Preparation is the key to a smooth and cost-efficient move. And when you prepare for your move, there are several things to keep in mind. For example: how do you find legit movers? How much will your move cost? Can your local moving company help with more than just transporting your home’s contents?
Fortunately, the best moving companies in Chicago provide a variety of services to help their clients have the best moving experience possible. Whether you need packing service, moving service, or both, you can find a terrific company to handle all of your moving needs.
Do you need professional packers, professional movers, or both?
As you prepare for your move day, one of the first questions you should ask yourself is whether you need help packing your home, performing the actual move, or both. Here are a few questions to ask yourself as you determine whether to hire a professional packing service, professional movers, or let one local moving company handle both services for you:
- Do you have easy access to packing supplies that will adequately protect your breakables?
- If you want an ecofriendly move, how many plastic moving boxes will you need?
- Will you have time to fully pack your home before your move day?
- Are your friends and family able to help you wrap and carry your furniture and boxes if you want to move without professional assistance?
- Do you want to rent and drive a moving truck to your new home?
Proper packing is crucial to a smooth move. If you’re not confident in your packing skills, you can consider scheduling a packing appointment with a team of professional packers.
Tips to prepare for your packing appointment
If you choose to hire professional packers to help prepare for your move, there are a few steps you should take before the packing crew arrives. Here are a few tips to set yourself up for a stress-free packing appointment.
1. Learn how your packing service will charge you
You’re probably aware that moving services charge by the hour. However, packing costs are billed a bit differently. Instead of basing your final packing bill on how long your pack team works, you’ll pay based on how much they pack and how many packing materials they use.
Your pack team will bring materials like boxes, packing paper, and tape to your packing appointment. You’ll be charged for the cost of each box plus the labor to pack each box—plus the total amount of tape and packing paper they use. In order to get a better idea of how to budget for your pack, see if your local mover has a handy packing guide that lists their material and labor costs.
2. Create a list of what you need packed—and what the professionals can’t pack
Your moving service will schedule your packing appointment a day or two before your actual moving day to help you prepare for your move. Before your professional packers arrive, survey your home and make a list of all the rooms you want them to pack up. Don’t forget about closets, junk drawers, and the attic and basement!
Keep in mind that there are a few items that professional movers and packers are not allowed to touch. The best way to find out exactly what your local moving service cannot pack and move is to contact them directly. However, here’s a short list of the items you’ll need to pack and move yourself:
- Currency, including coin collections
- Firearms, ammunition, fireworks, or anything flammable
- Important documents such as passports and house deeds
- Items of extraordinary value, including family heirlooms and priceless antiques or artwork
In some cases, your local mover can recommend specialty companies to pack and move these items. When you research local moving services to help you pack, just contact them with any questions on any belongings you have questions about.
3. Prepare your home for your packing appointment
Don’t forget to prepare your home itself for your professional packers. Straighten up surfaces like counters and tables so your packing crew can create packing stations throughout your home. Make sure every surface is clean and dry so each box can stay clean and dry as well!
Additionally, you can actually mark which areas or items you want packed up so that your packing crew knows exactly what to do. Grab a couple of rolls of packing tape and place a small piece on each drawer, cabinet, piece of hanging art, or closet door that you want packed up. The more autonomous you allow the packing crew to be, the less stressed you’ll be from fielding their questions!
Pro Tip: Do a walkthrough after your packing appointment
Remember: your move will happen a day or two after your packing appointment. The best way to set yourself up for a quick and easy move is to ensure that your packing team has packed up everything necessary.
Your Packing Crew Leader will ask you to do a walkthrough with them before the packers leave. Take advantage of this! Double check each room they worked in, and make sure that everything is packed per your instructions.
Packing and moving companies rely on their customers to be the experts on their own homes. And since every home is different, your local mover will look to you to confirm that your unique home is packed to your preference. When your home is well packed, you can rest assured that you’re ready for a great moving day experience!
Tips to prepare for your moving appointment
The more prepared you are for your moving appointment, the smoother and faster your move can go. And since your move crew will be on the clock during your move, time is money! Here are a few tips that can help you prepare for a stress-free and wallet-friendly moving day.
1. Get estimates from several local movers
Moving can be expensive. However, it’s important to find a professional moving company that’s licensed and insured. Some low-cost movers aren’t legitimate businesses, and you don’t want to trust your belongings—and your home itself—to a moving crew that you can’t trust.
The best way to find out how much it costs to move is to request estimates from several local moving companies. Although the total estimated cost is important, be sure to pick apart each estimate a little to find out exactly what you’re paying for. Here are a few numbers to look at:
- Quantity of movers
- Hourly rate
- Travel fee
- Materials fees
Each moving service charges a bit differently, so it’s important to know exactly what each estimate means. And as you prepare for your move budget, don’t forget to find out how much to tip movers!
2. Prepare your home for your move day
If you hired a professional packing crew, your home is likely well-prepared for your move day. However, there are still a few things you can do to get your home ready for your movers to help you have a smooth move.
First, dress in comfortable clothes and shoes that are well-suited for the day’s weather. Then, set aside an overnight bag, cleaning supplies, and snacks so you don’t have to dig through tons of boxes to grab your top essential items. If you’re moving with your pet, make sure they’re safely in a carrier or with a friend or family member. And finally, take a deep breath! Your movers are
Depending on the weather, you might need to clear leaves, ice, or snow to create a walkable path from your home to where your moving truck will be parked. The more quickly and easily your movers can get to and from the truck, the faster your move will go!
3. Clean out your fridge
Ideally, you won’t have to transport any open food to your new home. Even water can cause issues if it spills inside a box! Try to avoid moving any liquids or open food items to avoid spills, leaks, or even spoiling.
In the days leading up to your move, consume as much of your open food as possible. Invite a few friends over for one last meal at your old place—or try out a local restaurant before you move to a new neighborhood! In a big city like Chicago, there are countless places to eat that you probably haven’t tried. Treat yourself to a delicious carryout dinner as a reward for preparing for your pack and move!
Pro Tip: Do a walkthrough at your old and new homes
Just like walking through your home after your packing appointment, you should also make time for a walkthrough with your Move Crew Leader. At your old home, check out each room to ensure everything that you want brought to your new place has been packed onto the moving truck. This is particularly important if you’re leaving some furniture behind for roommates who will stay at your old dwelling, or if you’re going to donate or dispose of any items rather than moving them.
Similarly, perform a walkthrough at your new home with your Move Crew Leader before the movers leave. Make sure that each piece of furniture and moving box is in the room it should be. This way, you can rest assured that you’ll have an easy time unpacking and settling into your new home. And it’s all thanks to great preparation for your pack and move!
Move-tastic! can help you prepare for your pack and move!
As Chicago’s favorite movers, Move-tastic! proudly provides packing, moving, and storage service for our clients. And because we see moving as a hospitality-based industry, outstanding customer service is our top priority.