The road from one house to another can be rocky, and procrastinating could be your worst enemy.
It takes advanced planning.
Here are some ways you can avoid making the entire process can seem endless and overwhelming:
There are a number of potential pitfalls from damage to your household goods to unexpected fuel costs.
“Moving is all about preparation. The more prepared you are, the easier it’s going to be,” said Josh Herron, owner of You Move Me.
You should consider planning your move months in advance, according to U.S. News and World Report.
Give yourself plenty of time to research how you want to move and discover everything that’s involved.
Most movers give you the option of an in-house or over the phone estimate.
“The best way to do it is an on-site estimate. If you don’t have time, doing it over the phone is fine. You just want to make sure you’re being as thorough as you possibly can with the items you’re going to actually need help with,” Herron said.
Most experts recommend that you get three estimates and ask a lot of questions about possible hidden fees.
“Some moving companies are a fixed rate mover. Meaning, assuming the list is identical to what you told them it was, the price is fixed,” Herron said.
Though keep in mind, you may end up with more or fewer boxes then what you originally estimated.
“So, you don’t want to pay for extra stuff that you’re not going to end up taking. If you’re moving with a fixed rate moving company that’s going to affect your bill at the end," Herron said.
Hourly rate moving is another option. But, make sure you know the hourly rate up front.
“If you’re moving a studio apartment and the hour minimum is four hours, it’s not going to take that long to move. So, you’re going to spend more money then what you actually need to spend,” Herron said.
Also, ask your moving company if there are charges for additional stops, certain pieces of furniture like a grandfather clock, or even charges for going up a flight of stairs.
“Then you want to hold the moving company accountable to actually charge you the same rates that were discussed on the initial phone call,” Herron said.
Next, be sure to read your contract carefully before you sign it.
“What’s the liability on things like disconnecting washers or dryers or appliances of any type. Or do you disassemble and reassemble my beds,” Herron said.
Pay attention to how much insurance the company has, and if the company has workers’ comp insurance.
“Federally mandated moving companies have to provide .60 cents a pound for damaged items. It’s free for the clients to use, but there are also some companies who offer an additional evaluation for depreciated items. Because no matter sometimes how hard you try things happen,” Herron said.
Another helpful tip is to talk to friends, your real estate agent or even the Better Business Bureau to find moving companies with solid referrals. Or, check out trustworthy websites offering real customer feedback to see what previous clients say about their experiences with the company.
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