Essential Tips for Moving Alone to Another State
Moving alone to a new town is tough, but a long-distance relocation to a new state is possible.
People in America may live in new towns and states in their lifetime due to job demands, better living environments or health reasons. Although summer is the most popular time of year to accomplish this, any season is good as long as the weather is agreeable. Here are some of my practical tips for travel with your belongings, out of state.
I have lived in 4 other states in the past twenty-six years, recently more than one thousand miles. It can be done alone, but careful planning is essential.
Pricing Professional Movers
Yes, this does seem rather obvious, but there are people who have been overcharged by unscrupulous companies so you need to do your homework on this one. A common tactic is to hold your possessions in storage and demand more money, citing unforeseen expenses. Sometimes there is outright theft.
I'm not negating the honest companies, but they were never an option for me and those on a limited budget.
Ask friends, neighbors, or go on message boards to glean some valuable information. Today the Internet can help find out so much in a matter of minutes. Strangers can give you so much helpful advice and information about anything. Writing sites, and message boards have been immensely popular because of this concept I would only consider hiring professionals if I had so much that I had to take with me and couldn't get any help.
Organization Is Essential
To successfully relocate far from your present home, you obviously need to be organized and get things in order.
Here is a brief list:
- price professional haulers
- price do-it-yourself moving trucks and equipment
- discard or sell unnecessary items to move
- inform utilities in your present location and possibly in your new location if known
- prepare any pets by getting carrying cases or cages
- prepare children if any by discussing it before hand
I will go into more detail about each point.
Price Do-it-Yourself Equipment
For years people had the standbys, such as U-Haul, Ryder trucks, Budget trucks, where you could rent anything from a small tow behind trailer to a diesel-fueled cargo truck. They also rent carts, blankets, sell boxes, bubble wrap, etc.
Now in the last few years, a new concept in self-move had come to be. Outfits like POD and SAM, will bring the container to your home and leave it there so you can take your time packing your possessions into it. I recently checked out a newer self-move pod company by the name of U-Pack. It also uses a container-type large box that is dropped off and allows you to pack and then store it until you are ready to move.
The price is similar to POD but it doesn't have as many locations yet. You may check the price quote with just your email address to see if it's a better deal. As with any company, be sure to check reviews and the BBB in for any problems.
They are smaller than a standard moving company truck, but you could rent two if needed. You still have to pay for storage, distance charges, and make scheduling arrangements. They too, sell boxes, packing materials, and rent blankets and dollies. This was the way I went the last time I moved.
Also, remember that your storage unit is going to be riding on bumpy roads so wrap your furniture and fragile items carefully. I had many scratches and a few smaller items that didn't make the move.
Discard What you Don't Need
I have had the same boxes for the past three moves and never opened then until recently. I think I'm some kind of pack-rat. I now try to sell or discard any items not used in over year. I don't know if I'm a hoarder, but having an attachment to items I didn't need did cost more in the long run.
Anyway, you may need help with this one. Just remember, everything you take with you costs money and everything you can get rid of doesn't.
Of course, having a garage sale is always good for this purpose. Make some money and lighten the load. You may need friends and family to help pry some things out of your hands or perhaps sell your possessions for you, if you can't part with any. Go somewhere while they hold the sale so it'll be less painful!
Once you know your last day, you can set up, your shut-off date. The utility companies such as the phones, electric, gas, water, cable, satellite, and even the cell phone company will settle your final bill and possibly owe you money after you leave in most cases. You must give a forwarding address to receive your deposit money or pay any remaining balance. Your cell phone may not work in your new location, so check that out ahead of time.
Prepare Pets and Kids
I had a geriatric cat, which made this drive just as stressful as having a kitten. She had to be treated carefully and had to take more breaks while driving with her. Even though she was an experienced traveler, had her own carrier, but preferred to sit on my lap. Anyone with a cat knows they are very unpredictable and claw you at a moment's notice. Put them in a carrier, and have a litter box ready!
Some dogs can sit in the back seat depending on their temperament. Always put a leash on them. The smaller toy breeds can go into a carrier. Other small pets such as hamsters, mice, snakes, reptiles, should be in a container of some type. You don't want your pet snake getting out and around your feet while driving!
Prepare Any Children
If you are traveling with young children and don't have any help, this could be quite stressful for all concerned. They need to be mentally and physically prepared ahead of time, by discussing it and trying to make it seem like a fun trip. Children will need a lot of breaks and get bored quickly. Bring coloring books, electronic games, portable DVD players, or movies. It is a lot nicer to travel today with cars that have television and movie players installed.
I hope I answered the questions about self moves. You can do it alone, but it takes some planning to be successful and less stressful.
I will definitely not take all my possessions and furniture to my next location. The expense and aggravation are just not worth it so take it from one who has moved many times. You don't need to move with a friend but it would be easier. Happy moving!
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
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© 2008 Stacie L