Long distance moving can be extremely exciting. It’s also extremely challenging. All the normal issues you face with moving are amplified, and if you’re not prepared to move the task will be exponentially harder and more expensive. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take that will make long distance moving easier, not to mention more economical.
Tip 1: Start Early
Once you know you’re moving long distance, you should start planning. A long distance move is an enormous task, and the sooner you prepare, the more you’ll be able to deal with any unexpected issues that pop up.
The first thing you should do is create a list of all the tasks that need to be done before you move, from packing up all your belongings and hiring movers to getting the utilities set up in your new home. It will probably be a long list, but don’t let it overwhelm you.
Once you have listed the tasks you’ll need to complete, you can use the list you’ve created to help you create your moving budget. Start by estimating the expenses to give you the total amount you’ll want to set as a financial goal. As you do more research, you’ll get a clearer view of what the expenses will be. You’ll also find some ways you can save money on your move.
Tip 2: Inventory Your Belongings
Once you know that you’ll be moving long distance, you should start making a list of everything you own. Go through each room and catalog everything in it, no matter what it is. Make sure to include any items that are in the garage, in storage closets and under the bed.
This can be a time-intensive task, but once you’re finished you’ll have a good idea how much you’ll need to move. This will help you figure out what size of moving truck you’ll need, whether you’ll need to rent a storage unit, and what you should personally take with you versus what you should leave to the movers.
Tip 3: Lighten the Load
Once you’ve taken inventory of everything in your home, you’ll probably be amazed at the number of things you own, especially the things you never use. That’s a good sign—it means you’re ready to get rid of the things you don’t want anymore.
Getting rid of items you don’t need will lead to saving money during your move, since you won’t need to rent as big of a truck or use as much of the movers’ time. Even better, you won’t have to waste time and effort packing them up for the move.
Tip 4: Have a Mechanic Inspect Your Car
If you’re moving long distance, you’ll have to bring your cars with you. That means you’ll need to be sure your car can handle the trip. Be sure to take your car to your local mechanic a few weeks before the move and tell the mechanic you’re going to be driving long distance and that you want to be sure your car is up to the challenge.
Tip 5: Get Estimates on Moving Companies
When you know where you’re moving, you’ll want to do as much research as possible. Talk with several different moving companies about their fees, especially how much they’ll charge for moving “complicated” items, such as pool tables, artwork or pianos. Remember that even though you’re trying to save money, you’ll also want to hire movers who have a good reputation.
If you’re able to, try to plan your move between September and April. This is considered the “off-season” for moving, so many moving companies will offer you a discount on their services.
Tip 6: Plan for the Trip
When you’re moving long distance, you won’t only have to plan for how to move your items. You’ll also have to plan how to get you and your family to your new home.
Take some time to think about how you’ll be travelling to your new home. If you’re flying, be sure to purchase your tickets early to get the best possible deal. If you’ll be driving, you should look for the best motels along the way.
You’ll also want to figure out what to pack for everyone. Be sure to include changes of clothes, toiletries, and any day-to-day medications you might need.
Tip 7: Purchase Moving insurance
When you’re moving long distance, there’s a greater chance that your items might be damaged during the move. While moving insurance won’t guarantee that your items stay safe, it will at least allow you to buy a replacement if something gets damaged.
While moving companies do offer moving insurance for free, their coverage doesn’t provide much compensation if any of your items get damaged. You might be better off paying for additional coverage, especially if you have any high-value items.
Tip 8: Plan for the Delivery Window
Depending on the moving company’s schedule, you might have to wait a few days before your items arrive at your new home. That means you’ll need to plan to live without any of the items you packed on the moving truck until it arrives.
While you can always rent a motel room until the moving truck arrives, you can also make do with some camping furniture, such as an air mattress, a folding table and some folding chairs. You can also buy some disposable dishes you can use until your real ones arrive.
Make Your Long Distance Move Easier With First Alliance Credit Union
While moving long distance can be stressful, the more you prepare the better off you’ll be. Make sure to start early, research moving companies, and make sure you, your personal items and your cars are ready for the trip.
You can also make your long distance move go smoothly when you become a member of First Alliance Credit Union. You can get started planning using the moving guide with our free downloadable moving budget in our resource center to keep track of all your expenses, store money for a move in a traditional savings account or even get a personal line of credit to help cover your moving expenses.