Charlotte Relocation Guide

VOL2 ISS2 2018

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VOLUME 10—ISSUE 1 73 THE ORIGINAL RELOCATION GUIDE — CHARLOTTE | VOLUME 2 — ISSUE 2 that these quotes are not always guaranteed and also make sure the moving company is reliable. So, now you should have a pretty good cost-comparison between hiring a company and moving it yourself. If this is all you're concerned about, you can pretty much stop right here and make your decision. But if time is a factor, then you may want to take it a step farther: How much time will it take to pack your things, load your things and drive it all to your new destination? Do you have additional help like friends, family, neighbors or co-workers that can lend a hand? Are there fragile or special items that will require special handling? Can you move these items yourself? If not, what will it cost to move them? Will you need to rent additional equipment/supplies/hired-hands to move larger items such as appliances? Hiring a Moving Company — Hiring a good mov- ing company is a lot harder than you might think. Once again you start by doing some research, most of which can be done right from your computer. Select at least 5 companies and interview them over the phone. Get familiar with moving terminology, such as binding and non-binding estimates. Most companies have websites that list their services, service history, destinations they are willing to move to, and roughly how much it will cost. This is a great place to get background information and to start compiling a list of potential companies. Also, most companies will list contact information, including e-mail addresses, allowing you to ask questions and be provided with a written response. Also ask around among friends, family and colleagues. They can perhaps recommend a company (or if there's one you should avoid). Another place to start your research is on MovingS- cam.com. This is a website dedicated to revealing mov- ing scams before they happen to you. On MovingScam you can check out articles, message boards with moving company problems, warnings, and other Q&A sections. Find out if any of the companies on your list have gen- erated any BBB reports. Information you can get will usually contain any grievances filed and if the grievances were resolved successfully. It's rare that a company has zero unhappy customers; the key is to ensure that if there were complaints, that in the end, the customer was satisfied with the result. Read the report carefully, and if you're thinking of using a company who had a grievance filed, ask them specifically about this case and how it was resolved. Go to the U.S. Department of Transportation's Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website and find out if your potential mover has a Department of Transporta- tion (DOT) number. This number ensures that the com- pany is registered with the Department of Transportation. According to FMCSA, watch for signs of rogue movers such as those not offering an on-site inspection of your household goods before giving you an estimate; those demanding cash or a large deposit upfront; the ones with no local address; or if on moving day, a company who shows up in a rental truck rather than a company-owned and marked fleet truck. Make note of anything suspicious. Above all, if it doesn't feel right, it probably isn't. Move It Yourself — If you're moving locally, mov- ing yourself may make more sense and save you money. Self-moves tend to be financially smarter if you're moving a short distance, but there are some points to remem- ber when you start your research. You'll need a truck. As mentioned earlier, size depends on how big of a household you're moving. You'll also need to book in advance to make sure of availability. May through September is peak season and most agencies will charge more during these months. Don't forget any other vehicles that may need transport- ing (others cars or trucks, 4 wheelers, boats, etc.). Moving equipment such as dollies, pads, and blankets also add to the self-move total as well as insurance. Moving Timetable — In order to keep yourself on schedule, you'll need to keep a list of things to do eight, four, and finally two weeks before you move. At eight weeks - Start to call movers, truck rental companies, etc. and keep all notes and reminders. Decide if you're going to move yourself or hire professionals. Find out how much the moving company will cover, then contact your own insurance agent and ask if your policy can apply to moving your household goods. If you're moving with kids ,arrange to transfer their school records. Check on storage facilities at the new location if there will be a need. Finally, start compiling any packing supplies you'll be needing, pur- chase a lockable box for important documents. With a month to go - Contact your utility and service companies for disconnect and reconnect dates respectively at your previous and new residences. If you're moving yourself, now is the time to reserve your truck or trailer. In any case, complete all of your travel plans such as flights, hotels, and pet arrangements. If you're driving, decide what you need to pack for the trip such as kids' games, clothing, and food. Cancel local subscriptions (magazines, newspapers, bottled water). Complete an IRS change of address form. Be sure to have good directions for the en- tire trip and keep packing. Just two weeks left - Get your car fully serviced and prepare its registration and insurance. If you're moving out of state, notify your current Department of Motor Vehicles of your address change and inquire about regis- tration in your new state. Call your insurance company to cancel or transfer your current home coverage. You'll need to transfer all prescriptions to a pharmacy in your new city. Make sure the moving van can fit in your driveway or on the street and that the distance from the van to the front door does not exceed what the moving company allows. Try not to buy too many groceries or only buy essentials and items that you'll eat in the next two weeks. Continue general packing. Try to label each box with what's inside, where it goes and any special instructions. Be as detailed as you can. This will make it easier when you're unpacking. Some preparation on your part in the beginning can make something even as life changing as moving from your home to a new home a good adventure.[] MOVING TIPS & TRICKS

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