Packing & Storing Valuables
By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
Early on, a detail that needs to be attended to is where to store your items. If your storage needs go along with with a move, if you're cruising down the road pondering which storage facility is right for you, continue driving. You've already selected a mover for trucking your stuff to a new house, why don’t you confirm with them to see if they can provide storage, too? The majority of professional moving companies provide warehouse storage--with the same experienced crew to help you organize your stored boxes and furniture that packs and loads the truck for your move.
If you are moving out of the country, or your move is not long-term, you'll want a plan for any boats, jet skis, or motor homes that are too large to move with you. You can store those big things with your moving company, and again, you can simply park them on the premises or garage them inside—it is up to you.
Even if you are not moving, you could need extra space--if you have inherited some things, if you have a son or daughter who is boomeranging back to your houseback in the nest—lots of things can happen that necessitates more space for a little bit. Or, if you are thinking of moving and organize your residence, you will want to create the appearance of hardly-lived in space, so out of season clothes, small furniture you trip over at night, and the stuff you need to generally live your life, all need to go into storage until after your move in Little Rock.
Once you have picked where to store your stuff, the next chore you should ponder is how to pack everything for safe storage. The trick to packing crystal, glass, and other delicate things is to wrap everything separately. You may do that with a few different types of supplies or insulation, it is really up to you which you want to use—so long as plates and glasses are adequately protected against banging against each other, use what you like best. Newsprint (not newspaper, newsprint is the plain tan paper that is 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 find that mixing and matching determined by the individual item works best. Use small, heavy duty boxes for breakable items. Beware that you do not wrap too tightly; things need a bit of air space inside the wrap.
Some further things that must have special attention when moving into storage aren't always things that you would realize.
Here is a short list:
- Albums--Yes, they are making a comeback. If you're a collector you are familiar with how valuable they are, and if you're a casual listener who likes listening on a record player you know how difficult it is to locate replacements. Albums that are going to storage for any length of time in the spring or fall should be in a climate and humidity controlled facility.
- Clothing--Cotton clothing and most synthetic blends are hard to damage. You'll want to wash and iron any items that you store, but for the most part 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 don't unpack more hole than sweater. Moths aren't as much of a problem in colder climates, but putting in a few mothballs is still a good idea.
- Shoes--Leather shoes need to be in a humidity controlled location, particularly in a climate where humidity is high. They'll 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're going to be as cautious of your kid's 1st grade paintings as the curator at the Met is of his on-loan Picassos. For the kiddo's art projects, get a large flat plastic crate, 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'll 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 lots of antique pieces are as valuable as the paintings themselves, protecting them is vital.
- Mirrors--Like art, a lot of vintage mirrors are in very valuable frames. Treat them like the works of art that they are.
- Chandeliers—Take off 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 secured for transit and then hang it in storage--most units have hangars across the ceiling for that purpose.
And by all means, we are aware that you have the best intentions of picking through all those piles of college papers and credit card offers from 1995 and getting rid of all the junk. However, A-1 Freeman Moving Group will always have storage in Little Rock for you, until you can get that done.