Thursday, July 10, 2014

Moving How-to

I seriously hope you are not planning a move. And it you are, let me just say, I'm sorry!

There is nothing fun about moving. Not packing, not unpacking, not planning to pack. It's so emotional - even if, like us, you are excited about the next step. Although I knew there was a possibility we would be moving this summer, I kept putting off the unfortunate tasks like cleaning closets and looking in the attic to see what was really up there. My attitude was more like Scarlett's: "I'll think about that tomorrow." It is after all, another day!

So when we found out at the end of March that we would be moving some 530 miles in May, there was a lot to do in a very short period of time. Fortunately, the hospital here covers moving expenses up to $1,000. So that was our goal.

1. Sell bigger items on Craigslist. I also had some luck with Amazon for books and movies. The key to successful Craigslist selling is saying upfront - and sticking to it - first come, first serve. You can't hold it until after work or until the weekend. I learned this the hard way!

2. Clear out what you can with a yard sale and donate what doesn't sell. You can read about mine here.

3. Pack rooms you don't use that often first. For us this was the two guest rooms and guest bathroom. The kitchen was the last. After Christmas I had had the sense to pack our ornament boxes to move. So that was done!

4. Enlist good help! DeeDee came over packed all my breakables. I knew she would do a much better job than me. It worked - nothing broke! Mom and Net came and packed up the kitchen the day before graduation. It was the last room packed and the first room unpacked.

5. Get creative with your supplies. Once we ran out of tape, we got creative with soon-to-be-unusable address stickers. We also used sheets and towels to line the boxes of breakable items. I had saved the boxes my crystal came in (they were in the attic!) and that was helpful. 

6. Find free boxes. We ended up having to buy one hanging box and a few large boxes. A majority of the boxes we used were from the package store. I was a little afraid our new neighbors would think we had a problem. Someone moving into Belhaven was giving away her hanging boxes and posted a note on that they were free to the first taker. I'd never used these before but they were very nice for clothing!

There were about three weeks where our garbage looked like this. I'm sure the workers groaned when they turned on our street!

7. I did buy some bubble wrap, but for the most part we used old newspaper. A local college gave me a gigantic stack of old papers.

8. Search for the moving truck. The week after Match Day I called a few moving places in town and quickly learned that it would cost between $3,000 and $5,000 to have someone else move us. So that wasn't an option. I also looked at getting a POD and that would have been good if we needed a month to move because the price includes a 30 day rental and they will take it where ever you want within those 30 days. If we hadn't found a house right away, this is probably what we would have done.

I looked online at U-haul, Budget and Penske for prices and filled out their "get more info" sections. Penske called the next day and offered to match Budget's price - after I told the sales person Budget was cheaper. She also offered a web discount and a AAA discount. Our total cost for the truck was $626. That and gas were our biggest expenses.

9. Make a Pinterest board - or look on my boards. There's lots of good information out there about how to pack a moving truck. The heaviest things should be at the front for safety reasons.

10. We didn't do this but next time I'm going to write on my car "With the Penske truck" or something like that. I followed behind Ryan for the most part, and when were were going to change lanes multiple times (like in Atlanta) I would get over and "hold" the lane for him. We had a whole signal thing going so we didn't have to call each other. It was so annoying the cars who would try to get in between us. It all worked out, but it was a very nerve-wrecking nine hours!

Our total: $1,011.99

So just about $12 over budget!

1 comment:

Thelma Bowman said...

I'd like to think of the moving process as a metaphor for life. It's hard and it takes a lot of physical and mental effort, but the next step and reaching your new destination is akin to a light over the horizon. Anyway, it's great that you were able to move successfully with only $12 over budget. You gave such amazing tips. I'm sure those will be a big help for people out there who are moving for the first time. Thank you for sharing!

Thelma Bowman @ Quality Strapping