Buying a new home or switching to a new rental can be exciting. However, moving day typically isn’t what most people would describe as fun. But, with plenty of time to prepare and a few handy tips, things can run much smoother.
With that in mind, here are 12 pointers to help you dodge the most common moving mistakes.
General Moving Mistakes to Avoid
Most moving nightmares are due to a lack of preparation. Of course, some things may be entirely out of your control, but with the following tips, you’ll have greater control over the entire process.
1. Not Booking Ahead
Whether you’re moving to another country or just a few streets away, moving is a time-consuming process. Hiring a professional moving company can alleviate some of the stress, but leaving it too late is easy.
Good moving companies are usually extremely busy, so if you want to secure your spot, be sure to contact your moving company as soon as you know your moving date.
2. Failing to Research Your Moving Company
Just booking a moving company isn’t enough. It’s essential to do your research first to find a reputable business. Unfortunately, there are too many doubtful moving companies and scammers out there. If you’re unlucky enough to choose one, you could find that your belongings are damaged when they arrive or never arrive at all.
Choose a company with excellent feedback and referrals, preferably from friends and family. Failing that, scour online reviews until you find a company that is worth hiring. Fake reviews are not uncommon, so be sure your research is thorough.
3. Forgetting to Take Out Insurance
Even with the best moving company, delays and accidents can occur. As such, it’s well worth taking out a comprehensive insurance policy to protect yourself and your belongings in case of damage or loss.
Be sure to draw up a contract with your moving company, too. This should detail how disputes and problems will be handled, as well as the pricing structure.
4. Not Discussing All the Details
Communication is essential to a successful move, so be sure to talk to your moving company in advance. The last thing you want is to find that the moving van that turns up is too small for your belongings. Most good moving companies will initiate discussions, but if in doubt, be sure to talk about the following:
- How much you plan to transport
- The dimensions of more oversized items
- The nature of any fragile items and how they should be handled
- Parking arrangements for both addresses
- How much it will cost
If things change along the way, be sure to get in touch and provide the new details. While chatting with your moving company, make sure you also find out exactly which services they offer and get it in writing.
5. Not Double-Checking the Size of Larger Items
If you’re planning to take bulky items with you, be sure to measure them first. Not only that, but you’ll also need to measure the doorways in your new home to make sure you can get them inside. Be sure to also check the dimensions of the rooms so you know that you actually have space for your larger belongings when they arrive.
6. Forgetting to Arrange Utilities
Forgetting to arrange utility hookups in your new home can result in days without power or water. So, be sure to set these in advance for a seamless transition. At the same time, arrange to have the utilities in your old home shut off.
Packing Disasters to Steer Clear Of
Once you’ve hired your moving company, it’s essential to know how to pack when the time comes to move. From knowing where to get moving boxes to ensuring everything is well organized and safe, the following packing tips will surely help you out.
7. Starting to Pack Too Late
Leaving your packing to the last minute is the easiest way to introduce a lot of stress to the moving process. This typically results in things being forgotten, fragile items being broken, and poorly packed boxes taking up more space than needed.
Ideally, you should start packing your belongings at least a month or two before moving day. This gives you plenty of time to gather your packing boxes and fill them up. Start by packing things you rarely use, as well as seasonal items, and store them carefully out of the way.
Renting a storage unit can be handy at this point, as it enables you to empty your home before moving day, making things much more organized. As moving day creeps closer, start packing away more and more items until you’re left with just the everyday essentials.
8. Not Labeling Anything
Labeling your boxes is essential so you know exactly what’s inside. You might find that it helps to color-code your boxes, with each room having a different colored label. This will make your life much easier once you’ve moved into your new home since you’ll know what needs to go where.
9. Hoarding Things You Don’t Need
When you move into a new home, you have the ideal opportunity to eliminate some of the clutter and unused items you’ve been hanging onto. Now is the time to sort through food and medicine, throwing out expired items. Next, go through any unused toiletries, clothes, and linen.
Try selling or donating some of the items you don’t want to take with you. If you have the time, a yard sale is a great way to shift unwanted goods. Alternatively, you can try selling them online or donating things to charity.
Think about leaving some of the bulky, heavy items behind as well since they’re typically expensive to transport.
10. Not Preparing for Emergencies
It helps to plan for the worst-case scenario when you’re moving home. So, pack an emergency bag filled with the things you’d need to survive the first few days in your new home in case there’s a delay with the moving truck. You’ll typically need:
- A change of clothes
- Basic tools for building furniture
- Important documents and other personal items.
Common Self-Moving Pitfalls to Dodge
If you’re planning to save some cash and take care of moving your items on your own, it’s worth bearing the following mistakes in mind.
11. Underestimating the Workload
Lugging heavy furniture and boxes of items around is a physically demanding job, so make sure you’re up for the challenge. It’s all too common for people to injure themselves by lifting something too heavy incorrectly. Another issue is that poor handling can also result in damage to the items but also to the walls and ceilings in your new home.
12. Not Researching Your Rental Truck Company
There’s a good chance you’ll need to hire a rental truck for moving day. Unfortunately, like moving companies, there are plenty of sketchy businesses out there. So, be sure to do your research and check the rental agreement thoroughly before you sign or pay anything.