How to Spot a Bad Moving Company

Moving house requires many things, but planning and preparing are two of the biggest. These tasks help make a relocation easy and more successful, and you do want that, don’t you? Sure you do! Unfortunately, no matter how much effort you put into orchestrating a move that is flawless, certain events can occur that are simply out of your control. One thing, in particular, is to hire a bad moving company. After putting so much time and effort into planning and preparing a good local or long-distance move, it can be truly disheartening to have a poor moving company ruin it all. Though there are some movers out there who are dishonest, disreputable and fraudulent, let it be known that there are also many good and respectable moving companies that strive to make your relocation a success. So how do you bypass the “bad” movers and end up with a “good” one? The first step is by learning how to spot a bad moving company.

Bad Online Reputation

When on the search for a moving company to help with your relocation, one of the first things to research online are reviews and testimonials left by former customers. Good, reliable movers care about their reputation and work hard to keep their online record clean by providing excellent service and handling any claims, disputes and issues with clients in a quick and fair manner. Yes, there will also be a few bad reviews every now and again no matter what the business, but if a moving company is followed by mostly bad reviews, proceed with caution because you may be next to leave a bad review.

Not Licensed

All legit businesses must be registered with and licensed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). This includes interstate movers. Before hiring a moving company, you should check out the FMCSA’s website and ensure they have the required licensing information. If they do not, run the other way because you may be dealing with scammers.

Refuse to Insure Your Belongings

Just as moving companies are required to have the proper licensing, they must also assume proper liability for the value of items they relocate. As a consumer, it is your right to ask a moving company for proof of insurance, request any additional information about insurance options they offer, and what their process is for filing a claim in case of lost or damaged items.

If a mover refuses to provide you with the proper moving coverage for your items, this is a big warning sign that something’s not right and you should take your business elsewhere.

Phone or Internet Estimates Only

Getting a moving estimate via the phone or internet is incredibly easy. But consider this – how will a mover be trusted to provide you with a precise moving estimate without performing a detailed, in-home inspection of all the items you have to move? Obviously, they can’t.

In order to get a detailed and accurate moving estimate, it is important to request an in-home inspection by a qualified representative from the company. The primary job of a moving expert is to determine exactly how many items a person has to move, along with any special circumstances there may be (e.g., an item is too heavy, awkwardly shaped, fragile, etc.). They are also responsible for noting any details that will affect the final cost of the move, such as special packing requirements, long flights of stairs, narrow hallways or doors, and so on.

With all of this said, to ensure you are not handed an alarming bill after your move, never accept moving estimates solely over the phone or internet. Also make sure you get an in-home estimate from several reputable moving companies (not just one!) before making your final decision in who to hire for your relocation needs.

Other Red Flags to Watch Out For

We have already discussed several things you should do to ensure you don’t hire a bad moving company for your relocation, but there are some additional red flags to be aware of. If you experience any of these things during your search for a moving company, don’t hire them.

  • They do not answer the phone with their company name.
  • They do not have a website, or their website does not provide licensing information, insurance options, nor an address.
  • The mover does not provide flexible payment options, but instead demands a large deposit or cash-only payment.
  • On moving day, your movers show up in an unmarked moving truck, seem unprofessional, bring dirty or damaged packing materials, or behave in a rude manner.

For more moving tips and tricks, we’ve got ’em!

Top 12 Things to Do Before Moving Out

From the moment you decide to move to the moment the moving truck shows up, you will be met with a variety of tasks to accomplish. In fact, the number of moving chores and packing jobs can become so overwhelming you may get easily confused about what things you need to do before moving out, and when you need to do them. To better tackle all your moving tasks, and make your move a success, here are the top 12 most important things to do before moving out.

1. Research packing supplies and tips on packing. This will help you prepare yourself with everything you need in order to properly pack all of your belongings.

2. Sort through your belongings, organizing everything into three main categories: “To Keep”, “To Donate/Sell”, “To Throw Away”. Remember, the more items you move with you, the more it will cost in terms of the amount of supplies you will require and how much it will cost to ship all of your possessions. By donating, selling or even throwing away any items you no longer have a use for, you will save money on your moving shipment, spend less time packing, and may even make a few bucks on those belongings you decide to sell.

3. Make a moving budget. This will help you decide what kind of move you can afford. Be honest with yourself about your finances, and ask yourself some important questions. “Will you be able to afford professional packers and movers, or will you need to stick to a self-move with just you and help from your family and friends?” “Can you afford to buy all of your packing supplies, or do you need to locate as many free moving boxes as possible?” Figuring out the answers to questions like these will help ensure you stick to your budget instead of drowning in expenses.

4. Designate a specific spot for all of your important moving documents, such as a brightly colored folder. This will make it easier to keep everything together so you won’t lose anything and also so you can access any documents quickly and efficiently. Be sure to keep this folder with you at all times so you don’t lose it during the stressful, and often chaotic, hustle and bustle of moving day.

5. If you are moving out of a rental property, be sure to let your landlord know about your plans to move, as soon as possible.

6. Figure out how to properly pack and ship certain items, such as those that are fragile and need to be handled with the utmost care. When researching this subject, consider what specific packing supplies you will need, like bubble wrap, packing paper, protective blankets, and other cushioning materials.

7. Get a moving estimate. To do this, contact a few reputable moving companies near you. An in-person estimate is best, so schedule a time for movers to come to your current home to help create a more accurate estimate for your move. Be sure to let them know how many items you intend to move and what fragile items, if any, you may have that will require more movers or special moving tools or supplies. Also be sure to inform them of any obstacles that may hinder your move – flights of stairs, a long distance from your door to the moving truck, etc. All of these things will make an impact on the cost of your move and what your chosen movers will need to come prepared with the day of the move.

8. Prepare your old home – and new one if possible – for moving day. Many things can happen during a move, from scuffed floors and damaged walls, to personal injury, etc. This being said, you will want to ensure the property is protected. Cardboard is a great tool to use because it provides cushion and protection to all sorts of things. Cover floors and carpets with it to help eliminate dirt and other problems from occurring. You can also wrap cardboard around stair railings and sharp corners to help keep them protected from large furniture, and other items that are being moved about.

9. Pay extra attention to how you wrap and carry large, bulky items, such as couches, tables and chairs. To avoid damage to your belongings, property, and yourself, be sure to wrap any protruding areas, like table and chair legs, with extra protective layers. If possible, remove these pieces and wrap them separately to make them less awkward to move.

10. Find out ways you can save money during your move. One way is to opt for a self-move with free help from family and friends. Moving boxes and other packing supplies is another great way to save money when moving. Check grocery stores, liquor stores, and bookstores, which have a continuous supply of boxes.

11. Create a move-out cleaning checklist. This will help guide you through the steps to take to leave your old home in good shape. If leaving a rental property, this will help ensure you get your deposit back, which will be more money in your pocket for your move.

12. Change your address with the many companies and people who should be aware of your whereabouts. Some include: utility companies, banks, the post office, schools, the department of motor vehicles, family and friends.

For professional moving services and more pre-move tips, click here.

Easy Ways to Reward Yourself After a Move

Moving house is no joke. It takes tons of time, planning, packing and muscle. So, after a long adrenaline-filled moving day, there is no doubt that you will be exhausted. Though happy that you finally conquered your move and made it to your new home without any major accidents, it can be difficult to get your energy bar to raise from depleted to energized. So, what do you do? Reward yourself! To do this, you will need to turn your attention back on yourself. Yes, there are loads of post-relocation tasks that are begging to be completed, but after such a long and grueling moving process, it is important to let both your mind and body recuperate. So let the piles of boxes wait, and delve into one of the creative ways to reward and rejuvenate yourself that we’ve provided below.

Go to the Movies

The moving process can make you feel very overwhelmed, causing a number of negative things to happen. For instance, your mood may suffer, you may not sleep as well as usual, and you may not be able to focus on non-moving-related situations. This is why it is important to do something fun to take your mind off of the stress weighing down upon you. Going to the movies is one way to reward yourself after a move. A couple hours of distraction will do wonders in helping you clear your mind and recharge your batteries so you can get your post-moving tasks accomplished more efficiently.

Have a Housewarming Party

Your new home may take some time to look and feel exactly as you want it to, but don’t let this stop you from having a housewarming party. Inviting friends – and even new neighbors – over for a night of fun is a great way to relieve stress, so order some pizzas and pop open a bottle of champagne and toast yourself to a job well done!

Give Yourself Some R&R

Nothing rejuvenates the mind and body like some genuine R&R. Whether you choose to combat post-moving exhausting by catching extra zzz’s, diving into a new book or just watching TV, how you choose to take it easy is totally up to you. Trust us, it will be worth it.

Browse the Internet

One of the best – and most fun – aspects of moving is making your house a home. This means arranging and decorating it so it ultimately becomes the dream home you’ve always envisioned for yourself. After a tough move, though, these tasks will be much too draining. So instead, browse websites like Pinterest, which offer millions of ideas at your fingertips and let your future decorating plans unfold.

Explore Your Surroundings

What better way to rejuvenate yourself after a move than to explore your new surroundings? It may seem somewhat scary at first, but going on this brave adventure will empower you as well as excite you when you learn of all the great sites that await you. So take the bull by the horns and venture into your new town so you can learn all there is to know about it. Who knows, maybe you’ll even meet some new people along the way.

Treat Yourself

Since moving house can be such a stressful and overwhelming event, it takes a lot of motivation to get the job done. So why not boost your motivation level by setting up a reward system prior to your move? For instance, once you conquer your move and it is officially complete, you can buy yourself something extra special. A fancy new smartphone perhaps? Or maybe a flat-screen TV for your new home? Whatever reward you decide on, it will be a nice treat at the end of a long and stressful event.

For all you need to know about moving, visit our blog!

Moving: Top Reasons It’s So Stressful

When a move is ahead, the first word that comes to mind for many is stress. In fact, moving ranks among one of the most stressful events in one’s life. It’s really no surprise, considering it’s such a costly, laborious and nerve-wracking endeavor. But what really makes moving so stressful? Several specific factors cause the tension and anxiety typically associated with the moving process. Here is a breakdown of the top reasons why moving is so stressful.

Breaking the News

Breaking the news to family and friends of your life-changing decision to move can be one of the toughest parts of an impending relocation. Though this requires neither strenuous effort nor time or money, the news may come as a shock and even cause conflicts and tension in the home – especially if you have children. Because of this, you need to be very careful, positive and patient when discussing your upcoming move with your kids. Kids, especially those that are young in age, are unable to fully understand what moving is all about, and are not as able to process their thoughts and feelings as well as you. They may get upset, scared or confused by the prospect of leaving their safe and familiar world behind. After all, the unknown can be a very scary concept. If you have school-aged children and teenagers, be prepared for some grumbling, shouting, angry retorts, and bitter tears, and a loud door slam or two.

Finding a Suitable Home

One of the first steps in the relocation process is finding a suitable home for you and your family. This task alone is extremely difficult, as well as time-consuming, especially if you’re moving to an area you are unfamiliar with. To help make the process easier, it is a good idea to visit your new city in person several months before the move to get a good understanding of your new location. This way, you will be able to find:

  • Safe and pleasant neighborhood: Exploring different neighborhoods in your soon-to-be town will help you find one that will meet all of your specific requirements in terms of safety, agreeable surroundings, and friendly community;
  • Appropriate residence: Whether you need a small apartment or a large house with a spacious backyard, you will want to ensure that wherever your new residence is, that it is in excellent condition and will provide you with all the comfort and coziness you desire. It should also come at an affordable price.
  • Convenient location: Your new home should be conveniently located to all of the necessities – work, children’s school, local amenities, medical facilities, etc. Your new location should also meet your lifestyle and personal preferences.

Finding Reliable Movers

As soon as you know when and where you will be moving, as well as pin down a suitable home, you will need to figure out how to get all of your belongings there safely and efficiently. Unless you have decided on a self-move (which is best for short-distance moves), you will need to find trustworthy, reliable movers to ship your belongings to your new home. Due to the large volume of moving companies out there, finding movers won’t be a problem. However, finding movers that are experienced, dependable, and affordable will be a much harder task. Your final decision will define the kind of moving experience you will have. This being said, the process of finding a solid moving company adds stress to your move. In order to find good movers, you will need to do careful research and pay meticulous attention to details. This way, your relocation will be successful and stress-free.

Organizing Your Belongings

A little organizing here and there isn’t all that bad. But organizing your belongings for a move is a serious and challenging task. You’ll have to clean out closets, kitchen cabinets, a basement or garage, etc. All of these areas will take time, strength and lots of decision making. Here are two essential reasons it’s an important step in the moving process:

  1. The fewer items you relocate, the less you will pay in moving costs. This is because your final moving costs depend on the weight of your shipment.
  2. The better organized your belongings are, the easier it will be to pack, unpack and transport them.

Packing Safely

The safety of your belongings will be one of your primary concerns when moving to a new home. In order to ensure your things get from Point A to Point B safe and sound, you will need to pack properly. This means using quality packing materials and knowing how to best pack, arrange and secure your belongings in moving boxes and in a moving truck.

For more moving tips and tricks, click here.

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 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!

Tips to Conquer the Most Common Moving-Day Problems

After making the difficult decision to move to a new home, you have spent the last several weeks, even months, organizing, planning and packing. As much effort as you have put into your move, you have made certain that nothing could possible go wrong come moving day. Right? Well, hopefully this is true. However, there are some moving-day glitches that may occur. But don’t panic! With every problem there is a solution. Here is a list of the most common moving-day problems, along with a handy list of tips to conquer them.

Weather Hazards

Mother Nature is tricky. One day, the sun is shining and the temperature is perfection. Then the next, you may find a torrential downpour wreaking havoc outside your front door. This being said, weather is one glitch that can put a serious damper on moving day. Unfortunately, there is little you can do to prevent bad weather from sweeping your way. However, there are ways to conquer it. How, you ask? By being prepared. Here are some weather glitches you may have to deal with on moving day and how to be prepared for each.

Extreme heat. High levels of stress, strenuous movements and scorching temperatures outside can pose a great threat to your health. Temperatures that are too high can lead to a serious risk of heat stroke or heat exhaustion. Not only that, but high temperatures can also be damaging to certain belongings. Extreme heat can even cause your moving truck to overheat and break down. With all of the potential problems caused by extreme heat, it is a good idea to postpone your move until temperatures drop to safer levels.

If the heat is not too intense and you decide to continue with your move according to plan, be sure to take the necessary measures to stay cool and hydrated, by dressing in light-colored and lightweight clothing and drinking lots of water.

Heavy snowfall. One pro to moving during the months of winter is that it is typically less costly. However, moving in winter can lead to unpredictable weather conditions, like heavy snowfall. If you live in a snowy region, there are a number of problems that can stand in the way of your moving plans.

Your driveway or road between your current and soon-to-be home may be blocked by a snowdrift. Driving and maneuvering your moving truck on snowy, icy roads can be dangerous. It may also be impossible for your moving truck to access your property. Your moving shipment may even be delayed or damaged by freezing temperatures. If you intend to perform your move regardless of inclement weather, be sure to keep your driveway free of ice and snow, dress in warm clothes, and add extra layers of protective wrapping to your household items.

Torrential rain. A few raindrops aren’t worth fretting about, but torrential rain like that of thunderstorms or hailstorms can completely ruin your moving plans. Not only does rain increase the risk of slipping and becoming injured, but your belongings are also put at an increased risk of becoming damaged. Luckily, with most rainstorms, they typically taper off within a few hours, and moving can commence. To help make rainy conditions more manageable, dress in appropriate clothes and sturdy boots, and make sure your belongings are properly wrapped and kept dry and safe.

Bad Movers

Hiring a moving company to help you with your move is a great idea. However, if you fail to do adequate research prior to hiring movers, you may be caught in a moving-day dilemma. There are two types of bad movers – incompetent movers and rogue movers.

Incompetent movers. A moving company may have great intentions but may simply lack the experience and proper equipment to make your move a success. Problems like these can lead to mistakes that will result in broken items, property damage and a lot of wasted time.

Rogue movers. Incompetent movers are bad, but rogue movers are even worse, leading you to fall victim to moving fraud. Rogue movers will give you a good offer, but as soon as they get your money, they may disappear with it. They may even arrive on time and load your household items onto the moving truck as expected, then disappear with your items.

To avoid these types of moving-company disasters, be sure to do plenty of research before booking!

Poor Organization

So you’ve planned ahead and organized everything prior to moving day. Before you start calling yourself a lean, mean, organizing machine, here are some things you may have overlooked.

Measuring furniture and doorframes. Not measuring large pieces of furniture and doorframes of your house-to-be can end in major problems on moving day. It can result in you trying to accomplish an impossible feat, like pushing a couch through a too tight doorway. Not only will this waste mega amounts of time and energy, but it will also cause your stress level to elevate. It can also result in damaged property and belongings, and even having to discard new or favored pieces of furniture.

Failure to warn movers of limited home access. Failing to warn your movers about limited access to your home can result in big problems. One, for example, is having a moving truck that is too large. If your moving truck is too large to access your property, it may be impossible to complete your move. It can even lead to other inconveniences, like extra expenses.

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Safety Tips to Avoid Moving Injuries

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

Plan Several Steps Ahead

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

Get Adequate Moving Assistance

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

Avoid Overly Heavy Boxes

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

Use Proper Lifting Techniques

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

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

Keep Hallways and Pathways Free of Obstacles

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

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

Dress Appropriately

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

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

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Important Steps to Take When Moving Antique Furniture

Moving breakable items is always risky, whether you move a few blocks away or clear across the country. Things get even trickier when the items you need to move include antique furniture. Antique furniture requires a delicate touch and ultimate protection throughout the moving process, otherwise you risk costly – and upsetting – damage that can sharply diminish its value. Since moving antique furniture is such a specialized job, the best choice is to trust in the expertise and special equipment of professional movers. But before you move these precious items, here are some things to do first.

Take inventory

The very first thing you need to do before moving antique furniture is to complete a detailed inventory of all the pieces you own. It is also a good idea to inventory all non-antique furniture that require special packing and handling due to fragility, aesthetic appeal, sentimentality, etc. As you make a list of each furniture piece, be sure to note any existing damage, and also take plenty of clear, high-resolution photos. Photograph each item from all sides and angles, concentrating on pre-existing defects, weakened sections, or extra fragile parts.

Why is it a good idea to take photos prior to your move? Photographs will provide proof of any damage that occurs during the moving process and can be easily provided to both your insurance company and moving company.

To keep or to sell

After inventorying your furniture and having it appraised, you are ready for the next step, which is deciding whether all the antique pieces you own are worth the time, energy, and effort to relocate them to your new home. Antique furniture can be worth a good chunk of change depending on the item and condition it’s in. There is no right or wrong answer when making this decision, so simply opt for the choice that is best for you.

Have antiques appraised

Considering that antiques can be quite valuable, it’s a good idea to have these items insured before your move. This will help cover any potential damage these possessions may encounter during the moving process. However, before you are able to insure your valuables, you will need to have each piece appraised. We can’t stress enough how important it is to know the value of all of your antique furniture prior to moving day. Having these items appraised is the best step towards ensuring their safety. In some instances, you will be required to obtain more than one appraisal as verification of the value of your antiques. This is especially true if you own pieces considered to be priceless.

So how do you find a qualified and trustworthy appraiser? Ask your insurance agent/company or authorized antique dealers about recommendations for locally licensed antique furniture appraisers. You can also try contacting the American Society of Appraisers (ASA) for assistance. Most appraisers charge a flat fee or an hourly rate for their services, so be sure to find out ahead of time how much you’ll be charged.

Purchase insurance coverage 

Once you have your antique furniture appraised, you can then purchase proper insurance coverage. This is by far the most important pre-move task to accomplish in order to protect your antiques. If you are someone who prefers to “save” money by not purchasing insurance for your valuable items, be aware that the risk is almost never worth it. With insurance, even if the worst happens to your antiques during your move, you will still be able to recover the value of these prized possessions. After all, it’s always better to be safe than sorry.

Take a closer look 

The final step to take before moving day arrives is to take a closer look at each piece of furniture in order to recognize any potential risks to be battled during the move. This way, you will be able to figure out the appropriate way to protect and care for each piece. Inspect the construction/main frame, top section, legs or feet, and current condition/pre-existing damage like cracks, loose joints, etc. Here are some other things to take into consideration pre-move.

Size: Before the hustle and bustle of moving day begins, it’s vital to ensure all pieces of furniture will easily fit through doors and doorframes in both your old and new home. Measuring the dimensions of all pieces and doorways will make sure moving these items goes smoothly.

Temperature and Humidity: Antique furniture comes in many different types of wood. This makes extreme temperatures and excess moisture very damaging to the delicate finishes found on some of your items. To avoid this, temperature and humidity levels should be the same at both your old and new home.

Problem Spots: Another important thing to consider before your move is to identify any potential problem spots or sections that could prove to be problematic, such as loose shelves, interior parts and non-secured glass. Mark these areas as fragile on your inventory list, and be sure to inform your movers about them before the relocation takes place.

Moving fragile items can be worrisome, but with the right steps, you can turn a risky situation into a success!