Fine Art Transport: How to Prepare Your Antiques for Moving

Are you one of those lucky individuals who owns antiques, fine art or other collectibles? If so, you are well aware of how precious these items are. Not only do they represent artistic and artisan excellence, but they are usually quite valuable in a monetary way as well. Obviously antiques and other fine art are also extremely fragile. So, when the time comes to move them from Vancouver, British Columbia (or another city) you want to make sure that every precaution is taken to protect them during transport.

Antiques in particular can be easily damaged during a move simply by virtue of their age. A legitimate antique must be a minimum of one hundred years old to earn this designation. Items of this vintage can suffer from dried out brittle wood, loose hardware, cracked veneers or other similar ailments. Further damage during transport will diminish their value and may be difficult (or near impossible to repair).

Before moving antiques yourself or arranging for a fine art transport company to do the job there are a couple of steps you should take including:

Documenting Condition

  1. Always take a series of close-up, high quality photographs of your antique pieces from several angles. Make at least two copies of each photo. Having photographic proof of condition will make it easier to distinguish new damage in the event that an insurance claim has to be filed after the move.
  2. Get a professional appraisal of the value of your antique pieces. This is particularly important if your items are extremely rare. Antique shops, auction houses and some online appraisers can assist you in obtaining a general idea of value. However, for higher-end antiques it is best to go to an appraiser who specializes in your specific antique. You will have to pay a fee for a proper written appraisal, but it is well worth doing so for insurance purposes. The appraisal should include a comprehensive description of the item.

Once you have taken the above steps it is time to decide whether to try to move your antiques on your own or to hire a moving company who has experience with fine art and antiques transport. Given the fragility of antiques, experts will tell you that moving antiques is really not a “DIY” job. Rarely does the average person have the expertise on how to prepare and move items of this nature. And by the time you purchase all the necessary supplies to protect the antiques during transport, you will quickly realize that this is a task best left to the professionals.

Given the monetary and sentimental value of your antiques you want to make sure that the moving company you choose has experience in handling these types of commodities. Companies like Premiere Van Lines know how important it is to properly prepare these items before placing them on a truck. Only consider movers who take the time to measure your antiques and who clearly explain what steps they will take to protect them. Quite often the professional mover will suggest that the very best way to move antiques is in a custom built, wooden crate. This option will offer maximum protection for fragile pieces. If a crate isn’t deemed necessary then the mover will ensure that antique pieces are carefully and securely wrapped in clean, quilted moving pads, in some cases double wrapping may be applied. The proper preparation and the careful moving techniques of a professional moving company will ensure that your antiques are moved damage free so they can be enjoyed by future generations.

You can trust a moving company like Premiere Van Lines to handle your heirloom antique pieces like the treasures they are to you and your family. For more information call our Premiere Van Lines Vancouver, BC Branch at 604-530-2221 or contact your local Premiere Van Lines office.