Moving to Your New Home

Organization is the key to an easy move, so plan your move carefully. If you hire a professional mover, choose one with a good performance record. Make sure to seek written estimates and references from several moving companies before making your final decision. Here are some tips for a successful, hassle-reduced move.

  • Ask your mover about the company policy on breakage. Standard moving-company insurance may pay only a percentage of the cash value of broken items. Full protection will cost more but may be worth the added expense if you are moving fragile and valuable items. Tell your moving company up front about any special requirements your move will involve. And, remind them the day of the move.
  • Typically, the actual cost of your move is determined by weighing your belongings after they have been loaded into the van, plus charges for packing, insurance, and other items. If the cost turns out to be higher than the estimate, the company will notify you. When moving short distances, the moving cost may be determined by the number of hours times an hourly rate.
  • If the moving company is doing the packing for you, it will take place one or two days before the van is loaded. Supervise packing and all phases of the move. Do not expect to pack plants, firewood, or flammable items.
  • You can save money by packing items yourself. You may be able to buy boxes and packing materials from the moving company. However, the boxes you pack may not be covered by the mover's insurance—so ask.
  • Work out a floor plan for your new home so that the mover can place beds, tables, and other heavy items where you want them. Movers will follow your directions on furniture placement. This is not the time to experiment; do not keep changing your mind about where you want the piano to go.
  • If you do not hire a professional mover and prefer to move yourself, plan carefully. Before you rent a truck and call your friends to help, figure out approximately how much you have to move, where you are going to put it in your new home, and if any items will require special handling.
  • Pay careful attention to details. You don't want damaged belongings to dampen the excitement of moving into your new home. Moving can be very tiring, so don't feel you must unpack every box the minute the truck leaves.

Before you move, pack for your family as if you were going to stay in a hotel for a few nights. Also pack a box with some bedding, eating utensils, and cooking items. With thoughtful planning, you should be able to survive comfortably amid the clutter for an evening or two.