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The Essential Guide to DIY House Removals

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House removal is a tough job implying a huge investment in time and money. Hiring a removal company is probably the safest solution, but with passion, hard work and the help of your friends the DIY route is definitely feasible. By following some key steps we suggest you, you can achieve it straightforwardly.

How to plan an efficient DIY house removal?

A basic step for an efficient DIY house removal consists in mapping out the whole process from the packing to the unpacking operations according to your own exigencies.


Your house removal plan should include a strategy to manage the transport of the items from your house to the new destination successfully. It depends primarily on the dimensions of the van and there are some tips to follow to organize the transport of the items straightforwardly.

First, when doing a DIY house removal, it is important to check the height and width restrictions of the spaces where the removal operations will take place and then choose a van whose dimensions make it suitable to achieve a straightforward removal. The choice of the van, however, must be also based on the quantity and the dimension of the items you have to move. When planning your DIY house removal is therefore fundamental to put all the items to be moved into a list and then break down the list into several parts, each of which containing the quantity of items that can be loaded each time.


The final step is to estimate the time required to carry out the whole removal. This should be aimed to get an approximately exact information. For this purpose is important to overestimate and consider the possibility of delays that may occur especially during the loading operations as it is highly probable that a relatively long time more will be required to park the vehicle and to load the items correctly in it.

Packing your items: tips for an efficient and safe packing

While packing your house items you should keep in mind that the main goal of packing is to assure the items’ safety during the transport. To achieve this goal, it is vital to manage a correct disposition of the items in the removal boxes. It is vital for two reasons:

1. it prevents the items from moving around, which is one of the major causes of damage.

2. It helps to avoid any damage which may be caused by the weight of some items and of the material of which they are made.

Some examples will help you guide you to achieve a proper disposition of all the items you have to move into the boxes.

  • Books should be put lowest down in the box if they are to be packed along with documents folders which are generally more susceptible to damage than books. The rule for a safe packing is to dispose the lightest and/or softer items highest up in the boxes.
  • It will be of great help to collect items of a similar kind into the same box (e.g. a medium box to fill with blankets and cushions).


For mixed boxes is vital to wrap harder objects such as wood frames in bubble wrap or in a double pad of newspaper. It is essential in order to prevent such objects from scratching your cotton or paper items. To apply the protective materials correctly it is sufficient to follow 3 easy steps:

  • wrap the object with ONE sufficiently large newspaper sheet or bubble wrap.
  • if you are using newspaper, apply another newspaper sheet or more until the object will become smoother to the touch.
  • fix the sheets to the object by using safe removal tape.


Cushioning will be also very useful, so make sure the boxes are sufficiently filled with it. It is enough to cover the inside of the box with cushioning material on each side following the steps below:

  • cut a piece of cushion material for each internal side of the box.
  • cut 3 or 4 pieces of tape for each piece of cushion material.
  • apply the tape on the back of each piece so that the adhesive side adheres both to the cushion and to the side of the box.
  • fix the piece of cushion material on one side of the box.

Some breakable big objects such as mirrors and lamps may not fit in the boxes. To assure the safety of such objects during the transport, a good solution is to wrap them in corrugated cardboard.

To wrap such objects correctly, follow these steps:

  • Wrap the object in the corrugated cardboard.
  • Secure the cardboard with tape applied at the ends of the object and in the center part.
  • Cut two pieces from a removal blanket to cover the basis and the top of the object.
  • Seal each of the two pieces of removal blanket to the object with tape.

Finally, choosing corrugated boxes for your packing will enhance the safety of your packing. You might find some interesting packing supplies at online shop.


Another thing to do for an efficient packing is labeling each and every box. It will turn out very useful when unpacking the boxes. It is sufficient to write on the label what the box contains and in which room the items will have to be put and to put a label on each side of the box so you don’t have to turn it around to find out what’s in it.

A perfect loading for a safe transport

Making a loading operation without professional trucks may not be all that easy. Anyway there are some key steps that should be followed to achieve a safe and straightforward loading on your own.

From your house to the van

First of all the packs can be easily moved from your house by the aid of lifting straps. Once on the van, it is important to take into account the weight and dimensions of all the boxes and items in order to position them in the best way. The priority is the safety of the items to be moved. For this reason it is fundamental to prevent the items and boxes to move around the van. In order to achieve this result it is important to take into account some easy, important steps to follow.

1. Put the heaviest items such as desks, sofas, wardrobes etc toward the front of the van. As these items will not be packed in a box, they should be covered with protective blankets all over.

2. No item on the van should be left loose.

3. The best solution to install the items safely in the van would be to begin from the items to be positioned at the sides of the van and then proceed filling up the center of the van.

This last move will allow you to tie the items at the sides of the van to the eye bolts that the van should be provided of. To tie the items to the eye bolt, it is sufficient to use ratchet straps following the steps below:

  • Put the ratchet strap around the item
  • insert each end of the ratchet strap to the eye bolt
  • tighten the ratchet strap so the item will move close to the side of the van
  • make sure there is little or no space left between the item and the van

Drive safely

When transporting the loaded cargo to the destination, remember that the speed at which you drive will determine the success of the transport.

At this stage of the removal it is fundamental to avoid any jolt that may cause the items to chock against each other or worse, hit the sides of the van. To avoid this it is sufficient to drive very slow, in a way that sudden stops may not cause strong jolts.

Moreover, you should take into account that when driving a van stopping times are greater than when driving a car, so get ready to to push the brake as gradually as possible. It will also be useful for the safety of the items being transported to slow down considerably if you need to surpass a car, in order to keep the driving as steady as possible.

Tips for an efficient unpacking

Efficient unpacking operations derive from an efficient packing. In fact, if you have labelled all the boxes as prescribed, you will be able to move them easily in the rooms where the objects have to be put. Once in the room unpack the items.

Efficient unpacking

First, you need to tear the tape out the boxes and take the protective materials off the items. An easy way to take the wrapping off is to cut a bit with a scissor, paying attention to not damage the item wrapped and then tear out the material with both hands.

Unpacking organization

In order to avoid ending up with a room littered with all kind of stuff, the best advice would be to put each item to its place as soon as you have unpacked it. To do that, is it essential to map the unpacking according to some easy key rules:

1. Install items such as pieces of furniture at first.

2. Unpack all the items to be put, for example, into the wardrobe, then those that will be put on your library and so on…

3. To save time and energies, unpack one room at a time. The result will be a quick unpacking and a tidy room sooner than you may think.

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