Tips on How to Get a Precise Moving Quote for a Long Distance Move

Moving long distance is already a super stressful situation and making sure you get an accurate estimate can make it even more daunting. Not getting an accurate estimate usually means the cost of your move will increase on the day of which is a terrible thing if you are trying to stay within a budget. Below are a few helpful tips to getting the most spot on estimate possible.

 

Inventory

If you are looking to move out of state, the majority of moving companies will require a detailed inventory list of what you are looking to move. If the company offers an in home estimate or a virtual walk through, definitely take that option. That way the company can physically see your items and get a better idea of your moving situation. If that option is not available, being as detailed as possible with your inventory is critical in ensuring you receive a precise estimate.

You will need to mention all items that will not fit into a standard moving size box along with your best estimate of boxes. Going room by room and listing all the items tends to make the process a lot easier. Make sure not to forget the random items like lamps, rugs, or trash cans because even though they seem insignificant they do add up in the end. Be super specific with the size of your items for example: are you moving a queen or a king size bed? Is it a double dresser or a triple? Even providing the dimensions of items like bookshelves or shelving units can be very helpful in getting your estimate.

Estimating the number of boxes is typically the trickiest part especially when you haven’t started packing. A helpful tip to keep in mind is on average each room will have about 8-10 boxes. For example, a one-bedroom apartment with a living room and kitchen on average has about 30 boxes. When getting your initial estimate it’s always best to start on the higher end of the box count and that way you can see a worst case scenario and work your way down.

 

Stairs and Elevators

For long distance moves, companies do charge for stairs or sometimes even elevators. That’s why if you are moving out from a walk-up apartment or a high rise building, double check what the companies’ policies are regarding stairs/elevators. Counting the flights and the steps themselves will ensure complete accuracy with your quote.

 

Semi-Trailer and Long Carry

Most moving companies pick up and deliver in semi trailers (72ft bumper to bumper) and will require access for the semi to park within a certain distance from your door. You’re going to want to make sure that both your locations do have access because this is where one of the biggest surprise charges comes from. Asking your property management, leasing management, or any neighbors is sometimes the best way to check if its possible for a semi-truck to pull up in front of your home. If either one of your locations do not have access for the semi that means the moving company is going to need a shuttle. The shuttle means the movers will have to rent a smaller to be able to load or unload at your location. The price of the shuttle is usually dependent on the size of your move so you’ll definitely want to ask your moving consultant what the price for that service will be before booking your move.

The other hidden fee that is usually not discussed and can be a surprise is a long carry. Typically the first 75ft (actual distance may vary company to company) that the movers carry the items, from the truck to your front door, are free, any additional distance will be an additional cost. Again double check with your consultant on what their policy is before scheduling the move.

 

Packing

Every moving company will charge for packing, whether they show it to you during the initial estimate or spring it on you on the day of the move. To avoid having them surprise you with it on the day of your move, make sure you mention any glass top/furniture, marble top/furniture, mirrors, TVs, pianos, or anything fragile. You’re probably thinking to yourself, well don’t they wrap everything with moving pads? The answer is yes they do however, for glass and fragile items, moving pads are just not sufficient. They will need to cardboard crate the item and that is an additional cost. Depending on the size of the item the prince can range from $30-$250. If you were looking to pack all fragile items to save yourself some money then we recommend first bubble/blanket wrap the item. Then on top wrap them in cardboard to almost create a box. You can visit www.elitemover.com/elite-moving-videos/ and look at our packing videos to give you an idea on how to properly pack your things.

 

Getting an accurate estimate can be a difficult task but with these simple tips you can make it happen. Feel free to contact us at 847-675-8701 for any additional questions or so we could provide you with an accurate estimate for your move.

Moving in new home in Chicago

Staying Healthy During Your Move

Summer moving season is upon us. Are you moving soon? You’re not alone. Roughly 35 million Americans move each year. It is a stressful process which sometimes takes weeks and often months to prepare and complete. It is easy to get overwhelmed during the moving process and forsake your typical habits; especially when it comes to eating well. Keep in mind that your health must remain your number one priority during the move, and of course – after the move is over too.

Keep these tips in mind as you prepare to move to your new home.

SLEEP WELL DURING YOUR MOVE

Stress is one of the main reasons behind sleep loss, which is understandable considering the various pressures associated with moving. Proper sleep is super important during the moving process and the better rested you are, the better you will be able to handle the work load. The optimal sleep time remains 7-9 hours, so make a genuine effort to keep yours within that range. It is easier said than done with so much work to do, so start your moving preparation as early as possible. Also, it may be a good idea to take 30 minutes break each day during your moving process, to exercise or get a little extra sleep. A 30 minutes break can happen anytime, day or night, and you can spend it doing just about anything that helps you relax.

KEEP A HEALTHY DIET

There’s nothing wrong with ordering a pizza every once in a while, especially if you do it after a long day of packing, cleaning, and preparing for the move. Keep in mind that it will take about the same amount of time to prepare a healthy meal as it would to have a pizza delivered. Eating well will help you keep up your energy, keep your body in shape, and keep your immune system strong. Plan your meals ahead and make sure you stock up on healthy foods – fruit and vegetables, whole grain bread, lean meats, milk, cheese, yogurt, eggs, granola bars, etc.

The kitchen is usually the first room to get packed up, meaning if you don’t think ahead you may find yourself with no choice but to eat something in a takeout container lacking in nutrition. Leave out a few kitchen items, including plates, forks, knifes, spoons, and bowl per member of your family. When it’s time to go, pack these items in a clearly marked box so you can easily access them during the unpacking stage too. That box should be the first box you unpack in your new home. Have extra snacks or a meal packed to eat when you arrive. You may not be able to run out to the grocery store right away, so it’s best to have a few options just in case.

KEEP YOUR BODY HYDRATED

Just as important as healthy eating while moving is making sure you’re drinking enough water, especially if you’re moving in the summer. For most people, water is the best thing to drink to stay hydrated. Sources of water also include foods, such fruits and vegetables which contain a high percentage of water. Sports drinks with electrolytes, may be useful during the move specially in very hot weather, though they tend to be high in added sugars and calories. Carbonated drinks are high in sugar and low in nutrition so you want to stay away from drinking sodas when moving. The elevated intake of carbohydrates can lead to sugar crashes and energy slumps.

ASK FOR HELP DURING YOUR MOVE

If you know you’re going to have trouble sticking to a healthy eating plan during your move, don’t be afraid to ask for help. Friends and family will be glad to drop you off something healthy if you don’t have time to cook a meal or pick it up yourself, and it’s a good excuse to take a breather and share a meal.

During the moving process take time to relax, eat healthy and drink plenty of water. You will avoid stress-related illness and you will keep up your energy so you can get everything done for your move.

Have questions about how you can make your move even more stress free? Call Elite Moving & Storage today and see how we can help.

moving with kids

Moving With Kids

Moving can be a stressful time for the whole family, but it can be especially tough for kids. On moving day, there will be movers coming in and out of your home, packing and moving heavy items. It can be confusing, and if your little ones get mixed up in all the commotion, they could be injured.

Let’s keep your children happy, comfortable, safe and entertained throughout the whole process with these easy tips:

 

  1. Encourage your kids to pack themselves so that they are involved in the moving process.

    They can have their own boxes and suitcases that they are responsible for. Give them color codes, paint, markers or fun stickers to stick on the boxes that belong in their room. It will keep them busy and make it easier for them to identify which boxes hold their possessions when they arrive in your new home. This can help ease any apprehension about their most treasured toys being lost during the move.

  2. Give each child a backpack to fill with overnight items so that you don’t have to search boxes when the moving truck arrives to your new home.

    Include a toothbrush, pajamas, favorite stuffed animal, favorite blanket, favorite bedtime story, pillow, handheld electronic games and a change of clothes. They should keep their favorite toys with them to offer comfort as well as ensure safe passage to your new home.

  3. Keep them occupied.

    If your children are old enough, have books, board games, coloring books or other low-maintenance toys to keep them occupied as you may be tied up helping with the moving process. Keep a cooler with snacks and drinks in the room as well.

  4. Wait to throw away items.

    If you’re planning on getting rid of items your children no longer use, try to do the weeding out well in advance of the move or wait until after you are settled in the new home. This will prevent the children from associating moving day with an unsettling loss.

  5. Plan their new bedroom.

    Tell your children that they will have the opportunity to help decorate their new room by allowing them to pick out room colors or other fun items such as a bean bag chair, inexpensive tent, or a wall decal of their favorite cartoon character. You can give them a floor plan before you move in, so that they can decide where they want their belongings to go.

  6. Let children unpack their belongings first.

    Moving somewhere new is quite the adjustment for your kids, so make them feel important. Before you dive right into unpacking the kitchen, living room or dining room, allow each child to select one of their own boxes and take a few items out.

  7. Hire professional movers for your local or long-distance move.

    From full-service moving capabilities to storage options, Elite Moving & Storage can assist you with every aspect of your move, even unpacking your boxes and putting every last item where it belongs! If you don’t have to bother with the logistics of your move, you will have more time to focus on tending to your children.

Garage Sale elite moving and storage

Plan a Garage Sale Before You Move

If there’s one thing that’s always true about moving, it’s that it is the perfect opportunity to go through all your stuff and get rid of things you no longer want or need. Clearing out unwanted or less-used items makes packing, moving, and unpacking less stressful and less time-consuming. Doing a pre-move garage sale is a great way to free yourself of those extra items and make some extra money for the move as well.

Hosting a successful garage sale takes a bit more work than simply arranging your stuff on your front lawn and sticking up a sign. If you want to get rid of the most items possible and for the best price possible, follow the following tips:

DECIDE WHAT TO SELL

Go through each room in your home with a notebook and decide what things you no longer want to keep. The next step is gathering them all together and making sure they are in good shape. People who frequent garage sales are looking for bargains, but that doesn’t mean they want something that is old or falling apart.

CHECK WITH THE LOCAL AUTHORITIES

If you are planning a garage sale in Chicago you must have a permit. Residents are limited to 3 sales per year, with the third sale being a moving sale. Each Garage sale is limited to 3 consecutive days between 9:00 a.m. and sunset. The permits are FREE and must be displayed during the sale period.

SELECT A DATE

Everybody loves a sunny weekend garage sale! Spring/Summer is usually the ideal time for hosting a garage sale, since the weather is finally turning and people are eager to be outside. Timing wise, aim to start in the morning and go through the afternoon. If you still have a lot left at the end of the day, it’s time to go for the deep discounts.

PRICE IT RIGHT

We all find value in our belongings, but garage sale shoppers are looking for a bargain! Be careful not to over-price items. If you can, check out a couple garage sales in your neighborhood so you can see what kind of prices are being set. Remember that you are trying to get rid of these items, so price them in a way that will make a buyer ready to take it right then and there. Write your prices clearly with a marker on a sticker and affix it to the item. Also make a list of all your items and posted prices to have with you the day of your sale for easy inventory and price questions.

BE CREATIVE WITH THE ADVERTISING

You want to make sure that people are able to find your garage sale. A sign on the side of the road is the most common way to advertise it, but it’s not necessarily the most effective. Many libraries, grocery stores, and other public spaces allow posting fliers with permission. Do the advertising ahead of time, in the newspaper, public places and on social media. The more you get the word out, the more likely you are to draw a decent crowd

GET ORGANIZED

Organize your items in a way that makes sense. Clothes and accessories, dishes and kitchen items, home decor, and furniture. Display items in a way that makes them easier to sift through, such as records in a cardboard box, clothes hanging on a rack, and jewelry laid out on a mat. Make sure you rearrange items as other things are sold to keep the display enticing.

DONATE THE REST

If you end up having some stuff left at the end of your garage sale, you may want to consider donating it to a good cause. If they were good enough to try to sell, they should be good enough to donate. Find a local Salvation Army, Goodwill, or other donation center. Don’t forget to get a receipt, your donated items can be tax-deductible.

Always keep in mind the main goal of your sale: to clear out items you won’t be taking with you on your move! Now that you are ready to move, Elite Moving & Storage can help you with moving services. We’re highly rated, safe movers that offer full moving services year round. Contact us today for all your moving service needs!

Family-unpacking-boxes-new-home

10 Ways To Make A New House Feel Like Home

You’ve just moved in. You like your new space, but it just doesn’t feel quite…right yet. So how can you make yourself more comfortable quickly? After all, you have things to do, and you need this to be your sanctuary ASAP.

1. Unpack and Set Up

Get rid of those boxes! Get your big items out, then set up the small things, and put everything where it’ll go. Your space will feel more like home if you aren’t reminding yourself every time you look around that you just got here.

2. Clean Your Space

Chances are the place doesn’t quite smell like home. So, take out your own cleaning supplies and give the place a once-over that will help you get familiar with its nooks and crannies. It’ll feel a bit more familiar. Light a candle once you’re done to infuse the place with a familiar scent.

3. Decorate

If you’re able to, repaint. Recarpet. Your taste is likely a bit different than the people who lived there before. Go big, or go small. Adding some new splashes of color, pillows for the couch, big plants will make the place feel more like yours.

4. Make Your Bathroom A Priority

The bathroom is usually a small space that you can quickly personalize. You’re in there many times a day, after all. You’ll feel better if you get all your familiar toiletries out and available. It’s the little things that make a place feel more like you, and this is a great place to start.

5. Set Up Your Bed

When you first get there, you’ll need at least one place you can relax while you’re getting unpacked. You’ll need your bed, of course, to sleep in. Having that piece of furniture set up will go a long way towards making you feel like you have eked out a restful oasis in your new home.

6. Accessorize

Furniture is one thing, but your personality also comes out with your belongings. Posters, pictures of family and friends, souvenirs you bought on your last vacation, your favorite books, are all parts of you that you can spread around to make your new space feel safe.

7. Play Your Favorite Music

Get out your favorite playlist and turn on some music! As you’re unpacking and getting your new place ready, music can de-stress and soothe you, and make great new associations with your new apartment or house. Don’t be afraid to dance it out.

8. Do A Security Check

Make yourself familiar with the way your doors and windows work. Are your locks secure? If not, get them taken care of right away. Taking steps to make yourself physically safe will go a long way towards allowing you to relax in your new home.

9. Have a Housewarming Party

Bring in your old friends, and invite some new ones too! Moving is about new beginnings, but shouldn’t leave you bereft. So, hold a gathering for your support system. Seeing them enjoy your new home may help you do so as well.

10. Be Patient

It may take some time for you to truly get to know your house and feel like it’s becoming your home. You can do some things to help, but don’t force it. Eventually, you will find the best place to lounge and read, the one place your cat always has to sit, and the greatest storage area for your mixer – and then it all comes together for you.

Count on Elite Moving & Storage for expertise, service, and professional movers!

At Elite Moving & Storage, we pride ourselves on always trying to be the best movers in Chicago. We’re affordable and low-cost for all your needs, whether you’re searching for piano movers, furniture movers, or full-service storage. Try us for local or long-distance jobs. Get a free estimate!

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Moving With Pets: Keeping Animals Safe and Stress-Free

Did you know that one of the top reasons that people decide to rehome their pets, or leave them at a shelter, is because they’re moving?

It’s sad, but true. It may be because a new landlord doesn’t allow pets, for example, or your roommate has allergies, or the new space just isn’t appropriate for any furry friends. About five percent of pets never make it to the new home with their owners, and get left behind.

But for most of us, moving without our pets is simply not an option. And we want to do it with as little stress to our favorite pets as possible. So, here are some tips for moving your pet to your new home.

Before Your Move

You wouldn’t leave town or change living situations without thinking about your loved ones, would you? Your pets are part of your family, so make sure you consider their needs as you decide where you’re going, what kind of space you want to live in, and who else will share that space with you.

If it’s possible for you to do so, make sure your pet is part of your moving equation from the very beginning. Don’t rent an apartment that doesn’t allow cats. If you have a big dog, try to search out a house with a yard. If you answer a Craigslist ad for a new roommate, be upfront about your pets’ importance to you. Check state and local laws for licensing and other ordinances that may apply to your situation.

Research Pet Travel Options for Your Move

Will you be flying? Driving? Will you take your animals with you, or count on a family member to bring them up a few weeks later? Maybe an animal relocation service will have the charge of your pet for a while? You have many options when it comes to traveling with a pet. How you choose to transport them may have to do with your comfort level, and that of your pets.

If you’re traveling by plane, check with your airline about specific policies regarding pets – and get tickets well in advance. If you’re driving, remember to find out if restaurants and hotels along your route are pet-friendly. If not, you may have to make contingency plans. And, if you’re moving to a new country, know about quarantine rules getting your pet in and out.

Plan Your Pet’s Transition

Individual animals react to changes in environment differently. Cats, especially, are tied to locations and habit. We don’t socialize them the same way we do with dogs. So, when it comes to a move, they may need special attention. Acclimate your animals to the idea of a move.

Obtain a hard-sided pet carrier and put them inside for a few minutes more each day with a toy, to acclimate them and make them think the carrier is a place of safety. Take them out for rides if they’re not used to that. Confine them, or send them to a kennel on the day the movers come if they are stressed out by change. Keep them away from moving chaos, and don’t pick them up until you’re ready to go.

Pack Their Things for the Move

Make sure to have your pets’ medical information on hand. Pack a bag for each animal, with their favorite toys inside. You will also want to take a pet first aid kit, food and water (as water conditions will change from state to state), doggie bags, or a litter box. Have I.D. tags made up with your cell phone number and new address, just in case. Smaller animals will also need hard-sided carriers.

Consider having fish shipped for safety. If you have a good aquarium store nearby, have your fish put into bags with extra oxygen for the move. If your pet is a bad traveler, visit your vet for potential medical solutions. You may want a pre-move checkup to refill prescriptions or transfer records.

Things To Remember While Traveling for A Move

Keep all animals restrained. A dog can be held with a leash or harness, but cats and smaller animals should be placed inside hard-sided carriers with some breathing room. Not only does this allow for safe driving without worrying about animals getting in the way, it helps prevent escapes by stressed-out pets.

Birds, guinea pigs and other small animals are especially prone to moving-day nerves and changes in environment, so this is not the time to let them run loose. Animals can get car sick and disoriented by movement, so keep that in mind. Keep extra towels in the car for accidents. Cover carriers, especially for the first few hours of the drive, to prevent overstimulation. Remember that in hotels and strange places, cats will want to hide immediately.

After You Move In

When you get to your new residence, go in and inspect the house before you let your pets out. Find potential hiding places, and locate and get rid of any hazards (leftover mouse traps). Ideally, you’ll wait until your furniture is placed before your animals leave the carriers. That way, they will come out to some familiar sights.

Release your pets into one room first, let them adjust, and allow them more freedom. Keep things consistent, the way you did in your previous home, so your pets know to expect the same rules and the same behavior. You know your pet best, so watch for any signalers of anxiety, fear, or illness. Locate your resources, such a new vet, dog parks, and your emergency vets, so you know where to go from the start if anything happens. Also, if your pet is microchipped, update that information.

Give your pets some time, and they’ll be back to ruling the roost in no time. And for your move, consider the experts here at Elite Moving & Storage. We know the industry and we offer complete moving services. If you’re moving in Chicago, from Chicago, or to Chicago, we have the knowhow because we’re a local company. We’re also the best movers in town! Contact us today so we can help you.

 

 

Moving boxes various sizes, packing supplies, Elite logo

5 Take-Charge Tips for Your First Move

It’s your first move! This can be an exciting, yet stressful time. We can help, though. Over the years, we’ve developed some tried-and-true tips for maneuvering any move. Here’s what we’ve learned.

1. Hire professional movers

This is a big milestone, yet you want to save money. We get that. But please, please don’t solicit help from your friends and family to move you, unless you really only own two boxes of clothes, a laptop, a lamp, and a turtle in a tank. We know this from experience. If something goes wrong, you’ve ruined a relationship. Have a good moving company do it. Then, ask your friends over to have a celebratory/goodbye drink with you before the moving truck arrives, or after it leaves.

2. Declutter, and get organized

Moving is a great time to pare down to the essentials. The more you have to move, the more work you have to do. So, take this as an opportunity to decide what to keep and what to toss. Do you really need that sweater your aunt gave you three years ago, that you’ve worn twice – on trips to see her? Use this rule of thumb: If you didn’t use it for a year, you won’t need it again. Label your boxes, so that you know what goes where. And keep important things – IDs, pets, work papers, toiletries, tools you’ll need for your move – with you. You may also want to keep a few extra changes of clothing close by.

3. Don’t let the paperwork slide, and document everything

Change your address. Have your utilities turned off at the old place (if needed) and turned on in the new. Get insurance. Change your address with the post office. Make sure you know what’s in your rental contract, since that tells you which utilities you’re responsible for, and how much of a deposit you need to pay. If you’re not moving into your own home, take pictures of the space before you move in. That way, if there are any questions about what damage happened while you lived there, you have a record.

4. Google it

If you have questions about how to pack something, you can find plenty of resources online. Heck, we at Elite Moving & Storage have a whole page devoted to videos about packing your things properly. For the safety of your things, if you’re not sure how to pack properly, don’t just wing it. You won’t regret taking the time to do the research, working with little extra care when you pack, and using the proper padding. Learn how to pack your kitchen and other items here.

5. Make a budget – and stick to it

Make sure you have accounted, in your financial calculations, for rent, mortgage, furniture, decor, utilities, and other expenses that you may now have. Make a budget beforehand, and create a guide for living that takes your income and lifestyle into account. Remember, there’s a difference between need and want. If you’re on a budget – get only what you need, and then prioritize your wants. Don’t forget to set aside money for emergencies.

Contact us…

Planning a move to Chicagoland, away from Chicagoland, or within Chicagoland? Consider Elite Moving & Storage. We’re proud to one of the best Chicago moving companies, with great ratings, solid testimonials, and a commitment to quality. Go to the “Request A Quote” block at the top of the page to request an estimate and find out how we can help you with the moving process.