Helpful Moving Tips

The key to a smooth move is organization. Based on our years of experience, we have compiled a series of helpful hints and useful suggestions to assist you in organizing and planning your next move.

Hampden Moving & Storage
1304-B Continental Drive
Abingdon, MD 21009
Driving Directions

Call: 410-609-3511
Fax: 410-671-7971



Packing Tips

Pack as much or as little as you prefer. Hampden Moving & Storage is willing to do the whole job, or any part of the packing job. Whatever you decide, we want your part of the move process to go as smoothly as possible. These packing tips will help.


Here are a few general suggestions that will make packing easier:

  • Plan how you will pack. Pack items first that you don’t use often.
  • Start packing as soon as you find out you’re moving.
  • Never pack flammable items or non-allowable items.
  • Use generous amounts of paper inside the carton on the top and bottom to provide good cushion.
  • List contents and room on the outside of the carton.
  • Clearly mark "Fragile" on the outside of cartons.
  • Use clean newsprint paper. Old newspapers may work, but use them carefully because the ink may rub off onto your items. Clean "newsprint" paper is available from your local agent.
  • Write "Open First" on cartons containing essential items such as cooking utensils, toiletries, etc.
  • Separate breakables and non-breakables.
  • Pack all cartons tightly.
  • Use professional packing tape. Masking tape isn’t strong enough to support fully packed cartons. Packing tape is available from your local agent.


How to Pack:

Carefully wrap china in sheets of clean newsprint paper. Place newsprint paper in the bottom of a Dishpak for cushioning. Wrap each piece individually then wrap up to three in a bundle with a double layer of paper. Place these bundled items in the carton in a row on edge.
Surround each bundle with crushed paper, being careful to leave no unfilled spaces. Add two or three inches of crushed paper on top of the bundle to protect rims and make a level base for the next tier. Horizontal cardboard dividers can be helpful in keeping layers level. Smaller plates, saucers and shallow bowls can make up a second layer. Wrap and pack in the same way as larger items.

Silver is nested together and wrapped. The nested packs are cushioned in the silver chest. The chest is then wrapped in clean paper.

Stemware is individually wrapped with protective paper inserted into the goblet and around the stem. Each goblet is cushioned by a thick wrapping and placed stem up in a specially tiered Dishpak.

Soft Goods
Soft goods like pillows and bedding are packed in lined cartons separated by layers of clean paper.

Pack shoes in their original shoe box, if possible, and place in a carton. If shoe boxes are not available, individually wrap them to prevent abrasive damage.

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Clothes are left on hangers and hung in special wardrobe cartons.

Lamp Shades and Bases
Handle lampshades by their wire frames only and place in a carton lined with paper. Surround the shade with protective paper. Shades can be nested inside each other, as long as they are separated by paper.
Hampden Moving & Storage has cartons specially designed for packing lamp bases. These cartons are also good for golf clubs, floor lamps and garden tools.

If possible, pack electronics in their original cartons. As long as proper packing materials are used (bubble wrap, newsprint, foam sheeting, comforters/blankets, pillows, etc.), electronics can be safely packed in sturdy boxes.

  • Start by padding the bottom of the carton with a generous amount of packing material.
  • Wrap electronic with paper and place in carton.
  • Tightly pack padding around and on top of the unit to prevent damage.
  • Firmly seal the carton.
  • Label the carton as “Fragile – Top Load.”
  • Additional tips for moving: packing electronics


Note: When you unpack your electronics, let them reach room temperature before plugging them in.

Lay books flat in the carton, alternating the spine and open side of the book. Place a piece of paper between books to prevent them sticking together. Because books are heavy, Hampden Moving & Storage has a small book carton to make them easier to carry.

Statuary and Figurines
Wrap statuary and figurines with bubble wrap, then snuggly wrap with clean paper. If bubble wrap is not available, use clean paper to wrap the article until it is adequately cushioned.

Bottles are taped shut and wrapped in clean newsprint. For extra security, place bottles in a resalable, watertight bag before wrapping and placing in carton.

Mirrors and Glass
Wrap the picture or mirror in a generous cushion of clean paper. Place in a flattened packing or telescoping carton. Carefully tape and seal the carton. Always stand glass, pictures and mirrors on their edge. Do not lay flat.

If possible, pack computers in their original cartons. As long as proper packing materials are used (bubble wrap, newsprint, foam sheeting, comforters/blankets, pillows, etc.), computers can be safely packed in sturdy boxes.

  • Start by padding the bottom of the carton with a generous amount of packing material.
  • Wrap computer parts generously with paper and place in carton.
  • Tightly pack padding around and on top of the unit to prevent damage.
  • Firmly seal the carton.
  • Label the carton as “Fragile – Top Load.”

Be aware of special considerations for the internal workings of the computer.Discuss safe transportation with your Hampden Moving & Storage professional.

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Tips for Packing Electronics

Whether you’re a gadget fanatic, a computer nerd, a music maniac or just someone who has collected a lot of expensive electronics over the years, the idea of moving your prized electronic possessions may short-circuit your motherboard. If you’re among the 43 million Americans who will pack up and move this year, consider these tips to keep your gigabytes in working order.

This item represents a huge investment and is likely an important part of your daily life, so you want to pack it carefully. The central processing unit (CPU) should be handled with extreme care. This unit, which houses the motherboard and disk drive, is especially sensitive to jarring. Use the original carton if possible or another box large and sturdy enough to accommodate the CPU and plenty of packing materials on all sides. Packing peanuts should never be used when packing a computer because they have a tendency to carry a static electrical charge. Don’t forget to label cords and cables before unhooking them so you know where each cord goes after the move. When you arrive at your destination, allow the computer to reach room temperature before attempting to power it up.

Remember that your CD-ROMs are sensitive to heat and cold and should be moved with you rather than in a moving box. And be sure to back up all your computer files and your hard drive before disassembling the computer.

If you’re moving a laser or ink jet printer, be sure to remove the toner and any ink cartridges and carry them with you if your move occurs during hot weather. For other types of printers, the printer head should be secured to prevent shifting. Check the owner’s manual for preparations specific to your printer model.

Large-Screen Television
A large-screen TV must be custom-crated prior to moving day – which can be done arranged by a professional mover or a third-party service. Be sure to have any outside antennas disconnected and taken down if they are to be included in your shipment. Most large-screen TV owner’s manuals contain a statement that some adjustment or calibration may be necessary after transport, so make sure you refer to the manual to protect your TV in the best possible way.

Plasma and LCD Televisions
Although there are significant differences in the technology of LCD televisions and plasma televisions, the manufacturers’ recommended handling procedures are similar. It is suggested that a qualified third-party service company be used to properly prepare the LCD/plasma televisions for transport. Even with the original packaging, crating for maximum protection is recommended. When your television arrives at its new destination, it is recommended that the televisions be allowed to "set" for a period of time (several hours) before being turned on.

Other Electronics

  • Determine which, if any, of these items you can live without for a few weeks and pack those first. That way, you’re not rushed and in the throes of packing the entire household and you can pay extra attention to packing these items properly.
  • Whenever possible, pack electronics in their original cartons. If that’s not possible, use plenty of proper packing materials as padding. Comforters and blankets make great wraps for stereo and computer equipment, and pillows provide good cushioning.
  • Clearly mark “fragile” on the outside of cartons with breakables or delicate electronics. Also mark “this side up” on items containing electronics.
  • Use sturdy boxes and professional packing tape because masking tape isn’t strong enough to support fully-packed cartons. Start by padding the bottom of your box with a generous amount of packing material or padding, then wrap electronics with paper (or blankets, sheets) and place in the carton.
  • If you have concerns about reassembling any of your electronics, take pictures of the fronts and backs of your current assembly so you’ve got a visual. Then mark which cords hook to which holes before taking them apart.



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Packing and Crating


Good packing is essential for a good move. If you choose to do some or all of your own packing in preparation for your move, it's especially important that you be familiar with the techniques that will best protect your possessions. Hampden’s packing tips page will provide you valuable information to assist you in this process.

We have found that most people prefer to have their household possessions, especially fragile items, professionally packed by a moving company. Our "Quality Labor Certification," program teaches our packers proven techniques for safely packing your possessions.

Our certified packers have:

  • 200 hours of supervised on-the-job training
  • 30 hours of classroom training
  • Mastery of 80 skills associated with the packing process

Some items in your shipment may need custom crating, such as large mirrors, glass-top tables or chandeliers. While there is usually an additional charge for this service, crating will provide an additional level of protection for specific items.

For more information contact us today. “Mommy, Call Hampden” at 410-235-0600!

Hampden Moving & Storage
1304-B Continental Drive
Abingdon, MD 21009
Driving Directions

Call: 410-609-3511
Fax: 410-671-7971



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Moving Tips for Seniors

More than 12 percent of the American population is over the age of 65 and an estimated 1.5 million of these Americans will move into new residences this year. Whether you are moving to a retirement community or assisted living facility, or down-sizing to a space that is more appropriate for your new lifestyle, moving can be stressful and emotionally draining. The following suggestions can help you execute a smooth move:

Take Inventory
As soon as you decided to move (even before you put your house on the market), begin taking inventory of everything in your home. Start with the most remote corner of the basement and work your way through the entire house until you reach the peak of the attic.

Will it Fit?
Most likely you will need to scale down the number of belongings you take to your new home. Compare the size of your new space with your old space. Will all of the belongings you plan to take fit? Visualize where your current possessions will go and then decide what to do with those pieces that probably will not fit.

Rid Yourself of Possessions
Inevitably, you have gathered quite a few belongings over the years. Do you still need it all? Family or friends may want to keep some sentimental pieces, but after they have looked through the items, decide whether to throw away, sell or give to charity the things you are not taking with you. This will not only prepare you for moving but will also clear clutter and make your home “show” better to prospective buyers.

Keep Emotions in Check
The emotional impact of changing one's lifestyle, parting with objects from the past and going through a house full of belongings -- and memories -- is hard work, both mentally and physically. Make sure there is enough time allotted to review possessions and to adjust to the idea of moving. Realistic decisions also need to be made regarding how much packing and moving should be done without the help of a professional.

Don't Break your Back
The physical demands of packing and self-moving may be too strenuous to undertake. Moving furniture is difficult and most people underestimate the toll it takes on your muscles and joints. Whoever packs the belongings assumes liability for any breakage that may occur, so letting a professional do the packing can help ensure minimal damage – to you and your belongings. It also gives you time and energy to focus on other important matters.

What Will the Future Hold?
Your planned lifestyle will also influence what and how much you take. For instance, if you expect to travel frequently, you may want fewer possessions than if you plan to spend more time at home.

Decision-Making: Round Two
After deciding what you “absolutely must keep,” give yourself a one-week break and go back through your possessions with a more critical eye. Once you get used to the idea of parting with certain belongings, it may be easier to make a final decision the second time around.

Follow a Pre-Planned Timetable
It is a good idea to follow a step-by-step timetable for packing and moving. Your moving representative can give you a detailed calendar to follow, as well as tips of things to remember such as transferring prescriptions to a drugstore in your new community.



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Moving Day Forms


The key to a smooth move is organization. Based on our years of experience, we have compiled a series of helpful hints and useful suggestions to assist you in organizing and planning your next move.

For additional information or assistance with your move, please contact us.

Some links require Adobe Reader, a free download from Adobe.
Card Authorization Form
Local Moving Day Forms

Interstate Moving Day Forms



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Forgotten Items

Ten Most Forgotten Items

With more than 43 million Americans planning to move this year, odds are even the most organized may not remember every detail of a move -- or every item. Remembering the “out of sight, out of mind” objects increases your success in moving all of your belongings. Mayflower suggests adding the following 10 points to the top of your preparation list:

1. For the record -- Obtain copies of your and your family's medical records, including any dental and vaccine/immunization information, as well as any veterinary records for the family pet. In some cases, a notarized letter is required to receive official documentation; you may need to contact the American Medical Records Association to determine your new state's needs. You might also consider transferring current prescriptions to a drugstore in your new town.

Another record you'll want to be sure to have in hand is your child's permanent school record. School records are usually required when registering your child at his/her new school. Often, copies are not sufficient and require a raised seal.

2. Buried treasure -- If you've hidden any valuables around the house, be sure to collect them before leaving. You should carry valuable items such as jewelry with you or keep them in a safe deposit box instead of packing them on the moving van.

3. Old phone numbers -- Pack phone books from your existing residence to take with you. You may think you'll remember the numbers you frequently call now, but more likely you'll spend a small fortune on directory assistance charges to contact old friends or tie up loose ends.

4. Taken to the cleaners -- Remember to collect all items that are being cleaned, stored or repaired (for example, dry cleaning, shoes, watches, etc.). Also, remember to return library books, movie rentals and anything else you may have checked out.

5. What's your new address? -- Keep your new address handy in your wallet or purse. In the flurry of preparing for a move, you may forget your new address -- important information when forwarding periodicals, mail and credit card bills, as well as keeping in touch with old friends.

6. Spic and span -- Remember to leave out cleaning supplies for the final “once-over” before closing the door for good, or make arrangements in advance for a service to clean for you. To reduce the amount of things you take with you, if you are cleaning the home yourself, use up previously purchased cleaning products, and then throw away the empty containers when you leave.

7. The opener -- Many people often forget to take the electric garage door opener out of their automobile before leaving. Remember to leave the opener for the new residents.

8. Remember “Rover” -- In most cases, moving companies cannot transport animals or plants. Plan ahead and make arrangements for their safe transfer.

9. Bank on it – It's wise to open a checking account in your new town about a month prior to your move so that you have immediate access to your funds. It enables you to have a little cash on hand for unexpected expenses. On occasion, retailers will decline to cash “out-of-town” checks.

10. Keys to success – Remember the collection of spare house keys. Whether it means retrieving keys from neighbors or from under the rock next to the front door, don't forget to gather all sets before you depart.



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Before your possessions are packed and loaded, it is important that you understand which items cannot be shipped because they represent a hazard or are perishable. Listed below are some common non-allowable items that you will need to address prior to your pack and load dates.

Hazardous Materials – items that are flammable, corrosive or explosive.

  • Sterno
  • Matches
  • Kerosene
  • Gasoline
  • Propane/Propane Tanks
  • Fireworks
  • Charcoal
  • Charcoal Lighter
  • Ammunition
  • Lamp Oils
  • Fire Extinguisher
  • Aerosols
  • Cleaning Solvents
  • Ammonia
  • Nail Polish
  • Nail Polish Remover
  • Liquid Bleach
  • Paints (latex & oil-based)
  • Paint Thinner
  • Household Batteries
  • Chemistry Sets
  • Darkroom Chemicals
  • Pool Chemicals
  • Motor Oil
  • Car Batteries
  • Fertilizer
  • Pesticides
  • Poisons (such as weed killer)


Perishables – food, plants or living things that may die or spoil in transit.*


Examples include:

  • Frozen Food
  • Refrigerated Food
  • Produce
  • Plants
  • Open or half-used foods or food without adequate preservation

* For shipments moving less than 150 miles and delivered within 24 hours of pickup, agents may agree to transport perishables that are properly packed and require no servicing in transit.

Note: You should empty your refrigerators and freezers and keep appliance doors open for at least 24 hours in advance of loading. This will allow appliances to dry out and prevent the growth of mold.

Items of personal importance/sentimental value – This third category of non-allowables can create problems should your shipment be delayed or items lost. We suggest that irreplaceable items and\or sentimental items be carried with you instead of being packed with your shipment.

Examples include:

  • Airline Tickets
  • Car Keys
  • Cell Phones
  • Pagers
  • Laptop Computers
  • Checkbooks
  • Cash
  • School Records
  • Medical & Dental Records
  • Documents Pertaining to Your New Home
  • Jewelry
  • Family Photographs
  • Wedding Albums
  • Personal Video Tapes
  • Certificates of Deposit
  • Stocks
  • Bonds
  • IRAs
  • Financial Documents
  • Deeds
  • Car Titles
  • Professional Files
  • Insurance Policies(Life/Auto/Home, etc.)
  • Keys to Furniture, Safe, Home
  • Prescription Medicine
  • Computer Discs
  • Address Books
  • VCR's and Stereos
  • TVs/VCRs/Stereos




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Track Your Shipment

Local Move (Hampden Moving & Storage

Please contact us for assistance tracking your shipment.

Hampden Moving & Storage
1304-B Continental Drive
Abingdon, MD 21009
Driving Directions

Call: 410-609-3511
Fax: 410-671-7971


Track Your International Move (UniGroup)

Order Number: unique number assigned by UniGroup Worldwide. The job number can be a Government Bill of Lading number, Purchase Order number or Transportation Service Order number.



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Moving: It's a Workout

Packing up and moving an entire house is a time consuming process. People often feel pressured to put their other hobbies and interests on hold in order to dedicate more time to the move. However, cutting out a few trips to the gym shouldn’t hurt because the good news is that the activities associated with relocation burn a significant number of calories.

America is heading into moving season – most of the 43 million Americans who will relocate this year will do so between May and September. Consider the calories they will be burning.

According to www.caloriesperhour.com, a 140-pound person burns per hour:

  • 222 calories packing and unpacking boxes
  • 381 calories moving furniture
  • 191 calories moving household items
  • 572 calories moving boxes/furniture up stairs

So, just how many hours does it take to move? That depends on whether you do it yourself or hire a professional. For context, it takes about 70-80 boxes to pack and move a 1,500-square-foot home, and about 150-160 boxes to pack and move a 2,500-square-foot home.

It takes an experienced, professional packer about one hour to pack eight to 10 boxes, so the average person could probably pack five to seven boxes per hour. That’s at least 10 hours of packing for a 1,500-square-foot home, for a total calorie expenditure of 2,220! And, packing for a 2,500-square-foot home would burn at least 4,662 calories. If you’re moving the boxes and furniture yourself, you can expect to burn even more calories.



Contact Hampden Moving & Storage

Hampden Moving & Storage
1304-B Continental Drive
Abingdon, MD 21009
Driving Directions

Call: 410-609-3511
Fax: 410-671-7971