Bad Moving Advice

5 Things NOT to Do While Moving or Packing

Everyone wants to give you advice on how to move better, cheaper, or quicker. While reading up on advice can simplify your move, be wary of the bad advice that’s out there. As a general rule, don’t cut corners when it comes to personal safety or protection of your home and items. Planning ahead and talking to professionals is always your best bet.

Below are some common pieces of bad advice we’ve heard over the years – avoid them at all costs! We’ve also provided some great tips on how to move the right way.

Bad Advice: Wrap Your Dishes and Glassware in Clothing to Save on Bubble Wrap

A commonly shared “life hack” for packing breakables is to wrap them in clothing to save on packing paper and bubble wrap. This ‘tip’ is wrong, isn’t cost efficient and certainly isn’t safe.

Packing breakables in clothing increases chance of injury and you likely won’t know something is broken until you unpack it. Your safety, clothing, and breakables are more valuable than a sheet of packing paper.

Good Advice: When packing dishes,

start with a DishPack box.  Put a double layer of crumpled moving paper in the bottom of the box.  Starting with the heaviest dishes on the bottom layer, wrap each plate and place it in the box vertically, like a record.  After the largest plates are packed, use more packing paper and place crumpled pieces between each plate to keep the plates stable and in place. Another layer of crumpled paper, and you can add the lighter plates in the same way until the box is full.

Bad Advice: Keep Drawers Intact by Wrapping them with Press’n Seal

Press’n Seal barely keeps your food safe – what is it going to do to protect your drawers? You will need a more substantial wrapping material to keep your drawers safe from chips and scratches.

Good Advice: Professional movers such as Elite use heavy moving blankets to move and pack heavy and expensive furniture such as dressers and couches. Not only do moving blankets protect against scratches – they provide some additional padding as well.

Bad Advice: Keep Belongings in Drawers to Save on Boxes and Save Time

It may be tempting to keep your belongings in their respective drawers, but moving can shift objects and can cause damage to both your drawers and belongings.

Good Advice: In order to move safely, you’ll need to empty all drawers, but be sure to put the drawers back before moving the overall piece of furniture. The empty drawers in the dresser help stabilize the overall structure during the move.

You’ll want to pack up your belongings into their own boxes to protect your drawers from damage. If there are fragile objects in your drawer, make sure you wrap them properly with packing paper and bubble wrap. See how Elite wraps breakables such as glassware and dishes. Drawers are not built to withstand being moved with items inside, so don’t use them as boxes while moving.

Bad Advice: Book Movers at the Last Minute to Get a Cheaper Price

Everyone wants to score a great deal, and sometimes deals do exist for those who wait – such as last minute hotels on Priceline or buying overproduced clothing from an outlet store for a discount. In the moving industry, these deals do not exist. If you wait too long, you might not even be able to get a mover!

Good Advice: Movers run on a tight schedule, often planned weeks in advance, so if you try to book after the schedules have been set, they might not have room in their schedule for you. Busy moving times such as weekends and the end of the month (25th-2nd) are often booked at least 4-6 weeks in advance. If you are moving out of or into a building with an elevator, those must be booked in advance as well, no matter the date of the move.

If you’re still convinced you’ll get a better price last minute, it’s best to make a reservation with a mover that will refund your deposit, like Elite. That way you can still shop around, but you’ll have a backup plan in place in case you don’t find a cheaper price, and avoid a last-minute scramble for help.  Elite offers refunds of deposits up until 3 business days before the move.

Bad Advice: Keep Large Furniture in One Piece to Move Quicker

While the thought of taking your furniture apart only to reassemble it at your new location may seem unnecessary, it can actually make your move easier, and helps to prevent injury and damage to your home and furniture.

Good Advice: How does disassembling furniture save time? Well, large furniture causes the most trouble during a move. It’s hard – and sometimes impossible – to carry through doors and up staircases. Large, assembled furniture also takes up more room in the moving truck. Taking the legs off of a piano, for example, not only saves space in the truck, but makes it less likely for the piano to be broken during the move. You’ll also want to pack glass table tops separately from the rest of the table, for example.

Most injuries are caused by improperly moving large furniture, so by breaking things down to a more manageable size, you also significantly reduce the chance for injury.

Any Other Bad Advice?

At Elite, we perform thousands of moves per year, and have heard and seen countless bad practices when it comes to moving. As a rule, don’t try to cut corners when it comes to the safety of your items or yourself, and plan as much in advance as possible to make your move less stressful and more efficient.

Now for some good advice!

At Elite, we perform thousands of moves per year, and have heard and seen countless bad practices when it comes to moving. As a rule, don’t try to cut corners when it comes to the safety of your items or yourself, and plan as much in advance as possible to make your move less stressful and more efficient. As always, if you need help with your move, you can call your friends at Elite!

High Rise Moving in Chicago

Guide for Moving in a City

Tips for Moving in an Elevator Building, Certificates of Insurance and Parking Permits

Moving into a high-rise building adds a new level of complexity to the moving process. Managing a move when you have to consider the needs of other residents, building requirements, heavy tenant traffic, parking restrictions, and elevator reservations can be overwhelming.  The key to getting the best reservations, permits, and scheduling is starting early and communicating.

For High Rise Moving – Reserve Your Elevator Early!

If you’re moving into a high-rise building requiring use of an elevator, reserve the service elevator in advance – we suggest at least 4-6 weeks – to make sure your moving company and the elevator are available at the same time. It’s best to reserve the elevator for the morning so that yours will be the first move of the day, and a shorter arrival window for the moving crew.

As the day progresses, arrival windows grow longer, making it difficult for any movers to guarantee arrival during your elevator reservation window.  If the moves prior to yours take more time than expected, you might miss out on your reserved elevator window.

Plan A Timely Move!

Most modern high-rise buildings have both main elevators and dedicated service elevators specifically for tenant moves and maintenance use, but many do not. In either case, you’ll need to contact your property manager to get approval for the day and time of your move, and to find out what the restrictions there are for elevator use, no matter what kind you’ll be using.

The building manager can also tell you what, if any, insurance requirements they have.  Some buildings require what is called a certificate of insurance or COI from any mover that is working in their building.  They can usually provide you with an email or list of their requirements, which you can then pass along to your moving company.  Your moving company should then be able to provide you with a COI that fulfils the requirements.

If you have to use the main elevator of the building in the lobby, you may be asked to restrict your move-in time to mid-day hours only, so as not to interfere with heavy tenant use during early morning and late evening hours. If you have to use the main elevator for moving, you should have your furniture wrapped to protect both your furniture and the elevator from scratches or damage. Most service elevators provide padded wall coverings to protect both walls and tenants’ property.

If parking permits are required to park at either your pickup or delivery location, notify your mover as soon as you know. Your mover should be able to secure parking permits for you with plenty of advance notice at an extra cost.

With a little preparation, and Elite on your side, your city move will be a snap.

DIY Moving Chicago

DIY Moving versus Hiring the Professional Movers

When you’re moving from one location to another, one of the biggest questions you find yourself asking is whether to do it yourself or have professional movers do it for you.

If you’ve moved yourself in the past, you may remember the struggles that come with it. Figuring out how to pack all of your belongings into boxes. Finding friends and family that are willing to help you move. Lugging heavy boxes and furniture up stairs, and figuring out how to fit the sofa in the car. Moving yourself is not an easy task. On the other hand, you can’t pay professional movers with pizza.

So how do you decide how you’re going to move? Consider these questions and it will likely guide you in the right direction.

How Much Stuff Are You Moving?

This should be the first thing you consider, as if you have more than a couple rooms, it will be hard to haul everything without a full sized truck. Even if your move is a relatively small one, such as moving a single person in a studio apartment, there’s still a lot of stuff to consider. People often underestimate everything they own – Kitchen Utensils, Clothing, Electronics, Furniture, Mattresses, etc – it adds up quick. Inventory your belongings to decide how much work it will be to move everything on your own, and how much it will cost to rent a vehicle and moving supplies to get the job done. If you have to take time off of work to move yourself, consider the opportunity cost as well.

How Far Are You Moving?

If you’re moving around the block, a bunch of back and forth hauls might be time consuming but doable, but anything more, especially across the state or country—you should seriously consider using professional movers to take care of the many details associated with moving, as well as all the heavy lifting of boxed belongings and furniture that’s involved.

How Much Do Professional Movers Cost?

Your budget will play a large part in your decision to DIY or hire movers. Professional Moving companies such as Elite may seem like more money up front, but they offer way more than just the moving of your belongings. Elite, for example, moves thousands of clients every year, so we have the expertise that can help make your moving process be easier. Professional Movers also offer insurance to protect your belongings, provide storage options in case your new location needs to be renovated or is not ready right away, and can rent or sell moving supplies and delivery them to you. Additionally, many full-service moving companies now offer a wide range of moving packages to fit most any budget. So you might find out that professional movers aren’t as expensive as you once thought. You’ll save on the time it takes for you to pack all of your belongings, and that’s worth a lot! But naturally, if you don’t have the funds to afford movers, then you have to be prepared to do it yourself, and hopefully with a little help from your friends!

Should You Move on Your Own?

Should you decide to do it yourself, you will have several challenges, but it’s not all horrible. Moving on your own can work if you have a lot of flexibility and free time. If you plan well, you can potentially save money, especially if you already have a large vehicle, or don’t have very much to move.

Keep in mind that while you’ll have complete control, you (or your strong friends) will be doing the heavy lifting of furnishings, you’ll have to devote considerable time to planning every move from logistics to navigating the route to your new home to dealing with unexpected surprises like loading and unloading the truck the right way, furniture getting stuck, or even personal injuries.

Or Should You Let the Professional Movers Make Things Easy?

A professional moving company can help ease the stress and strain that accompanies moving, freeing you to focus on other details. Experienced and legitimate professional movers are also reliable, because they’re under contract to perform all duties required to make your move smooth and complete. They won’t flake out at the last minute.

What Else Should You Consider When Moving?

If you need any other services besides moving, such as insuring your goods, purchasing or renting moving supplies, and utilizing storage services – bundling all of them together with a moving company might be your most cost effective method of moving.

You should also consider your physical well-being, as moving heavy boxes and furniture is a very strenuous activity, and can be dangerous if not done properly. If you do decide to move on your own, be sure to review safety tips on how to move heavy items safely.

You should base your decision to move yourself or hire professionals based on your specific needs, budget and circumstances. If you’ve got a great distance to move, have a larger home, or have children and other responsibilities to keep track of, going the DIY route might not be a good idea. But if you’d rather have more freedom and time to focus on taking care of family needs, getting addresses and utilities and changed and set up, and other things that insure a smooth move, take advantage of the peace of mind a professional moving company can offer.

If you decide hiring the professionals is the best call, you can always call your friends at Elite!


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