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Relocating to Your Snowbird Haven


If you’re renting your future snowbird home, it may already come fully furnished.  Contact the office and ask what comes with the rental.  Keep the following items in mind:


Kitchen:  microwave, dishes, silverware, cups, pots, pans, and dish towels

Bathroom:  shower curtain, towels, floor mats

Bedroom:  mattress, sheets, comforter, dresser, hangers

Living room:  couches, television, radio


It may, however, be nice to decorate your home-away-from-home with your own stuff and style.  In that case, it’s important to consider whether it’s more cost effective to haul your stuff down there, or just buy the towels when you get to your location. 


Either way, here are some moving options to keep in mind:


Move it yourself

The most convenient way is to rent a moving truck for your one-way trip.  Possible moving equipment to rent includes: truck, trailer (behind rented truck or your vehicle), and trailer to tow your vehicle.  Moving companies also sell boxes and other moving supplies.


Moving tips

  1. BulletDecide in advance exactly what you’re going to move, sell, give-away, or store

  2. BulletNumber your boxes (esp. with moving company) so you don’t lose boxes.  Also, use numerical system to indicate which room.  (i.e., A-12, A= kitchen & 12 = box number)

  3. BulletDon’t pack heavy things in large boxes

  4. BulletAvoid packing boxes heavier than you can comfortably carry

  5. BulletRemember to pack important documents, computer data backups, small valuables, priceless valuables and prescriptions with you and not on the truck

  6. BulletIf renting a truck, ask the rental company for a gas-mileage estimate.  Add more onto your estimate for any errors.


Hire someone to move it

Finding the right moving company is essential to a successful move.  Keep in mind the busiest moving times are the last ten days of June, July, and August.  The best way to safeguard yourself is to check with the Better Business Bureau about past complaints (www.bbb.com).  Above all, make sure all of your expectations are written into the contract. 


Be knowledgeable! 

Double check these things and make sure it’s written into the contract. 

  1. BulletPrecise delivery dates and retribution if they’re late

  2. BulletHidden fees, expected gratuities, extraordinary fees for packing supplies, etc.

  3. BulletRecourse for damaged/lost/stolen items

  4. BulletInsurance

  5. BulletDo they pay for the stated value of the item or just 60 cents/lb.?

  6. BulletDoes the company use subcontractors?  How much experience do the movers have?

  7. BulletHow do they calculate cost?  By weight or cubic feet?

  8. BulletAsk for a signed verification of their weight estimate for your stuff—BEFORE it’s loaded onto the truck.  That way, they can’t claim they “miscalculated the weight” and charge you significantly more (when it’s too late to find another moving company)

  9. BulletKnow that even if the moving company changes the price (due to a poorly estimated weight/cubic feet estimate), they may take the truck with all of your things on it, until you’re able to pay

  10. BulletAsk for the fully company name, how long they’ve been in business, and for references and call them


Rent the movers, drive the truck yourself

If you’re concerned about hiring someone to move your things, consider renting a moving truck and hiring movers to load the truck.  By calling a moving company, you should be able to find some hired help for the day.  Then, you don’t need to worry about hidden fees, delivery dates, and your stuff disappearing.


Send it to yourself:

After spending hours trying to reconfigure your vehicle or moving truck, you may have one or two boxes that just won’t fit.  In this case, consider just mailing these boxes to yourself.


Tips

  1. BulletConsider giving the boxes to a friend or family member to mail when you’re at your snowbird destination

  2. BulletContact the office of your community to see if they’ll hold the box or place it in your home

  3. BulletOnly send light-weight boxes and non-breakable items

 

Related Links:

Moving Company Tips:  Contains great tips on how to choose a moving company, types of estimates, the right questions to ask, etc. 


www.movers.com:  Offers searches for long distance movers, small parcel moves, “you pack & movers drive” moves, and has great tips for moving.


www.uhaul.com:  Rent a truck, trailer, roof pouch, or anything else you need for moving.


www.pods.com:  Portable On Demand Storage (PODS) can be delivered to your driveway.  You load it at your leisure and PODS moves it to your location.


UPS:  Calculate the cost of shipping your boxes.


US Postal Service:  Calculate the cost of shipping your boxes

       

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