Moving can be a stressful experience—whether you’re moving across town or to another state. Planning and preparation are the keys to taking as much stress as possible out of your move. But with so much going on, how do you know what you can or should do to lessen the burden on yourself? Below, we’ve put together a few essential checklists for anyone who’s moving:
- Checklist for hiring a mover
- After-the-move tips
- Self-packing tips
- DIY moving tips
- How can a moving company help you?
Use these checklists to keep your stress levels in-check and to make moving as simple and streamlined as possible!
Checklist for hiring a mover
Here’s a quick step-by-step guide for how to prepare for moving day if you’re planning on letting someone else do all the heavy lifting and transport. Reference this mover checklist to get as much done ahead of time as you can, so when moving day comes, all you need to do is follow your belongings to their new home.
- Contact the mover: Contact 3-5 movers to get the right understanding of what they offer and what their cost is. This will help you to choose the right mover with confidence. Be prepared to answer a few simple questions before you get a quote, such as where you’re moving to, how much stuff you have and when.
- Verify the mover: After you contact a mover, verify their identity. Are they reliable? Do they have a physical address? Are they licensed and insured? Do a little research to make sure the company you’re trusting your belongings to is one with a good reputation and responsible practices.
- Estimate the move: Once you have quotes, check the fine print to make sure it includes all taxes and fees, and that everything you need is included service-wise. As if the quote is binding and how long it’s valid for. Then, use the final quote as part of your total move budgeting process.
- The moving and pick up process: Find out the details about the moving process, such as who your point of contact is and whether your presence is required at the time of moving. Also, consider other arrangements that need to be made. Will you be in touch with the moving crew directly? What’s the cancellation policy? What about inclement weather?
The more you can do to communicate with your choice of mover, the better you’ll feel when moving day comes. Use these tips to stay on top of the moving process before it even begins!
The stress doesn’t stop after a move. Once you’re all moved into your new place, there’s a whole new phase of work that needs to begin. Use this quick checklist to give yourself a break when it comes time to unpack, check your belongings, settle your moving bill and get settled.
- Check your budget: Does everything add up on your moving bill? Where are you at in terms of your total moving budget and did you factor in everything? It’s smart to have a buffer, in case there are unexpected expenses.
- Pay special attention to valuables. From jewelry to important documents, locate your most valuable items after a move to give yourself peace of mind that they made the trip safely and are intact. This will take an immediate weight off of your shoulders.
- Treat fragile items with care. Check to make sure fragile items arrived safely and take the time to unpack these things first. It’s easy to forget what’s packed where when you’re unpacking everything, so handle the breakables and fragile items first.
- Unpack the essentials. If your unpacking process is going to occur over a period of days or weeks, locate and unpack the essentials first. Dishware for your kitchen. Tomorrow’s underwear. Essential electronics. These are things you don’t want to hunt for later.
These may seem like common sense tips, but they’re easy to forget when you’re stressed and have a lot going on. Do these things first and you’ll feel immediately better as you start getting acclimated to your new abode.
Packing can be a real debacle if you’re not sure what you’re doing or how to simplify the process. Thankfully, you can always hire movers to pack for you! If you do choose to go at it alone, keep these simple packing tips in mind and use this checklist to make sure your possessions are packed appropriately.
- Pack electronics. Make sure your electronics are packed securely in boxes and labeled accordingly. It’s a good idea to wrap them in towels or bubble wrap, to prevent any bumping or jostling that might damage them in transit or during unpacking.
- Pack the kitchen. There are numerous breakables in your kitchen. Pack dishware separately from pots and pans, and be sure to use a liberal amount of padding. Leave a barrier between glasses, mugs and cups. Label these boxes accordingly!
- Pack the bathroom. Make sure any spillable items like shampoo or soap are contained in plastic bags, to minimize damage if they do break open. If you have toiletry bags, use them liberally to contain loose items within boxes.
- Pack fragile items. For heirloom pieces and those with fragile constitution, pack them separate from everything else and spare no expense in wrapping them in protective bubble wrap or towels.
For large and oversized items, or special items like pianos, it’s almost always better to entrust professional movers. There’s no sense in taking chances with your most important items (or your safety) when you can count on professionals to do the job.
DIY moving tips
Planning a do-it-yourself move? There’s a lot of work involved in a DIY move, but it can be worth it for the cost-savings alone. With the right packing supplies and a way to safely transport your belongings, there’s no reason you can’t approach a DIY move with confidence. Here’s what to keep in mind as you get started.
- Start Early. Never pack in a hurry! You might miss something or damage something in a bumpy truck ride because it’s improperly packed. Start packing as far in advance as possible.
- Track supplies. Keep track of things you’ll need for packing, like moving boxes, packing paper, packing tape, black marker, garment bags and much, much more. Make a list and make sure you’re calculating the total cost of supplies as you go.
- Declutter and downsize. Donate, throw away or have a backyard sale for things you don’t need. Packing extra items requires more truck space, extra gas and additional packing supplies. It’s often smart to downsize before a move to make things easier—and to earn a few bucks extra!
- Buy boxes. You don’t want to damage your belongings, right? Avoid using grocery boxes for packing—they crush easily. It’s beneficial to use boxes designed for moving. They’re available through all truck rental companies, moving companies and hardware stores.
- Pack non-essential items early. Think about the things you won’t need immediately before or after a move—offseason clothing, books, artwork and more all come to mind. Pack the things you don’t use early and pack similar items together for ease when unpacking.
- Keep essentials accessible. Put immediate-use items at the rear end of the truck and mark these boxes as “essential.” It can be anything from cleaning supplies and towels, to clothing, utensils, toiletries and whatever else you think you’ll need right away after a move.
- Load like a pro. Take care when loading your belongings, to avoid any damage along a bumpy ride. Use rope and straps to secure everything, and place heavy items and large boxes on the bottom. Load heavy items to the front of the truck to avoid load shifts during travel.
Packing and moving by yourself won’t seem so stressful when you know what you’re doing and the best way to do it. Don’t forget, you can always call a moving company to help you with anything you can’t do on your own.
How can a moving company help you?
Trying to decide between a DIY move and hiring movers? For most people, their best bet is the latter—let someone else handle the work! Moving is a big job that’s made much easier and much less stressful when you can delegate it to someone else. Here’s a look at some of the ways a moving company can make your move (and your life) easier.
- Plan and supervise your move, saving you the effort of the mind and body.
- Create a comprehensive plan to meet your moving schedule and storage requirements.
- Use heavy-duty moving equipment to transport all kinds of large furniture and fixtures.
- Handle delicate and specialized items, using correct packing and loading techniques.
- Use the latest moving equipment and practice proven safety measures.
Above all, good moving companies hire only trained, skilled and dedicated staff to make your move a pleasurable experience, rather than a headache.
We hope these checklists and tips are helpful to you—whether you’re moving all by yourself or hiring a mover to help ease the burden. If you have any questions, be sure to contact the Ben Hur Moving & Storage team today!