Let’s assume you’re new to moving – maybe you are, maybe you aren’t. But, for the sake of argument. Everyone makes mistakes, even during big events such as moving. And that’s perfectly natural; however, when it comes to mistakes, maybe it’s best to avoid them. Here’s a list of top 10 moving mistakes from the perspective of Verified Movers, and some good common sense advice on avoiding them:
#1: Always hire reliable movers
This one might seem obvious. You only want to deal with reliable people, regardless of whether they’re movers. However, many rookies tend to hire fraudulent moving companies. They are lured by offers of cheap prices, discounts, and whatnot. So, they make a mistake, and now the fraudulent moving company is holding their precious goods hostage. There are some clues as to how one might recognize a fraudulent moving company:
- They don’t have an internet presence – naturally, they don’t want to let the Feds track them easily;
- They ask for money in advance – I can’t stress this one enough. Do not give any money in advance!;
- Rookie customer lets his/her stuff get hauled into a truck without a signed agreement – don’t do this. They will hold your stuff hostage and demand a ransom;
- Do not sign any contract if you aren’t sure what a specific clause means.
#2: Research, research, research
Yes, I had to say it three times, because it’s extremely important. You have a computer (obviously, otherwise you wouldn’t be reading this article). There is a lot of info that you can access from that computer. On our list of top 10 moving mistakes, this one is very much underestimated. Let’s say you were thinking about hiring a moving company near you, but, aside from their location, you know nothing about them. The obvious solution is to check them. So, which site will you visit?
- Check if they’re registered with your state’s DMV. If they’re not, avoid them altogether;
- Verify with the Better Business Bureau – these guys keep track of pretty much any larger company;
- Check with Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
There is little that a fraudulent moving company can hide from the wary eye of the public. Use it to your advantage to avoid one of the top 10 moving mistakes.
#3: Check some user reviews
Some companies aren’t fraudulent, but they have bad business practices, or simply need overall improvement. They harbor no ill intentions towards their customers whatsoever. However, thanks to their business practices, they aren’t able to reach the quality level of a reliable moving company. So, it is best to avoid them altogether. So, how do you recognize a company with bad business practices?
- Again, check with the Better Business Bureau;
- Check for an unusually large amount of negative feedback online;
- When you call them, they don’t answer the phone.
This is, of course, not a complete list, but you get a general idea.
#4: Make sure you label the boxes properly
The next on our list of top 10 moving mistakes is a benign mistake. Packaging and labeling your stuff is actually pretty important. Why – you may ask? Well, first and foremost, a good strategy to save money is to pack your stuff yourself, or with some help from your friends. Long distance moving companies often charge these services. The best thing to do here is to pack them carefully and label them with the labels your moving company will give you. This way, the moving company will know how best to haul your sensitive stuff into the truck.
#5: Pick the right moving season
You probably know that most people move during midsummer. What you probably don’t know is that, because of this, that’s when the prices are highest. Supply and demand economics at its best. The prices are lowest when the demand is lowest but the supply is still there: during winter. Yes, it’s harsh. Very much so. But, if you want to keep your hard earned money, you would do well to move during winter.
On the other hand, if you wish to find the perfect balance and make things easier on both yourself and your moving crew, choose spring or fall for your move.
#6: Sometimes it’s better to do it yourself
Let’s say you don’t have that much stuff to move, so you ask yourself is it really worth calling a moving company. Well, moving companies employ not only trucks but also vans. Let’s say that you have a large minivan (Dodge Ram or Volkswagen Sharan – you get the idea) and you decide you might as well move it yourself and save some cash. Here’s the thing: you have to be extremely careful, unless you’re a professional driver and/or really good at driving long mileages. Take some time to rest, a few extra driving classes if need be, and you’re good to go.
#7: Make sure your sensitive stuff is protected during the trip
Let’s say you have a collection that you want to keep as long as you’re alive: family jewelry, porcelain items, works of art, etc. You want to keep them safe. Many rookies pack their valuables the same way they do with other stuff, and then tragedy strikes. A good idea to keep them safe is, for example, to wrap them in old blankets and stuff them in boxes later. The blankets will absorb most of the force coming that way. Especially useful if the road has numerous potholes.
#8: If you’re DIY-moving, don’t rush it
Speed limits exist for a reason, and so do speed bumps. It may be tempting to rev the engine up to 100-110 mph, but it’s not a good idea. Your destination should be your new home and not the police station or the coroner’s office. Take your time and do not rush it. It’s better to arrive late than not at all.
#9: If you’re moving with a pet or a baby, consult the doctor
It doesn’t matter if said doctor is a vet or a pediatrician. “He’ll be fine” isn’t something you should say before moving with a pet or a baby. Check if they’re ready for the trip, make it as comfortable as possible. Only then should you embark on your journey.
#10: Last of the top 10 moving mistakes – avoid any stress
Last on our list of 10 moving mistakes is overstressing. Stress has been associated with a lot of diseases, especially cardiovascular ones. You want to be safe and healthy. No stress allowed.