You’ve probably moved in your city before – to a new apartment, a new condo, or a new home.
You might have rounded up your friends, borrowed a friend’s pickup, rented a truck, or just packed your car and made a few dozen trips back and forth between your old and new homes.
But if you’re moving a long distance (whether between states, across the country, or overseas), there are things you need to keep in mind that will make a long-distance move a bit easier.
Here are our top eight tips for making sure your long-distance move goes off without a hitch:
- Packing breakables carefully is even more important for a long-distance move than a local one. If you’re moving locally, you might simply load up your car with your breakables and make dozens of careful trips to a new apartment or home nearby, but moving long distance means that it’s far more likely that fragile items will break. Be extra careful in packing your items, and make sure you don’t scrimp on bubble wrap, tissue paper, tape, Styrofoam, and specialized boxes (such as picture frame or mirror boxes) when packing your goods. A little extra care in packing will save time and money in the long run.
- Consider moving in the off-season. If you have a choice, consider moving when rates are lower. Many moving companies charge higher rates during the busy summer months, but if it’s possible, try to move when fewer people are doing so. Be sure to check seasonal rates with your mover. You may get a substantial discount for adjusting or changing your packing and moving dates.
- Make sure you have insurance. Check your homeowner’s or renter’s policy to see if breakage during a move is covered (it usually isn’t). While most movers offer some liability coverage for breakage, make sure you understand who is responsible when something breaks or is lost. If your mover loses or breaks an item, providing them with receipts will help insurance claims move along faster. If you don’t have a receipt, you may have to accept ‘fair market value’ for your lost or damaged item. It is possible to purchase moving insurance online – you can purchase e-Moving insurance in minutes with a click of your mouse.
- Don’t pack food or liquids. Not packing liquids should go without saying. Heat, cold, and vibration can cause even the best-sealed liquid items to rupture and spoil your household goods. Even if you have dry or canned food items, don’t pack them. The temperature will affect even dry items, and there’s no guarantee that even the most well-packed food item won’t tear or break, and you’ll be left with a box of spoiled food and a big mess to clean up. Your food items may sit in a storage warehouse for weeks or months following your move, and spoilage is practically guaranteed. If you need to dispose of food items, consider giving boxed and dry goods to a local food pantry, or even to neighbors. Avoid packing food or liquids to prevent a moving disaster.
- Anticipate delays. Your mover will probably give you a delivery window of several days. Traffic, weather, and mechanical issues may affect when your items are delivered to your new home. Be prepared to live for several days without your household goods, and be sure to pack enough clothing and personal items to get you by until you can unpack at your new home. If you’re moving across the country, check out the U.S. Department of Transportation’s website where you can see traffic delays nationwide.
- Know when you’re allowed to move in. Just because you’re ready to move in doesn’t mean that you may be allowed to do so. Make sure you check with your new leasing office, property owner, or community to see if there are restrictions on days or times when you’re allowed to move in.
- Decide on how you’re going to travel. Many long-distance movers may put your car in a tractor-trailer along with your boxes of household goods and furniture. If your car is going to be loaded on a truck with your items, make sure it’s empty (or nearly empty) of gas, and that there are no fluid leaks. If you’re traveling by car to your new home, be sure to allow for extra time on the road for safety and rest breaks. If you’re traveling by air, take direct flights, if possible, to lower the stress of travel. If you’re traveling with a pet by air, be sure to check pettravel.com for up-to-date airline pet policies.
- Don’t forget to have a proper goodbye. Even in the internet age, long-distance moves mean you won’t have the same kind of relationships with your friends, family, and neighbors after you move. A Skype or FaceTime call is a poor substitute for a personal visit, so make sure you spend enough time with your friends, neighbors, and family members before you set off. If no one is throwing you a farewell party, consider throwing one yourself, especially if you have children or teens.
If you follow these simple eight guidelines, your long-distance move is sure to be a more pleasant and less-stressful one. Need assistance with your long-distance move contact us!