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TIPS FOR A SMOOTH MOVE

Research continues to show that moving is one of the most stressful life events in a person's life. Our goal is to make the transition as smooth as possible for all of our clients. Therefore, we have assembled a list of tips that can help alleviate some of that stress! These tips range from things you can do in the months leading up to your move all the way to the actual day of the move. Many of these tips will also help to save you valuable time and money!

MONTHS        WEEKS BEFORE MOVING DAY

  • Sort, pack, purge. Begin sorting and packing early - preferably months in advance if possible. Start with any non-essentials. Many people underestimate how long it will take to pack on their own! You’ll want ample time to sort, purge, and to try to sell items. You can also donate or dispose of any unwanted or unnecessary items to save on moving costs.

  • Change of address. Change your address with the USPS at least 1-2 weeks before moving day. You can change your address on the USPS’ official website. This will cost you $1.10. Beware of scammers that charge higher rates. Don’t forget to update your address with your bank, credit card companies, car insurance, the DMV, SSA, etc.
     

  • Internet, cable, and utilities. A few weeks before moving day, notify your internet, cable, and utility providers of your moving date. This should give them enough lead time to prepare and to set up an appointment if needed.
     

  • Items many forget to pack. Don’t forget to pack things like lamps, TV’s, pictures, mirrors, and artwork. These are at higher risk of being damaged if they are not properly packed in advance. We can always wrap these items in moving blankets on moving day, but they are still safer when wrapped in bubble wrap and put into appropriately sized boxes.
     

  • Pack boxes properly. Pack heavy items (such as books) into the smallest boxes possible. Larger boxes can begin to crumble, warp, or fall apart when packed too heavily. Larger boxes are made for lighter items such as bedding, towels, lamps, etc. Use heavy-duty boxes if you have large/heavy items that will need to go into large boxes.
     

  • Buy new boxes. Used boxes can be a tempting way to save on moving costs, especially if you get them for free. However, many boxes aren’t made to be used repeatedly, especially if they’ve previously been used for heavy items. Each time a box is used, its structural integrity is compromised. Used boxes carry a risk of collapsing or crumbling under pressure when stacked (even when stacked properly), or even falling apart. If you can help it, don’t subject your belongings to an increased risk of damage! Boxes that are beginning to collapse, crumble, or fall apart can also take longer to load. Movers may struggle to find a way to stack the boxes safely if they are all crumbling, costing you more money on hourly labor charges. Having a bunch of random boxes of varying sizes can also take longer to load. Buying new boxes from the same location will ensure all your smalls, mediums, etc. are all the same dimensions.
     

  • Pack up furniture. If any dressers or large furniture pieces are being taken up or down any stairs, these items should be packed up and empty before they are moved. The extra weight creates a safety hazard for your movers while going up or down stairs. Pack up items in smaller furniture pieces such as nightstands, side tables, etc. These lighter items will be stacked on top of the larger items in the truck. Leaving any items inside can add weight. Smaller items like jewelry, coins, etc. may also slip out of the drawers when flipped upside down, causing them to get lost or broken.
     

  • Furniture placement in the new home. Try to plan out where you would like your furniture placed in the new home, if possible. Not knowing where to place certain pieces, having the movers set things aside while you decide where to put them, or rearranging items after they have already been placed will take more time and increase moving costs.
     

  • Children. Come up with a plan for your kids, especially if they are young. Younger children may wander around and accidentally walk in front of a mover carrying a heavy piece of furniture, or even wander onto the moving truck. Don’t let your kids enter the back of the truck under any circumstances, as there are heavy items stacked up inside that may not yet be secured.
     

  • Pets. Have a plan for where your pets will be on moving day. Be sure to have your pets in a kennel, at day care, at a friend’s house, or somewhere safe on moving day. Movers need to keep doors open to get furniture and boxes in and out without having to stop, open the door, move the piece through, stop again, close the door, etc., etc. Doing so would significantly increase the time required to complete the move, resulting in much higher charges than your electric bill! Pets may run out of the home if they are loose. Some smaller pets, such as cats, may also hide under furniture, resulting in their injury when movers go to move the item.

A FEW DAYS        THE DAY BEFORE MOVING DAY

  • Gather essentials. Pack up a box or suitcase that you can take with you, especially if you won’t have access to your items for a while (storage, container moves, etc.). Include items like toiletries, medications/medical devices, extra clothing, keys, chargers, important documents, etc.
     

  • Disassembling furniture. This step isn't necessary since the movers can do these on moving day. However, some people prefer to disassemble and prep their furniture to save themselves time and money. Bedframes can be disassembled and the legs can be removed from the dining room or kitchen tables. Mattresses you aren't using can be wrapped in advance. Remove and wrap up any shelves on entertainment centers, bookcases, cabinets, etc., especially if they are glass. Shelves that are screwed in do not need to be removed.
     

  • Perishables. Pack perishable food and other items into coolers to take with you (not the moving truck). You can also give them away to friends and family or just dispose of them in advance. Refrigerators and freezers will need to be empty and defrosted before moving.
     

  • Appliances. If a refrigerator is being moved, unplug it and open the doors at least 24 hours in advance. Place an old towel on the floor to absorb any water. Freezers should be prepared the same way at least 48 hours in advance. These appliances need to be defrosted before being moved to prevent them from leaking all over the other items in the truck. Wet floors also create a safety hazard for movers operating in the truck. Make sure your washer/dryer is empty in advance. Wet clothing adds a lot of weight, and clothing shouldn't be moved in either appliance whether it's clean or dirty.
     

  • Electronics. Unplug any TVs, stereo systems, cable boxes, and other electronics. Be sure to pack the cables into boxes. The movers can unplug these items if needed, but it will add time, especially if you have a setup with a lot of cables. These items should also be packed in advance.
     

  • Move some items in advance. Not everyone is able to, but if you have the ability to move smaller furniture, boxes, or miscellaneous items in advance, it will save you time and money on moving day.
     

  • Final preparations. Make sure all items are packed and ready to go. Loose, unpacked, or improperly packed items can take more time to load, may create void spaces in the truck, and are at higher risk of being damaged. These may also create an issue with not having enough truck space for all your belongings.

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MOVING DAY

  • Children. If your younger children are at home during the move, be sure to keep an eye on them. Younger children may wander around and accidentally walk in front of a mover carrying a heavy piece of furniture, or even wander onto the moving truck. Don’t let your kids enter the back of the truck under any circumstances, as there are heavy items stacked up inside that may not yet be secured.
     

  • Pets. If your pets are still in the home on moving day, make sure you have them in a kennel. Movers need to keep doors open to get furniture and boxes in and out without having to stop, open the door, move the piece through, stop again, close the door, etc., etc. Doing so would significantly increase the time required to complete the move, resulting in much higher hourly labor charges than your electric bill! Pets may run out of the home if they are loose. Some smaller pets, such as cats, may also hide under furniture, resulting in their injury when movers go to move the item.
     

  • Box placement. Determine where you want the boxes to be placed when unloading. Some people want the boxes taken to the rooms they belong to, and others opt for a more cost-effective option. Placing boxes in the garage or on the 1st floor of the home will save a lot of time and money, especially if you have a large number of boxes going upstairs. You can always grab boxes as you need them and unpack at your own pace, without having stacks of boxes all over your home. Either way, the movers will be happy to do whatever you need!
     

  • Be on site. We strongly recommend that you are on site for the load and unload. When the movers are unloading, make sure you’re around to tell them where you want certain pieces. Just because a chair came from the master bedroom doesn’t always mean it goes back in the master bedroom. Many people place certain furniture pieces in different rooms than where they originally came from due to the layout of the new home. Movers will also need to know which dresser you want on which wall, where exactly you want the new rug placed, etc. If the movers have to wait around for directions, this will increase time and moving costs.
     

  • Conduct a final walkthrough before leaving the home to make sure all items have been loaded onto the truck. Having to come back for a 2nd trip or having to schedule another day to return will increase moving costs. Conduct another walkthrough after the movers have unloaded to make sure everything is where you need it, everything has been assembled, etc. Movers are human and may forget things, especially when working for long hours in the heat, if you have a large home, or if they’ve already had a long and exhausting week leading up to your move.
     

  • Payment. Make sure you have a form of payment with you that’s easy to access. The movers will collect payment as soon as everything is completed. Your estimate will contain additional payment information if you have questions.
     

  • Enjoy your new home! 

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