The process of moving is not a task that people typically look forward to. Planning ahead is the key to a smooth move and will help make this stressful process simple. Most questions we receive are about moving boxes.

  • How many moving boxes do I need?
  • Where should I get moving boxes?
  • What are moving box sizes?

So, we decided to create this moving box guide to answer all of your moving box questions.

Preparing for Your Move

We created this free moving checklist to help with the overall time frames and process of moving, but as for the packing and preparing of moving supplies, here is what you should prepare for.

When should you start boxing things?

It is never too early to start packing, however if you are moving due to the sale of your home and you are currently showing your home, your real estate agent may not want boxes visible. In that case, you should plan your move and start packing as soon as you sell your home unless you have a spare room or basement to store boxes.

Using the Right Boxes to Pack

Moving boxes come in all shapes, sizes, and styles. The size and type of box that you use will depend on what you are packing. Here is a breakdown of the different sizes and types of boxes you will find, the average cost of the boxes, as well as what these boxes can be used for.

Sizes and Types of boxes

Small boxes (Book Crate)

These are good for packing things like books, knick-knacks, picture frames, tools, and other small items.

Medium-sized boxes 

Used to pack things like pots and pans, dry food, lampshades, and other items along those lines. 

Large boxes 

Used when packing linens, toys, pillows, larger pots, and pans, etc.

China Boxes 

These are corrugated cartons that are designed for breakables because they are very sturdy. They are mainly used for china, crystal, dishes, and other fragile items. 

Picture or mirror cartons 

These cartons are used to protect pictures, posters, and mirrors. 

Wardrobe boxes  

Wardrobe boxes are extremely popular, they are large boxes where you can store hanging clothes, loose clothing, blankets, and/or linens. 

How many moving boxes do I need? 

As you can see there are different sizes and functionality for each box. The average single family home typically uses 100-150  boxes per move. If you are not sure where to start, and want to start small, here is what we recommend you order to kick start your move:

  • 15 small boxes
  • 15 medium boxes
  • 10 large boxes
  • 3 rolls of tape
  • 2 packs of paper

Here are some quick tips when packing and moving your boxes:

  • Packing paper is your friend and will help ensure your breakable items are moved safely
  • Place sharp objects in separate, clear, labeled boxes to avoid the risk of injury
  • Pay attention to labels on the boxes that you purchase. Pre-labeled is best!
  • Look for thick, heavy-duty, and high-quality boxes to hold your heavier items
  • When packing your dishes, put heavier dishes at the bottom of the box to keep it sturdy. 

Buying Moving Boxes DC, MD, or VA

Boxes can be expensive whether you buy them from a retail store or a moving company, especially when an average home uses about 100-150 boxes to move. You have a few different options when purchasing moving boxes. We also offer free used boxes when customers book a move with us!

Moving Company

Purchasing boxes through a moving company is the easiest and most efficient way to obtain boxes for your move. 

Moving companies have custom labels on the side of their boxes so that you can easily identify the boxes when packing and unpacking. Boxes can be delivered to your home so you have one less thing to do during the moving process. We can deliver boxes to your home at no charge. The biggest benefit we have found is that our estimators can help determine how many boxes are needed, the best type of boxes, and help facilitate a seamless move.

Where to find Free Moving Boxes?

Free boxes can be stockpiled from packages that you have had delivered or even passed down from others that have used them. The downside with free boxes is that you have to hunt for yourself, and most boxes are small or medium-sized boxes so you would need to collect quite a bit to pack your home. 

Another option would be to schedule a move with us at Town and Country, and you can pick up used moving boxes from our warehouse for free. You can get an estimate for your move here. Our estimators will provide you with an idea of how many boxes you may need for your move. 

Final Thought

At Town and Country Movers, we know how to meet your needs and we know how to make your move as simple and seamless as possible. We’ve been providing full-service moving, packing, and storage services since 1977, and we are one of the top moving companies in DC, Maryland, and Virginia.