Simplify a Cross-Country Move: Checklist for Moving Out of State

Moving is always a bit complicated, whether moving to a different floor in your current building or a brand new home in the same town. But throw moving to another state in the mix, and the complexity level rises even more.

Luckily, getting organized well before starting an out-of-state move helps reduce stress. This checklist will help you manage so you can easily move to another state.

Make a Moving Budget

Moving can be expensive, but moving cross-country costs even more. One of the best ways to control expenses is to create a moving budget.

Plan ahead by making a moving budget that includes factors such as:

  • Moving team
  • Packing expenses
  • Specialty packing and moving costs
  • Gas
  • Lodging
  • Dining
  • Airfare

Be sure to build in a contingency for potential cost overruns. This will help you avoid unpleasant surprise expenses.

Work with Reputable Movers

Working with professional movers will help your move be more cost-effective, especially on a long-distance move. A reputable mover will provide you with clear estimates up front, with no hidden costs. (If a mover won’t give this information, that’s a big red flag.)

Get quotes from several different companies before making your decision. A moving team that specializes in state-to-state moves may be the best choice.

Manage Paperwork

While it isn’t the most exciting part of a move to a new state, getting your paperwork in order is an essential element — and a key to keeping stress levels low.

Well before your move, take care of the paperwork and related tasks such as:

  • Change of address forms with USPS
  • Notify banks, credit cards, gyms, and subscriptions of your new address
  • Cancel current utilities and set up new utilities
  • Collect records from medical and dental offices
  • Request any school transfer records
  • Fill out new voter registration
  • Transfer prescriptions
  • Update insurance
  • Register pets at the new address

Pare Down Belongings

Moving to a new state is the perfect time to go through your belongings and purge things you no longer want or need. After all, you don’t want to pay to move unwanted items, especially when a long-distance move is involved.

Starting a few months before moving day, set aside time — ideally, just a couple of hours at a time, so you don’t feel overwhelmed — to go through all of your belongings.

Separate everything into four categories:

  • Keep
  • Donate
  • Sell
  • Recycle/Trash

If you know the dimensions of your new home, keep them in mind when deciding what to keep. For instance, if your current couch won’t fit in your new living room, now may be the perfect time to sell it and get one when you arrive at your new home.

Call the Pros

Moving always comes with some stress attached. Moving to a different state is no exception and may feel much more complicated. Fortunately, planning and working through this checklist can reduce stress so you can have a smooth interstate move. Contact us for a free quote.

7 Tips for an Eco-Friendly Move

Moving can generate a significant amount of waste and use a lot of fuel. However, proper planning can make moving more eco-friendly. Moving can also be an excellent way to kick off a new eco-friendly lifestyle in your new home.

Here are some green household moving tips.

1. Pack Lightly

One way to reduce the environmental impact of your move is to move less stuff. First, make a written list of every item you own so that you avoid taking duplicates to your new home. Then sort through your clothes, towels, and kitchen appliances so that you only take those items you truly need and love.

Rather than throwing away items you don’t want, donate or sell as many as possible. CraigsList and Offer Up provide options for selling unwanted furniture and housewares. In addition, charities and thrift shops will accept donations. Responsibly recycle batteries and similar items appropriately.

2. Reuse Boxes as Much as Possible

Buy new boxes as a last resort. If you think you will move, save boxes from deliveries throughout the year. Also, check with grocery stores and bookshops to see whether they have sturdy, gently-used boxes you can reuse. Some movers can also provide used containers.

3. Use Alternative Packing Containers

Chances are, you have many packing containers throughout your home. Pack items in suitcases and totes.

Also, pack smartly. For example, you can put kitchen utensils and silver inside pots and socks inside shoes. The fewer containers you need, the less you’ll impact the environment.

4. Use Eco-Friendly Packing Materials

Before you buy packing materials, consider what you may already have. For example, towels, sheets, blankets, and clothes make suitable packing materials for all but the most fragile items. After that, consider using newspapers which you can easily recycle.

Buy bubble wrap only for fragile items that require it. When buying bubble wrap, look for an eco-friendly version.

6. Don’t Pack Up the Whole Kitchen Right Away

When you pack up the kitchen, leave a few plates and silverware for last-minute meals. That way, you can avoid using paper or plastic. Pack the last-minute kitchen items in a separate essentials box and take them in your car. You can also use them for the first few days in your new house.

7. Recycle Boxes After the Move

Offer your gently-used boxes to community members who are moving. Place a notice on NetxDoor or Marketplace.

Otherwise, corrugated cardboard moving boxes are recyclable. To recycle your boxes after the move, first, break them down. Then, store them in a dry place until recycling day. Wet boxes, or boxes with wet spots, cannot be recycled. If a box still has some moisture, cut the damp piece off so you can recycle the rest of the box. Then check with your waste management company on the best way to put your boxes out for recycling.

You can also recycle boxes in other ways. For example, you can donate boxes to a compost center, cut them up to make drawer dividers, or use one or two to make a cat playhouse.

Moving Made Easier

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5 Tips When Moving in a Hurry

Ideally, when preparing for a relocation, you have months to plan and pack for it. But, factors like a new job, quick property sale, or other random life circumstances can cause you to move in a hurry — without much warning.

If you find yourself on a tight schedule and need to pack for a household move quickly, you might need some time-saving packing and moving hacks to help.

1. Make a list and timeline.

A task list and timeline are essential when planning a move on short notice. With a brief timeframe, it’s necessary to stay on track. Include as much as you can, then prioritize the list. Check items off as you complete them. Tasks to include: 

  • Get moving supplies
  • Set up utilities
  • Pack your home
  • Complete change of address forms
  • Organize important documents, etc.

2. Schedule your professional movers quickly.

Contact professional movers to schedule assistance as soon as you know you have to move. Some movers stay busy, but you might be able to secure their help. The sooner you can book a spot, the better.

3. Forego the sorting and pack things where they are.

When you have time before a relocation, you would carefully sort everything before packing. This would include moving displaced items back to their designated rooms before packing. It might also involve eliminating items you no longer need or use. But since time is of the essence, you need to pack things as they are. 

It would be best if you labeled your boxes, so you know which rooms the boxes should go to in your new home. Then, you can leave the sorting and discarding for when you arrive in your new home.

4. Pack your clothes as they are.

Clothing is not necessarily challenging to pack. However, the process can take longer if you decide to box it up individually. Here are some efficient ways to handle your clothing.

  • Leave hanging clothes on their hangers and put them in a specialty wardrobe box, large box, or large garbage bag.
  • Keep your clothing in your dresser drawers.
  • Leave your stored clothes in storage containers and move them as they are.

5. Lock-in help from family and friends.

A short-notice relocation means you’ll need all the help you can get. Schedule family and friends to help out. Assign each family member specific tasks. For example, if your kids are old enough, challenge them to pack their own rooms. 

Even a few family and friends for a few hours can make a big difference in the packing process.

Get Help from the Pros

Having a professional residential moving company help with a short-notice move means you have the help you need to get it don’t smoothly and efficiently. Contact us for a free quote.

How to Help Your Kids Make Friends in a New Town After a Move

Moving to a new city can be exciting – new places to explore and sights to see. But, if you’re moving with children, they’re focused on missing friends, school, and familiarity. You can help ease this transition so your little one is excited. Here are the top ways to help your kids make friends in a new town.

1. Find Parks With Playgrounds

It should be easy to find parks with playgrounds depending on where you’re moving. If a quick Google search doesn’t yield results, try looking at the local Parks and Recreation Department. They should have a list of locations and the amenities they provide.

Playgrounds are an excellent place to meet other kids and parents. Try to go to ones close to home since there’ll be a higher chance of anyone at the park being local. Then, you can wait for your child to make a new friend and introduce yourself to their parent.

2. Go to Family-Friendly Events

Many cities and towns host events throughout the year for families and children. Often, many of these events are free, so you don’t have to spend too much money attending. This tip is helpful because it allows your kids to meet other children their age and helps you discover your new home and what to do nearby.

Usually, you can find a calendar of events on a local city page. Still, there are also lots of websites that curate this information to precisely zero in on family-friendly activities.

3. Join Local Children’s Groups

Some examples of youth groups include the YMCA, music and arts clubs, and agriculture clubs. Joining these kinds of groups is an excellent way for your little one to make friends because they often meet regularly, so you have a chance to meet parents and introduce yourself. Also, new members may come in and out regularly, so your child’s friend group can expand quickly.

4. Sign Up for Sports

These days, sports don’t have to be limited to basketball, football, and the like. Instead, you can often find competitions around anything your child likes. Some unconventional examples include chess, video games, ballet, cheerleading, taekwondo, and more. Team-based sports are good because they help facilitate bonds between the players. However, anything that allows your child to meet other kids their age is a golden opportunity for them to make friends.

5. Attend Classes Together

If there’s a local community center, you can research classes suitable for children and their parents. Or, even if you’re not participating, you can stay and watch your little one engage with other kids. Examples can include art classes, crafting, programming, and more. Again, find something your child is interested in so you know they’ll look forward to going regularly.

Get Moving Help Today!

If you’re worried about how your child handles the stress of moving, you already have a lot on your plate. So, let us take care of the logistics of packing and transporting your items to your new home. Contact us today to find out more!

5 Environmentally-Friendly Moving Tips

It’s become clear in recent decades that our society needs to become more environmentally conscious. As a result, people worldwide are actively looking for ways to be more Earth-friendly in their daily activities.

The moving process is no exception—there are many ways people can reduce their carbon footprints when relocating.

Follow these five environmentally-friendly moving tips.

1. Actively Declutter

When people think of decluttering, they think of creating large amounts of trash. However, one of the greenest things you can do is declutter your home. Think of it this way:

  • Gently used or good condition items can be donated, given away, or sold.
  • Certain items can be upcycled or recycled.
  • Fewer belongings to move results in using less packing materials.
  • Lighter loads mean using less fuel due to lighter weight and fewer trips.

Aside from these Earth-friendly benefits, you can also start fresh in your new home and envision a new space—think of how fun it’ll be!

2. Repurpose Cardboard Boxes

If you’re an online shopper like most people, start saving cardboard packaging once you know you’ll be making a move. These boxes make great moving containers, especially since you’ll have a variety of sizes. Even if you don’t do a lot of internet shopping, ask family and friends. Or stop by a local grocery, liquor, or store with standard deliveries. Chances are they’d love for you to take boxes off their hands. 

Then, when you complete your move, pass the gently used cartons to friends, family, or neighbors. Or find innovative ways to reuse them.

3. Reuse Containers

Cardboard boxes make great moving containers, but you can also use other types of packaging. Other suitable packing containers found in the household include suitcases, backpacks, duffel bags, reusable grocery bags, plastic bins, drawers, and laundry baskets, to name a few. This approach is environmentally friendly and a cost-saver because you’re paying to move these items anyway (or making fewer trips if making a DIY move).

4. Use Household Goods as Packing Materials

You must pack many of your possessions carefully, so they don’t break during transport.  Instead of buying a large supply of bubble wrap, use towels, blankets, kitchen dish towels, clothing, or any other household item that provides a sound protective barrier. Even mismatched socks make excellent packing materials for glasses or other fragile items. Aside from reducing the need for bubble wrap, you’re also lightening your load since you’re moving these items to your new home.

5. Pack the Kitchen Last

Plan to pack up your kitchen last. Packing items such as plates, utensils, glasses, and other tableware too early means you’ll probably end up using much more disposable kitchenware than you usually would. Save packing these and other highly-used items for last so you can continue to use them until you move. Additionally, try to eat down your pantry and freezer areas (the latter if you’re moving locally) to reduce takeout containers and avoid throwing out more food than you need. Again, less bulk to move as well.

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6 Tips to Save Money When Moving

Moving can sometimes be expensive. The average cost of moving ranges from $800 to $2,500, and that’s for moves of 100 miles or less. On average, long-distance moves cost even more, from $2,200 to $5,700.

Here are six ways to save during a move.

1. Create a Budget

Start the moving process by creating a budget. Having projected and actual costs in writing will help you stick to a plan and cut back on unexpected expenses.

Setting up a moving budget can be as simple as creating a spreadsheet on a computer or using pen and paper. Then, add a 5 percent contingency into your projected costs to avoid surprises.

2. Sell Items

Long before your move, go through your belongings. Set aside items you no longer need or use but are still nice enough to sell.

Hold a yard sale, head to a consignment shop, or sell items online. This will help you raise a little extra money for your move.

3. Only Move What You Need

While going through your items, get rid of things you no longer want. Whether you sell, donate or recycle, there’s no need to pay to move unwanted items.

This will help reduce the number of belongings you need to pack and load, plus fewer items taking up space and weight on a truck, which will reduce costs.

4. Move During the Off-Season

If you can choose when you move, schedule it for the off-season. Most people move in summer when kids are out of school, and the housing market is at its peak.

This means moving companies are extra busy and tend to charge more. Moving in winter, when demand for moving services isn’t as high, can result in lower rates.

5. Seek Free Packing Material

The costs of packing materials — such as cardboard boxes, bubble wrap, foam sheets, and crates — can add up fast. Save money by collecting used materials for free.

Several months before the move, ask local businesses if they’ll give you their used boxes and supplies. When you get packages in the mail, keep the packing materials. And save up your newspapers and old towels; they’re perfect for packing around fragile items.

6. Compare Moving Estimates

Before deciding on a mover, gather and compare multiple estimates. Of course, the lowest estimate isn’t always the best choice (too-low prices may be a red flag).

But comparing prices can help you hire a reputable, reliable service and save money. Just be sure to start this vetting process well ahead of the move to get the best rates.

Moving the Easy Way

Take the stress and pressure off — let us help you with your move. We have the experience to customize your move. Whether you need a little help or a full-service move, we can help with your needs. Contact us today for a free quote.

Moving Into a New Construction Home? 5 Tips to Make the Job Easier

Moving into a new construction home is different from moving into a pre-owned home in various ways. Knowing what issues can arise with a new custom home can help you prepare for your upcoming relocation. Here’s what to know.

1. Do the Final Walkthrough Before Moving In

Your contractor will perform the final walkthrough before you move into the house. Contact them if your contractor hasn’t contacted you to schedule the final walkthrough. Doing the walkthrough before moving in helps your contractor identify issues that need to be resolved. In addition, this will ensure your house is ready to be lived in by the time you’re unpacking your things.

2. Protect the Floors

If you hire a pro mover, they should take steps to protect your brand new floors from foot traffic. Ask them what they do to safeguard floors before the day of the move-in. However, if your move is a DIY relocation, take steps to protect your flooring yourself.

Use canvas runners or thick paper to protect walkways and high traffic areas. Ask people bringing in furniture not to slide the furniture around on your new hardwood floors. If you have time, put felt floor protectors on the bottoms of your furnishings before the move-in day.

3. Just Sodded the Lawn? Don’t Walk Through Grass During Move-In

You may have just laid down new sod on your new lawn. If that’s the case, ask anyone moving boxes and furniture into your home to not walk on the lawn. Your new grass needs time to become established before it can withstand heavy traffic.

4. Walk Through The House To Ensure You Have What You Need

Did your builder outfit your light fixtures with light bulbs? Do you need to lay contact paper in the cabinets? Check for any last-minute items that you need to complete before moving in. This will help ensure that your house is ready for your relocation! Also, don’t forget to turn on utilities, like heat and Internet service.

5. Watch for Problems with Construction After Moving In

After you move in, you may notice some problems with your home’s construction. This could be anything from a malfunctioning water heater to a loose shelf or a cabinet that doesn’t close quite right. Start making a checklist of these items from the minute the movers start unloading the boxes into your house.

The quicker you can bring these issues up with your custom home builder, the easier it will be to fix the problems. If you wait too long to have these problems addressed by the home builder, your builder may resist making repairs.

Work With a Professional Moving Company

There’s a lot to think about when you’re moving into a new home. Working with a professional moving company makes it easier to focus your attention on the issues that could arise with your new house. If you’re relocating soon, call today to get a quote for your move.

4 Reasons to Hire Professional Movers

Relocating your home is stressful, with many moving parts to coordinate. You’ll undoubtedly face many decisions during the process, including whether or not to hire professional movers or take the DIY route.

Professional movers are highly experienced and know all the ins and outs associated with transporting possessions from one location to another. People can carry out a relocation themselves, but it’s time-consuming and involves a lot of extra work. So as you’re making your lists, consider these four reasons why hiring a professional mover can make a move more manageable and less taxing.

1. No Worries About Finding Manpower

Taking the DIY moving route means finding vehicles large enough to fit everything and recruiting people to help. It also means multiple trips back and forth, which can be tiring. Also, consider that while it’s generous of family and friends to help you move, sometimes circumstances change, and you might find yourself stuck on moving day without the help you need. Professional movers take care of the heavy lifting and can do it all in one trip.

2. Can Save Money

Many people assume hiring a pro mover is more expensive. While sometimes this is true, going a DIY route often doesn’t save you as much as you’d think. Going the DIY route involves the following costs, which can quickly add up.

  • Renting a truck
  • Fuel costs
  • Moving tools/equipment
  • Packing materials.
  • Time off work to pack and physically move
  • Any unanticipated costs

Home Advisor reports the typical range of a move is about $870 to $2,400, depending on if movers are hired strictly for transporting belongings or if clients pay for a full service that includes packing, unpacking, and furniture disassembly/reassembly. The benefit of this way is that you know exactly what you’ll pay for your move upfront if you go with a binding estimate.

To bring down costs, you can also take a hybrid approach—consider hiring a professional mover to take care of the bulky and heavy items while you handle the packing and moving of smaller items.

3. Ensures Personal Safety

Moving an entire household equals a lot of back-breaking work, and some of it can be pretty risky from a safety perspective. Carrying heavy items down staircases can be tricky and lead to injury. The weather might be rough on your moving day, creating slipping hazards. Professional movers know how to properly carry belongings, move them safely, and have the equipment to protect them from injury. They also are highly experienced at moving in less than ideal conditions and know what precautions to take.

4. Frees Up Time

Both local and long-distance moves involve a lot of planning. Sometimes, the list of things to do seems endless. For example, you need to settle your account with your landlord and utility companies if you’re renting. If you’ve sold your home, you have to make sure you’ve followed all details associated with the contract to the letter. If you have children or are changing jobs, there are other transitionary steps to take and set up utilities and services you’ll need in your new home. By hiring a professional mover, you’ll have more time to focus and ensure you don’t overlook any necessary details.

Moving Made Easy

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 6 Tips for Moving on a Budget

Moving can quickly get expensive between taking off time from work, hiring movers, putting down payments on homes, or leaving security deposits for apartments. To help scale down costs, many people look for easy ways to budget their moves.

The good news is there are numerous ways you can trim moving expenses. Here are six tips you can try to help you plan a budget-conscious move.

1. Move Off-Season

This isn’t possible for everyone but move during the off-peak season if you can plan for it. Prices might be lower for professional movers since demand is lower. If your move must be during peak season, try to move from Tuesday to Thursday since fewer people are moving during those days. Additionally, home and rental prices tend to drop.

2. Find Free Boxes

Boxes can quickly get expensive, especially if you’ve got a large household or years of accumulated belongings. Check grocery stores, liquor stores, offices, Craigslist, and other places people commonly find free boxes—this can save some money.

3. Use recycled or free packing materials

Packing materials can get costly, so instead of purchasing lots of bubble wrap, be inventive and see how you can get around paying for these items. Items you can use to wrap fragile items include towels, dish towels, clothing, or blankets, to name a few.

4. Reduce the Unnecessary

This is simple math—the more stuff you move, the more expensive it’ll be to transport. Whether you’re transporting yourself or hiring professionals for your move, you’re either paying in gas and time for multiple trips (or renting a bigger truck) or paying for weight with a mover.

Downsizing unwanted, unused, and broken items by giving them away, donating them, or throwing broken things out can go a long way toward reducing moving expenses. (Remember, to recycle anything eligible!) Holding a yard sale or selling stuff on Marketplace can also bring you extra cash.

5. Consider Not Bringing Some Furniture

Try to offload any bulky furniture by selling or donating these pieces if they aren’t exceptionally sentimental or easy to replace. Then, use the money you’d spend to move these items and buy new furniture for your new place. If donating, note what you’ve donated and ask for a receipt; you may be able to benefit come tax time.

6. Measure New Place

Be sure anything you bring will fit in the new place. Measure doorways, halls (some corners are tight!), and actual room space. If you have belongings with no place to put them, you certainly don’t want to pay to move them and make a costly mistake.

To save money on the move, the best thing to do is plan for it. Then, aside from the above, look for ways you can reasonably reduce costs—sometimes, it’s the minor ways you find that make the most significant impact.

Moving Made Easy

Moving is undoubtedly a big task, but DIY jobs can also be more costly than you think. Hiring pro movers who can get the job done quickly and efficiently may be the least expensive option depending on your circumstances.

Contact us today with any questions or to receive a free moving quote. We’re happy to help you explore your moving options.

5 Things to Manage When Moving Out of a Rental Home

Are you moving out of your rental home? Moving is a significant change, with the potential for new beginnings and a fresh start. And while you’re undoubtedly looking ahead to the future with anticipation, there are still a few things to take care of before you move out of your current rental.

When moving day is just around the corner, don’t forget to add these important “to do” items onto your moving checklist.

1. Review Your Lease

Before you take any other steps, review your rental agreement. This legal document will lay out everything you and the property owner agreed to when you moved in. This should include how much notice you need to give and the terms of getting your security deposit back.

In most cases, you’ll need to let the landlord know you’re moving within a specific timeframe. This gives them time to find a new tenant and gives you time to pack, transfer utilities, move out and clean up.

Often, you’ll need to provide written notice of your intent to vacate. Be sure to follow the terms of the lease that you signed.

2. Inspect and Fix

Usually, rental agreements specify that the tenant must leave the rental in the same condition as when they moved in. Therefore, the landlord should have provided you with a condition report that detailed any issues with the rental.

Some normal wear and tear are expected. But any damage that goes above and beyond may come out of your security deposit if you don’t fix it. This may include:

  • Holes in the walls where you hung artwork
  • Returning painted walls to their original color
  • Replacing broken windows and light fixtures
  • Repairing dents or scratches on walls, cabinets, doors, and floors
  • Ensuring appliances, plumbing, and electrical systems are in working order

3. Clean Up

To get the maximum amount of your security deposit back, you’ll probably have to clean your rental. But, again, your lease documents should specify the level of cleanliness the property manager expects.

Overcleaning is usually a safer bet than under-cleaning, at least when getting your deposit back. Common cleaning tasks tenants tend to overlook include:

  • Windows and windowsills
  • Blinds and window treatments
  • Ceiling fans
  • Range hood filters
  • Around and under the range burners

4. Pack All Belongings

When moving day rolls around, pack all of your belongings. Your goal is to leave the rental empty. Of course, you don’t want to forget any of your things. But you also don’t want to get charged if the landlord has to dispose of left-behind belongings.

After the move, do a complete walk-through. Don’t forget to check in every drawer and cupboard, the very backs of shelves, under the staircase, the basement, the garage, the attic — be sure that you haven’t left any forgotten items behind.

5. Document the Condition of the Property

Once you have made repairs to the rental unit — clean, empty, and document it! Take pictures and video so you’ll have a record of all the work you did.

You may want to schedule a walk-through or inspection with the landlord. They can make a list of any issues so you can fix any problems.

Moving Assistance

Now you’re ready to move on into your new home. Contact us for a free quote. We can help make your moving day smooth and simple.

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