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.

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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.

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.

Must-Know Tips for a Successful Pre-Move Garage Sale (Part 1 of 2)

There’s no doubt that over the years you have accumulated a great deal of possessions. From clothes and kitchenware to office supplies and more. But what if you are faced with an imminent move? What will you do with all of the things you own? There are, of course, items that you won’t want to part with, but moving house requires a lot of time and money – and the more things you move with you, the more time and money will be spent. If you have enough time before moving day, you may want to consider having a garage sale. Having a garage sale is the easiest and most efficient way to transform your unnecessary items into less packing and more money to spend on the move. But if you’re going to have an organized, profitable and stress-free sale, you will need a plan. Continue reading for must-know tips for a successful pre-move garage sale.

Organize and Categorize Belongings

The first step to follow when organizing a garage sale is to designate a space in your home where you can gather all the items you want to sell. This area should be kept clean and organized in order to eliminate confusion and stress.

The next step is to take the time to go through all of your belongings and put them into categories:

  • Belongings you only use on rare occasions;
  • Gifts and souvenirs that have no particular monetary or sentimental value;
  • Old magazines, posters, CDs and DVDs that are no longer used;
  • Comic books and old textbooks that you and your family have outgrown or no longer use;
  • Children’s clothes and shoes that no longer fit;
  • Toys your child(ren) have outgrown;
  • Musical instruments and sports equipment that are never used;
  • Tools – lawn mower, etc. that you will not need in your new home; and
  • Clothes, pieces of furniture, kitchenware, appliances, etc. that you don’t care for or use, or that will not fit in your new place.

Once you have sorted all of your possessions and organized them into categories, it’s a good idea to make a detailed list of all items you intend to sell. You may also consider noting the corresponding price for each item. This handy list will be extremely useful on the day of the sale when price tags fall off or get mixed up, and when shoppers ask a lot of questions and insist on making a deal.

Important Questions to Consider

When organizing your garage sale, there are several questions to ask yourself to ensure its success:

What is the condition of the things you are selling? When shopping, do you want to buy belongings that are in poor condition? Our guess is no, you don’t. This being said, you won’t make a very good profit at your sale if the items you are selling are dusty, dirty, wrinkled or damaged. In order to make a maximum profit, take the time to make your items shine! Wash and iron clothes, polish wood surfaces, and thoroughly clean equipment, old kitchenware, and so on. The better your stuff looks, the more profitable the outcome!

How much are your items worth? Pricing your belongings can be tough. Something that holds a bit of sentimental value to you may seem like it should be tagged with a price that’s much higher than garage sale shoppers will ever pay. As a result, overpricing the items you plan to sell will leave you with minimal sales. So do some research on the market value of things you intend to sell – then assign prices according to the demand for the objects, its brand, and especially its current condition.

On the other hand, you also don’t want to underestimate the value of items you are selling, like antiques, vintage objects, or high-quality products. Doing market value research prior to your sale will ensure you price your possessions accurately and make sure you aren’t taken advantage of.

When should your garage sale be held? If there is enough time before your move, it’s important to schedule the date of your garage sale wisely. The ideal date to have a sale is the first weekend of a month, just after payday. It’s also a good idea to check the weather forecast, because gloomy, rainy days or storms will bring less customers.

There’s no set rule to what time your garage sale should begin, but typically, the earlier you start, the better. Having a start time of 8 or 9 a.m. will leave you with a whole day to sell and plenty of time in the afternoon to clean up and organize everything after the sale ends.

These tips are just the start of how to throw a successful pre-move garage sale. To learn more must-know tips, continue on to our next blog!

Top 5 Tips for a Last-Minute Move

Getting your home and belongings organized and ready for a relocation can put a great deal of pressure on your shoulders. This is especially true if you are moving at the last minute. You may have a limited amount of time, but the job must still be done. No matter the reason for your speedy move – getting a new job, a home eviction, a natural disaster, etc. – you will need to prepare for your move quickly, and still manage to do it efficiently. When every moment counts, here are the top five tips you should use in order to make your last-minute move a success.

Separate Belongings

Since time is at stake during a last-minute move, you won’t have time to sell any belongings you don’t care to take with you. But it is still a good idea to organize and separate all items between those you plan to take with you and those you intend to donate or throw away. The more you decide to leave behind, the less time you will spend packing and moving, and you will also save a pretty penny in shipping costs.

Gather Packing Supplies

Once you know what you are taking with you, you will be able to plan what items need to be packed. You will also get an idea of what sort of packing materials you will need. Gathering all packing supplies in advance, and at once, is the ideal choice. If you have to stop packing to buy new boxes, tape, etc., you will lose a lot of valuable time. It will also ruin your concentration, which can be hard to get back into.

Pack “Open First” Boxes

For the first couple of days after your move, you will be met with piles of boxes to unpack and lots to clean. You will also more than likely be exhausted – body and mind – after such a long day of moving (not to mention the fast-action efforts you powered through to make your move happen). To get yourself through those first few days post-move, be sure to pack a box or two with all of your essentials, like clothes, toiletries, cosmetics, cell charger, and so on.

Label Everything

In your rush to pack by a very soon move-out date, you may feel there is no time to be spent on labeling boxes. During the chaos, you may even simply forget to do so. But labeling your boxes will actually save you time overall. Labeling boxes with their destination room will make moving day simpler and more organized, which are both excellent time savers. Also, marking boxes with special instructions (e.g., “fragile”) can save time by avoiding broken items that have to be cleaned up.

Stay Focused and Avoid Distraction

Staying focused can be difficult, especially when packing can feel boring and endless. Not to mention, there are so many distractions surrounding us daily – TV, cell phones, computers. But if you are going to get your belongings packed efficiently, and super speedy, you will need to keep your focus intact. To do this, distractions, like those previously mentioned, should be avoided at all cost.

Following these simple tips and hiring last-minute movers can make your relocation fast and smooth. Don’t lose another minute – get started now!

Top Tips to Avoid Damage When Moving Out

Whether you’re moving out of a rental house or a home you own, you need to take proper precautions to prevent property damage from occurring during your relocation. If your property is going to be put on the market, chipped walls and scratched floors will negatively affect the sale. This is why it needs to be in perfect condition after moving in order to pocket the most money out of the deal. If you are moving out of a rental home, you also need to leave the property in excellent condition if you want to get your security deposit back. Whatever your moving situation is, here are some tips to help protect your property when relocating.

Hire Professional Movers

The easiest way to avoid damage when moving out is to hire a trustworthy moving company. Professional movers have all the required equipment, along with the necessary skills to ensure your belongings are moved in a safe and danger-free manner. They also have enough experience under their belts to foresee every potential risk, so they can take adequate measures to keep your home and personal items safe.

Properly Pack Your Belongings

To help reduce the risk of damaged items during your move, it’s important to pack everything safely and securely. This means using adequate packing materials, sorting out your belongings, and packing every single item based on its weight, shape and fragility. Here are some tips:

  • Use sturdy boxes;
  • Secure boxes with heavy-duty packing tape;
  • Provide sufficient padding inside boxes, containers, etc.;
  • Avoid placing too many heavy items inside one box. Instead, distribute hefty items into small containers that are easy to carry around;
  • Use large boxes solely for light items; and
  • Dismantle furniture and carefully wrap edges that are sharp or protruding.

Use Proper Moving Equipment
Before you move heavy items – furniture, large appliances, etc. – it’s important to get the proper moving equipment to facilitate your needs. Otherwise, you risk serious injury. Below are some well-known tools that will help make moving large, bulky items easy, as well as keep your home damage-free.

Dolly/Hand-Cart. With the use of a dolly/hand-cart, you will be able to move heavy furniture or multiple boxes without risking damage to the floors. This tool will also reduce strain on your body, helping lower the risk of injury.

Moving Pads. Sliding hefty items across the floor in order to move them can lead to scrapes and dents. Moving pads are the most reliable and easiest method to tackle this type of task.

Straps. Cabinet doors, desk drawers, and other belongings that open can easily do so when being moved. The result: wrecked floors and damaged doorframes. To avoid problems like these, use straps to keep them properly secured.

Safeguard Your Property

Property damage is very possible when moving house. This can negatively affect a home being put up for sale, as well as cause rental deposits to be forfeited. Use adequate measures and materials to avoid accidental damage during your move. Safeguard your properly with items like these:

Furniture Blankets. Furniture blankets serve multiple purposes, which makes them very handy when safeguarding your home from moving damage. They can be used to create a protective barrier for furniture, floors, walls, etc. You can also drape and secure them over bannisters to eliminate damage when moving items up and down stairs.

Plywood Sheets. Hardwood and tile floors are highly susceptible to harm, especially when hit by a heavy appliance. To safeguard your floors, cover them with sheets of plywood to absorb any damaging blows on moving day.

Carpet Film Protectors. These protectors are designed specifically to protect carpets by providing them with a tear-free, non-slip surface. They also do not leave adhesive residue and are suitable for covering all types of floors.

Corner Guards. Moving day leaves corners and edges susceptible to chipping. Installing corner guards around your home prior to moving activities will prevent this from happening.

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Important Qualities to Look for in a Moving Company

During the strenuous process of preparing for a move, there will come a time where you’ll admit you need help. While friends and family can come in handy during the stressful events of your move, opting for the help of a professional moving company is the ultimate choice. Not only will it save you a whole lot of stress, it will also leave you time to focus on other important moving tasks. But before you hire the first help you find, here are some important qualities you should look for to ensure you make the right choice.

Are they legit?

Before you dive in and hire the first moving company you come across, it is extremely important to ensure that they are legit. There are a lot of “rogue” movers out there with the solid intention of reeling you in with ultra-low prices just to screw you over in the end. To avoid tragic situations like this, you need to do your research. To guarantee a safe move, you need to hire movers that are fully bonded and certified, who operate legally and meet all federal insurance, safety and financial standards.

The ultimate way to verify the legitimacy of a moving company is by checking their license. A legitimate intrastate moving company is required to have a USDOT number issued by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). So in order for an intrastate moving company to legally operate, they need a state license.

Another way to detect a legit moving company is by their membership with the American Mover and Storage Association (AMSA) and/or the Better Business Bureau (BBB). This guarantees that a company abides by the national guidelines and assumes liability for the items in their custody. When reviewing potential movers for your upcoming relocation, be sure to visit the FMCSA official website (or your states government website if you are moving locally) in order to find out if they have a valid USDOT number (or state license).

Are they affordable?

For most, price is the main factor in deciding if a moving company is the right choice for you. Moving is expensive enough without tacking on professional help, after all. The lower the cost a moving company asks of you, the better it seems. But is it? While you want to hire movers within your budget, it’s important that they also offer good customer service.

Finding the perfect balance between quality and cost can be tough. This is why it is worth your time to get at least three or four moving estimates so you can compare prices and conditions offered by different companies. During your estimate, be sure to find out these things:

  • What the quoted price includes;
  • What they consider to be “extra services” and how much is charged for them;
  • What packing materials and packing assistance they provide and at what cost;
  • What deposit is required and if it’s refundable under certain circumstances;
  • If they offer any discounts or promotions; and
  • What payment methods they accept.

Once you have all the necessary information, you can then make an informed decision on the best company for your move.

Are they experienced?

Hiring a moving company then finding out they are inexperienced is a situation you definitely don’t want to end up in. If you’re going to entrust your most prized possessions into the care of complete strangers, you want them to have expert skills and professional know-how in order to provide a smooth, fast and problem-free relocation.

Movers that have been in business for years have faced a large variety of relocation types and gained rich experience in all sorts of situations. This means they are good at what they do and will know exactly how to handle your belongings in a safe and efficient manner, as well as how to take proper care of all other aspects of the grueling moving process.

Another thing to keep in mind is that a moving company would only have remained in business for years if it had proved itself by performing well.

Finding a mover with a flawless track record is huge when it comes to choosing moving services. When speaking with potential movers, be sure to ask them these questions:

  • How long they’ve been in business;
  • If they hire full-time movers and provide adequate training;
  • If they employ temporary workers (Temporary workers lack experience and are likely to make mistakes.);
  • If they have specialized moving equipment (hoisting and rigging systems, for example); and
  • If they have storage facilities.

Are they reliable?

One of the most important qualities to look for in a moving company is reliability. A reliable company will provide all the key traits you are looking for.

  • Legitimate and insured;
  • Provide excellent customer service, treating your belongings with care and attention;
  • Will clear rates and conditions;
  • Will deliver on time; and
  • Will settle problems in a mutually beneficial manner.

So how do you find a well-rounded and reliable moving company? The best way to do this is by verifying the company’s credentials and performing extensive research on their background and reputation. Here’s how:

  • Read online reviews from former customers;
  • Contact the FMCSA’s safety violation and consumer complaints hotline to find out about complaints against your chosen movers;
  • Check the company’s rating with the BBB;
  • Find out if the company has won any awards for their services; and
  • Ask them to provide you with references and show you letters of recommendation.

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

Top Tips for a Smooth Relocation During a Severe Weather Evacuation

severe weather awareness - PHOTO (ABC BLOG)Mother Nature brings many things, from beautiful rolling green hills to massive sunrises and sunsets. But while Mother Nature is fairly calm for the most part, she can also be quite fierce at times, blowing in with reckless abandon, causing destruction and devastation to whatever is in her path. While most times we can find safety from bad weather in a designated safe spot, there are times when weather conditions can become so severe we are required to evacuate our homes – even towns. So, what do you do when dangerous weather hits and you have to relocate? Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about packing up and moving during dangerous weather.

Prepare an Emergency Supply Kit

Emergency Evacuation Supply Kit - PHOTO - ABC BLOGThe first thing you should do when evacuating is to prepare an emergency supply kit. It should include:

  • Bottled water: Water is our most vital resource, and you should have an adequate supply in your emergency supply kit. Each person needs one gallon of water per day. You need enough water in your kit to last each family member three days.
  • Non-perishable food: Food is another essential you will need during your evacuation, so stock up on non-perishable items. Example: soups, cereals, nuts, crackers, peanut butter, jelly, energy bars, etc. Also included in your supply kit should be food for babies, infants and/or pets. And don’t forget the can opener!
  • Blankets, sleeping bags, change of clothes: Be sure to pack enough of each of these things for all family members. Make sure to take the weather and temperature into account.
  • Prescription medicine/First-aid kits: Be sure to pack your emergency supply kit with all prescription medications. Also, include first-aid supplies, such as pain relievers, sterile bandages, antiseptic lotion, allergy meds, thermometer, etc.
  • Toiletries: Just as when you go anywhere overnight, you should bring along toiletries, like toilet paper, toothbrushes, soap and shampoo.
  • Tools: Another way to prepare your kit for your evacuation is by supplying it with basic tools – a pocket knife, hammer, pliers, duct tape, flashlight/spare batteries, matches and so on.

What to Take with You When Evacuating

If severe weather causes you to evacuate your home, or town, there are some things you should always bring with you – no matter what. Some essentials include:

  • Valuables: Any items that are truly valuable should never be left behind. This means things that are irreplaceable. Examples include: cash, bank cards, jewelry, expensive electronics, collectors’ items, family heirlooms and artwork.
  • Important documents: Even if pressed for time while getting ready to evacuate, it is a good idea to try and gather some of your most important documents first. These include:
    • Personal documents: IDs, passports, driver’s licenses, birth certificates, social security cards, diplomas.
    • Financial documents: Banking information, investment papers, tax records.
    • Insurance documents
    • Medical records
    • Home deeds/other property needs
  • Pets: Your pets aren’t just important to you; they are valuable too. So, just as you are evacuating yourself and your family, don’t forget your precious pets. Be sure to bring their transportation carriers, and ensure they have their ID tags secured to them. Also, bring along food and water for them for the journey ahead.

What to Do Before Evacuating

When the time officially comes to evacuate your home, here are some of the important things you should do before leaving.

  • Prepare to evacuate using a planned evacuation route.
  • Start preparing for the evacuation as early as possible. This will help you avoid the risk of being on the road when bad weather strikes, as well as getting a jump-start on the traffic jams that are sure to form.
  • Ensure you don’t leave anyone or anything behind, from family members and pets to valuable items and documents.
  • Turn off the main water valve, switch off the electricity and stop the gas supply.
  • In case of flood, move prized possessions you are unable to take with you to higher ground.
  • Secure any loose objects inside your home – furniture, potted plants, etc.
  • Board up windows and doors.
  • Lock all windows and doors.
  • Fill your car’s gas tank.
  • Have your cell phone and charging cable handy.
  • Load your emergency supply kit and all valuables into your vehicle.

Other Thoughtsemergency movers - PHOTO - ABC BLOG

You may not have considered this, but if there is enough time before severe weather makes its debut, you can hire professional emergency movers to help you move your items out of harm’s way. Professional emergency movers will respond quickly and know how to handle emergency moves. They will also make it possible for you to move – and save – more of your possessions.

For more noteworthy moving tips, ABC Movers has what you need.

Moving from Small Town to Big City: The Pros and Cons (Part 1 of 2)

For many who grow up in a small town, the idea of a big city with its bright lights and forever bustScreen Shot 2017-01-13 at 8.14.24 PMling streets is very intriguing. If you are someone who has always dreamed of the chance to escape small-town life and venture into life in a big city, it is a good idea to consider all of the pros and cons that such a move poses.

The Pros

A big city provides a whole new world of possibilities, potentials and prospects to discover. Here are some of the top pros of moving to a big city.

Great Opportunities. One of the top pros of moving to a big city is the number of great opportunities it presents. While there is a lot opportunities ahead - PHOTOof competition in a big city, there will be plenty of options and opportunities that you won’t be able to find in a small town. Whether you want to advance your studies, improve your skills, enhance your professional expertise, acquire new abilities, expand your world view, or pursue a specific passion, big cities will provide you with the opportunity. Whatever your passion, skills and interests are, you will be able to explore them in full and reach your full potential.

Unlimited Options. If there’s one thing a big city provides, it is options. In fact, it offers so many options that it may actually be overwhelming at times. But, having unlimited options is one of the great things about living in a big city. You’ll suddenly have access to:

  • Enormous shopping centers
  • Every ethnicity of food available, within walking distance
  • Different social events nightly
  • A huge number of restaurants, bars and night clubs

Cultural Diversity. Small towns are known for their like-minded folk, which can lead to only one outlook on every aspect of life. But when you move to a new city, you will be exposed to a variety cultural diversityof different perspectives, values, ideologies, points of view and more. These great cultural and ethnic diversities will expand your knowledge of the world and help you learn to appreciate differences and reject stereotypes.

The Cons

Life in a big city is set at a quicker pace than that of a small town. Everyone is in a rush, and everything happens twice as fast as it does in a small town. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it may make your head spin at times. It can also be added to the list of cons about moving from a small town to a big city. Here are some other cons to consider.

Higher Cost of Living. If life felt expensive living in a small town, then you are in a world of shock at the cost of living in a big city. Life in the city is much pricier than small-town life – it’s a fact. Not only will essentials, like housing, food and transportation, cost you more (around twice as much) than it does in a shigh cost of livingmall town, there are also many temptations that will quickly suck your wallet dry – pubs, theaters, museums and the like.

Strong Competition. One thing you will not be used to when moving to a big city is the strong level of competition among those that live there. While in a small town, there are only a few people with an expertise in a specific area or field. In a big city, there are hundreds – even thousands – of people with the same level of expertise or degree as you. This being said, you will face enormous competition in a big city, a problem that can make it hard to find a job.

Heavy Traffic. One of the biggest cons of city life is the massive amount of people – and cars – on the road. From vehicles, pedestrians, bicyclists, and so on, citcity traffic - PHOTOy streets can be a continuous stream of traffic jams. Finding a parking space can also be a nightmare in a big city. Not only will it take you huge amounts of time trying to find a space, you will also be charged to park there. With such a raging mess, you will quickly become a fan of public transportation.

Now that you know about some of the pros and cons of a big-city move, continue to Part 2 of this blog to learn some necessary steps to take before venturing from small town to big city.