Move Management Transformation: Packing

This client contacted us less than a week before her move date when she realized, due to her neurological disorder, she simply wasn't going to be able to get herself packed for an upcoming move.

We did our usual virtual consult in advance so we could see the scope of the job and it seemed pretty straightforward based on what we saw during the video call even though it was obvious there were a lot of layers of clutter.

And the client had assured us she was going to do some cleaning up and decluttering before we got there so we felt confident 3 of us could power through the packing in less than 4 hours.

Unfortunately, the client didn't have the energy she thought she was going to have to do what she said she would do and as a result, we walked into a very different scenario than we anticipated.

The space was too small to even have the packed boxes inside the apartment so we had to stage them outside her front door where they had to remain overnight and potentially could have been taken by anyone in the apartment building.

In addition, we spent more time actually sorting "stuff" and cleaning around the piles than actually packing which was frustrating to some degree because we didn't actually complete the packing in the time we had allotted.

It was not a good feeling for us leaving her with so much more to do but she knew she hadn't done enough preparation and was just happy we did what we could under the circumstances.

BTW...the before and after pictures don't show the bedroom but we had one team member in there for 3 hours and could barely make enough of a dent to show any difference because of the volume of clothes that were in piles and under the bed. But about 1/3 of the boxes in the hallway were, in fact, items from the bedroom and bathroom.

Biggest tips/takeaways?

  • It is so important for clients to be realistic about what they say they will do in advance to prepare for a move vs. what they need us to do when we are there in person. Otherwise, no one's expectations will be truly met and there will be a lot of time, money, and energy wasted.

 

  • Try to have "like items" in the same cabinets, drawers, and/or closets before packing commences. You may not care that your pots and pans are scattered throughout your kitchen on a day-to-day basis but if they aren't immediately visible to the packers you hire, you will end up with them in several different boxes. So when you get to your new home and you can't unpack everything right away but want that one pot you really need at that moment, you are going to be very frustrated.

 

  • Make sure there is at least one table or counter completely cleared for wrapping any fragile items. Trying to do it on the floor or a couch is not only uncomfortable but also not efficient. And make sure you also have cleared an area for the packed boxes. If you live in a very small space like this particular client there was very little room for us to move around so that was another contributing factor to wasting time having to constantly move things around.