Easy Moving Tips

Make It An Easy Move - The What...Where...When...Who...and How Much of your move

This article is written to help you with a process that usually takes between 90 and 120 days. Start the moving process early and you will find it can be a positive experience.

Here are several experience-tested suggestions that will save you time, money and frustration:
  • Begin with pre-move planning and organizing
  • Appoint one family member who can and will coordinate without procrastinating
  • Get an early start
  • Communicate regularly
  • Pay attention to detail
  • Follow-thru by every family member is a "must"!
THE IMPORTANT WHAT, WHERE, WHEN DECISIONS
  • Before you call a moving company, decide: What, Where and When& early in your planning.
  • What furnishings will you replace within 2 months?
  • What's the best way to dispose of items you don't want or need in your new home (rather than paying to move them only to give them away after moving). Keep receipts if you give to a charity.
  • Identify furnishings that won't fit and things your family has outgrown or no longer needs.
  • This is the best time to clean out the attic, basement and closets. Dot it before you pack or move and before the discards are figured into the cost estimate of the move.
  • Obtain a list of things you can not move (flammables, paint, gasoline, anti-freeze, tanks with propane in them) and find proper disposal facilities well in advance of the move. If total moving cost is a major factor when you move:
  • Try to arrange your move during the least busy period of the month. A high percentage of moves occur during the first and last weeks, and the busiest months are in the summer.
  • If you are moving away from a high growth area (e.g., the Sun Belt) you may find movers returning empty to their base willing to bid aggressively for your move.
THE WHO OF YOUR MOVE
Your most important job is personnel: the care, safety, emotional adjustment, mental and physical health of your family members. Moving professionals recommend you take the time to make the move a pleasant, positive experience for every family member including all the adults! Few home buyers can safely handle a move on their own, and it depends upon:
  • You and your available help,
  • The size, weight, volume and distance to be moved
  • Your available time.
Before you decide to move yourself, answer these seven questions:
  1. Do you have adequate physical strength and endurance?
  2. Do you have at least two helpers, at least one whi is stronger than you are and know how to pack a truck?
  3. Can you be sure to have adequate time off from work to complete your move on schedule?
  4. Compare costs fairly, apples-to-apples, total costs versus total costs. Does it "pay you" to move?
  5. Will your home owners policy cover potential loss in case of accident en rout or while moving?
  6. Can you carry everything through doorways, up stairs without damage to house or item moved?
  7. Do your homework. Truck rental firms have widely different rates, equipment, services, and fees for a one-way move. Have you compared all the costs?
HOW ABOUT THE COSTS?

Movers will give you an estimate and their representative will probably be knowledgeable. But the estimate doesn't tell you total actual cost or the total amount of your certified check!

Some movers will "low-ball" or underestimate cost components to "get" your move, or won't mention extra costs that are automatically tacked on as actual conditions warrant. Ask for all of the cost components with the estimate, including potential extra charges, with the written estimate so you don t receive any surprises after the move is completed. Moving cost components include:
  • Packing (labor and materials)
  • Servicing electric appliances
  • Special handling of antiques, art and other fragile items
  • Additional insurance while in transit or in storage
  • Accessory charges including number of stairs, distance from van to house, items of high or unusual weight or size, ease of entry
  • Transportation charges (weight times total miles between homes)
  • Client imposed costs requiring the crew to consume extra time or manpower to complete your home move.
When you receive an estimate, be sure to review all potential added charges, particularly relating to the mover's ability to position the van close to both houses before the move.

You don't "win" by giving your mover surprises when he arrives at your new home. Your actual cost will be determined by the reality of the move, not by a verbal description of your new residence. Unless you have received a written, binding estimate, you will pay the total charges, including extras, on delivery unless your move is an approved, corporate move in which case your firm will be billed for the actual cost.


PREPARING YOUR FAMILY

Communicate openly and realistically with all family members as early as possible.
  • Tell children what is happening and include them in the process, even in new home selection, if possible. If they are happy, feel included in the decision making process, and "take Ownership" of their new home, the transition will be easier for everyone.
  • Don't forget to keep informed the grandparents, cousins and your extended family, close friends of both parents and children
  • Share the excitement and responsibilities. If every family member takes responsibility for an age appropriate part of the move, yours can be an easy move. Remember: appoint one adult coordinator, and get every family member involved in the move.
Pets, plants and perishables
  • These three are often forgotten until moving day. Some states don't permit plants to cross the state line without treatment and some plants don't travel well. Plan to give away your plants to people you know will care for and enjoy having them.
  • Moving is especially tough on pets. Get them groomed on moving day, pick up copies of medical records, and make advance reservations for their move, especially if by air.
  • Four weeks before your move begin the process of winnowing down your freezer s content to avoid trashing or attempting to move large quantities of food, especially frozen meat. If you fly to your new home&
  • Remember to book a kennel reservation for your pets well in advance, and obtain all required inoculations at least two weeks before the move.
  • Ask your airlines about requirements and possible seasonal restrictions for kennels.
PACKING FOR YOUR MOVE

Packing is both art and science. Art in combining just the right items in each box to arrive damage-free, science in producing an inventory that enables you to quickly find anything you need at a moment's notice after arriving in your new home. Some helpful hints:
  • Pack to unpack. When possible, combine items that will go together in your new home.
  • Pack heavy items in smaller, heavy-duty cartons.
  • Use vertical and horizontal dividers for glassware and other fragile items of similar size.
  • Clearly mark room destination on TOP and at least ONE SIDE of every carton.
  • If you plan to unpack over several weeks or more, make a complete inventory of the contents of each carton, and number clearly all cartons to be opened sometime later.
  • Pack tools needed for immediate use in your new home in a single carton and mark all sides, top and bottom clearly. This carton should be marked "TOOLS: Last Packed,-First Unpacked."
  • Make sure your tool carton is either moved by you or is the last carton on and the first carton off the mover's truck
  • Remember, your mover won't know which child is which, so tag bedroom boxes with BR-1 or BR-2 and tape the same tags on their bedroom doors.
  • Don't forget to make privacy preparations for your first night in your new home and clearly mark cartons containing shades or blinds.
  • Don't pack your moving inventory. Carry it with you to the new home.
RECORDS, VALUABLES, NOTIFYING UTILITIES

Gather records and memorabilia and make plans to move them as carefully as possible, including:
  • Family medical and tax records
  • Diplomas, school records
  • Family genealogies, pictures
  • Business, social organizations
  • Other memorabilia
If your move is across town, you may want to move those things yourself on the day of the move. If you're moving across the country you may need another option.

Financial instruments, jewelry, coins, etc. may be shipped by bonded carrier and fully insured, but you must have an itemized inventory detailing their condition and vlue. Ask your mover for details.

Notify utilities, media and others. Make contact at least one month before the move with utilities on both ends of your move.

Check this list of businesses to be notified.
  • Electric Power Company
  • Heating Fuel Supplier
  • Water Company
  • Local Phone Company
  • Credit Cards, Banks
  • Stock Brokers, Mutual Funds
  • Magazines, Book Clubs
  • Long Distance Phone Company
  • Religious Organizations
  • Boat, Sports Clubs
  • Cable TV Company
Keep in mind that most publications require at least six weeks notice for change of address. Let your neighbors, local schools (if you have school age children) and religious institution know how and where to contact you.

TAX DEDUCTIONS

You may be able to deduct some of your moving expenses when you file your Federal Income Tax return. And, you may have additional tax liability for reimbursement by your firm for items left in your prior residence, or negotiated in the sale of the property.

Talk early in the moving process with your accountant or attorney before settling a financial agreement with your firm if moving at company request and expense.

Since IRS regulations change with some frequency, review your individual situation before the move and, by all means, keep accurate records and every receipt for all moving related expenses (and reimbursements).

Give records, receipts and a profit/loss summary on the sale and/or purchase of properties to your accountant in adequate time for analysis prior to the tax deadline.

Call your local IRS office for a copy of the IRS Publication521 and Form3909. If you qualify, you may be able to deduct expenses for the following:
  • Costs for moving household goods and personal effects
  • Costs for moving family pets
  • Travel and lodging costs related to the move, including meals
  • Mileage costs
YOUR MOVING CALENDAR

Moving is a process that takes place over a period of six to eight weeks& or more! During each of those weeks there are decisions and activities that you can complete to make yours an easy move while still conducting your business and enjoying family and friends.

Don't try to cram the entire move into either your final 2-3 weeks at the old address or into an already overloaded schedule - without sharing responsibility within the family. Most of the hassle and much of the discomfort of you move can honestly be minimized by pre-move planning.

Spread your moving-related preparation and work over the six to eight week period and follow the Moving Check List in this issue to help make your family's move a positive family experience and an easy move for every member of your family.
This article provided for you by Premier Real Estate.
Reprinted with permission from Homes & Land Magazine. © S.M.A.R.T. Marketing, Inc.
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