We’ve all heard the moving horror stories. The moving van that headed to Abilene, Texas while the new house was in Austin. The rented apartment that suddenly isn’t available, despite deposits and signed lease agreements. Movers who took off with the valuables and left someone else’s boxes in their place. Not everyone will have a perfect moving experience, but fortunately the true horror stories are few and far between. And most of the more serious problems can be avoided with a little bit of research and planning. Here are five mistakes you want to avoid when moving:
Mistake #1: Thinking you can swing the move yourself
Ah, big mistake. Even a move across town can be very complicated, and takes extensive advance planning. There are a huge number of potential pitfalls, from the wear and tear on your poor body and damage to your household goods, to unexpected fuel costs. In the end, a do-it-yourself move may not be as “cheap” or as fun as you thought (that would be about the time you drop the TV on your foot or discover the truck is fully loaded but a third of your house is still on the sidewalk). Give yourself plenty of time to research how you want to move and discover everything that’s involved. Talk to friends who’ve moved themselves and to movers to get the full picture before you decide.
Mistake #2: You forget Fido has to move too
With all of the other things you’re worrying about, it’s easy to forget that the family pet needs to move too — and that’s one thing you can’t have the movers throw in a box! Visit your vet before moving day to make sure your pet has current shots, tags, certificates, and proper identification. If your pet will be traveling by air or in a car a long distance, ask about travel recommendations, portable kennels, and motion sickness medication. Make sure you carry the animal’s papers with you, especially if you cross state lines. When you get to your final destination, reinstate your dog’s routine and reward him with a special treat.
Mistake #3: You forget plants have special needs
Obviously, the inside of a van isn’t conducive to plant life. Lots of movers won’t handle plants, especially if you’re moving more than 150 miles or crossing state lines. If plant moving gets put on your to-do list, first check with the USDA to make sure there aren’t rules about bringing plants by car into your destination state (those that have big citrus crops, for instance, may be picky about incoming plant and potential insect life). A few weeks before the move, transplant plants from your breakable pots (the movers can pack and transport those) into lighter-weight unbreakable ones that will be easier to for you to move. If it turns out you can’t move your plants, donate them to friends, a botany class, or local retirement home.
Mistake #4: Forgetting to pack an overnight bag
Even if your move should not last more than a day, you will want to make sure you have an overnight bag with an extra set of clothes and some toiletries on hand for when you get to your new place. Chances are you will be tired and just want to rest when you arrive, instead of unpacking 32 boxes in search of your contact lens solution and pajamas. Having something ready to use will mean you will not have to scramble around the boxes and try to dig out what you need when you can barely stand up anymore.
Mistake #5: You didn’t clean house
Face it, there are tons of things in your home that you haven’t used in years. But you’ll be paying to pack them up and move them, and then you’ll be faced with unpacking them and finding a place where you can store them, unused, for another 10 years. Bad idea! Instead, plan a reuse, recycle, regift weekend where everyone in the family gets rid of the things you really don’t need or use. Donate items to charity, hold a garage sale, or give furniture to the kid next door who is getting his own apartment. It’ll save you time and trouble in the long run — and will prevent extra charges when your moving men stumble upon Grandma’s old dining room set hidden in the back of the garage!
Find out what moving services are provided by Apache Moving & Storage so you can avoid making these mistakes.