Four Tips For Moving Your Book Collection Long Distances

Moving across state lines is hard enough when you have furniture, pets, and appliances to deal with, but what about when you have a personal library to move as well? Books are both heavy and fragile, making them one of the more challenging items to move, particularly in large numbers. In order to keep your books safe and avoid a disorganized nightmare when unpacking in your new home, follow these four tips before you start placing books in boxes. 

Choosing Which Books to Keep

As painful as it may be, you should use this time as an opportunity to evaluate which books you want to keep and which might be more useful in the hands of other readers. Not only will this significantly decrease the amount of work put into moving them, but it will also provide you with more shelf space to collect new books in the future. Donate or sell any books that you can't see yourself reading again in the future to narrow your library down to the essentials. 

Avoiding Heavy Boxes

A standard moving box full of books will be far to heavy to support itself or be carried safely, so you may need to find alternative shipping options. Small boxes are an option, but you may also want to pack your books with lighter objects like bedding or curtains to reduce the overall weight of each box. Talk to your moving service for recommendations and to learn about any weight limits they may impose on each box. 

Organizing Your Books for Easy Unpacking 

While stowing your books away for the move, keep in mind that you will need to unpack and organize them later. When combined with the rest of a move, this can quickly eat up time that would be better spent elsewhere. Try to keep your books together based on their genre or subject matter to make it easier on yourself later on. Labeling your boxes with the general topics of the books inside can help you track them down if you prefer to stock your shelves in a particular order. 

Protecting Your Books in Transit

Books can survive most normal temperatures without issue, but they need to be kept dry and secure while in transit. Wrapping each book in newspaper or packing paper can protect delicate pages and bindings, and choose climate-controlled transportation if your collection is old or fragile. By communicating with your moving service and planning ahead, you can turn the frustrating task of moving books into an efficient and relatively easy process.