Top 10 Moving Mistakes and How to Avoid Them
There are a lot of things that you should learn the hard way. That includes math, playing an instrument or driving a car. But when it comes to moving, don’t DIY, and winging it is also a bad idea. Plan, make a list, research, and plan some more. Read here about the top ten moving mistakes to avoid. Find out here how to make your move go as smooth as possible.
Moving Mistake #1: Avoid procrastinating and DIY last minute
Even a move inside the same city can be very complicated and will require planning in advance. There are so many possible obstacles on that path. You need to start early and go by a thorough checklist. Imagine if you hurt yourself carrying heavy and bulky items. Or if somehow you damaged the furniture. Let’s not even start with unexpected costs. Give yourself plenty of time to research on the way you want to move. Find out about each step and everything that’s involved. Question friends who’ve moved to get the full picture before you opt for a DIY hassle.
Moving mistakes to avoid #2: Timing
With over 40 million Americans and Canadians moving each year, those statistics cause a moving “traffic jam”. This happens at specific points during the year. The most reputable moving companies are booked by late spring and over the summer months. That is when half of all relocation happens, so be sure to plan in advance. Don’t make that moving mistake of being stuck with an unreliable mover who has to hire temporary help. They are not professionals and that is as bad as doing the move yourself. Some companies practice overbooking, which serves as a guarantee for a lot of work. You don’t want to be the person they cancel the day of the move. Give yourself sufficient time to research moving companies. That is how you avoid problems and do it 3 or 4 months before the selected date for relocation. Tell your family and plan everything carefully.
Moving mistake #3: Not getting an estimate
Most moving companies offer two kinds of estimates, binding or non-binding. The non-binding estimate gives you a rough cost based on the mover’s estimate of the size of your current home and its contents and the distance to your new home. They can only charge you 10 percent more in the final bill. A binding estimate is a legal document that clearly describes the costs. It won’t change unless you request additional services. That happens when movers have to help you with things they didn’t know about in advance. Most experts recommend that you get multiple estimates. That will help you find out as much as possible about any hidden fees. Also, you don’t want to accept the most affordable bid; because there could be a hidden and unpleasant reason for a cheap move.
Moving mistake #4: Not checking the insurance
Let’s say you move and during the unload or unpacking you see your favorite dinner plates set broken. You thought nothing bad could happen and didn’t pay for insurance. Now what? There is no use crying over spilled milk. Before the moving day you should definitely find out if your chosen mover offers some insurance. But make sure it doesn’t pay only for a fraction of your valuables. Then check your home insurance provider to see if they have all aspects of the move covered. Check under what conditions can you file claims etc. Does your policy cover moving and items in transit? Bottom line, moving companies offer a variety of insurance deals with additional charge.
Moving mistake #5: Forgetting about non-movables
Alcohol, Firearms, laptops, jewelry and anything really valuable to you don’t go in the boxes and on the truck. You should plan for this in advance and move these things by your car. Avoid the mistake of not reading your moving contract carefully to see if your mover can transport your grill. Also before the trip, the tank has to be emptied by a professional. The same goes for special and collections of value, important documents, expensive cameras – if it’s fragile you’ll probably want to take care of it yourself and keep it with you.
Moving mistake #6: Forgetting to plan pet care
You may be surprised that this got into the top 10 moving mistakes. But it happens too often, unfortunately. People have been known to leave their pets behind even. We know this is a huge project with a long checklist of responsibilities. We are here to remind you that you should visit your vet before moving day. Prepare your pet so that it doesn’t get sick during this stressful period. See that it has all the current shots, tags, certificates, and proper identification. Arrange specific travel recommendations if needed, if it’s a plane ride or a long haul drive to your new home. You will need portable kennels, and motion sickness medication. Make sure you have the pet’s papers with you, especially if you cross state lines. When you finally relocate, start getting your dog to his normal routine and remember to reward him.
Moving mistake #7: Not caring about your plants
This is easy to forget, let’s be honest. Should it even be on the top 10 moving mistakes list? You have such a long list of chores and lots of movers don’t transport plants. Especially if you’re relocating more than 150 miles and crossing state lines. People often leave plants behind. We recommend that you check with the laws to make sure there aren’t rules about carrying plants in your car when crossing a border. A few weeks before the move, transplant plants from your ceramic pots into lightweight unbreakable boxes that are easier to move. If it turns out you will not be able to move them, donate them to friends.
Moving mistake #8: Not cleaning house
Plan a reuse, recycle, donate weekend where everyone in the family gets involved to help getting rid of the things you haven’t used in 10 years. We know you have stuff in your house you forgot you owned! Donate furniture to charity, hold a garage sale, or give clothes to those who will put them to better use. Declutter, clean and feel the relief while loading the truck, and especially when unpacking in your new home.
Moving mistakes to avoid #9: Not packing a survival kit
This is one of the most common moving mistakes. But it is not number one, because it is easier to solve with some cash than the ones before. You should have something like a “carry on” on the move-in day so that everyone in the family can have their toothbrushes, change of clothes, phone chargers and other necessities to feel comfortable since the unpacking hasn’t really started yet. This survival kit could include items like scissors, soap, coffee, toilet paper, toiletries, dog food, your address book, a can opener, a screwdriver, a flashlight, a map of your new town, and necessary medications for the whole family. Remember to carry cash, for tipping movers and ordering take-out food.
Moving mistake #10: Not checking twice
Following a checklist of the inventory, while preparing, packing, loading and unpacking will give you some reassurance that you didn’t forget anything. It is very important to avoid moving mistakes like rushing through the inventory! Tick off the list again as movers unload boxes at your new home. Before approving the inventory sheet on delivery day, make sure you know the process for filing a claim for missing items.