Moving Guide

Planning a Stress-free Move

It sounds obvious, but before you start asking for bids from moving companies, it’s important to make note of what kind of move do you need to plan. The more information you can give the movers, the more accurate your pricing quote will be. Consider the following options:

What’s Your Budget – How much are you able to spend on moving? This will help you eliminate high bids immediately.

How Far Are You Moving?

  • Long distance move – Anything over 100 miles, or across state borders, is considered long distance.
  • Short distance move – Anything over 50 miles but less than 100 miles, and within state boundaries, is a short distance move.
  • Local move – This is any move less than 50 miles from your current location.

Full-service move – The mover handles all aspects of the move.

Self-service move – Options include taking on the task of packing your possessions, or packing and loading your possessions (the moving service will handle driving the truck to your destination), this is the best way to keep costs at a minimum.

Amount of Possessions – You don’t have to have an actual inventory of everything you own – just give the mover a general idea of the amount of furnishings you have by the space you currently occupy, i.e., a two bedroom apartment or a five bedroom home. The amount of things you need transported determines how big a truck and how large a crew they send to help you move, all of which affects price.

Choosing a Mover

Gather estimates from more than one mover and compare them. You can use our quote tool to start. Double check what services you get for the price so that you know the bids you receive are comparably matched. Do a quick Internet search to check on a mover’s customer feedback. Use both price and professional reputation to choose the right mover for you. Generally you would also want to go for a mover that has been around for at least five years, so you can be sure that they are experienced.

Preparing for the Move

First things first, get rid of what you don’t want. Before you pack anything, donate, sell, or throw-out all unwanted or unused items. This will save you the extra expense of moving things you don’t want in the first place. Once you’re down to what you really want in your new home, consider these tips for packing:

  • Buy packing material – Even if you have hired a full-service mover that handles the packing for you, you will likely still want to pack certain items yourself, such as certain valuables and fragile items. If you are handling all of the packing yourself, be prepared with packing tape, bubble wrap, and plastic sheeting to protect mattresses and soft furniture. Start collecting newspapers several weeks out to use as box filler.
  • Wrap furniture – Wrap fragile wood furniture in bubble wrap and plastic sheeting to protect it from dents and scratches. Likewise, wrap mattresses in plastic sheeting to prevent them from gathering dirt. Protect fragile items with bubble wrap and keep them tight in boxes with plenty of box filler.
  • Pack boxes – When packing a box, write the contents of the box on the outside in permanent marker. Also, write the room location (i.e., kitchen, living room, etc.) for easy sorting at your new home. Remember not to make boxes too heavy to lift.
  • Create “Open First” boxes – These would include clothes, cooking utensils, or other daily goods that you will need when you first arrive. Put these aside and pack last so you can find them first.

Loading the Moving Truck

If you have chosen a self-service moving option, you may be loading a truck or storage pod yourself. Keep these things in mind:

  • Get plenty of help. Don’t underestimate how many hands and strong backs this may take. Be prepared to thank your helpers with a free meal afterwards.
  • Use a two-wheeler – If you don’t have one, either buy or rent one for the day. This will help you move heavy items.
  • Protect Furniture – Furniture should be wrapped to avoid any scratches. You can further protect with padded blankets
  • Completely fill the truck – If items are loose in the back of a truck, they will move around in transport causing damage to your possessions. Pack the truck as tightly as you can. If there are any loose items, secure them with rope or by pinning them with other, heavier objects.

Prepare Your New Home

If possible, get into your new home before your furnishings arrive. This will allow you to take care of any painting, cleaning or repairs before you move all of your possessions in. If you need a little time, ask your mover about storage options.

When your boxes and furniture arrive, you can take your time unpacking. You or your movers will have placed labeled boxes in their appropriate rooms. Start with the most essential rooms first, probably the kitchen and bedrooms, and work your way through the house.