By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
For most people, moving is not a lot of fun. In fact, even the smoothest of relocations can come with a little bit of stress.
However, when something goes horribly wrong on moving day, it's easy to feel like your world is coming to an end. Instead of suffering through such a calamity, it's so much better to plan for all contingencies.
Here are several common moving day disasters, and how you can avoid them:
Your Furniture Doesn't Fit
After traveling for hours and hours, you finally arrive at your new residence... only to find that you can't push the sofa through the front door. That would be a major letdown, and a huge source of stress.
Solution: Measure your big pieces of furniture for all their dimensions. Be sure to compare what you write down with the dimensions of your new home, as well as your new home's entrances.
Your Travel Arrangements Fall Through
If you wait until the last minute to make travel arrangements (like hotel reservations for long distance moves or plans for a friend or two to help you transport your belongings), then it's all too likely that they'll fall through which will leave you scrambling.
Solution: Try to plan out your travel arrangements at least a month in advance. Set reminders for yourself if you must.
Items are Damaged in Transit
It can be one of life's most disheartening experiences to finally arrive at your new residence, open the moving truck's door... and find that many of your valued possessions have been reduced to broken pieces scattered throughout the compartment.
Solution: In most cases, improper packing techniques are the root cause of damage incurred in transit. Use appropriate containers and boxes for each fragile item that you're bringing. Be sure to use plenty of bubble wrap, packing peanuts, or whatever else is needed to secure and cushion your valuables during the move. Or, you can always ask your professional mover for help packing items. Most moving companies will pack as much or as little as you need.
You End Up Paying More than You Expected
A few days before the move, you find out that your bank account is going to take a bigger hit than you originally thought. The moving company is charging you a higher rate for their assistance.
Solution: Many moving companies do charge higher rates for "last minute service”. Also, depending on when you are moving, you could have to pay peak season rates. To obtain the best rates, don't procrastinate. Call your local moving company and talk to them about your requirements and then, reserve your spot as far in advance as possible. And always get a written quote from the moving company you select.
We said it before, but it is worth repeating…moving really doesn't have to be stressful and bring you to the edge of a nervous breakdown. This is not to say it's a moment of Zen in your life, but with some planning and then some backup planning, your move will be successful, and you will remain sane.
Here are several more important reminders that you need to keep in mind as you are planning for your move.
Hire A Reputable Moving Company ASAP
The minute you know your new address, start interviewing moving companies. This is not the time to cheap out with a couple of guys and a beat-up truck--splurge on a professional mover. They will provide the following, and you can cross these tasks off your list.
- Well-maintained equipment--trucks that go through routine maintenance (check-ups, tire rotation, brake checks) and are completely road-worthy
- Professional moving crews who know how to wrap, load, place furniture in a truck, and reverse the process at your new house.
- An insured crew and equipment--if a mover gets hurt, the moving company handles their medical expenses
- Professional packing if you are just overwhelmed. If you need a few specialty items packed or crated, they will take care of that for you, so you can rest assured your valuables will arrive in one piece.
- A checklist of the things they can't legally move--chemicals, houseplants, and paint are on that list, to name a few. You don't want to find out at the last minute that your prized bonsai plant must stay behind.
- A contract with a written estimate.
Hire the Crew, Too
All your buddies say, sure, they'll help you load the moving truck. Which is great--if you're moving across town and they can help you unload, too. And, if you're willing to risk injury, scheduling conflicts, and other small challenges to your moving day.
Hiring professional movers helps to guarantee a crew who shows up on time, knows what they're doing, will drive the truck, and you can depend on to transport your belongings safely. They'll also unload all your stuff and place it in your new house--and that's worth the expense.
Move What You Love and Actually Use
The "if-you-haven't-worn-it-in-six-months-get-rid-of-it" rule really applies when you're moving. Consider that every box you pack and move has some cost attached to it, and that adds up quick when you're looking at hundreds of boxes. Get rid of old linens, kitchen gadgets, toys, furniture--everything that you don't use, don't like, or don't need.
There's A Snowstorm Coming--or a Hurricane
One thing even the most organized among us can't manage is the weather. Watch the forecast and have a Plan B in case you're caught in bad rain, snow, or wind. Coordinate with the moving company a couple of days ahead of time if it looks unsafe to pack up and drive and reschedule if you must. If you're moving a long distance, book hotel rooms along the way. Your realtor will understand if you can't be out of the house on schedule; bad weather affects everybody, so the new occupants won't be able to get there either. Don't try to beat the storm—never a good idea. Moving companies will not risk their crews or equipment in dangerous weather; the good news is that it usually passes in a day or two.
Put the Pets in Daycare
Your animals know when you're stressed, add to that the disappearing stuff and they can really get upset. Board your pets the day before the movers come and pick them up on your way out of town. Pack their beds, food, water, and toys for the trip and make them your last task.
Now buckle up, relax, and enjoy a disaster-free ride to your new home. If you are thinking about a move soon, give A-1 Freeman Moving Group a call. We can help!
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