Most Common Moving Frauds to Watch Out For

Deciding on a moving company can be difficult – especially with all the moving frauds and scammers out there just waiting to take your money and belongings. There are many reasons people fall for moving scams – a lot of them due to lack of proper research and investigation. Luckily, the internet is a great source for finding honest, professional movers to hire for your upcoming move. All you need to do is familiarize yourself with common fraudulent schemes and learn to recognize the red flags of moving fraud. To detect moving company frauds and protect your move, check out the following list of the most common moving frauds to watch out for.

Fake References: Phony movers typically use false references (fake moving reviews, fictitious testimonials, etc.) to make you believe they are trustworthy. Some fraudulent companies even truck consumers by constantly changing the name of their business. Before hiring a moving company, it is strongly recommended to investigate the movers in question by asking for opinions and feedback from people who have worked with them. You can also check with the Federal Moving Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).

Oddly Low Estimates: If the price is too good to be true, then it probably is. A common practice of shady movers is to offer extremely low estimates in order to lure customers in. Once they secure the job, they either disappear with your money, or they will request you pay huge extra fees for alleged additional services or unforeseen difficulties during the moving process. To avoid falling for this trap, take the time to carefully research companies, compare their offers and take all relevant information into account when making a final decision on a moving company.

Fine Print: A very important rule to abide by in life is to never sign a contract without having carefully read the fine print. If you look closely, the fine print often states that the guaranteed price of your move is subject to changes under certain circumstances. A lot of moving company frauds are based on this simple trick. Usually, the movers claim the job took longer than it actually did or that it was more complicated than expected. In turn, they charge you much more than initially estimated. To best avoid swindles like these, be sure that all required accessorial services, as well as any special conditions related to your move, are clearly stated in your invoice.

Large Deposits or Advance Payments: Some crooked movers may request a very large deposit or hefty up-front payments in return for a convenient pick-up or delivery time, higher quality services or other “special favors”. This is a huge red flag! These movers are the “grab the money and run” type of scammers. If you fall into this trap, you will likely never see your movers (and money) again.

Before handing over your money, know that any requested deposits should not exceed 10-15% of the estimated final moving cost. You should also be able to pay with a credit card – not only cash. If your movers only accept cash – run in the other direction quick!

Extra Fees: Additional services offered by moving companies are not automatically included in the estimate. Unfortunately, this makes it easy for dishonest movers to deliberately perform a variety of unnecessary services to increase the price. Avoid last-minute schemes by discussing any special requirements and potential difficulties in advance with your movers. This way, you are more able to say no to any services that are not explicitly stated in your invoice.

Refusal of Delivery: Another common scenario of moving fraud involves your household items being held hostage in demand for more money. In this circumstance, the movers will refuse to release your belongings until you pay enormous extra charges for whatever ridiculous reason they come up with. If your shipment contains a lot of valuable items, the situation may become even worse, with the fraudulent movers completely disappearing with your belongings. To avoid outrageous schemes like this, it is crucial to carefully research your chosen movers before hiring them in order to ensure you are dealing with movers that are legitimate, insured, trustworthy and professional.

Stolen Items: Sometimes, you may have a very smooth and trouble-free relocation experience. But upon delivery, many of your most expensive belongings turn out to be missing. Unless your belongings have been properly insured and declared as high value articles, the moving company will only assume liability for a small percentage of the lost or damaged items. Also, if you fail to notice or immediately repot a missing piece when receiving your shipment, the moving company can deny any liability. To prevent problems of this nature, be sure to provide adequate protection for all of your valuables. Also, check them carefully upon delivery in order to verify that nothing is damaged or missing.

For a moving company that is reliable and professional, trust in ABC Movers. Contact today for a FREE quote!

Moving Costs: How Much Money Should You Save?

So, it’s time to move. Whether it’s for a job, because you don’t like your current landlord or neighbors, or just because you want a change, the prospect of moving can be quite appealing. But before you start picking out furniture for a new place you haven’t even found yet, it’s important to truly consider the many aspects that are involved in a move. One very important thing to consider before jumping into a commitment is whether you are emotionally ready to part with your old life and financially comfortable to afford a relocation. When moving house, costs add up quickly. You need to be able to cover these costs without difficulty in order to have a smooth, stress-free moving experience. But, how much money do you need to be prepared to move? It all depends on a number of things, such as:

  • The living costs in your new area;
  • The amount of items you’ll need to purchase for your new place; and
  • The size of your move, including the distance from your current to new home.

To figure out how much you will need to save in order to afford all of the moving expenses required, continue reading.

Housing

Housing expenses will typically be your largest financial challenge when moving to a new home.

Renting 

If you decide to rent an apartment or house, you will be required to provide several things, including:

Safety Net: Before you sign a lease for a new home, you are strongly encouraged to save enough money to cover at least three months’ rent – even more if you don’t have a steady income at the time of your move.

Security Deposit: When renting, you will be required to put down a security deposit at the time you sign your lease. Security deposits are typically the same amount as one month’s rent. One potential perk here is that you will be able to get your security deposit back after you move out. However, you will only get all of your money back if you leave the rental property in just as good of condition as when you moved in.

Management Fees: When renting a home, you will be charged for a background/credit check. This will add up to another $50 you will have to be able to hand out on the spot.

Buying

If you decide to buy a home, the initial costs are much, much more than that of renting. This being said, you will need to have a lot of dough saved before the idea of purchasing a home is even an option. To avoid extra fees like mortgage insurance, you will need to have saved 20% of the final cost of the home you are buying.

Whether you rent or buy, be sure the monthly rent or mortgage does not exceed 25%-30% of your disposable income. Otherwise, you run a dangerous risk of enduring serious financial difficulties.

Utilities

When you relocate to a new home, you will need to have all of the utilities turned on. These include gas, water, electricity, etc. If you like entertainment, you will also want to install extra utility services, like cable and internet. Utility costs depend on the area you live in as well as the size of your home. Also note that there are often extra connection and transfer fees you will be required to pay in order to have these services turned on.

It is a good idea to contact service providers in your future area before moving in order to get an estimate of what your monthly bills will be. In turn, you get a better idea of your total monthly expenses.

Moving Expenses

Moving house equals moving expenses – to hire movers, to buy packing supplies, and so on. These costs can range anywhere from a few hundred dollars to several thousand, depending on the distance to your new home, the size of your move and the moving assistance you require.

DIY Move: A do-it-yourself move is definitely the cheapest option when moving house. But keep in mind that a DIY move is only possible if you rent a moving truck and have reliable friends and/or family to help you. It is also, usually, only possible when moving locally. If you do opt to move by yourself, you will still need to pay for several things, such as:

  • Rental truck (and fuel)
  • Vehicle insurance
  • Road tolls, parking fees, and meals and lodging, if applicable
  • Moving boxes, packing tape, packing paper, moving dollies, etc.

Professional Movers: Hiring professional movers may be more costly than a DIY move, but it is definitely the more worthwhile choice. Experienced movers have specialized moving equipment, plus the required know-how to perform an efficient and safe relocation. When moving locally, you will be charged on an hourly basis. For long-distance moves, relocation costs are based on the total weight of your items and the distance to your new home.

For a FREE price quote based on your moving needs, contact ABC Movers.

Moving to College: Everything You Need to Know

Today is the big day! The day you leave your parents home and move away to college. It’s an exciting time, for sure! But it is also a time of worry about the unknown ahead. Who will your new dorm-mate be? Will you like your classes and professors? Will you meet new friends? During a time where your mind is running wild with questions, you will feel much more at ease if you plan ahead and prepare yourself for what’s to come. Here are some important things to know before college move-in day arrives:

  • Know the date and time of when you can move into your dormitory. Some colleges/universities have just one designated move-in day for students to park and unload their belongings.
  • Familiarize yourself with all rules and requirements of your college and soon-to-be dormitory.
  • Create a detailed checklist o everything you need to bring with you so nothing is forgotten.How to Transport Your BelongingsMoving to college may signify a time of moving out “on your own”, but how exactly do you intend to transport all of your belongings to your new home? For some, moving to college may be done alone, but for most, doing it alone is not an option. Luckily, there are several options to rely on for help.

    Family and Friends. When it’s time to move to college, make it a group effort with the help of family and friends. This way, you will have several cars to pack your stuff in, plus a lot of extra bodies for the much-needed muscles you will require for a day of heavy lifting.

    Moving Truck. If you are moving to a college that is across the country, or if you have a lot of large items to relocate, renting a moving truck will suit your moving needs. This way, you will be able to move all of your belongings in one trip. If you decide to rent a truck, be sure to get one that is of an appropriate size for your needs, and one that will not be too large to drive or fit on campus.

    Hire Movers. If your family and friends are unable to lend a hand on college move-in day, you may feel overwhelmed and worried about what to do. Renting a truck isn’t going to be of much help if you don’t have anyone to help you unload it, so what do you do? If you wind up in this situation, hiring a professional moving company may be your ideal solution. Many moving companies offer special discounts for college students. Add these discounts to the speed and experience of professional movers and moving day will be easy and successful.

    Packing Tips

    While many believe that packing is just a matter of throwing belongings into boxes, this is definitely a rookie mistake that will lead to disorganization, lost items and a complicated unpacking process. You don’t have to be a master packer, but for a more efficient move, here are some clever tricks to follow:

    • Stack smaller items into larger ones to save space.
    • Pack heavy items, like books, in small boxes that are easier to lift and carry.
    • Label all boxes clearly and pack similar items together – all toiletries in one box, all desk supplies in another, and so on.
    • Use bags, purses, suitcases, laundry hampers and trash cans as moving boxes to hold small belongings.
    • Use towels, socks, older clothes, etc. as packing materials to protect fragile items.
    • Pack belongings in sturdy boxes or plastic containers that can later be used for storing your belongings inside your dorm room.

    What to Pack

    Transitioning from living in your parents’ home to a single dorm room can be tough. You’ll want to bring as many things as you can in order to “make it on your own”. But in reality, your college packing list shouldn’t dorm room essentials - PHOTO (ABC)be too long. So focus on the essentials.

    Clothes. The first thing to consider when moving to college is what clothing items you should take with you. Choose garments that are suitable for the climatic conditions of the state your college is in, plus some extras in case of unexpected weather changes. You also typically won’t have access to a thermostat in your dorm room, so be prepared in case your room tends to run too hot or cold.

    If you will have a closet in your dorm room, be sure to pack hangers – ultra-thin ones, if possible, so you can save space and store more clothes.

    Bedding. Your dorm room will most likely be equipped with a bed and mattress. However, you will need to supply your own sheets, pillows/cases and blankets. Dorms typically have twin-size mattresses, but be sure to find out ahead of time just to be sure. If you think you will need a mattress pad, comforter, and/or sleeping bag, be sure to pack them.

    Toiletries/Medication. Most toiletries can be purchased after you have moved into your dorm, like toilet paper. But you will probably want to go ahead and bring certain personal items with you, like a bathrobe, hairbrush, and toothbrush/paste.

    Electronics. College means school work – homework to do, chapters to read, papers to write. You will also need internet access. To tackle all these things, bring your computer/laptop, along with chargers, etc. with you.

    When away at school, you will always want to keep in touch with others back home – like your parents! – along with new people you meet. In the age of cell phones, we probably don’t need to bother telling you this, but be sure to bring your cell phone and charger so it will always be fully juiced when needed.

 

 

Transporting Your Vehicle to a New State: A Helpful Guide

Everyone who’s endured a move knows it’s a haggering experience. Moving locally is hard enough, but moving out of state is even tougher. A lot of the challenges are due to the colossal amount of tasks to do prior to the move itself – all within a limited time period. What can make it even more difficult is if you are forced to ship your car to another state. How do I ship my car from one state to another? How do I find the best auto transport company? How much does it cost to ship a car to another state? How do I prepare a car for transport? All of these are important questions that you will find yourself asking, and stressing over, as moving day approaches.

To help you through this head-scratching process, check out the guide below to learn what you need to know and do in order to organize your state-to-state vehicle transport in the best possible way.

What do I look for in an auto transport company?

Believe it or not, auto shippers do exist (phew!). All you have to do is find one. It may seem easier said than done, but it really is that simple – as long as you know what to look for, that is. When on the hunt for an auto shipper, pay close attention to these things:

Experience: As with all companies/businesses, what sets a great car shipping company apart from a not-so-great one is how much experience it has. Your best bet is to choose a company that’s been in business for many years. The length of time a business has been established acts as a sort of guarantee that your state-to-state auto transport will be well taken care of by someone with experience.

Trustworthiness: Having trust in your auto shipper will come from communication and dealing with the company one-on-one, and it will also come from what you read or hear from reliable, trustworthy sources. So do your research, and trust your instincts as you venture into a business relationship with an auto transport company.

Professionalism: It’s easy to tell right off the bat whether a company is professional or not. Professionalism is an attitude, a way of doing business in an honorable, honest way. A company that is disorganized or has rude, unhelpful employees is definitely not professional, so steer clear.

Affordability: A successful auto shipper will have a healthy balance between high-quality services and affordable prices. The most expensive place and the cheapest place are more than likely not your best choice, so try and find a company that stands somewhere in the middle.

How much does it cost to transport a vehicle?

One of the most important questions to ask an auto transport company is how much they charge, so be sure to ask for a price quote as early as possible to avoid wasted time and energy. Here are some things that will affect the cost of your state-to-state auto transport:

  • The distance from Point A (the current location of your vehicle) to Point B (your new destination). The more miles, the more costly.
  • The size, make and model of your vehicle. Larger or more expensive cars will cost more.
  • The total weight of your vehicle. The more weight, the higher the cost.
  • The cost of insurance to protect your vehicle (and you!) if there are any problems during the transport.

How do I prepare my vehicle for transport?

Once you’ve selected a company to transport your vehicle, you may think the task of shipping your car is complete – just hand over the keys and you’re done, right? Well, you will be handing over the keys, yes, but you will need to prepare your car for transport first. Follow these steps:

  1. Wash the exterior – if needed.
  2. Do a thorough inspection of your vehicle. Note any damage with close-up photos. This will stand as evidence of your vehicle’s pre-move condition. Also, get photos of your entire vehicle in case a damage claim needs to be filed post-move.
  3. Inspect your vehicle for leaks – around the engine, underneath the car, etc. If any leaks are discovered, have them fixed prior to shipping your vehicle.
  4. Leave your gas tank with roughly ¼ of fuel. This will decrease the total weight of your vehicle and save you money in shipping costs.
  5. Inspect tires to confirm they are in good condition and fully inflated.
  6. Ensure your car’s battery is well-secured and charging as it should.
  7. Verify the emergency brake is in good working condition.
  8. Remove any personal belongings from your vehicle. The only belongings that are allowed to stay are a child seat, spare tire, jack and emergency kit.
  9. Remove any non-permanent exterior parts (i.e., a bike rack).
  10. Disable or remove any alarm systems.
  11. Fully retract (or remove) your vehicle’s antenna.
  12. Close and secure any convertible tops, sunroofs, etc.

Now that you know a little bit about how to ship your vehicle between states, your move will go a lot smoother. For more tips and tricks to make your move easier, click here.

Safety Tips to Avoid Moving Injuries

Anyone who has ever endured a residential move knows it’s stressful. Unfortunately, many don’t realize just how dangerous it is until an injury occurs in an unpredictable, painful moment. What’s the best way to avoid injuries while moving? Start by checking out our list of safety tips that will help keep you and your moving crew injury free on moving day.

Plan Several Steps Ahead

Moving goes hand-in-hand with organization. Planning each step before actually taking it will be your best approach to a safe move. So plan several steps ahead. For example, if your couch won’t fit through the living room door, don’t use brute force to push it out the doorway. This is a big mistake that will lead to damaged property and personal injuries. Instead, opt for an adequate solution, like breaking down your couch or temporarily removing the door to provide a few extra inches of space so your couch can fit through.

Get Adequate Moving Assistance

Moving is not meant to be a one-person job. No matter how much planning you do or how organized you are, a solo move is basically impossible. This is why it’s crucial to have help when moving day arrives. Friends are great for providing physical and emotional help, but hiring professional movers is the optimal way to ensure a safe move. Professional movers are trained to follow safety procedures and are familiar with safety rules so accidents and injuries are prevented.

Avoid Overly Heavy Boxes

When moving house, there is one fundamental safety rule you should always follow: never pack a box so that it exceeds 50 pounds. Boxes that bypass this weight have a much higher risk of causing bodily injury. If a box feels uncomfortable to lift and carry around, this means it is too heavy and items should be repacked. The only acceptable way to move bulky boxes and other heavy, awkward items, like furniture and kitchen appliances, is to use the proper moving equipment. A moving dolly is the ultimate moving tool for heavyweight items. When using a dolly, always be sure to have the proper assistance and use the correct lifting techniques.

Use Proper Lifting Techniques

Moving day is filled with awkward and unusual body movements – lifting, bending, pushing, pulling and twisting. These movements mean your body is prone to sustain minor, or even serious injuries. To reduce the risk of self-injuries when handling heavy objects, here are some simple and efficient lifting techniques to follow:

  • Lift with your legs, not your back. Do this by keeping your back straight, bending at the knees and using the strength of your legs to lift the object. This technique will help decrease the chance of back strain.
  • Push heavy objects forward, don’t pull them backwards. This will help prevent back injuries.
  • Avoid twisting your hips when turning with a heavy object. Instead, pivot your body with your feet.
  • Keep heavy objects close to your body and centered in relation to your body’s height.
  • Take small steps, keeping your footing secure. Also make your movements slow and smooth versus sudden and jerky.
  • When lifting/moving heavy items, keep your eyes looking in front of you and slightly upward.
  • Unless absolutely necessary, avoid lifting heavy objects over your head.

Keep Hallways and Pathways Free of Obstacles

During your move, one of the most dangerous situations is to trip and fall over obstacles in your way – a problem that can lead to body strain and even broken limbs. This is why it’s vital to keep all hallways and pathways (inside and outside your home) clear. Here are some ways to do so:

  • Place packed boxes in labeled, organized piles away from all hallways or other heavy traffic areas.
  • Clear outdoor pathways that lead to the moving truck of mud, water, snow or ice. Also remove any debris from the ground that could prove hazardous.
  • Trim overgrown shrubs or protruding tree branches that might get in the way.

Dress Appropriately

When moving day arrives, it’s important that you dress appropriately for the tasks ahead of you. Being fashionable is the last thing you should be worried about on the longest, most exhausting day of your life. For comfort and safety, check out the list below for what to wear on moving day.

  • Clothes should provide a maximum level of comfort and protection. Wear fabrics that are breathable and flexible, and that won’t restrict your movements.
  • Choose clothes that you don’t mind getting dirty or ruined after a long day of moving.
  • Avoid baggy clothing because it has a high chance of becoming caught or tangled on boxes, furniture and so on – a situation that can compromise your safety.
  • Select a pair of shoes that are both comfortable and closed-toe in order to provide your feet the best protection, flexibility and traction.

For more tips to keep your move safe, check out ABC Movers blog.

ABC Movers Makes Entrepreneur360’s 2016 List of Top Entrepeneurial Companies in America

Impact. Innovation. Growth. Leadership. These are the qualities that make a well-rounded and successful business. These are also the elements that a business must have in order to obtain a spot on Entrepreneur Magazine’s Entrepreneur360 list. Entrepreneur Magazine aims to inspire, inform and celebrate entrepreneurs with tips, tools and insider news to help them build – and grow – their businesses. This yearly list features 360 small businesses that have proven their ability to grow and thrive.

ABC Movers, an LA-based moving company, takes the 127th spot on Entrepreneur360’s 2016 list as one of the top entrepreneurial companies in America.

“We are very pleased to learn that we made Entrepreneur360’s list of top entrepreneurial companies,” said Sukhrab Karimov, president of ABC Movers. “It’s exciting to learn that all of our hard work is being noticed.”

Since its start in 2007, ABC Movers has grown rapidly and now serves every major city in the United States, providing a broad range of professional moving and storage services, including local, commercial and long distance moves.

To learn more about ABC Movers, click here. You can also follow them on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Must-Know Tips When Moving into an Apartment

Deciding on a new place to live can be tough. House or apartment? One bedroom or two? City or suburbs? The possibilities are endless. If you’re considering moving into an apartment, there are a number of essential things to assess before making the big leap. For a successful apartment move, here are some must-know tips.

Choose an apartment based on your lifestyle. Choosing an apartment to live in involves much more than looking for big bedrooms and a nice layout – it also means taking numerous things into consideration, like location, convenience and even the neighbors. Moving into an apartment only to find out that it doesn’t meet your needs or lifestyle can be problematic. To avoid a potential nightmare of choosing the wrong place to live, always research all of your options, and be cautious when making a final decision.

Inspect and document pre-existing damage. Whether you purchased an apartment or are simply renting one, moving to a new residence that’s in need of repairs is going to be a burden to deal with. If you bought an apartment, it’s important to be aware of any issues that will need to be fixed quickly after moving in. This will allow you to plan ahead and create a budget.

If you are renting an apartment, be sure to inspect it carefully for any problems, and document any pre-existing damage. Not only will this provide you with a list of needs to give your landlord, but it will also provide evidence of the initial condition of the property so you won’t be held responsible for damages when the time comes to move out.

Understand your lease. When given a wordy document to read, like a lease, many just skim and sign where required. Unfortunately, not reading the fine print can lead to potential problems, so take the time to read your lease thoroughly. Sit down with your landlord and go over all terms and conditions. Discuss any clauses you fail to comprehend or terms you are uncomfortable with. Also ask about important issues, such as:

  • Available storage
  • Available parking spaces
  • Trash disposal location, dates and times
  • Maintenance hours

It’s also important to find out about any specific conditions that may cause the rent to increase, if there are extra fees for late payments, and if there are any penalties for breaking a lease early.

Assess the layout. Before moving into your new apartment, you want to assess the layout (and take measurements!) so you will know what belongings to pack and bring with you come moving day. This is an especially important step if you are moving to a smaller place. If you want to keep some of your belongings, but there’s just not enough space, knowing the exact dimensions of your new apartment will let you know which belongings you’ll need to move to a storage unit.

Coordinate deliveries. No, we’re not talking about pizza deliveries – although you will probably do a lot of those after you move in. What we are actually talking about here is furniture deliveries (or other large items). Some apartment buildings have strict rules about what days or times you can move in – this includes big deliveries, like a truck full of furniture. Before you assume any day or time is fair game, check with your landlord first. This will help you better arrange move-in times and deliveries so everything can be brought into your new place at the same time.

Learn the rules. Most apartments come with a set of rules to follow. Some may include:

  • Moving and parking fees
  • Pre-defined moving times
  • Elevator deposits
  • Accessibility of elevators/freight elevators
  • Cleaning requirements
  • Pet restrictions
  • Renovation projects
  • Safety regulations

Take care of paperwork. There is a lot of paperwork to take care of when moving, like changing your address with the post office, updating your car’s registration and insurance, voter’s registrations, etc. Handling these things before your move is ideal, but if you can’t tackle it ahead of time, just be sure you do it quickly after moving in. Some of these things may require you to take care of them within a specific deadline, and if you put it off for too long, you may have to pay a fine.

Prepare for emergencies. In the events of a disaster (fire, earthquake, etc.), exiting an apartment is much more difficult than getting out of a house. This being said, it is very important to learn the quickest and safest escape route, along with safe areas nearby to take shelter. It’s also a good idea to have an emergency kit strategically placed in your apartment in case of emergencies. Be sure to store a list of emergency numbers in your phone as well as place a written list of these numbers inside your emergency kit.

Moving into an apartment may seem difficult, but with these must-know tips, you can turn a stressful situation into a successful one. For more moving tips and tricks, ABC Movers is your number one source!

Essential Last-Minute Supplies to Have Handy on Moving Day

Imagine that you wake up in the morning, and it’s officially moving day. You have worked diligently for months organizing every detail and packing every single belonging for your imminent relocation. Everything is complete except or the heavy lifting … right? Well, you may think so, but believe it or not, there is a good chance that as you empty your home of furniture and boxes, you will come across a drawer or cabinet you forgot to pack, or a few lingering items lying around. How will you pack these items? Times like this call for one thing – extra supplies! For those last lingering items that creep up, here is a list of the essential last-minute supplies to have handy on moving day.

Spare boxes: When moving, one supply you can never have too many of is cardboard boxes. Not only are they great for securely packing your belongings, but they are also useful for other things, like providing extra protection to already packed items and to cover floors to prevent damage and excessive dirt. Since boxes are so convenient, practical and affordable, they are truly indispensable, so be sure to get extras to have on hand for moving day.

Packing tape: Cardboard boxes go hand-in-hand with – you guessed it – packing tape. Without this extremely vital packing supply, there would be no way to secure or seal your moving boxes. The day of the big move, it will be very handy to have packing tape for last-minute needs, like sealing boxes, restructuring any boxes that break, and so on. It is also a good idea to get a packing tape dispenser, because it will save you time and effort.

Permanent markers: Not labeling boxes and other belongings during a move is an easy way to lose your things. Printed labels may come in handy for pre-moving packing, but for last-minute labeling needs, nothing is handier than a permanent marker. Be sure to have several on hand during your move to ensure all of your belongings are clearly marked.

Bags: Plastic bags, sealable bags, trash bags, vacuum bags … all types are welcome on moving day and make an excellent last-minute packing supply. Use them to hold random, loose items you forgot to pack, to gather trash, and so on. The more bags the better; just make sure they’re clean.

Medical Supplies

The day of the big move involves a lot of heavy lifting and moving awkwardly-shaped items. As a result, there is a fairly high risk of injury. In case of injuries, sore muscles, etc., here are some life-saving medical supplies to have on hand.

First-aid kit: For quick and adequate measures, a first-aid kit will provide you with the proper medical supplies in the unfortunate event of an injury.

Pain Relievers: Aspirin and other pain relievers for achy, sore muscles will come in handy during your move, as well as after.

Allergy medications: Environmental factors are one thing that can stir up your allergies, but moving involves a lot of contact with dust, dirt, and other irritants – all things that can really cause allergies to act up. Access to allergy medications on moving day will help alleviate allergy symptoms, which will keep sneezing, itchy eyes and runny noses at bay.

Contact lens solution: With all of the dust and dirt that get blown around during a move, it’s a good idea to have easy access to contact solution in case something gets in your eyes. You should also have your glasses handy, just in case. The last thing you want to have happen in the middle of a move is to have your vision compromised.

Daily medications: Moving day is a day of non-stop, go-go-go action. This makes it likely to lose track of time and also be unable to focus on anything except your move. Unfortunately, this can be problematic if you forget to take your prescription medication(s) during the moving madness, so be sure to keep all daily medications accessible.

Basic Tools

Whether you need to disassemble furniture, measure the dimensions of a doorway, or other random task, having basic tools at your disposal will save you a lot of hassle come moving day. Make sure you have these things:

Swiss army knife: This multifunctional tool not only serves a number of purposes, but it can also easily fit into your pocket.

Scissors: A good pair of scissors will go far on moving day, from cutting tape to sealing boxes, and more. Also consider having a box cutter on hand.

Hand tools: There are several hand tools to keep close by when moving, including a hammer, pliers, screwdriver, nails, screws, duct tape and a measuring tape.

For more moving-related tips and tricks, check out our blog.

Important Documents to Collect Prior to Your Move

Considering the magnitude of the moving process, it can be a challenge to effectively plan and organize all of the complicated aspects of your approaching relocation, along with handling all of the laborious moving-related tasks. Along with key issues to take care of, like these, you also need to gather all of the necessary paperwork. All things considered, paperwork may seem like the simplest task to complete on your moving checklist, but it often proves to be more time-consuming and nerve-wracking than originally anticipated. Not only does collecting and organizing all records and papers need prior, during, and immediately after your relocation take time, effort and diligence, but you also need to keep it safe. It is important to keep in mind that procedures for issuing and/or updating documents can take a long time to complete, so preparing paperwork as early as possible is your best bet to eliminate any potential problems when moving day arrives.

Documents to Collect Pre-Move

While some of the documents you need to take with you when moving are already in your possession, some will need to be retrieved from different institutions. Here is a list of the documents you will need:

Personal IDs. Personal IDs include:

  • Birth certificates
  • Passports
  • Driver’s license
  • Social security cards
  • Marriage/divorce certificates
  • Military documents (I/A)

Be sure to gather all personal IDs for yourself as well as for each member of your family. Some of these documents will be needed during your relocation, so be sure to keep them on hand at all times.

Moving Documents. If your relocation includes hiring a moving company to transport your belongings, you will be provided with important moving documents. These include a signed contract, along with a binding estimate, inventory list, moving-guide pamphlets, etc. These documents will be needed frequently throughout the moving process, so keep them secure and easily accessible during your relocation until moving day. When moving day arrives, place all moving-related paperwork in a secure spot, such as a lockbox – just don’t leave it behind by mistake!

Financial Documents. Financial documents include:

  • Credit cards
  • Bank statements
  • Savings account statements
  • Bank transaction statements
  • Income tax papers
  • Tax receipts
  • Tax deduction bills
  • Loan papers

Be sure to keep all financial documents in a designated folder and away from potential prying eyes. Also, keep track of all moving receipts because moving-related expenses can be used for tax deductions at the end of the year.

Property Documents. If you are moving into a home you purchased and/or out of one you sold, you will have a mountain of property-related documents to keep up with, such as:

  • Selling and buying agreements
  • Lease copies
  • Mortgage documents for new and old homes
  • Property insurance policies
  • Auto insurance cards
  • Registration documents of motor vehicles

Medical Records. To keep everyone healthy, it’s important to visit your doctor shortly before your move so you can obtain all medical documents needed post-move Also, be sure to transfer all prescription medications, and obtain dental records from your dentist’s office. If you have pets, you’ll also need to retrieve copies of veterinary records and vaccination certificates.

School Records. If you have kids, don’t forget to collect their school records. This is important because you will need them to enroll your kids into new school systems after the move. If your child is applying for college, be sure to request certified copies of his/her school transcripts.

Documents Needed When Moving Abroad

If you are moving abroad, you will need to gather a somewhat different set of documents. They include:

  • Valid passport
  • Visa and work permit
  • International health insurance policy
  • Immunization records
  • Pet information and vaccination certificates
  • Emergency contact list, including the address and contact details of the U.S. embassy in your new country

It is also a good idea to obtain an apostille stamp on all important documents (birth certificates, marriage certificates, degree certificates, professional licenses, etc.) when moving abroad. This will assure foreign officials and government agencies that your documents are legit.

For everything you need to know about your upcoming move, ABC Movers can help. Click here to visit our blog or contact us at 800.771.0151.

Prepare Your Belongings for Storage: A How-to Guide

There are items we want to throw away, and there are items we want to hang onto, but we just don’t have the space – like antique furniture, outgrown children’s clothes or artwork. So what should you do with these things? For items you want to keep for future use or sentimental value, it is a god idea to put them in a storage unit. Self-storage units provide a simple and convenient solution. All it takes is choosing an appropriate storage facility and moving your belongings into it. But, before tossing your items inside and locking the door, you want to ensure your belongings will remain in excellent condition while stored. To make this happen, you will need to prepare and pack your items with great care and attention to detail. Check out our useful how-to guide to learn how to prep your belongings for storage.

How to Prep Furniture

  1. If applicable, empty furniture of any items – books, papers, etc. Using a brush attachment for your vacuum, remove any excess dirt, and clean all surfaces with a mild solution of soap and water. Let furniture air dry fully.
  1. Protect your furniture, based on its material. For leather, use a protective spray as well as leather conditioner. For wood finishes, apply a protective coat of wax to seal the wood and reduce the risk of mold development.
  1. Disassemble large furniture pieces (as much as possible). For any protruding elements (table legs, etc.), cover them with a protective layer of bubble wrap.
  1. Pack all detached pieces together so no parts get misplaced. Also, place small hardware parts (bolts, hinges, etc.) in a sealable plastic bag, then tape the bag to the corresponding furniture.
  1. Cover furniture with sheets and blankets. Use specialized fabric furniture covers if your items will be stored long-term, and secure with cinch straps, plastic wrap or rubber bands.

How to Prep Appliances

  1. Empty and thoroughly clean any appliances you intend to put into storage. If you plan to store a fridge/freezer, be sure to defrost it first or expect a wet and moldy disaster!
  1. When cleaning appliances, it’s a good idea to disinfect them properly. A cleaning solution of bleach or baking soda will work as an excellent disinfectant/cleaning agent and will also remove any bad odors.
  1. Completely drain water from any attached hoses or internal mechanisms – especially when storing dishwashers and washing machines. Missing this step can lead to water freezing and damaging your appliances during winter months or mildew during warmer months.
  1. Tie down and secure any attached cables and hoses. Remove any hoses or other attachments, if possible, and store them inside the appliance so they won’t get lost.

Things to consider:

If possible, leave doors on household appliances slightly ajar when stored. This will allow proper ventilation and will prevent condensation and bad odors.

How to Prep Electronic Devices

  1. Ensure all electronics are clean and free of dust.
  1. Pack sensitive electronic devices in their original boxes or ones of similar size and quality. Use crumpled packing paper, foam sheets or anti-static packing peanuts to fill any empty spaces inside boxes to ensure optimal protection during storage.
  1. Seal all boxes tightly in order to keep moisture out and damage away.

How to Prep Clothes

  1. Hang garments on a clothes rail inside wardrobe boxes. This will keep them wrinkle-free and ensure good ventilation to eliminate the risk of mold.
  1. For expensive and delicate clothing items, wrap them in a suitable protective cover to keep them fresh, clean and damage-free.
  1. For clothing that will be stored long-term, use an insect repellant such as naphthalene or mothballs.

Things to consider:

When storing clothes for extended periods of time, avoid folding and piling them into boxes. This will not only lead to wrinkles, but damage due to dust, dampness and mold.

How to Prep Mattresses

  1. Inspect mattresses for any signs of infestation. Also, make sure your mattresses are clean and completely dry. To make sure, consider placing them in a spot with direct sunlight for a few hours.
  1. Place mattresses in a specialized storage bag that supplies a perfect fit. Durable mattress bags are a wise investment when storing mattresses, because they protect against dirt, dust, moisture and pests.
  1. Seal the ends of the plastic protection bags with packing tape.

Things to consider:

Use vacuum bags to save space when storing bedding items, like comforters, duvets, linens, etc.

How to Prep Books

  1. Ensure all books are fully dry. Try spreading them on a table in a sunny room for several days before packing them for storage. Also consider running a dehumidifier in the room.
  1. Wrap leather books in packing paper to eliminate the risk of them sticking to each other.
  1. Place books in small, sturdy boxes. It is recommended to pack books flat – especially larger ones – to prevent damage to their spines.

Things to consider:

Books are incredibly heavy! Avoid using large boxes because they will be too difficult to lift. They may even break under their own weight.

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