Unless you’ve never moved before, you already know long-distance move is hard. From house hunting and packing up everything you own to managing logistics and discovering new friend groups, moving hours from “home” is time-consuming and requires planning and a heavy dose of patience. But if you’d like some help with your upcoming long-distance move, we can help!

If you didn’t already feel overwhelmed, you wouldn’t have landed here, right? But don’t worry. Take a deep breath, and let’s walk through how to manage a long-distance move with as little stress as possible. You might even find some cost-saving tips to lighten the burden on your wallet as well!

Options: How to Move

First things first, you need to decide what method of moving is going to work best for you, your sanity, and your budget. Do you have the manpower, time, and energy to DIY the move? Are you looking for a full-service, hands-off experience where you only have to worry about payment to the moving company and getting yourself and your family to the new home? Or are you looking for some middle ground? Renting a truck (or a few) is a budget-friendly option if you have the time to do it on your own and have plenty of volunteers ready to assist. Hiring a team of professionals can save you tons of time, not to mention stress, but it requires a bigger budget. If you want to pack everything yourself and hire a team to handle the heavy lifting, transporting, and unloading, a hybrid move may be the best option. It saves a ton of money on a full-service option and may be relatively inexpensive considering the time you will need to take off work, rent trucks, gas for travel, and provide food for your volunteers.

Research and Planning

Prepare long-distance move early! Research is the most important step to ensure you understand what your move requires and can plan accordingly. If you want help from professionals, it is always a good idea to get quotes from several companies and compare them before signing a contract. Research the companies’ reviews and complaints, and if you’re moving across state lines, make sure they are licensed. Ask about insurance coverage in the case of an accident or damage to your belongings. Most companies provide basic insurance, but it generally covers the bare minimum. If you want additional coverage, ask about the available options and compare. Make sure they come to your home for an in-person assessment before hiring a company so you don’t end up with any surprises on the final bill. Ideally, it is best to secure the dates with the moving company about two months in advance.

Exploring your New Home

Speaking of research, have you visited your new city in person? At the very least, you should explore the new town virtually and familiarize yourself with the local amenities and schools (if you have school-aged children or work in education). Will you need public transportation? And if so, what do those options look like? Look up statistics and crime rates. Join local Facebook groups and your new Nextdoor neighborhood to get a realistic idea of what life will be like with your new neighbors.

Get Organized

A moving checklist is an invaluable resource for helping you stay on task and visualize what still needs to be done. Find one that best suits your needs (or create a custom combination of several) and keep it handy.  Create a moving binder and keep all your important documents in it. There is no worse feeling than needing a birth certificate and only knowing it is buried somewhere in the mountain of boxes.

Once you’ve secured the important files, you can organize the house. Start to gather your moving and packing supplies. Pack the non-essentials first. Move things into a “Donate” pile as you go through your belongings and find things you don’t want to take. This will help keep stress low, knowing you are only taking the things that really make a difference in your life, and you won’t have to find a home for items you don’t use or know what to do with.

Managing Travel and Settling In

If you’ve hired a moving company to transport your belongings to your new home, you’ll need to plan your own travel arrangements. Will you ship your car and fly to the new destination? Book flights and reserve hotels in advance. Are you planning to make it a road trip? Purchase and pack all the snacks, drinks, and entertainment you will need along the way. Pack a travel bag with all the clothes and hygiene items you will need for the first week in your new home to give you a little breathing room for unpacking.

If you have children, start the conversation early. Kids may get upset and anxious when they see their home filled with a flurry of activity while everything moves into boxes. If you are moving with pets, consider what they need for the journey and prepare accordingly. Does someone in your household use regular medication? Keep it on hand. An emergency first aid kit is also great to put together while the rest of your things are still in boxes.

Call your utility providers to arrange a service transfer to the new address. Forward your mail. Confirm the moving details with your movers a week before the move. Arrange for a move-out cleaning of your old home. Hand over the keys to your old place. Update your voter registration card. And finally, take a deep breath. You did a great job!

Take some time to unwind once you’re in your new home. Everyone will need time to adjust after such a big change. Long-distance moves take a lot of effort, and you deserve to celebrate that achievement! Make time for yourself and your family once all the hard work is done.

About AB Moving & Storage

AB Moving & Storage has been a trusted name in the moving industry for over 20 years. We specialize in providing highly-rated moving and storage options for long-distance moves. Our team of professionals is here to offer a smooth and stress-free moving experience with personalized services to meet your needs. Let us help you make your next move the best one yet. Contact us today for a free quote and discover why so many rely on AB Moving & Storage for their long-distance moving needs.