Moving Mistakes to Avoid for a Less Costly, More Efficient Move

From simple mishaps to serious blunders, moving mistakes can ruin your moving adventure – especially if they result in lost money and valuable time being wasted. Moving house is a major event. It takes lots and lots of careful planning, packing and organizing. It also requires many helping hands. The last thing you want to do is create complications and suffer extra expenses by making mistakes that could have easily been avoided. To eliminate emotionally and financially draining mistakes during your move, here are some things to avoid.

Hiring the First Moving Company You Find

Google “moving companies” and you’ll be provided a mega list of choices – each company claiming to be “the best in the business” in order to compete and attract more customers and to make a greater profit. But are they really the best in the biz? All moving companies offer moving services, of course, but their services may be radically different in terms of rate, quality, reliability and terms. Their level of competence and experience, along with equipment used, will also be different. This is why thoroughly researching a moving company before actually hiring one is so important. Hiring the first moving company you discover can lead to money lost and huge disappointment, so take the time to consider all of your options so you will pick the best company for your specific needs and requirements. Here are some important steps to take before hiring movers:

  • Ask for several moving quotes;
  • Interview several selected movers;
  • Request onsite written biding estimates; and
  • Compare and analyze offers.

When contacting moving companies, be sure to give them all relevant information – the number of household items to be moved, the final destination, any potential obstacles and requirements, and so on. Clearly stating your wishes and preferences is necessary in order to get the most accurate quote. Also ask about discounts, specific conditions, guaranteed pick-up and delivery date and time, etc.

Costly Mistakes to Avoid:

  • Believing an estimate given via phone or email is accurate;
  • Withholding relevant, must-know information your movers should know;
  • Hiring movers at random.

Choosing the Moving Company with the Lowest Estimate

As the moving expenses pile up, up, up, saving money is definitely going to be at the forefront of your mind. But don’t let the fear of expenses cause you to make an unwise choice when choosing a moving company. If a moving estimate is too good to be true, then it probably is. You may be dealing with:

  • Rogue movers who plan to disappear with your money and your valuable possessions.
  • Incompetent movers who want to secure the job but will do it poorly.
  • Scam artists who will demand a much greater amount of money than previously stated, for alleged accessorial services. (In this situation, they will not deliver your belongings until you pay these extra fees.)
  • Moving brokers who will sell your move to a third company that has its own tariffs.

All of these scenarios will cause you to pay large amounts of money. To avoid situations like these:

  • Before signing a contract, check the legitimacy of your chosen movers by verifying their USDOT number.
  • Look for any complaints regarding their services by calling the FMSCA safety violations and consumer complaints hotline.
  • Learn how disputes and conflicts have been settled in the past.
  • Read the fine print before signing a contract.

Costly moving mistakes to avoid:

  • Not thoroughly reading/comprehending movers’ paperwork;
  • Not checking movers’ credentials;
  • Signing blank or incomplete documents.


Hiring Movers at the Last Minute

If you have a big move ahead of you, one of the worst things you can do is procrastinate. This means everything, from signing a lease or mortgage on a new home to packing mountains of moving boxes. It also includes waiting too long to hire a moving company. As often as people move, moving companies are quickly booked up, and the longer you wait to sign a contract with one, the bigger the risk of:

  • Restricted available moving dates;
  • Limited moving crews;
  • Limited access to moving equipment and supplies; and
  • Higher price.

Moving at Popular Times

If you want your move to be as flawless and cheap as possible, it’s all about good timing. Here are some moving times to avoid:

During peak moving season. Between the months of May and September, moving costs dramatically increase. This is because more people are moving during this time. The result is paying more to secure a moving crew and vehicle.

On weekends. It’s a lot easier for most to move on weekends when they are off work and have a larger chance of getting help from family and friends. Unfortunately, your weekend free time can mean higher moving costs.

At the beginning or end of the month. There are several reasons why moving mid-month can lead to savings. This is because things like payday, end-of-lease agreements, and starting a new job typically fall at the beginning or end of the month. Because more people move during these times, moving companies are in higher demand, which, in turn, causes prices to skyrocket.

On holidays. National holidays are an extra busy time for a relocation, with moving companies pushed to their limits. The busier the time, the more you’ll pay.

For all your moving needs, contact us or visit our blog.

Top Items to Never Entrust to Movers

When tackling a major move, hiring experienced movers is the ideal choice. This is because professional movers have the training and equipment to perform a smooth and trouble-free relocation. However, no matter how competent and reliable your chosen movers are, it is strongly recommended not to entrust them with certain possessions. Here is a complete list of the valuable items you should always move yourself:

Important Documents

There are many important documents you’ll need to keep track of during your move – passports, driver’s licenses, medical and school records, birth and marriage certificates, insurance policies, bank statements, car registration papers, mortgage papers, etc. While no one will necessarily want to steal or damage your documents, you never know what may happen or how soon you will need them after your move. For all moving-related papers, it’s a good idea to store them in a binder, small safe or lockbox and keep them with you at all times. If you opt for a safe or lockbox, be sure you have the keys to unlock it, and keep them in a safe spot.

Valuable Jewelry

Pieces of jewelry are small and expensive – two elements that make them prone to mysterious disappearances during a move. One, you may lose or misplace an item, and two, someone can easily take it, especially when left unattended during chaotic moving-day activities. To help lower the risk of valuable jewelry being lost, be sure to do your research on moving companies and only hire those movers with an excellent reputation.

Because delicate jewelry pieces can be easily damaged during transport, be very careful when packing these items, and take the time to move them yourself. You will handle them with much more care than anyone else, and you can ensure to get them to your new home safe and sound.

Electronics

You probably won’t be surprised by this, but expensive state-of-the-art electronics top the list of stolen items during a move. This includes everything from flat-screen TVs and computers to stereo, headphones and popular video games. If items like these are stolen, it is obviously a very sad and frustrating event. Not only will you be out a lot of money – and a prized or favorite possession – but you are also put at risk of identity theft if the item stolen has personal information digitally stored on it. To ensure the safety of your most expensive electronics – laptop, digital camera, smartphone, etc. – keep them with you at all times during your relocation. A good way to protect yourself in case of stolen electronics is to secure them with a password (and avoid easy ones like “1234”).

Another problem seen when moving expensive electronics is a high risk of damage. This is especially true during long-distance moves in mid-summer and mid-winter. Why do these times increase the risk of damage? Because of the extreme temperatures and weather conditions – a situation that can lead to irrevocable damage to sensitive devices. Your best bet when moving these items is to store them in a temperature-controlled environment at all times.

Family Heirlooms

The loss of family heirlooms can cost you dearly in many ways. The most obvious one being deep emotional stress because no amount of time or money can ever bring them back again. No matter the object, items of high sentimental value are irreplaceable and should be given special attention during a move. To avoid having them stolen or damaged, pack them with care and keep them with you at all times.

Antiques, Artwork and Collector’s Items

If you own antiques, there is a good chance that many of them are rather large and will need to be placed on a moving truck. To keep these items well protected, wrap them in materials like bubble wrap and packing paper.

Art pieces are much too valuable and delicate to be loaded into a moving truck. But for large items that cannot be transported by car, package them in custom wooden crates that are specifically designed to hold artwork. Be sure to use plenty of bubble wrap, foam sheets and corrugated paper.

If you are a collector, no matter what the item is that you collect, it is something that holds some sort of value to you. If possible, take these items with you during your relocation to avoid having these prized possessions lost or damaged.

An important thing to remember to do before your moving truck departs from your old property is to check to ensure nothing important has been forgotten, misplaced or mistakenly loaded onto the moving truck. It is also a good idea to remember that even if you have hired trustworthy movers, anything can happen. Opting for a liability protection plan is a good way to ensure you are compensated if your belongings end up missing or damaged during your move. For those items of high sentimental value that can never be replaced, don’t risk it, and move them yourself.

For everything you need to know about moving, click here.

Step-By-Step Guide to Unload a Moving Truck the Right Way

After many hours of loading all of your belongings safely inside a moving truck, you are probably already tired and ready for moving day to be over and done. But as you roll up to your new home, you still have many hours of unloading ahead. Sigh! So how do you make the process of unloading a moving truck efficient, speedy and safe? By checking out the handy step-by-step guide below.

1. Fully extend the loading/unloading ramp your rental truck is equipped with. Check the ramp to ensure it is in good operating order and also that it is dry.

2. Open the truck door. This should be done slowly so you won’t disturb items inside, and if something falls out, you will be able to react quickly. The chance of pieces falling out of the truck as you lift the door is high because things easily shift during transportation.

3. Unload items carefully and in the right order.

  • The first item to unload will be the last items you loaded.
  • Next, remove miscellaneous items that are lightweight. These will be those belongings that have been placed on top of larger items or in remaining empty spaces.
  • Household appliances should be next on your unloading list. Since these items are delicate – and heavy – use extra care when moving them, along with a utility dolly and several extra hands.
  • After household appliances have been taken off the truck, tackle bulky boxes.
  • Now comes the time to remove furniture. Be sure to unhook any ropes or moving straps that are holding pieces in place inside the truck. For furniture that contains drawers or doors, check to ensure they are well secured and won’t fall out or swing open while unloading them.
  • Once all of the previously mentioned items have been unloaded, you should be left with just large boxes to remove. Be smart and carry only one box at a time – it will actually be just as quick and will decrease the risk of damaged items and personal injury.

4. Use proper lifting and carrying techniques during the unloading process. Bend your knees, and use the strength of your arms and legs to lift and carry heavy pieces. Be sure to hold items close to your body, take small steps and keep your movements slow and precise.

5. Avoid rushing while unloading your moving truck. Rushing to get the job done faster will only lead to broken belongings and injury. So plan every step carefully and avoid hasty actions.

6. Take belongings directly to their designated location as you remove them from the truck. This will eliminate having to move large, heavy items around your home later, and will also save you lots of time when trying to unpack, because everything will already be in the right spot.

7. Check inside your moving truck one last time to ensure all of your belongings have been removed. Then close and secure the door, and disengage the ramp.

8. If a moving company delivered your items, check your inventory sheet to make sure all of your belongings arrived safe and sound. Be sure to do this while the movers are still there, just in case!

9. If you rented a moving truck for a DIY move and it has officially served its purpose, it’s time to clean the empty truck, fuel it back up and return it on time.

For more must-known moving tips, click here. To learn about our rental services, check out our website.

Helpful Tips to Move Your China Cabinet with No Cracks, Chips or Broken Pieces

Just looking at a china cabinet can leave you feeling tense. All of those delicate items just waiting to break at even the slightest rattle or shake. The worry of breakage is even worse when preparing for a move. One careless step and you risk some of your most valuable items being shattered into thousands of sharp, dangerous pieces. Not only that, but your china cabinet itself is breakable too and can suffer major damage during the moving process. Luckily, there are ways to tackle the fragile process of moving your china cabinet and all of the precious items inside with no cracks, chips or broken pieces. So let out those worried breaths and steady those shaky hands, and check out the following tips.

Must-Have Supplies

Before you can begin the process of packing your china cabinet, you will need to gather all of the necessary supplies. Here’s a list of all of the must-haves:

Dish boxes. To provide the best protection to your breakables, you will need to invest in dish boxes. While similar to typical moving boxes, dish boxes are better for breakables because they are made of a double layer of thick corrugated cardboard. They can also be found with specific slots to provide extra protection around each individual dish. If you are unable to find boxes specifically designed for dishes, you can still use regular moving boxes, but just be sure to include extra padding to compensate for the weaker protection of their single-layered cardboard walls.

Bubble wrap. The air-filled sacks bubble wrap provides is a must-have supply when packing breakables. For delicate items, like china, it will ensure the ultimate protection needed to keep everything safe during the moving process.

Steps to Pack Your China and Breakables

Now that you have the necessary packing supplies, follow these steps to pack your fine china when moving house.

Step 1: Reinforce the bottoms and sides of dish/moving boxes with quality, heavy-duty packing tape. Breakables, like fine china, can become very heavy when packed together. Providing your boxes with extra security is a vital step to ensure your boxes – and the contents inside – won’t break.

Step 2: Layer wads of crumpled paper on the bottom of your boxes before filling them up.

Step 3: Position one fine china plate – or other items – in the middle of several sheets of packing paper. Two or three sheets should suffice. One by one, pull the corner of the sheet stack over the plate until it ends up completely covered. Secure paper edges with packing tape.

Step 4: Using a single sheet of bubble wrap, use the same method as the previous step to wrap your item. Secure with packing tape.

Step 5: Repeat steps 1-4 for each individual piece of chinaware from your china cabinet.

Step 6: When all items are properly wrapped, you can place them inside their designated boxes. For plates, place them in boxes on their edges. Stacking them flat can cause damage to those plates on the bottom due to too much weight bearing down on them.

Step 7: When your box is unable to fit anymore pieces of chinaware, fill any remaining spaces inside the box with packing paper or newspaper. You can also use bubble wrap or old, clean pieces of clothing. The goal here is to make sure nothing moves inside the box during your move. To check, give each box a gentle shake. If you feel, or hear, movement inside, add more padding materials before sealing the lid.

Step 8: Use words like “BREAKABLE”, “FRAGILE”, and “CHINAWARE” to label the top and sides of each box.

Steps to Prepare Your China Cabinet for a Move

Packing the contents of your china cabinet is just the first half of the moving process. The second half is to get the china cabinet itself ready for the big move. China cabinets are very fragile. This being said, the best way to move them is to hire experienced professionals who will do a great job of safely packing and transporting your china cabinet in a way that only experts know how. If hiring a professional mover isn’t in your budget, however, the following steps will help you move your china cabinet safely and efficiently.

Step 1: Empty Contents. Before you can even think about preparing your china cabinet for a move, the first step is to empty all of its contents. (If you skipped the step-by-step guide above on how to pack items from your china cabinet, scroll up!)

Step 2: Handle Glass with Care. Once your cabinet is completely empty, you will need to focus on its glass elements. If your china cabinet contains fragile glass doors and shelves, for instance – as most do – it is crucial to handle these areas with particular care.

Glass Doors. During a bumpy, jostling move, the doors of your china cabinet are bound to swing open – a problem that can lead to damage and even injury to those moving it. The best way to secure doors, especially those made of glass, is by removing them and packing them separately. Remove all doors one by one, slowly and carefully. Then, wrap each door in thick packing paper, followed by a layer of bubble wrap. The final protection step is to wrap doors in furniture blankets and secure them with packing tape. *Be sure to keep all screws, hinges and other small parts in a sealed plastic bag – and don’t forget to label it!

Glass Shelves. Just as you removed the glass doors to your china cabinet, you will also want to remove any glass shelves. Using extra caution, take each shelf out of the cabinet one at a time. Then, wrap them in packing paper and cover them with several sheets of bubble wrap. Be sure to take the same final packing precaution as you did with the doors, and wrap shelves in a final layer of thick furniture blankets. Old, clean blankets you already own will also work.

Step 3: One-Piece or Two-Piece Cabinet? Does your china cabinet have one piece or two? If it is a two-piece china cabinet, it will have two
sections – an upper section where china is displayed, and a lower section with drawers for storage. If there are two sections, be sure to separate them for better packing and protection during your move.

Step 4: Wrap Cabinet in Furniture Blankets. When all pieces – including drawers – have been removed, wrap the entire cabinet in furniture blankets. Be sure all areas are fully

Step 5: Secure Cabinet Legs. If your china cabinet has legs, they are highly susceptible to damage during transportation. To protect these protruding parts, wrap them in thick blankets or multiple sheets of bubble wrap, then use plenty of tape to secure them. Even better, if the legs of your china cabinet can be removed, take them off and pack them accordingly.

Step 6: Move Your China Cabinet.The final step of moving your china cabinet is both tricky and risky. You have to be able to lift it and also know how to use proper moving equipment to move it. An appliance dolly is the best tool to move your china cabinet without damage or injury to those moving it. Make sure the cabinet is adequately secured and immobilized on the dolly with rope or straps before trying to move it.

For all of your professional moving needs, contact us or visit our blog.

Pack Your Desktop Computer with These Tips

Whether a person is old, young or somewhere in between, computers are an essential part of daily life. They offer entertainment, education, and an easy way to instantly connect with others. So when you’re preparing for a move and it’s time to pack your precious computer, you want to take every precaution in order to avoid something bad happening to it. From specific packing supplies to packing preparations, below you will find everything you need to know about how to pack your computer safely to protect it during the bumpy journey ahead.

Packing Supplies

The first rule to packing (no matter what the item is) is to ensure you have the proper supplies to keep your belongings safe and protected. When packing something as valuable as a computer, the process of packing gets a bit trickier – especially for desktop computers because they come with a number of parts (monitor, hard drive, keyboard, mouse). Here are the essential packing supplies you’ll need:

Computer packing boxes. The optimal choice when packing a computer for a move is to use its original packaging. This is because it is professionally designed to provide adequate protection to a computer during travel. But let’s be real … if your computer is more than a few weeks old, any original packaging is most likely long gone. But don’t worry; there are ways around this.

First, ask friends and even IT employees where you work if they have any spare computer boxes you can use. If not, opt for a regular cardboard box. Make sure it’s the right size, and use lots of cushioning materials around the computer.

Bubble wrap and packing paper. Along with boxes, you will need bubble wrap and packing paper to safely pack your computer. Several layers of these two items should be wrapped and secured around your computer in order to help eliminate damage during a move.

Styrofoam inserts, packing peanuts, and air-filled plastic bags. Along with wrapping your computer in bubble wrap and packing paper, it is also a good idea to fill the moving box with extra protection, like styrofoam inserts, packing peanuts or air-filled plastic bags. Supplies like these will provide the necessary protection required during your relocation by absorbing vibrations and negating direct hits that may occur while traveling on the road to your new home.

Packaging tape. Once your computer is safely packed inside a moving box, it’s important to use quality packing tape to seal the lid shut. You will also want to secure sides and seams, along with the underside of the box, for extra reinforcement.

Sealable plastic bags. Computers come with several small parts (cords, screws, etc.). For small items like these, use sealable plastic bags to store them. Be sure to label all bags so parts aren’t lost during the chaos of your move.

Steps to Prepare Your Computer for a Move

Once you have all of the supplies needed, there are some things to do before you can actually use them to pack your computer. Here are some important steps to follow:

Step 1: Backup data. As important as the outside of your computer is, the data it stores inside is just as vital – if not more so. If your computer was to endure damage during your move, if you have a backup of all of your data, you will still have all of your photos, important documents, etc. To backup your data, there are several ways to do it – we suggest using at least two of the following methods, just in case!

  • Upload data to a cloud storage service.
  • Transfer files to an external hard drive.
  • Save information to a flash drive.

Step 2: Measure your computer. Before you can properly pack your computer inside of a box, you will need to know what size packing box you will need. To find out, measure your computer. For desktops, this means measuring both the monitor and computer tower.

Step 3: Remove cables. When it’s time to pack your computer, the first thing you should do is take a picture of how all of its cables are plugged in. This will save you time and confusion when hooking your computer back up after the move. Next, remove all cables from the wall and the computer itself, and pack them accordingly.

Step 4: Keep Your Computer in One Piece. Before you start taking apart and removing important pieces to your computer, opt for the better route and don’t disassemble your computer at all! Taking your computer apart in order to pack it for a move is not necessary. In fact, disassembling then reassembling your computer poses a much greater risk of damage than simply leaving it intact and packing it as is.

For more tips and tricks, click here.

Continued … Must-Know Tips for a Successful Pre-Move Garage Sale (Part 2 of 2)

As you learned in part one of this blog series, having a pre-move garage sale is a good way to lower time and money spent on moving. You also found out a few first-step tips to make your sale a success, like how to organize and categorize your belongings for sale, the best date to have a sale, and even some pricing how-tos. But there’s more to know, so read on to learn even more tips on how to make your sale a success.

Advertise

In order to have a successful pre-move garage sale, you have to make it known that the sale is happening. The best way to do this is by advertising. Here’s how:

Word of Mouth: Via mouth is a good way to advertise your upcoming garage sale. Tell your friends, neighbors and colleagues about the upcoming sale and ask them to help you spread the world.

Social Media: Another way to advertise your sale is by posting about it on social media, especially sites like Facebook that have designated sell pages where people looking to buy used items are likely to visit.

Signs/Posters: It’s also a good idea to tune in to your craft side and create signs/posers promoting your sale. Place them at strategic places in your neighborhood and on busy roads nearby, several days before the sale (on trees, telephone poles, bulletin boards, etc.). Be sure to make signs big and brightly colored with large print so those driving by can clearly see them. Also consider drawing arrows on your signs so visitors will be sure to know which direction your sale is.

Whatever method you use to advertise your garage sale, be sure to do these things:

  • Clearly state the date, time and address of the sale;
  • Entice customers by including pictures of items for sale or by listing highly desirable merchandise.

Display Items Just So

You may think that all you need to do is place your belongings on some tables in front of your house, but if you want to make your garage sale profitable, then you should mind how you display your items. Here’s how:

  • Place similar goods together. This makes it easier for people to find exactly what they are interested in. It will also ensure they won’t miss something that’s jumbled in a large pile of random stuff. Being able to easily browse means they are more likely to keep shopping, which means more cash flow for you;
  • Group baby clothes and other clothing items by size and type to make shopping easier for visitors;
  • Lay smaller objects on tables or shelves. This allows them to be seen clearly;
  • A messy pile or box of clothes will discourage customers from looking through your stuff and it limits how many people can look at once. Hanging them up, however, is a great way to draw people in. Doing so will make them look cleaner and allow for much more organized browsing; and
  • An inviting and pleasant atmosphere is an excellent way of attracting visitors to your sale and will lead to more money in your pocket. So make your sale attractive. Try colorful signs and tags, even some music to help gain a crowd.

Be an Active and Reasonable Seller

As you’ve learned so far, there are many ways to make your pre-move garage sale a success, but one thing not to forget is that you also need to be an active and reasonable seller. Check out the top ways to do this in the list below:

  • Actively participate in the sale and be flexible. This means talking with customers, negotiating, offering last-minute deals, and more. The more invested you are in tending to these needs, the more efficient your sale will be;
  • No one wants to spend time at a garage sale where they feel unwelcome. So, be friendly! Welcome visitors with a smile, and encourage them to feel comfortable. Also, avoid losing your temper if faced with frustrated situations;
  • Don’t tackle a sale alone. Instead, arrange for family members and friends to help you;
  • Be sure to have plenty of change and cash before the sale begins;
  • To get rid of several items at once, and to better satisfy buyers, sell belongings in bundles; and
  • Collect paper and plastic bags and boxes of different sizes to place purchased items in. This will make sales more organized and make it easier for big buyers to tote things to their car. Also consider having some spare wrapping and packing materials to help protect fragile items.

Ensure Safety

The last thing to remember when hosting a pre-move garage sale is to ensure safety for everyone and everything.

  • Remove any obstacles and potential dangers from your property prior to your sale;
  • Animals can become scared by unknown people, and some people are also scared by animals. To avoid any potential injuries or problems, keep animals away during the sale;
  • Eliminate access to your home. Lock doors and secure entrances.

For more tips and tricks to make your move a success, check out our blog.

Top Reasons to Move Off-Season

When it’s time to move house, many opt for the warm and sunny months of summer. This is especially true for those with kids who are on summer vacation. While it may seem like the most convenient and favorable time to move, there are actually many benefits to relocating during the fall and winter seasons. Continue reading to learn some of the top reasons to move in the off-peak moving season.

Lower Moving Cost

There’s no doubt about it – moving is expensive. And with cost being such an important factor to most of us, any chance to save some cash can definitely be worth it. Whether you just need to rent a moving truck or plan to hire a moving company to help you move, rates of course vary. But did you know that using these services in the summer months will cost you much more? This is because summer is the peak time to move, which means there are less moving trucks and companies available. As a result, moving costs are higher. For a less costly move, the best time to move is in the off-seasons of fall and winter. During these times, moving companies lower their rates as much as 30%. Many also offer additional moving coupons and discounts for off-season moves. In a time where any extra money helps, these discounts and deals are very helpful.

More Efficient Movers

It’s a fact that people move and work better in cool weather than they do in hot. This is another reason why a fall or winter move can be beneficial to you. While many think colder weather obstructs us when moving, the opposite is actually true. The cooler and fresher air that comes with the fall and winter seasons helps us acquire more energy, and with more energy to burn, your moving crew will be much more efficient.

Safer and Faster Deliveries

Moving in summer means battling busy roadways – kids are out of school, people are traveling for vacation, and don’t forget, more people are moving so there are more trucks on the road. If you move in the off-peak season, you won’t have to deal with over-crowded streets. While many fear winter road conditions, choosing to relocate in the fall or winter can actually be safer due to less traffic, and can make for faster deliveries.

Increased Attention from Professional Movers

If you have ever been busy at work, you know that it is not always easy to spend enough time on each and every task or client. Well, this is something moving companies face too – especially during peak seasons. When moving companies are busy and their staff is stressed, they have less time to answer your questions and concerns. If you’d like more attention and time from your movers, you can definitely get it much easier during the off-peak seasons of fall and winter.

For more information on our moving services and rates, contact us today at (800).771.0151. Or, click here.

Essential Tips to Pack Your Shoes for a Move

Moving to a new home is one of the biggest steps you can take in your life. It will require a number of things to ensure you are well-equipped for the adventure ahead – a positive attitude, excellent organizational skills, sufficient savings, reliable moving assistance and quality packing supplies. But there’s one more thing needed to conquer the rocky steps to come … a good pair of shoes. As you already know, shoes are a necessity – every day and in every situation. This being said, you will need a reliable pair of shoes before, during and after your relocation. And just as you need to wear good shoes while moving, you also need to pack all of your shoes correctly so they will stay in good condition. To avoid smashing, tearing, breaking or deforming your footwear during your move, here are some essential tips to pack your soles the right way.

Tip 1: Sort your shoes
Before you can pack your shoes, you must first sort through them. This way you will know which pairs should be taken with you and which ones should be left behind.

  • First, put aside any worn out/damaged shoes that you can no longer wear. These shoes can be thrown away prior to your move.
  • Next, set aside any shoes that are in good condition but that you no longer wear, like shoes you have outgrown, formal shoes you no longer have a need for, outdated shoes, uncomfortable shoes, etc. There is no point in moving impractical footwear to your new home. The fewer items you relocate, the less time, packing materials and money will be wasted in the end.
  • Lastly, group all shoes you intend to take with you, according to their type – boots, flip-flops, high heels, sneakers, etc.

Tip 2: Prepare your shoes for packing
Once you have decided which shoes you intend to take with you, you will need to prepare them for packing.

Check for minor repairs. Before packing your shoes, you should inspect each pair for minor repairs. Minor repairs range from replacing zippers or soles to sewing up torn or loose sections. Then, go ahead and have them repaired. There are a few reasons why taking your shoes to a repair shop prior to your move is a good idea, but the main reason is because you may learn that a pair of shoes is not worth fixing. As a result, you may decide not to relocate them after all.

Clean your shoes. Cleaning each pair of shoes you intend to relocate is another good way to prepare them for a move. To do this, remove all dirt and dust. Also, remove any pebbles embedded in the soles, a problem that can harm delicate footwear.

Dry shoes. Packing shoes that contain moisture inside a moving box can lead to a moldy, smelly situation. To avoid this, it is strongly recommended to air out your shoes for a few hours before packing them. For shoes that are especially vulnerable to humidity (sports shoes, work shoes, leather shoes), you may also want to place crumpled paper inside each shoe to help fully absorb any moisture. You can also add powder to the insides to help draw moisture out of leather and other fabrics.

Stuff shoes with paper. Many believe that simply throwing your shoes into a moving box is an efficient packing method, but this can lead to damage. To help your shoes keep their shape and avoid being crushed during transportation, stuff them with paper. While packing paper is the ideal choice, you can also use any clean paper or soft fabric, like socks. Avoid messy items, like newspaper, which will leave behind ink stains.

For shoes/boots that go above the ankle, be sure to stuff them all the way to the top. For high heels, wrap the heels in bubble wrap to prevent them from breaking.

Use proper packing materials. For some, shoes may just be shoes, but for many, they are an investment – especially those with designer names. To preserve your investment during the moving process, you should provide your shoes with the best protection possible by using quality packing materials. Plastic bags and cardboard boxes may be fine for certain things, but for more expensive or valuable items, like pairs of shoes, you will need sturdy boxes, packing paper and quality packing tape.

Tip 3: How to pack shoes
Once you have accomplished the previous tips, you can now focus on how to pack your shoes. When packing shoes for a move, you should focus on two things: safety and efficiency. Here are some ways to make the packing process easier.

Set aside a pair of shoes for moving day. While packing your shoes, be sure to set aside a pair of shoes to wear on moving day. Be sure they have non-slip soles, will protect your feet, and also ensure safety and comfort.

Separately pack footwear you’ll need within the first few days post-move. They should be season-appropriate, good for running around town, and also provide comfort when unpacking your belongings.

Use boxes. The ideal way to pack is to wrap your shoes in packing paper and place them inside their original boxes. But if these boxes have long been thrown away, use small- to medium-sized boxes that are clean and strong enough to provide adequate protection. Once shoes are inside the appropriate box, seal the box with packing tape.

Another idea is to pack your shoes inside plastic containers instead of cardboard boxes. Plastic containers will provide excellent protection from dust, dirt and external moisture.

Pack in pairs. To avoid a maddening hunt to locate a single shoe, always pack your shoes together as a pair.

Pack heavy shoes first. If packing several pairs of shoes in one box, be sure to place heavier ones on the bottom. Cover them with a protective layer of packing paper, then place lighter shoes on top.

Don’t overpack boxes. When piled together, shoes are quite heavy, so it’s important not to put too many pairs together in one box. Overpacked boxes will be too heavy and difficult to lift and carry, and may even crush under their own weight.

For more packing tips, click here.

Prepare for Your Upcoming Move with This Week-by-Week Timeline

moving checklist - PHOTO (ABC)When preparing for something as big as moving house, it is important to be as organized as possible. One way is by creating a week-by-week moving checklist and sticking to it. Check out the following guide for help creating your own personal moving timeline – from eight weeks to one week prior to moving day.

Weeks Prior to Moving Day: 8

  • Decision time! Eight weeks prior to moving day is the optimal time to make that important decision – opt for a self-move or hire movers.
  • If you are currently renting, inform your landlord that you will soon be leaving the property, and begin your search for a new place in the city you are moving to.
  • Confirm with your current employer that you will be moving, and arrange your first day of work at your new job. Or, if you do not yet have a job in your new area, begin your search as soon as possible.
  • Create a moving budget so you will know roughly how much money you will need to organize and execute your upcoming move.
  • If you decide to use professional movers, being your search for a top-rated moving company that is affordable and professional.
  • Contact several moving companies and request an in-house estimation of your future relocation costs.
  • Inventory your home by making a detailed room-by-room list of all your possessions.
  • Review your home inventory list and decide which items you will take with you and which ones will be left behind.
  • Create a special binder to keep all of your moving-related paperwork.
  • Begin thinking about how you are going to pack your belongings.

Weeks Prior to Moving Day: 6

  • If you have opted for a self-move, begin strategizing your plans for renting a moving truck. Contact truck rental companies and compare prices and conditions.
  • Collect all medical records from your doctor and also from your pet’s vet. If you have school-aged children, now is the time to also obtain their school records. This is also a good time to take your pet(s) to the vet for a complete check-up, required vaccinations, and advice on the upcoming relocation.
  • Start looking for a new healthcare provider and a new school for your kid(s) in your future city. Be sure to ask around for suggestions and recommendations before the move takes place.
  • If your move is local, visit your soon-to-be home, and measure the dimensions of rooms and doorways. This will eliminate potential problems come moving day.

Weeks Prior to Moving Day: 4

  • If you will be having a self-move, four weeks prior to moving day is a good time to go ahead and contact your friends and family to ask them if they can help you move.
  • Begin collecting moving boxes of various sizes. Also, gather packing supplies, such as:
    • Bubble wrap
    • Tape
    • Markers
    • Packing paper
  • Learn what items your moving company forbids being transported due to their hazardous nature.
  • Cancel any subscriptions for delivery services and memberships to clubs/organizations.
  • Driving to your new home? Now is the optimal time to have your car serviced so your upcoming road trip goes smoothly.
  • If you are flying to your new home, you will need to find a trustworthy auto transporter to ship your car.
  • Arrange travel plans – book flights and hotels, collect important documents, etc.
  • Begin packing, being sure to label all of your boxes. This will make unpacking much faster and more efficient.
  • While packing, prepare one or two boxes/containers with all of the absolute essentials you will need during the time when you won’t have easy access to your belongings.

Weeks Prior to Moving Day: 2

  • Contact your chosen professional mover to ensure all plans are still in order.
  • If moving with kids, make a point to talk with them about the upcoming move. Discuss with them what is expected from them, and also use this time to calm down any fears they may have of the unknown ahead.
  • Contact your current utility companies to inform them of the date your services will need to be disconnected. Also, contact service providers in your new area, and arrange a connection date.
  • Consider how you will pack and ship any fragile or valuable items – artwork, paintings, antique furniture, and jewelry. For optimal protection, use appropriate packing techniques with materials that provide good cushion and padding, like bubble wrap and packing paper.

Weeks Prior to Moving Day: 1

  • Pay any remaining bills before your scheduled move-out date.
  • Begin disassembling large furniture – dressers, beds, desks, etc. Keep in mind, you may need help handling these tasks, so you will need to have enough time to find helpers.
  • If you have fallen behind in your moving schedule, seek aid from friends or professional movers.
  • Make a move-out cleaning checklist, and prepare all cleaning materials in advance.
  • Finish any last-minute organizing, packing and preparing for the big day ahead.

For all the moving tips and tricks you need to know, click here.

Changing Your Mailing Address: Things to Know

When you are moving to a new home, you will endure many complicated – albeit, stressful – situations. In the scheme of things, changing your mailing address may seem like achange your mailing adress LETTER - PHOTO (ABC) relatively easy thing to do – and in most situations, it is. But there are some required steps to take in order to ensure the process is done correctly. Here are some things to know about changing your address so no important mail gets lost!

Top Things to Know Before Requesting a Change of Address (COA) with the United States Postal Service (USPS)

Do you know your correct address?

Sure, you know the location of your soon-to-be home, but do you know the correct address? It may sound silly, but during the stress and mayhem that surrounds your move, you may not even know your future address. You may think you’re going to live on a ‘road’ when you’ll actually be living on a ‘lane’ or ‘circle’. Before registering your new ad
dress with the USPS, be sure to confirm with your realtor, or landlord, of the correct, complete and error-free postal address of your future home.

Should you choose a temporary or permanent change of address?

When changing your address, you will have two options: to file a temporary change of address or a permanent change of address. Here’s the difference:

A temporary address change means your mail will be forwarded from your old mailing address to the new one for only a specific amount of time – usually 6-12 months. This option is best if you are moving temporarily, such as spending the winter months in a warmer climate, but then moving back to your original address.

A permanent change of address means your mailing address will be permanently changed – not just for a specified period of time. This option should be chosen if you do not plan to move house again in the near future.

Should you request an individual or family change of address?

Another option you will have when changing your address with the USPS will be to change the address of an individual or an entire family. If your entire family is moving as one – and has the same surname – you will need to fill out just one change-of-address form for the entire household. Easy! But things get a bit more complicated if members of your family have different surnames, or some individuals are moving to a new location while the rest are staying behind. For this situation, you will need to fill out a separate change-of-address request for each individual person.

How long does it take for your address to be changed?

The USPS is rather quick, but when you change your address, the request will not be immediate. In general, a change of address will take effect roughly seven days after your request is submitted. However, there are some potential road blocks that could cause it to take longer, such as:

  • Your exact location
  • The time of year
  • The number of requests currently being processed

However, do note that your COA request may be processed much faster than anticipated, especially for a local move.

When should you change your address?

It is up to you as to how far in advance you request a change of address, but a good rule of thumb is to do it two weeks prior to your move. The main advantage of this is that your mail will start being delivered to your new home by the time you have moved in. This way you won’t have to worry about mail being delivered to your old address when you no longer live there. Another advantage of changing your address two weeks prior to your move is that you won’t have to take care of this task after moving day is over. Instead, you can focus on the main job at hand – unpacking!

Now that you know some of the important things to do before changing your address, here’s a look at how to actually do it. Here are some methods to consider:

Method 1: Change address online

Changing your address online is typically the easiest and most convenient method. Here’s how:

  • Access the official USPS change-of-address form via usps.com/move;
  • Fill out the required fields with the accurate information;
  • Provide a valid e-mail address to receive a confirmation email by the USPS;
  • Using a debit card or credit card, you will be charged a verification fee of $1. This is a standard procedure to verify or identify and safeguard your personal information so no address fraud is possible;
  • Ensure you receive a confirmation email so you know your COA request was processed successfully.

Method 2: Change address in person

If you’re more of a person-to-person type of individual, you may primagesefer to change your address at the actual post office. To do this:

  • Drive to the nearest post office;
  • Request PS Form 3575, and fill it out on the spot;
  • Turn in your filled-out form to the post master;
  • Changing your address in person at the post office will not cost you anything, because you will be required to prove your identity in person.

Method 3: Change address by phone

If you want to save yourself a trip to the post office, you can also choose to change your address via phone. Here’s how:

  • Call 1-800-ASK-USPS, and follow the recorded instructions;
  • You will again be charged an identification fee of $1, so have your debit card or credit card ready when making the call.

Method 4: Change address by mail

Prefer snail mail? If so, this is also an option for changing your address. To do this, follow these steps:

  • Download the USPS printable change-of-address form – PS Form 3575;
  • Print out the COA form, following the detailed instructions from the link above to ensure you fill it out correctly;
  • Place your filled-out form in a stamped envelope and mail it to: POSTMASTER; United States Postal Service;
  • Wait to receive a move-validation letter. It will be sent to your old address;
  • You will receive a confirmation letter within 10 days after the actual change-of-address request has been processed and goes into effect. This will be sent to your new address.

Looking for more moving tips and tricks? Check out our blog, here.