Detailed Packing Checklist For Moving Long Distance

This article explores all you need to know before embarking on a long-distance move. It includes a 3-step moving checklist, designed to keep you on top of everything before moving day.

Detailed Packing Checklist For Moving Long Distance

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A moving checklist is a list containing all that needs to be done before moving day. A good moving checklist will keep you organized and prepared before your moving date, eliminating a great deal of stress and panic that comes with it.

1. Prepare a Packing List

The very first thing you need to do is make a list of what needs to be packed at least 3-4 weeks before your intended move date. It makes your move organized and a lot less panicky, a sample packing checklist should look like this:

1. Declutter your belongings as much as possible. This not only helps reduce cost, but you’ll also have space for more items when you arrive at your new apartment.

2. Make an inventory of the items you will be moving and the state they are in, this will help you with your packing and moving in case you need to file a claim.

3. Start packing by boxing-up the items you use less often, to avoid re-opening of moving boxes before moving day.

4. Label the boxes properly. This helps when unpacking, it also lets the mover know what boxes contain fragile items.

5. If you aren’t requesting a full-service move from the moving company, make sure to have all your belongings packed at least 3-4 days before the moving date.

6. Request professional packing services for furniture disassembly or other labor-intensive tasks you won’t be able to handle.

7. Cancel all utility services in your present apartment and schedule the activation of new ones in your new one.

8. Make photocopies of important documents and keep them with you, insurance can’t replace them if your shipment is lost or damaged during transit.

9. Declare any items of special value to the mover.

10. Clean the apartment before handing over the keys to the landlord or realtor.

11. The delivery window for a long-distance move is between five days to two weeks, so make sure you keep a box of necessary items with you until your shipment arrives.

Items Your Mover Will Not Help You Move Long-distance

Unfortunately, movers cannot transport every item you own. So be sure to not include these items on your packing list.

Federal law prohibits the shipping of hazardous materials without informing your mover, and a violation could result in 5 years imprisonment or a fine of $250,000.

A typical list of items that movers classify as dangerous to move are:

  • Firearms and ammunition
  • Aerosols
  • Fertilizers
  • Paint cans
  • Oil or gas of any sort
  • Charcoal
  • Pesticides and poisons

2. Choose the Right Long-distance Moving Company

Making a packing checklist is not the end of it, you are yet to choose a long-distance moving company to take your property to your new home/apartment.

Check out our article on the best long-distance movers. Most long-distance movers (moves over 400 miles or cross state borders) offer options for consolidated shipping—which saves cost at the expense of time—or express shipping.

Hiring the right mover will save you a great deal of stress. In addition to packing, make sure you use discretion before finding the right movers. Some criteria to consider before hiring a mover are:

  • Make sure the mover is licensed and insured
  • Ask for references
  • Use the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website to view their service history
  • Inquire if they are capable of handling your move
  • Confirm their reputability by reading online reviews, this provides clues on how their customer service responds to complaints from dissatisfied customers.

Get Free Moving Quotes From Top-rated Long Distance Moving Companies Around You

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Pack Knowing you Have Moving Insurance

You might be debating ditching moving insurance as it raises your moving costs, but it could prove useful if you are moving extremely valuable items during extreme weather conditions, or any other unexpected scenario.

One of the most important questions to ask a mover is what type of insurance coverage they offer, this determines how much you would be reimbursed in the eventuality that your shipment is lost or damaged while in transit.

3. Determining the Cost of your Long-distance Move

Okay so you have your packing list, you know what to look for in a moving company, but how much will this cost you? An average long-distance/interstate move costs about $7,000.

This price is mainly influenced by the weight of your shipment. Other factors such as the insurance coverage selected and the distance to drop-off also influence moving costs.

To get the cheapest prices possible without sacrificing quality service, contact at least three reputable long-distance moving companies and request an estimate from each one. If the company you’re looking into offers in-person estimates, try them. This allows you to budget and potentially bargain.

Rather not go through all the stress involved with researching a mover? Take a look at the top moving companies of 2022.

How do Moving Companies Calculate the Cost for Long-distance Moves?

Long-distance moving costs are mainly calculated using shipment weight. That’s why it’s a good idea to start packing sooner than later, so you know how many boxes you actually have.

Other factors that influence how much you will be charged for your move are:

  • The number of movers required to pack your belongings.
  • Cost of truck and gas
  • Added charges if you are moving items that require special machinery
  • Storage in Transit
  • Moving Insurance

Cheapest Way to Move your Items Long-distance.

The cheapest way to move long distance/interstate is by use of consolidated shipping. This involves grouping your belongings in the same truck, where transportation costs are shared between clients based on the proportions of space used.

If the moving company you have contracted for your move does not offer consolidated shipping services for long-distance moves or you are pressed for time, you can cut down on moving costs by:

  • Getting cheap or free packing supplies
  • Move during off-peak season
  • Contacting at least three moving companies for moving quotes and comparing offers
  • Decluttering as much as you possibly can
  • Pack what you can yourself
  • se up all your perishables before the move

To have a more accurate idea of how much your move will cost, check this out.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is the main difference between an in-home estimate and an online moving quote?

An in-home moving estimate is more accurate than an online moving quote. It is done by a highly experienced moving agent with an understanding of the amount of space and movers needed to complete the job.

2. Do I have to pay for an in-person estimate?

An in-person estimate is free. However, it can only be offered to you if the moving company has on-site estimators in your area.

3. What is the best way to pack my things for an interstate move?

Requesting packing services from the professional mover handling your move is the best way to ensure your belongings are protected throughout the move.

4. How much will it cost for me to move long-distance?

A long-distance/interstate move costs about $7,000 on average. Though prices will vary based on the circumstances surrounding your move, from the weight of your belongings to the distance.

5. When is the best time to move?

It is best to plan your move to fall during the off-peak moving season, which is between March and May. You can avoid price hikes imposed by moving companies as a result of an increase in demand for their services.

You Are Good to Go

You’re packed, informed, and ready to move. The best time to hire a moving company is during off-peak seasons to avoid paying extra due to the surge in demand for moving services. Depending on the moving option you choose, a long-distance move could be well over $7,000 so make sure to have a budget and declutter before contacting a moving company. Follow our tips and stay organized to make your move less stressful, and cheaper.

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