Moves are challenging, and a long-distance move has added difficulties. If you forget something after the move, you can’t quickly drive home to get it. To avoid problems, it is best to begin planning as soon as you have committed to moving.
Research Moving Companies
There are long-distance moving companies with all types of ratings, and you want to hire only the best. Research companies near you have extensive experience with long-distance moving. Don’t worry about prices yet, but look for the companies that you think will serve your needs the best. If you have a large house, you will want a company that has large moving trucks, experienced drivers, and well-training movers.
Get Estimates at Your Home
Before you commit to a moving company, the next step is to ask the movers to visit your home for an accurate estimate. Meet with people who will be in control of your personal belongings while they are on the road. The movers need to see what they will be hauling so they can give you an accurate estimate, too. If they will not come to your home, then do not choose them.
Consider the time of year you are moving. It is easier to move when the weather is nice, so the spring and summer are the busy seasons for moving companies. You might save money if you move in the off-season when the weather gets colder and children are in school.
Sort Your Belongings
In many cases, the cost of moving is based on how much you have to pack into the truck. So to make your move easier for you, sort your belongings. Consider the things you haven’t touched in years. Then, ask yourself if you really want to spend the time and money packing and unpacking those things, and not touch them for several more years.
As you must pack everything you want to move, this is the perfect time to decide what you want to keep, sell, or donate. You might have a yard sale to see what you can sell. Then donate what is left to charitable organizations in your area. You will be pleasantly surprised by how good it feels to downsize before you move.
Before you start packing, double-check the measurements of your furniture to the rooms where you want to place them. This is something your realtor can request, or if you are visiting your new home before you move, you can do it, too. You should also measure the doors and stairways to see if your furniture fits through them. If you have furniture that will not fit, then you should sell it or give it away before you move so you don’t have to pay for moving it.
As you pack your boxes, take careful consideration of what goes in them. Remember that you have to unpack the boxes. Therefore, pack items that will be in similar rooms. Then label very clearly where the boxes will go. Label them boldly and on several sides, so the movers know where to put everything. You might even want to label individual items, like remote controls or pots and pans, so you know where those important items are.
As you pack, start with the items that you will not need while you are living in your current home. This might include items like holiday decorations or seasonal clothing. Then, move through rooms, leaving the things you use daily for the last boxes.
Pack Your Documents
When you move, your important documents like social security cards and car titles need to be easy to find. In fact, you might need them to close on your home. It is vital that you know exactly where your important papers are at all times. So those are items that you might want to keep with you, even as you are moving.
Understand Your Rights
There are federal rules regarding long-distance moving. You should receive a booklet from the moving company regarding their rights and responsibilities. If you do not receive one, don’t hesitate to ask for one. Movers will reimburse you for items that are damaged en route, but there is a limit to what they pay. Accidents happen, so it is helpful to know what your rights are if an accident occurs.
If you are moving because of your job, the costs are tax-deductible. To make your life easier, keep your receipts for everything you buy for the move – boxes, packing tape, bubble wrap, etc. If you have to stay in a hotel on your way to the new home, save those receipts, too. Ask your tax preparer for advice on what you can and cannot deduct.