What You Can’t Pack – A Guide to Non-Allowable Items

What many people don’t realize when they are planning and executing a move, is that there are a number of things that the moving companies will not or are not allowed to move. Most professional companies will speak with you regarding these items, and will give you a special ‘non-allowable’ list before you begin packing, but knowing ahead of time what you shouldn’t be packing can help you plan for this eventuality. Of course this list contains things you might expect to see on it, but there are plenty of things on this list that you probably didn’t think would be there.

Remember, if you do pack any of these things and something happens to your goods while they are being transported, your insurance company may not cover the loss or damage, and neither will the movers. For this reason, be sure that you keep these things in mind and don’t pack them in your boxes!

HATMAT or Hazardous Materials

There are plenty of materials in your home that you already know are hazardous, but there are probably things that you didn’t realize were quite as dangerous as they are. Make sure that you keep all of the following out of your packed containers, as under certain circumstances, they can catch fire, explode, emit gasses that can pose a lethal danger to humans, or create other life threatening circumstances.

  • Cleaning supplies, pool chemicals, acids, solvents, bleach, ammonia, and chemicals used in photography.
  • Children’s chemistry sets.
  • Flammables like gasoline, kerosene, lamp oil, lighter fluid, motor oil, acetone, or paint thinner.
  • Propane, scuba, or oxygen tanks.
  • Ammunition and reloading supplies for firearms.
  • Fire extinguishers of any kind.
  • Pesticides, fertilizer, bug spray, or weed killer.
  • Nail polish, sterno, poisons, charcoal, or batteries.

Food and Perishables

While not quite hazardous, most moving companies won’t transport perishable items either. Certain companies will allow certain things, and the rules with this category aren’t quite as strict as they are with the hazardous items, so always ask your movers ahead of time to find out if you really can take any of the following.

  • Frozen foods
  • Refrigerated foods
  • Produce
  • Live plants

Your Personal Items

Everyone has personal things that would be hard to replace if lost or damaged. For this reason, moving companies often don’t like to transport these things. Because they attempt to limit any liability for the goods they are moving, some of the following, if not all of the following, may be listed as items you should not pack to be transported by the movers. Instead, you should pack them and carry them with you in your own form of transport to your new home.

  • Cash, stocks, bonds, CDs, or other financial products and information.
  • Titles to vehicles, boats, homes, or other large investments.
  • Research paperwork, professional records and files, deeds, tax records, checkbooks, financial documentation.
  • Jewelry, silver, gold, or valuable items of a similar nature.
  • Photo albums, dvd’s, cd’s, tapes, and discs.
  • Medical and school records, medication, keys, and tickets.

Again, while some movers are more strict than others, always plan ahead and prepare to find another method of getting these items to your new home. If you absolutely need to pack something, be sure that you talk with the mover or consider shipping something via the USPS instead.

About Alyssa Sullivan

Alyssa Sullivan is a moving and storage veteran and a relocation consultant of Moving Angels , a one stop shop specializing in long distance and local moves within US and Canada, auto transport and homeowners insurance.
You can connect with Alyssa via Facebook