Develop Your Moving Day Strategy
Call in the Professionals
Features of a good moving company:
- Fair and competitive prices. Low rates may be appealing, but additional fees and other charges could increase your costs.
- No requirement of a large deposit or up-front payment.
- Clearly state their address, license, or insurance.
- Maintain professionalism in all interactions.
- Moving trucks display company name.
- Clear pricing structure and insurance coverage.
Always ask for detailed descriptions of the insurance that moving companies offer, since types of coverage could include different levels of liability.
Full Value Protection policies allow you to repair, replace, or receive a cash settlement for any item at the current market replacement value. Other liability coverage might only pay based on the weight of the item. Determine which coverage fits your needs.
If you're not satisfied with the liability coverage offered by your movers, contact your home or renter's insurance company to find out whether your belongings are already covered for your move. If not, consider purchasing additional liability insurance.
Do It Yourself
Sell, donate or throw out any unwanted items before your move to speed up the process and make packing easier. Plus, this is an opportunity to get a fresh start with new styles and designs in your new space.
Enlist a group of friends, family and neighbors to help on moving day. Find boxes, wrap and other packing materials by checking with friends, neighbors and coworkers, or online. Or pick up discarded boxes at local businesses.
Your budget should include fuel expenses, additional packing supplies, truck/trailer rental fees, and food for your helpers.
Make sure large items such as oversized furniture and appliances will fit through doorways and halls, so there are no surprises. Determine a way to use your helpers in advance to streamline the operation, save time and keep everyone energized throughout your move. Being organized will help you make the most of every minute.
- Pack perishable, dangerous, or hazardous materials properly for a safe move
- Mark the side of each box with its contents or create a master list you can refer to when you're moving into your new home
- Label each box with its corresponding room
A Combined Approach
You can leverage the skills of professional movers by making strategic decisions about your move and paying only for necessary services.
If you feel confident that you can get your own things safely into boxes, save some money and hire movers to help only with moving the boxes. Then, have everything ready to go when the movers arrive, including disassembling your furniture in advance.
Note: Packing your own boxes can make it more difficult to establish a claim against movers for damaged items, so be extra careful with fragile items. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for packing appliances and electronics.
Packing your clothing, office supplies, and household goods may be relatively easy, but other bulky, heavy, or complex items can be more difficult to move. You might want to hire an expert to take down the flat screen TV, and deliver your washer and dryer with care while you handle the rest. Choose movers who specialize in relocating electronics and appliances, fireproof safes or pianos.
- Supervise both the loading and unloading process, or give this job to a person you trust.
- Use painter's tape to label the doors of each room, or create a map for your movers and volunteers to follow.
- Pack separately any personal belongings you will need during the move, like toiletries, medication, clothing, cell phone, laptop and their chargers.
- Keep important paperwork with you, including information about services at your new home. If your electricity isn't turned on, you'll need to know immediately who to call.
Protect your home and belongings
Invest in home automation to keep an eye on your home and belongings during a move. Entry door and garage door smart locks, automated lighting, and other devices can help you monitor your living spaces and protect your home and valuables from theft or negligence while you move.
Apps to make moving easier
There are apps for just about everything, including moving. Get some instant assistance right on your phone, whether you're searching for the most reputable mover in town or plotting the best ways to avoid traffic on the way to your new home.