Moving is one of those things that looks very attractive to DIYers. After all, it’s simple enough to just carry your things into a moving truck, drive it over to your new home and carry all the items out of the truck and into the house, right? Wrong.
In reality, there are a lot of complexities when it comes to moving that make it something that’s better left in the hands of people who have years of experience with it. There are many things that could go wrong, and if they do go wrong, would have a very negative impact on your moving experience (and even your experience in your new home). Damage to your property is the most obvious example here, but it’s far from being the only one.
The best way to go about it is to get a quote from a reputable moving agency to see how much it would cost to hire them. You’ll usually find that the cost is not as much as you thought, and well worth the service. Regardless, if you’re determined to go it alone, here are some of the common mistakes you’ll need to avoid:
Packing Every Single Item
Moving houses should be an opportunity to declutter and remove items that are no longer useful from your belongings. Sure, there’s some sentimental value in being able to say you have those magazines from 45 years ago, but you have to consider if it would not be a better idea to let them go and make more space in your house. Before you begin packing, take some time to do an inventory of all the items in your home that you need to take along with you. Think about each one and how it’s likely to be useful in the future, and you’ll see that many items will drop off the list naturally. Think of it as an opportunity to give some things out as well. You’ll be better off with a truly fresh start in your new home, and your move will be easier since there will be fewer items to deal with.
Not Getting Enough Supplies
There are many things that you will need, as you prepare your items for the move and through the actual move to your new home. Things such as boxes, wrapping material and even cleaning supplies are particularly important. If you forget or run out of any one of them, you’ll have to choose between wasting time and getting more stressed while you try to go get more, or looking for alternatives which will not be as good and which will likely put your items in danger of damage. Be sure to plan well ahead and get everything you’ll need.
Not packing your items Properly
How well you prepare your items for the move in the days before moving is as important as the actual moving trip, if not more. If you don’t prepare your items properly, you’ll likely find out, when you get to your new home, that quite a few of them have been damaged in the course of the trip. Something as simple as forgetting to wrap bubble sheets around some items could lead to shattered plates or damaged electronics. Failing to put padding on your furniture could also lead to permanent damage. The way to avoid this is to ensure that you conduct thorough research to find out how to protect each item and cover them appropriately with the right kind of material.
As you pack by yourself, you’ll likely find yourself instinctively putting items in the boxes that are nearest to hand, and simply carrying them all to the truck afterward. That’s a terrible way to go about it because if you don’t box your items purposefully, you might put items in a box together which shouldn’t be together, and if you don’t take the time to do an inventory of all the items, you might find that you forget something or somehow lose some of your items in the course of the move. With proper planning, inventory and labeling, you’ll be able to keep track of all your items and quickly find anything you want when you get to your new home. This is particularly important if you don’t want to or cannot unpack everything immediately – you’ll be able to find exactly what you need in a jiffy instead of rummaging through all the boxes.
Forgetting to Change Your Address
You’re moving houses – wow, how exciting! In that excitement, it’s possible to forget that beyond, your neighbors, friends, and family, you also need to notify a few other people that you’re changing addresses. Depending on what you do for a living, the people whom you have to notify will differ greatly but generally, you must notify the utility companies as well as the mail service. Again, the procedure will vary but you can generally complete the process online to be sure that you don’t miss any mail while enjoying your new home.
Renting a Truck of the Wrong Size
This is another mistake that is easily avoided if you work with professionals. Many moving companies will usually be willing to evaluate what you need to move before giving a final quote, which will include the kind of truck that will be suitable for your needs. Many people who choose to DIY their move often end up with a truck that’s too small to carry their goods which could mean that they’d need to do multiple trips or one that’s way too big, in which case they would have spent much more money than they should have. A reason for these mistakes in estimation is that unlike professional movers who have experience fitting belongings into trucks, making a rough amateur guess could never be as accurate.
Not Packing and Driving the Truck Properly
People who have never driven a moving truck or other very large vehicles often make the mistake of thinking that driving one is just like driving a car, only bigger. Nothing could be further from the truth. It takes some time to get used to driving a moving truck in a way that’s safe for oneself, other road users, and the items in the back. It’s important to load the truck properly too, stacking the boxes well and strapping furniture and other large, heavy items like refrigerators securely to make sure nothing falls on other items during the ride. When driving, you will need to be more careful and be aware of road signs for large vehicles, such as clearance and weighing stations.