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These 10 Tips Make Moving Easy

#1 - Plan an Interstate Move Around the Best Travel Seasons
If you found AllStarTransfer.com on an internet search or were referred by a friend, there's a good chance you have an interstate move coming up, and now you can use a few great tips to make moving day go as easy as possible.

First, let's talk about the seasons -- Fall, Winter, Spring, and Summer. Sometimes moving can't be put off, and things happen unexpectedly, where you have to move without any time to plan for a seasonal move. But if you have the means, look closely at what time of the year you plan to move. Mountain passes in winter time can cause serious delays and risk to moving plans, as can the extreme heat of the hot summer months in a handful of states. Consider where you're loading and where you'll be unloading at, seasonal weather (yes, it rains a lot in the Pacific Northwest, for example) when making plans for a major move.

#2 - Donate or Sell Items You Really Don't Need
Most families have an assortment of extra goods stored in closets, garages, basements, attics, and sheds. A family of five can have several years of accumulated goods that can add 25% of more to the amount of goods being moved. That's great for movers -- we get paid more. But that's bad for you, our customer, who has to pay for the time and space and fuel to move all these extras, a lot of which may be candidates for donating, selling, or just disposing of in advance.

* Thinking About Moving with All Star? (We can save customers 30-50% off the final bill vs what they would spend with large, mega-corporate moving companies). Periodically we are fully booked and or we may not have any moving routes available currently in an area. Check Service Areas to see our current routes and if we can tackle your move!

#3 - Pack Your Garage, Shed, Basement, and Attic -- First
With that said above in the previous moving tip, before packing up your active living spaces, go through, and clean out as much as possible your garage, shed, basement, attic, etc, before hand, disposing and donating extras, and getting everything well in advance of moving day packed up, labeled (more on that below), and boxed (or donated, disposed of, etc.). Attics and basements can be overlooked in a rush by people, and leave unexpected and unpacked belongings for movers to deal with on moving day.

At the same time, in the weeks' prior to moving, get rid of all stored chemicals, gasoline, and used motor oil. You may have years of pesticides, fertilizer, various bug sprays and traps, gasoline for lawn equipment, and old motor oil for your cars, motorcycle or ATV, etc. We've seen it all! The average family that lives in a 3 bedroom house or larger, and has a lawn, and possibly a recreational vehicle, boat, or something else along those lines, can have a mess of chemicals to get rid of. There are several laws against illegal disposal of chemicals, and thus many communities nowadays have a place for disposing of these chemicals and pesticides. Locate yours and get rid of these chemicals in advance of moving day, so they don't slow you down, and leave you with an unexpected chore to deal with.

#4 - Don't Rely on Large Plastic Tubs -- Choose Strong, Uniform Boxes
Ok, the big box stores like Wal-Mart like to sell a variety of large plastic storage tubs. Throw a tub in your child's closet, and it works great for storing toys, blankets, etc. In your garage they sometimes work well for tools, gardening supplies, and other extras. But as a serious method for moving, these tubs are a pain in the neck. With accumulated weight on top from stacking other tubs or boxes, they tend to bend and crack, and end up wasting time and space, rather than conserving time and space -- two essentials that are key to a good moving experience.

Instead, buy several sturdy boxes, and choose boxes that are uniform (the same size) in size and strength. For a family of 3, you can choose 15 talls (by "tall", you decide on that), 20 mediums, and 15 smalls (for dishes and glassware, photos, etc) for example.

Before purchasing your talls, determine the height of the truck likely to be used by the moving company you plan to hire, and then purchase "talls" that will reach the ceiling (or just under), when stacked. (If renting a truck and attempting to tackle the chore and expense of moving day on your own, check the height of the rental truck you'll need -- but before you rent a truck and go about this on your own, read this article on the truth about moving to learn why "renting a truck" may not really be the cheapest route to move (surprising facts, risks, and unexpected expenses that come with "do it yourself" moving).

#5 - When You Shop for Furniture, Look for Furniture That's Easy On Moving
That king size living room entertainment center or palace size bedroom set looks great -- but are you ready for the expense of hauling in excess moving equipment like mechanical joists, possibly a crane if you're up on a balcony, and potentially 2 teams of movers to tear it down, and get it moved out of your home and onto a truck?

If you've found the home you plan to settle down in, then that's great -- don't worry so much about whether or not your furniture can be moved. But if you think it's possible that you may move 2 or 3 times over the next ten years, give serious thought into that heavy slate pool table, 1500 pounds of home gym equipment, or 600 pound safe before you purchase it. Choose items that break down easily into smaller pieces, or are easy to assemble, or simply no assembly is required. Take measurements in advance and compare to average door size frames and then factor that into your decision to purchase. The next time you have to move, you'll be glad you took these steps when you did. Easy in, easy out.

#6 - Avoid Being "Hustled" By a Crook Posing as a Moving Company
There are a lot of crooks in the moving industry. It's one reason that the moving industry has gotten a bad rap over the years. First thing to know is that not all moving companies are crooks and highway robbers. Check out your mover with the BBB (Better Business Bureau), and when you request a quote, and get a live operator on the phone, ask if they're a moving broker or the actual moving company that's going to do the move. Also, research a mover on www.wutc.org where you can make sure they are a registered agent to perform interstate moves.

A lot of websites look like real moving companies, but actually are brokers, who post your move on a job board for other moving companies to bid on; it's hard to say who's actually going to show up at your door to do your move, if they'll even be on time, and what kind of service you're going to get. Remember, you're not choosing the moving company that shows up at your door, when you go through a broker -- instead, they are choosing you. That's the perfect recipe for ending up a victim and being yet one more complaint filed with the BBB against a "moving company" over the years.

Avoid these brokers and do your research and work directly with an actual moving company.

#7 - Label Your Boxes in the Same Place on Each Box With the Same Colored Pen
You can use your boxes for a future move, easily, by labeling each box in the top right hand corner (for example), with the same colored Sharpie pen. After this move, break down your boxes and save them. On a future move, put your boxes back together, and now choose the bottom left hand corner to label your boxes (for example), and choose a different colored Sharpie pen than you used on your last move, putting an "X" through each previous box's label. By labeling your boxes in the same place, with the same colored pen, you can help speed up the time needed to unload a moving truck, and also help avoid confusion or misplaced boxes in your new location. At the end of the day, after moving 40 - 60 boxes, this saves you time and money on your final bill!
#8 - Transfer Utilities, Set Up Mail Forwarding, and Transfer Medical and School Records
In the days leading up to your move, get cable and internet ready for install either the same day, or even a couple days in advance if you can work that out. Get your addresses in place with the post office (you can change your address online nowadays. Inform your child's present school that you plan to move, and contact the next school your child will be enrolled at to find out exactly what they need (including immunization records) before your child can start. (More moving tips here on transferring school records).
#9 - Use Up Perishable Food So You Don't Have to Move It
In the last two week's leading up to moving day, use up the food in your refrigerator and freezer so you don't have to move it. If you're doing an interstate move and plan to spend a day or more on the road, you will appreciate not having the headache of knowing your food isn't at risk of going bad during the transfer. This will also give you the opportunity to clean out your pantry of expired non-perishable foods if any, and leave you with less of a mess to pack up on actual moving day -- if most of it has in the days prior been consumed, disposed of, and cleaned up after as you go. Two days before moving day transfer the remaining items in your refrigerator and freezer into a cooler, and live out of your cooler those last two days. That will give you the opportunity to clean your refrigerator and freezer the day before moving day.
#10 - Wardrobe Boxes for Clothes and Bubble Wrap for Artwork
For the clothes you absolutely need to keep hanging, get a wardrobe box or two. Get plenty of bubble wrap that you can use to protect artwork and electronics, and wrap and label in advance of moving day. If using our company, for example, let us know in advance if you would like packing and crating services for high priced items. Contact your homeowner's insurance company in advance of your move, and request extra protection for a short period of time. You can also request extra insurance through your moving company, if working with a reputable mover (which you should be, especially if your belongings are important to you; it is not safe to just trust any mover with your belongings and keepsakes.)

* Thinking About Moving with All Star? (We can save customers 30-50% off the final bill vs what they would spend with large, mega-corporate moving companies). Periodically we are fully booked and or we may not have any moving routes available currently in an area. Check Service Areas to see our current routes and if we can tackle your move!

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