrap or a garbage bag to wrap it. This will prevent spills or leaks from contaminating other items during the move. You can also consider buying a new one for your new home.

Home Office

Your office may contain important documents and expensive equipment, so make sure to pack carefully:

  • Organize Documents: Sort and organize important documents before packing them in labeled folders or document boxes.
  • Secure Electronics: Protect your computer and other electronics by wrapping them in bubble wrap or packing paper and placing them in their original boxes if possible.
  • Back-Up Important Files: Before packing your computer, make sure to back up any important files on an external hard drive or cloud storage.  This will give you peace of mind in case something happens during the move.
  • Label Cables: Before disconnecting any cords or cables, take a picture of how they are connected so it is easier to set up at your new home. Also, label them with tape or stickers so it is clear which device they belong to.
  • Wrap Office Supplies: Use bubble wrap or packing paper to protect office supplies such as staplers, pens, and scissors. Place them in a small box or container labeled “office supplies.”
  • Protect Your Desk: If you have a large desk, consider disassembling it for easier transportation. Be sure to keep all hardware in a labeled bag for easy reassembly.

Garages and Attics

Garages, attics, and crawlspaces may be full of bulky items and tools, but here are some tips to make packing it more manageable:

  • Start Early: Storage spaces can be full of items you haven’t seen or used in years. Start the process early to give yourself time to sort through everything.
  • Wrap Tools Well: Securely wrap sharp tools in paper or padding to minimize the risk of injury for you and our movers. Write “sharp” or “blade” on the outside of sharp objects, so your movers know to handle with care.
  • Dismantle: If your tools can be broken down into smaller parts, do so. This not only makes packing easier but also helps prevent damage during transit.
  • Be Mindful of Hazardous Material: Before packing, remove batteries from power tools and drain fuel from items like lawnmowers or weed trimmers.
  • Use Sturdy Boxes: Power tools are heavy, so pack them in sturdy, reinforced boxes. If available, use their original packaging.

Trust the Experts at ADSI Moving Systems to Handle Your Move

Packing doesn’t have to be a headache. With these tips and strategies, you’re well on your way to a smooth, organized move. Remember, each item has its place, and taking the time to pack properly will save time and stress in the long run.

Need Assistance with Your Move? Don’t hesitate to turn to ADSI Moving Systems. Our professional team is equipped to handle all aspects of your move, from providing high-quality packing materials to ensuring that your valuables reach their new destination safely. Whether you’re relocating across town or across the country, ADSI is here to make your move as effortless as possible.

Ready to start your stress-free move with ADSI? Get a free quote today!