You can toss everything that you own into the back of a pickup for a move across town, but that won’t work for a long-distance move. You’ll need estimates, meticulous packing and lots of advance planning to keep everything on track.
If your next move will take you out of your current zip code and into a whole new state, here are six big considerations that can eliminate common headaches.
#1: Make the Hard Decisions
You’ve had that oil painting that you bought from a street vendor since your second year of college, but lately, it’s taking up space in the attic. And that chair in the garage still needs new upholstery. When you’re planning a major move over state lines or across the country, some of your household belongings might lose a little priority.
The cost of a long-distance move is typically determined by the weight of the shipping load. So the more that you take, the heftier your moving bill will be. That’s why so many individuals and families start early to streamline the event. Some people have garage sales, some offer belongings to friends and family, and some donate to charities. If you can live without something that you own, it might be a good idea to part ways.
#2: Use Better Packing Materials
For moving across town, almost any boxes and crates will do. But a long-distance move puts all of your household belongings in a jostling situation for at least a full day and maybe longer. If your moving company packs up your household, they’ll ensure the right materials are used. But if you do the job, it’s a good idea to invest in better packing materials.
Some suppliers offer specialty cartons for items such as plasma TVs, mattresses, dishes and delicate clothing. Where they’re available, it’s a good idea to take advantage of the extra protection. But at the very least, you should use sturdy containers and durable tape that won’t come apart somewhere along the way.
#3: Leave the Large Items for Your Movers
Whether you pack up the house or someone else does the job, some items are safer in the hands of the pros. Heavy appliances, for example, are difficult to wrestle and take special padding for protection.
Even in a large truck with a smooth ride, there will be a near-constant vibration from point A to point B. That means upholstered items might have worn spots and wood furniture might become scratched. Movers know the right way to pad these items for protection, and they also know the best spot to secure them on the truck. Get a moving quote and find a mover who will handle your belongings with care.
#4: Protect Your Belongings with Insurance
Your moving company has insurance, but it never hurts to go the extra mile when protecting everything that you own. If you rely only on their coverage, any number of issues might arise that reduce the amount of compensation you receive for loss or damage. Play it safe and get your own policy.
Check with your homeowners or renter’s insurance provider, too. In some cases, the existing policy provides coverage for a household goods move. If so, that one phone call could save you some money on a new policy purchased just for the move.
#5: Make the Utility Switch Seamless
In a perfect world, you’ll have active utilities in your old home until after you walk out the door for the last time. And everything that you need in your new home will be active when you arrive. That’s probably one of the simplest tasks to handle in a long-distance move, and all that it takes are a few phone calls and maybe a mailed application.
Make early arrangements with your existing providers to shut off your electric, water, cable, internet and any other services the day after you move out. Get letters of good standing, and you might avoid paying a deposit at your new place. And long before you move, contact all of your new providers to ensure services are active when you get there. You might hit a snag or two, such as with a cable company who requires you to be home when services are turned on. But for basic utilities, that shouldn’t be a problem.
#6: Schedule the Delivery Date
Arriving at your home on a certain date to pack up and move is one thing. Coordinating a delivery date and time is something altogether different. Your shipment might make the long-distance move faster than you. Or you might arrive at your new home with your belongings a week or more behind.
Plan for a delivery date plus a contingency plan. If your shipment arrives early, storage arrangements in advance mean you won’t have to worry about who’s handling your things. If you know that they’ll arrive later, you can make hotel arrangements to avoid sleeping on the floor in an empty house.
If moving is nerve-wracking, long-distance moves can be doubly so. Nearly every aspect of the adventure takes more time, more planning and a more comfortable relationship with the right moving company.
Mover Junction can connect you with pre-vetted professionals who stake their reputation on providing great service. Start planning the next stage of your life and get a free moving quote today.