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Avoid Moving Day Problems

Nobody looks forward to moving an entire home full of cherished belongings.  It’s a monumental task, capped off by a dreaded loading and unloading of all your earthly possessions.  Hopefully, these suggestions will prevent much of the worry.

First, do your homework.  Of course, referrals are the best way to find a good moving company, but you could also get recommendations from on-line services like Angie’s List or Service Magic.  You can check (the American Moving & Storage Assoc.) to see if the company is certified and/or licensed.

Make arrangements with the movers 4 to 6 weeks in advance of the moving day.  This is especially true if you’re thinking of moving during the peak summer months.  Schedule the move for the middle of the month.  Those dates are typically less busy, and you are more likely to get a top-notch crew.

Some moving companies will supply you with the boxes and packing material you’ll need (for a price), but you can easily buy these items yourself through the Yellow Pages (under “moving supplies”) or from self-storage facilities.  Boxes come in 4 sizes: skinny boxes for framed pictures; small boxes for heavy things like books; middle-sized boxes for china, glassware, etc.; and large boxes for linens and light-weight items.

Label every box with a list of contents & with the room that you want it brought to.  Be present during the packing and keep an inventory of everything.  And update your contact information.  The mover should know how to reach you during the move in case a problem comes up.

There are a few things to look out for:  if a mover requires you to pay a big deposit to “hold the date” or to “ensure prompt service”, find another mover; don’t necessarily go with the lowest price – especially if it’s substantially lower than your other estimates.  Lastly, find out if you’re dealing with a broker who will charge a fee up front and then select another mover to actually perform the work.  This is a middle man you don’t need.

If you notice that a box is damaged at delivery, open it in the mover’s presence and have them confirm the condition of the articles in the box.  Note any damage on the inventory form.  Even if you don’t notice any damage right away, you have 9 months after delivery to file a claim.  If you’re not satisfied, file a Household Goods Consumer Complaint with the U.S. Dept. of Transportation.  The mover must acknowledge the claim within 30 days and deny it or make a settlement offer within 120 days.

Once the movers have left, unpack the essentials quicklyArticle Submission, then take your time with the rest.  Don’t try to do too much right away.  Enjoy your new home.

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Charles Gueli invites you to ask questions and take advantage of the resources on , where guidance, information and support are always available.

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