Have you put your house on the market, wanting to find another place to call home?
Are you building a new home, and can’t wait to move in?
It’s springtime, the most popular time of the year to make a move. According to Census data, the average American will move 11.7 times in their lifetime. That works out to about every seven to ten years.
Of course, we move for many different reasons. We head off to college. We buy our first homes. We upgrade when our families start to grow. We downsize when we return to an empty nest. We’re always in the search for the right amount of space.
But through it all, one thing never wanes; our desire for personalization and classic good looks. We want our personalities to shine in the places we call home. And for many of us, that means having hardwood flooring throughout.
Moving is hard on hardwood floors. While you might start out with the best intentions, after several dozen boxes, everything becomes a little heavier. You forget to lift. And solid wood furniture, heavy bedroom sets, and refrigerators become even more difficult to move.
That’s when your floors are the most vulnerable. That’s when it’s easy to scratch your hardwood floors. And that can be an expensive endeavor to recover from.
If you’re planning a move anytime soon, keep these moving tips in mind before you move your first piece of furniture. With just a little forethought, you can avoid the problem, and have beautiful hardwood flooring in place when the last box is carried outside your door.
Clean as you go
Cleaning is the least exciting job any of us do. And as you’re moving, clean-up takes on an entirely different meaning. Once the refrigerator is emptied, all you see is mess staring back at you. And what’s that in the back of the linen closet – how did it even get in there? Why not wait until the house is empty and start the cleaning process from front to back?
The same applies to the new place. You’ll clean when the boxes are finally gone. But that might not be your smartest move, especially if you want your hardwood looking their best.
No matter how hard you try, dust, dirt, small rocks, and other debris are going to find their way into your home. And when they find their way underneath your feet, a box, or the legs of a dresser or couch, they can cause scratches and deep grooves in the wood.
Stop what you’re doing from time to time and run a swiffer over the hardwood to capture these tiny particles and remove them. Now you can resume your move-in tasks.
Lighten the load
Moving is a lot more expensive than most of us think about. We often look at the big costs, forgetting all the nickel and dime tasks that add up along the way. That’s why many of us look to cut costs where we can – why not fill every box to the brim?
The problem with that is each box is more difficult to handle. You’ll increase the risk of dropping it. You’ll also increase the chances you drag it across the floor rather than lifting it up.
You should also empty drawers to lighten the load or your dressers and shelving units. It will decrease the likelihood of people dragging it to put it in its final resting space.
Hire the right people
Many people try and do a lot of the move themselves, hoping to save money. That increases the chances you’ll get tired and worn out, and will rely on dragging and pulling to get things into place.
At the very least, get as many friends as you can to help out. A few extra hands can get it done twice as fast, and eliminate the chances of dragging things because you’re tired. Whenever possible, hire a professional moving company to get the job done the right way. If you can’t hire one for the complete move, at least consider it for your heavy furniture. This will make even the smaller job of moving boxes seem easier.
Create a softer surface
Set aside a variety of tools to help you move furniture and other big items into place. Towels, soft blankets, moving blankets, even small area rugs can be placed underneath legs and used to slide furniture into place. Just make sure each of the items is clean and free from dirt and other small particles, and that the soft side is always facing down to the floor.
And never use cardboard to move furniture. While it may make the item move a little easier, you’ll damage your hardwood just as quickly.
Move it on its side
Not every piece of furniture is best moved in its original position. If you have a large entertainment unit, for example, it might be better moved on its side.
This will also push you to empty drawers and take apart loose pieces, and better protect them for the move.
You’ll find a lot of moving tips tell you to invest in a good set of wheels. Place wheels underneath your heaviest furniture, and you can wheel it into place. We caution that advice. Sand, grit, dirt, and other debris can stick to wheels and drag it along as you move. It can create deep gauges on your hardwood floors.
Instead, invest in gliders; they are perfect for sliding heavy objects into place. You’ll love them so much, you can keep them around and use them to move your furniture easily for spring cleaning, or a little bit of redecorating whenever you please – new area rug anyone?
Fix problems immediately
Once you’re in place, all the furniture is moved in, and the last box is unpacked, walk around your home and take a closer look at your hardwood floors. Are there any scratches that happened during the process? Is there anything deeper than a scratch?
Don’t cover it up with an area rug, or push it aside to deal with “some other time.”
Fix it now. Call in a flooring expert and get the problem fixed, so your hardwood flooring looks great for many years to come.
Do you have any questions about your hardwood floors?