Each year, millions of Americans pack up their homes and move to another place for all different kinds of reasons. While moving within the same town or even within the same state may be pretty easy logistically, the same is not so for moving long distances. In fact, about 20% of those who moved in 2021 were to a different state, which takes a bit more planning, organization, and sometimes stress.
However, there are ways to smooth out the process and make it easier for everyone. Here are some tips to get you started.
If you are planning to move from the eastern part of Maryland to Delaware, it might be similar to staying within the same city. But if the move is from South Carolina to California, that task is a bit more daunting. After all, you can’t easily bop from one residence to the other if you’re moving thousands of miles away. So, the distance from point A to point B matters a lot in planning.
Also, think about how many people you have to help you and the number of drivers in your household. For instance, if you are the only licensed driver, there is no way for you to drive the moving truck and the family van, so you will have to bring in help. While it’s nice to ask friends and family to assist in some ways like the packing, they might not be able to travel long distances to give you a hand at your destination.
Bringing in the Pros
Even if you have more than one driver in the house, you might consider bringing in professional movers. They can do much of the heavy lifting, especially when you have large and awkward items like a couch, entertainment center, or gun locker. These companies can not only pack up your things, but load them into the trucks, unload them at the new location, and bring them inside for unpacking. If you go with this option, you want to do some research ahead of time. They will handle everything from your keepsakes and valuables to your furniture and knickknacks, so you want someone you can trust.
Check with the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA) for professional moving company recommendations. The organization is a non-profit entity with a mission to help people find the best movers in their area.
Take an Inventory
Even when you choose a company with high ratings, you still want to make sure everything you own makes it from one place to another — unscathed. It might be a good idea to take an inventory of your belongings. That way, you know exactly what is going in the truck and precisely what should come out of the vehicle upon arrival.
For an added layer of protection, you could bring your valuables, keepsakes, and important papers in your car while moving. That way, you don’t worry about any missing and important items.
Organization Is Key
If you decide to do your own packing, label the boxes well. Doing so will make it easier to stage and unpack at your new home. Whether you use a professional moving service or not, think about the essentials you will need when you arrive. It might be a good idea to pack some clothes, cookware, and anything else you might use while waiting for the rest of your belongings. Bring those items with you, so you don’t have to do without. Even if you are moving yourself, the last thing you want is to be forced to dig through endless boxes to find a change of clothes or a pan to cook dinner.
With a bit of planning, even a long-distance move can go off without a hitch.