If you’re faced with moving your family clear across the country, or even a couple states over, the prospect can be terrifying – not just in terms of the logistics but in terms of a complete lifestyle change. In many ways, it’s likely you’ll be starting all over. A long-distance move takes a lot of planning, and you need someone on your side to handle the moving and transportation part.
But here are some more tips for surviving any long-distance move no matter how many miles are involved.
1. Plan Early
The sooner you can start planning for the move, the better. This isn’t like a quick local move across town. You will need at least two to three months to plan out your moving timeline, create an inventory, pack, and switch over utilities, doctors, schools – the list goes on and on. You’ll also have to book a flight if you plan to fly to your new destination instead of drive. This means you’ll be relying heavily on your movers to load, transport and unload your belongings at the new place. That’s why you have to trust your movers implicitly, but more on that later.
Here are a few helpful pointers:
- Organize important papers, such as passports, birth certificates, social security cards, bank statements, and password lists. Put them all in a binder or folder for safe keeping and easy access.
- Purge your home and donate items to charity or hold a yard sale. You can sell things online, and of course, trash anything that’s broken or stained.
- When purging, use the one-year rule: If you haven’t used something in the past year, get rid of it, suggests How Stuff Works. Don’t keep holding out hope that you’ll fit into your skinny jeans from high school, or hang onto that second toaster you got for your wedding. Chances are, you won’t use those things and worse, you’ll be paying to transport things you don’t need.
- Come up with a list of the chores you need to do on the existing house to make it ready for sale, or the new owners if it’s already sold. Then, you can chip away at those maintenance chores, like touch-up painting, little by little.
- Tell your landlord the date you intend to move, or if you own your own home, get in touch with a real estate agent who is licensed in both states.
- Research your kids’ new schools and begin the enrollment process.
2. Save $$$ and Budget
Many employers will offer relocation assistance, so be sure to inquire about this. They will hook you up with movers in the area, set up the logistics and even pay for the move in many cases. This is a good time to start budgeting for unanticipated moving expenses, such as hotels, meals and cleaning services.
3. Hire Movers
You may look at the price of professional movers and packers and think you should just move everything on your own. Bad idea. Nothing is ever free, and you will end up spending much more time, money and headache trying to pull off a DIY move. Budget for movers, and never look back. You will thank yourself later. If you try to move all that heavy furniture yourself, you risk damaging the items, not to mention a tweaked back or worse.
4. Make Lists
Pick up a notebook or get an organizing app on your phone. Then keep lists. You may need multiple lists for different purposes, such as for to-do’s, phone numbers, packing, cleaning, airline tickets, real estate agent contact info, and appointment reminders. It’s confusing and frustrating to face a long-distance move; lists will keep you grounded and organized. Don’t rely on your memory – there are simply too many things to worry about.
5. Bundle Important Items
There’s a lot than can go missing when you’re juggling boxes between rental cars, houses, and hotels. You don’t want to lose the envelope of cash you were reserving for tips at the airport or for your movers. Keep an accordion file of important envelopes, cash reserves, receipts and more so they don’t get lost in the heat of the moment.
Got a ton of digital documents? Make a folder on your computer and keep important information pertaining to flights, hotel confirmations and invoices in there, all properly labeled. You probably also have hard copy documents as well. For those, put them in a binder with color coded sections. Grab a duffel bag or backpack and use it to transport all important things, such as wallets, passports and birth certificates. If you use something, replace it in the same spot.
6. Pack on a Timeline
It’s a good idea to split your move up into stages, such as pre-packing, packing, in-transit, and destination. Create a timeline and then assign a corresponding packing schedule to each stage in that timeline. If you’re packing for a long distance across different climates, you’ll have to consider the weather and all the different outfits you will need. Moving from Frisco to Boston will be a big change weather-wise, especially in the winter. Pack for colder weather and dress in layers.
In addition to weather concerns, you’ll also have to pack according to the activities you’ll be engaging in. If there’s a pool at the hotel, you’ll want to pack towels and swimsuits that are easily accessible. Also, you’ll want to pack an essentials bag that is filled with everything you’ll need for a few days, from saline solution and contact lenses to prescriptions and fresh underwear. And for the love of Pete, don’t forget your toddler’s favorite blankie!
Contact Olde World Movers
Facing a long-distance move on your own can be daunting. Let us help you every step of the way. Just contact us to get a free quote and book your move with us today. We can handle the rigors of your long-distance relocation.