Taking the time to plan your move carefully will help you avoid pitfalls along the way, especially if you are about to embark on the biggest move of your life. You need to take the differences between a local move and a long-distance move into account during the pre-moving process. Whether you’re planning your first ever long distance move, or are well acquainted with the moving process, use these tips from the experienced experts at Today Movers:
Insure Your Belongings
A lot can happen to your stuff over thousands of miles in the back of a truck when it’s being loaded and unloaded by multiple crews. Moving is a high risk industry; according to statistics from the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA), “More than 80% of all moves have no claim filed”- in other words, up to 20% do. Be ready for something to go wrong, and get the proper coverage. Determine well before your move if you want to purchase full-value coverage or stick to basic coverage. Take note of the deductibles and the amount of coverage you’re getting. If you’re unsure which is better for you, your moving company will explain the differences between the coverages, and you can make a more informed decision that will help you prevent your expensive long distance move from becoming a financial disaster.
Keep a Complete Inventory
The cross-country moving company handling your long distance move will want to know how many items you have. The only way to truly know how much is to make a list of all of it. An inventory list won’t just be helpful for getting accurate price estimates from movers; it will help you stay organized while packing for your move and allow you to keep track of your items along their long distance journey. If you check something off at the origin and destination, you won’t be worried about whether or not it safely made the trip.
Purge Unnecessary Items
Decluttering and downsizing can be a huge relief before a big move and help you reduce your moving expenses. The less you pack with you across the country, the less it will cost you. The three best ways to get rid of items are donating, selling, and tossing. Media items like CDs, DVDs, video games and books are easy to sell or donate, since they’re mass produced and one size fits all. Blankets and winter coats are in major demand by charities in cold weather cities. Cheap, bulky furniture items often aren’t worth the work it takes to move them, and these can often be donated as well. For furniture and other valuable items you no longer need, try selling online for less hassle. Also, consider having a garage sale before moving cross country to lighten your load!
Put Your Name on Each of Your Boxes
Moving trucks which service long distance moves have a variety of different peoples’ belongings on the truck. In order to keep your stuff from getting lost, make sure to mark all of your boxes with your name or some other unique identifier. In the event one of your boxes is mixed in with another shipment, the movers and other clients will notice immediately.
Be Aware of the “Delivery Window”
The complicated nature of cross country moving and the numerous logistics involved can make it difficult for moving companies to pinpoint a precise delivery date. For instance, a move from New York to Los Angeles may take up to two weeks, but you may only be provided with a vague delivery date. Most companies usually do not (because they simply cannot) tell their customers well in advance when their moving truck is going to arrive at the new location. Generally the company will provide a “delivery window.” Pay close attention to your contract; some companies have a delivery window that can in some cases be in excess of 20 business days (excluding weekends and holidays). Take along adequate shoes and clothing to keep yourself sane until the end of the delivery window and consider what you might need for the few days afterwards in the event the truck encounters an unexpected problem.
Be Prepared for Anything
There are so many liabilities when it comes to moving, especially if you are striving for a more cost-effective move. The cheapest way to move may end up being the most expensive if you don’t read all the fine print. The cost of moving can vary depending on how organized you are; be sure to inquire with many moving companies and truck rentals for free quotes to make sure you are getting the best deal. Be sure to book flights to your new city in advance, as flight prices go up the closer you get to moving day. If you are going the DIY route, learn about late fees with pick up and drop off of a moving truck rental. In the same vein, when hiring professional moving services, don’t wait until the last minute to learn about their insurance policies. Be aware of any additional fees that can arise during the move due to traffic, detours and parking tickets.
Be prepared and good luck!