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How to Move Furniture — The Ultimate Guide

How to Move Furniture — The Ultimate Guide

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There was this time when I moved into my new flat in Sydney. I was adamant about moving in quickly, so I had my family and friends over to help me out. We worked for hours, sliding the awkwardly-shaped sofa up two flights of stairs. But after we got it up, it just didn't fit through the door! So, we had to spend the next few days hammering in nails, white-gloving the walls, and finally moving it over the last three steps so we could get it into our place.

And don't even talk about how I got the furniture to my current house in the first place! There was no strategy whatsoever, no lifting technique, and I was WAY underpowered if you know what I mean. As a result, many fragile items were broken, I injured myself, and all my spare time was spent moving.

Favourably, I learned that "being unprepared" is perhaps the biggest inhibitor to moving furniture, followed by an ever-dominating DIY ideology. A concrete and comprehensive "plan" is, therefore, a must — one that transforms "the most frustrating practice" into "the most rewarding experience."

More importantly, you must have the means to carry out your plan. You may be a pro at packing things, you may be a master at jigsaw puzzles, but if you don't have the right equipment (and resources), go ahead and call it a day. This isn't to imply that you won't be able to move your belongings. But to do so competently, you'll have to go the extra mile.

Moving Your Furniture

recent analysis by the Australian Bureau of Statistics revealed that more than 360,000 people move interstate every year (368,700 in 2020). So, you aren't alone trying to channel your way through intricacies.

Besides, you'd undoubtedly welcome the thought that it's not that complicated to move furniture from one place to another — but it can be a bit of an ordeal if you don't have the know-how, the right tools or enough hands on deck. Whether you're moving your furniture locally, interstate, or even internationally, you need to have both a good checklist and an inch-perfect method of execution in place.

In addition, you have to have clarity over whether you prefer to move the furniture yourself or you want to hire professional removalists and moving companies to sort things out for you. The choice between the aforementioned is a tad objective since "moving it yourself" could invite many risks — both cost- and time-wise (not to forget that you may get hurt in the process). 

Instead, when you're hiring people to do it for you (either through movers or by renting a truck), you'll not only get the job done quickly but also prevent damage to your furniture. Interstate removalists, for instance, are adept at squeezing your furniture through tight spaces — the doorways, stairwells, and elevators — that a DIY operation may overlook — all while preventing any damage to your belongings. And, they certainly know how to take it from Perth to Sydney (Just Saying). 

However, some scenarios might not entail the help of professionals. Maybe you're moving across the street and deem it fit to handle it yourself, and understandably so. Or perhaps, the furniture isn't heavy after all. To that end, it's essential that you keep track of the basic moving techniques — another facet that this guide comprehensively touches upon.

First Things First, Have a Concrete Plan 

Most people consider planning a doddle when, in fact, it's the most meticulous chore. And, the idea that you can improvise when things get complicated is a fallacy — well, you heard the story in the beginning. So, before you let the thought of "I'll just get a truck and go with it" abduct your intellect and pave the way for crushing mishaps, you may want to steer clear and have a picture of the whole undertaking right before your eyes.

Why? The greater the uncertainty, the more confusion you'll face on the floor. You'll waste time trying to figure out what's; next, you'll get stressed and lose your objectivity, and you might even break something in the process. Have a plan of action in place. Make sure you know what's going to happen from start to finish and if needed, rent a car to go back and forth from the new place if you need to make and optimize your floor plan.

This is best summarized by the following:

Step 1. What is it that you're moving?

Is it a refrigerator, a bed, or a sofa? Perhaps you have bedsheets, curtains, rugs, or even couches lined up? How many pieces of furniture are in that lot? These things are essential to the progress (or otherwise) of your furniture relocation. 

Step 2. What's your budget?

This is another fundamental step. While you certainly don't need to break the bank to move furniture successfully, you should still have clarity over how much you're willing to spend and what quality of service you can afford.

Step 3. Who do you want to hire to do the job?

It is a critical decision. Do you want a local removalist, an interstate removalist? If you're not sure, don't be shy — simply ask the people around you or reach out to us. We're all ears!

Step 4. How will they transport your furniture?

Do you have someone to help with the loading and unloading? If so, do you need them to provide equipment such as power tools and loaders?

Step 5. How are you going to pack?

Bubble wrap, cardboard boxes, and moving blankets? What could be lightweight, robust, and easy to handle? Fill in the moving kits, or will you need to buy them? What should be packed in what?

Step 6. How will you label your boxes?

This is, after all, the first thing you will need to do to ensure clarity of what's inside. Remember that it is a critical part of making things easier on the other end.

Step 7. What could you or what should be left out?

While it's not uncommon to have some items that need special attention, there are others that are rather mundane and don't add much value to the overall cost — or the exercise.

Step 8. How are you going to ship the oversized furniture items?

There are removalists in Perth and Sydney that specialise in these items. If applicable, ship them ahead of yourself — this way, you can get them off your shoulders and direct your attention against other pressing issues at hand.

Step 9. What are the storage facilities like?

Are there any advantages of storing things before the move? If you decide to do so, do you have a plan B if the storage place is packed?

Step 10. What's your emergency plan?

Keep a handy list of contacts in case anything happens en route — an indispensable step.

These are just ten quick steps you can follow to get your moving gears in motion. Now that we're all set up for the showdown let's find out how moving should be carried out on the ground. 

A Step-by-step Guide to Moving Your Furniture 

By now, we're very clear on having a strategy laid out for a hassle-free move. It's common for some things to not work out the way you want, and that's alright. As long as you're prepared to improvise, adapt, and overcome the obstacles in your way, you'll get what you want.

As mentioned above, you can move your furniture all on your own across the street if it's not very heavy — this could be, for instance, a single sofa, a sturdy almirah or something similar. However, things are relatively different when it comes to interstate shifting. Moving across states could be a long, strenuous process. After all, you have to figure out how to get your furniture from, say Perth to Sydney, and that takes time — not to mention some money — on your part.

Here's a step-by-step guide to walk you through the most optimal way of doing this:

Step 1. Select the Equipment and Start Packing

Get your tools. At the bare minimum, you'll need some equipment to help you pack your belongings. You wouldn't require all the bells and whistles — a few boxes, bubble wrap gel and tape will do for starters. And keep track of the time — the more time you have for packing, the better!

Here's how to go about it:

  1. Use an oldie but goldie cardboard box— think of it as your swiss army knife for moving your furniture. What could be better than using a cardboard box to transport oversized and small items alike? It's cost-friendly, environmentally friendly, and convenient. Aside from being lightweight, the box is solid and durable and requires little effort to unpack.
  2. Use bubble wrap if you're worried about breakage during the move — a truly ingenious idea. It's extra-fine and lightweight yet strong. To use it effectively, take a roll of bubble wrap and fold it in half. Lay it flat on the floor, then wrap the items you need to protect. Next, take a rolling cover and place it over the bubble wrap. This is all you need to do for anything that's bigger than your palm.
  3. Use moving blankets courtesy of several pockets that you can fill with packing materials before rolling it into a tube. They're lightweight, easy to pack, easy to store in the corner of your room and ideal for shielding the corners and edges of your furniture. To use moving blankets, take two pieces of cloth and pile them up on one another. Next, wrap them using a tape measure to prevent any shifting or movement inside the wrapping. It's fitting to have at least two or three layers of moving blankets.
  4. Secure things with straps and bungee cords, for they are perfect for keeping things in place during the move. If you're moving some heavy-duty items (quite natural) such as a sofa or a fridge, then opt for straps and bungee cords. To use them, take a rope and thread it through two hooks. Next, thread the rope through the item you want to secure. Fasten the hook back to its original position, making sure it is tight.

Step 2. Measure and Mark

It's time to check the size of your furniture. Here, a simple tape measure, measuring tape or ruler will do. Set your ruler to the widest point of the item you intend to move and measure it. For instance, if you're moving a coffee table, you'll need to measure its length (measured from front to back).

You can use a tape measure to measure the item or use a ruler. A ruler's smaller range of measurement works better when moving small items. Of course, there is a definite length of the item, which you should consider. For instance, moving a bed could be easier if your bedroom is slightly larger. You can also have a piece of paper and line it up with the item. Mark the measurement on the paper as it will help you later on.

Subsequently, you must measure the doors and passages of your house. We suggest you have at least two or three small items in the same room so that you can make a rough estimation of how much space you don't have to clear. These preliminary measurements will give you an idea of how much space is needed to accommodate (move) the furniture in question.

Step 3. Get a Baseline of Your Storage Capacity and Begin Moving

Now, you must organise things in the order that you'd prefer moving first (moving high-value furniture first is recommended). You'd want to measure the width and length of the space through which you're moving your furniture. In order to do that, you must find out the widest and longest point of the area.

To get a proper reading, lay a ruler across both the longest and shortest points of space in question. This will inform you about the space availability pertaining to each item and indicate how much you have to move. We recommend measuring double the space to help you figure out how much space you'd need to make room for everything.

For instance, if you want to move a couch that measures 6 feet in length and 4 feet in height, it would be advisable to generate a space of at least 8 feet. (After all, you can't really afford to move your furniture the wrong way!).

Besides, this is the step where you'll have to decide if your furniture will go through doorways or hallways. As such, it's an important decision, and you should entail the confirmation of the dimensions beforehand (Good thing that we've already measured doors in Step 2). 

Important Note: You must have enough hands-on deck to move your furniture. The fewer the people accompanying you, the longer it'll take you to move your furniture. It's possible that you might have to create a storage point outside of your house to move bigger and heavier items. Not to mention, you can't really move heavy items alone (or can you?) — you'd be both a genius and a brawny brute if you could.

Step 4. Ensure that the Vehicle is Ready for Your Move

You should take care of a few details before packing and moving out. If you're planning to hire professional movers (which you ideally should), make sure that the van or truck is in tip-top shape! Take note of the following:

  1. The truck should be clean: There's no reason to risk having a dirty vehicle. So, make sure that there are no stains on the vehicle or any cuts in the upholstery.
  2. It must be capacious enough to accommodate your stuff (without compromising safety): A vehicle that's too small will only slow you down as it won't accommodate all of your stuff.
  3. The truck must be equipped with safety devices: For your own sake, be safe and ensure that the vehicle has a braking system, shock absorbers, hand brakes, a beginning accelerator, first-aid supplies (bandages and gauze) and fire extinguishers. There's no point in moving your furniture if it's damaged or being thrown around because the driver wasn't careful enough.
  4. The vehicle must be equipped with the right tools: That's right! You should ensure that the truck has a hammer, screwdrivers, wrenches, pliers and spanners. These items are necessary for maintaining your furniture, if the need arises — since the distance could be overwhelming. 
  5. The vehicle should have appropriate signage: The signage will designate you as a certified mover. It's actually a mandatory regulation in most states. 
  6. The vehicle should be equipped with the right moving equipment: This step is crucial, so don't leave it out! You'll want to make sure that the truck is fully equipped with a ramp for loading your furniture and dollies for carrying them around (and unloading).
  7. The removalists must be experienced and trustworthyRemovalists on Upmovehave to authorise themselves via identity proofs and contact information before making themselves available for hire. 

Step 5. It's Time to Get Moving

Make sure your items have all their tags with them and ask the removalist to park the truck right where you want it to be. You'll want to remove the dollies from the truck and place them alongside the furniture. If you cannot find a suitable spot for them, you might have to improvise with a piece of carpet or a rug.

Lay your furniture out on the dollies, ready for moving. They can only be positioned in one direction. Ensure that your items are flush against each other and that there's no "jutting" outwards.

As a rule of thumb, commence with smaller items and move on to bigger ones (such as beds, desks and tables). You'll want to withdraw from the floor and work your way upwards to ensure smoothness.

Make sure that you're testing out every nook and cranny of the vehicle so that you don't have any hiccups during the moving. You'd want to keep a few things in mind:

  1. Keep an eye on the direction: Your furniture can get damaged if it's being moved in the wrong direction. You could inadvertently damage it with bumps and scratches if you don't get that right. 
  2. Rest your objects properly on the vehicle: Make sure that the object rests on the dollies properly. This means that you need to place them gently so as to avoid losing their balance and falling off of the vehicle. 
  3. Keep track of your objects: Don't just aimlessly throw everything inside the truck and close the doors. You should keep track of all your belongings for easy access and identification.
  4. Document your items: Have the removalist (or you) properly document all of your belongings so that you don't get confused when you open them up later.
  5. Don't carry too much weight: It's a cliché, but it's still the truth! You'd want to ensure that you don't overload the truck because you'll only end up causing more harm than good with stuff going wrong due to a failure in the vehicle.

Step 6. Your Last Stop

You're almost there! It takes a few minutes to finalise your moves and finish them up. All you need to do is transfer the furniture from the truck to where it will be staying for good.

Make a note of the following:

  1. The location of the item: If there are any stairs, or a lift that might be involved, then ensure that you inform the removalist so that they make an amendment in the form of a ramp or lift (to avoid accidents). 
  2. The set-up needed: If the item requires two people to move it out of the truck, then make sure that two people are ready for the task. 
  3. The required help: Document all the things you need to do to put your item in its place. This will help you remember what needs to be done and if there's anything else that you're forgetting. 
  4. The measurements: You should measure the distance from the truck to the place of rest — as this will help you know if there's going to be a need for an additional ramp or lift.
  5. Check with the removalist: If there are any doubts in your mind, don't hesitate to ask your removalist for help — they are the experts, of course.

Often, the replacement of furniture is overlooked — you wouldn't want all the hard work to go in vain, would you? So, once you've unloaded your truck, do a quick survey of your assets (just to make sure nothing was damaged or stolen in transit).

Again, if you're moving to the second floor, you'll have to use the ramp to move items up and down. Be sure that the ramp is placed securely and that it doesn't wobble or tilt. It's essential that you place your furniture down safely as it could possibly lead to damage if the ramp isn't sturdy enough.

Moreover, it's advisable that you unpack your things outside in the front yard rather than un-loading them directly into your new apartment or house.

Once everything is set, you can unpack with ease.

Don't Make These Mistakes While Moving Your Furniture.

The old saying goes: "Practice makes better!"

In this case, it's ideal to practise packing your own furniture to get the hang of it. You'd figure out what works best for you and what doesn't.

But if you've never had the chance of moving your furniture before, here are some things to keep an eye out for — no need to make those mistakes and jeopardise the move.


This happens to many people, especially if they're moving to a relatively far away place. Packing too much could cost you a lot of money as well as cause damage to your items. It's not worth it, so try your best only to pack the essentials and then leave room for your furniture to breathe.

Poor Packing

You'll inevitably make mistakes, but there are some mistakes that you can avoid altogether. For example, you should never pack a table and leave it for a whole day without even putting the legs in. And don't hang your TV on your headboard — no matter how strong the muscles are, it will eventually break.

Not Having Enough Help

If you have a handful of bags and boxes to move and an empty truck — it would be ideal if you had at least two pairs of hands helping you out. Never underestimate what little manpower can do!

Inadequate Research for Best Removalists

It's better to take no decisions than to make some in haste. Do some concrete research beforehand and make sure that you've found the most reliable removalist service. (Check out the best cheap removalists to gain more knowledge before you go ahead with a move).

Not Checking the Truck

As much as we would love to ensure everything's in order, we just cannot be home whenever items are being moved. Because of that, it's essential — and mandatory — that you check the truck out before it's taken away.

Not Thoroughly Documenting and Marking Your Items

Documentation is an absolute must! You wouldn't want anything to get lost or stolen during the move; otherwise, you'd be looking at a serious financial loss. Take pictures of your belongings and write down models, serial numbers, etc. It could save you from getting into a troublesome situation.

Not Knowing Where Everything Will Go

You've just arrived in your new house, and you haven't even unpacked anything yet. Don't get overwhelmed, but be sure to have an idea of where everything is going to go. You don't want to accidentally destroy your most cherished items because you moved them around without knowing where they went (it's just embarrassing!).

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) On Moving Furniture

Are professional removalists and moving companies truly necessary when moving?

Maybe you're moving across the street. In that case, your DIY prowess could come into play. However, if your furniture and appliances are very heavy, long in length or bulky and need to be transported to an altogether different location (city or state), you'll definitely need some help. Professional movers will transport your items with care and make sure that everything goes to its proper place in one piece. Alternatively, if you're going to be using a DIY service for your furniture transport, ensure that you're well prepared ahead of time and possess all of the tools, supplies and workers at the ready — this method, however, can prove to be immensely expensive.

How much does furniture transport cost?

The cost of transport depends on: 

  1. The distance that you're moving furniture, in miles.
  2. The number of people helping you out with the transportation.
  3. Whether or not your items are going to be shrinking in size (if so, the items will have to be shrink-wrapped). 
  4. Whether your items are delicate and need to be padded and protected, etc.

The most viable approach is to have a profound conversation with professional removalists and get a custom quote.

Best Online Furniture Stores

Outdoor Furniture Superstore

Furniture Stores AustraliaOutdoor Furniture Superstore is an importer, wholesaler, and distributor of fine furniture and has three decades of experience and knowledge in the industry. Its stocks are constantly changing to keep up with the trend and latest styles. All of these are meticulously selected with very high standards for the materials and construction process. The store offers a range of outdoor furniture styles including rattan wicker, modern setting, aluminum, and timber. You’ll be able to find attractive collections of bar settings, chairs, dining, lounges and sofas, and a lot more. They have the lowest shipping charges and a 14-day money-back guarantee. Check the latest deals in-store and online.


Furniture Stores AustraliaThis store showcases wonderful collections of decors and furniture that are sourced from many places around the world. By collaborating with Australian and international wholesalers and retailers, they will bring you pieces of rich culture from skilled artisans. They have been transforming spaces into a wonderful vision endowed with authentic art and style. You’ll find a wide range of items that include furniture, decorators, lamps, fashion, and a lot more. They also offer interior styling for residential and commercial spaces which has an hour consultation that includes site visitation. Explore a different style today with Village.


Furniture Stores AustraliaAs one of Australia’s highest-rated furniture brands, this store brings you thousands of choices for outdoor furniture. Its collection is composed of meticulously refined items that are reasonably priced. It has more than two decades of experience and is now a 5-star rating on Google with more than 1400 reviews. A few of the reasons are their fast delivery, wide range of beautiful collections, and 98% satisfaction. They even offer items in 4 installments with 0% interest.

FurnitureOkay provides outdoor furniture in wicker, aluminum, stone, and teak. It also has sets of outdoor accessories like rugs, heaters, and decorative pillows. You can even find here BBQs and outdoor shades such as umbrellas, gazebos, and shade sails.

Chocolate Wood

Furniture Stores Australia

This online furniture store in Australia allows you to save time while getting access to a wide furniture selection. Truly convenient where you can browse through custom-made Australian pieces like entertainment units, dining tables and bench sets, and beds. The store also offers commercial furniture, items for your living room, bedroom, outdoor, home decors, and many more. Chocolate Wood focuses on Australian products but also offers top-quality items from other countries. All of which bring you variety and incredible designs, perfect for new home furnishing. Not just that, all items are guaranteed to be 100% quality still they have 7-day credit on offer in cases where the items do not meet your expectations.

Shop at your convenience with Chocolate Wood!

Best Furniture Stores Sydney


With a wide collection of wonderfully-crafted furniture, BoConcept has been delivering limitless options for its clients. It has been in business for 70 years and continues to transform spaces with its competent designers. The store has been showcasing distinctive Danish style with more than 300 showrooms in 65 countries. You can choose from their vast collection which featured sofas, chairs, tables, storage, beds, outdoor garden furniture, lamps, rugs, and accessories. You’ll never have to go elsewhere as they offer a one-stop solution for interior design, installation, and storage management. And, they offer customization options to match your interior look. Book an appointment now and get a free interior design service.

Best Furniture Stores Adelaide


This furniture business has been running for five generations. The family maintains quality furniture that has been crafted to last. Berkowitz features international and Australian-made brands that can be found in approximately 10 showrooms around the country. The shop is quite famous for its carefully curated selection of premium brands that exude smart designs and craftsmanship. All of these will provide you with a time of comfort and pleasure. The store offers custom sofas, recliners, beds, and other furniture that fits perfectly for your space and office. You can also view their online shop and check warehouse clearance for more.

Best Furniture Stores Brisbane

Brisbane Furniture

BrisbaneFurniture.com.au is an online furniture shop that is completely Brisbane-owned. Its team has a vast experience in the industry of combined 90 years in designing, manufacturing, and selling quality solid timber furniture. They work closely with overseas manufacturers ensuring the standard quality of furniture arrives at each client. For years clients have been highly satisfied with their service as they provide free pick-up and flat rate Brisbane delivery. They even have free shipping insurance and 1-year manufacturer’s warranty. And, if you are not happy with the product, you get a refund after 7 days without a fuss. Shop by product, range, or style and get premium furniture.

In a Nutshell

Packing your furniture safely and efficiently could take you forever if you don't know what you're doing. However, moving is a lot easier if you have a strategy in place.

Set aside some time, gather all your supplies and get ready for the move! It's not as daunting as it sounds!

Do your research beforehand, talk to professional removalists in order to get a better idea of the process and how much it would cost you. Get a quote now.

Book now — removalists services

Budget-friendly removalists. Trusted by thousands of customers. Door to Door delivery. Same Day service. Fixed Prices.
9.8 · 958 reviews
What are you moving?

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