Moving Day Countdown
Relocating to a new home is one of the biggest decisions that a person can make. It’s not an impulse decision that you can just pull out of a hat. Moving out of your current home and moving in to a new one requires months of planning. It can be a frightening task for many but just like any other project or challenge, it can easily be conquered if you do it one step at a time.
Scheduling Your Move
One of the first things you need to do is to decide when you will be actually moving. Take note that some months of the year will cost you more than others. If you are planning to hire professional movers and you want to keep the prices low then timing is of the essence.
Summer time is the busiest time of the year for movers. In addition, the beginning and end of each month are traditionally busier than mid-month, regardless of the season. If you are planning to a transition during one of these times, plan well in advance so that you can book something to fit your schedule.
Now it is time to contact the movers on your list. Inform them of your destination and the timing. Ask them to provide you with a written estimate, and have them explain the services listed in the estimate in detail. Carefully compare each estimate to see which company best suits your needs and budget.
Check out our Countdown planner, to be sure you don’t forget anything.
Proper packing by a trained packer using specially designed cartons and materials is crucial. Schedule packing with the company a day or two before the van is loaded. If you are packing yourself, it is never too soon to start. We highly recommend that you start packing no later than two months before your planned date. While packing yourself can save money, professionals will not usually accept liability for damage to items packed by owners. Always remember that you don’t have to bring everything with you. Your task will be much easier (and cheaper) if you lessen your baggage. Let go of the things you no longer need and make space for some new ones.
So let’s say that you hired movers for packing. Be present when your goods are packed. An inventory of your goods will be made and it is important to resolve any disagreements prior to signing the inventory. Make sure all copies are legible and all items are numbered. Have valuable items listed separately. Some appliances may require servicing prior to you leaving. Your professionals can schedule these services for you.
There are several options for insuring your goods. All household goods shipments move under limited liability. However, you may purchase additional liability coverage from the company.
Planning the Day
The company may ask you to select several consecutive days during which your goods can be loaded and a second series of dates during which your goods can be delivered to your new home. A spread of days gives everyone the flexibility needed to keep things on schedule. Remember that summer months are the busiest, and some companies offer lower prices between the months of October and April.
- Be on hand when the professionals arrive
- Discuss the delivery arrangements fully with them
- Have beds stripped and ready to be packed
- Save your energy – let the crew disassemble goods
- Read the Bill of Lading before you sign it
- Give the driver directions to reach you at your destination
- Keep in contact with the agent at your destination while you are in transit
Generally, your belongings will be transported in a van along with those of other families in the same general direction. This helps to keep your costs down. Delivery is made on any of the several consecutive days agreed upon before the move began. Make sure the mover knows how to contact you to schedule actual delivery. If you cannot be reached at destination, the mover may place your shipment in storage to avoid delaying other shipments. This can mean additional charges for storage and handling.
Upon delivery, check your goods for damage. Do not sign the inventory until you have inspected your furniture and the exterior of the cartons.
If any of your household goods are damaged or lost, report the facts promptly and in detail on the van driver’s copy (original) of the inventory sheet before you sign it. If you notice damage after unpacking, a claim must be filed within nine months after delivery. However, it is to your advantage to report damage as soon as possible. The company must acknowledge receipt of your claim within 30 days and must deny or make an offer within 120 days of receipt of your claim. When making a claim or considering a settlement offer, keep in mind the amount of liability that you declared on your shipment. For example, if the value declared on your shipment was $5,000, their maximum liability for loss or damage to the articles in your shipment is $5,000. Claims for more than this amount will be declined because they are in excess of their liability that you declared on your shipment.