March 1, 2014
Moving Cost Calculators A Good Place to Start
People are desperate for anything that will reduce the stress of moving. But that desperation needs to be tempered with reality. A survey taken recently showed that over 90% of movers in the United States found that the Internet helped them to decrease their moving-related stress. A hugely popular tool is the online moving cost calculator, which takes a few variables (such as size of house, estimated weight of belongings, and distance to be traveled) and produces a rough guess as to the final cost of the move.
The difficulty, however, lies in how variable those variables really are. Few people can accurately eyeball the total weight of a houseful of possessions. The quote you get from a moving cost calculator might differ wildly from the quote you get from a full service moving company. Realize, too, that a full service company may be willing to reduce the overall cost if a customer is willing to pack, load, and unpack their own belongings.
Moving container companies tend to offer flat rates for long-distance delivery. That rate reflects the fuel cost (figured by distance traveled and current gas prices), the drivers' fees, and any tolls along the way. Many customers have found that flat rate moving such as this takes much of the guesswork out of the final bill. But don't forget to factor in the monthly rental cost of the unit itself.
Moving cost calculators for self service movers are perhaps the most unreliable of the estimates, since there are so many variables that are completely dependent on the mover -- namely, you. You're responsible for your own fuel costs, which are difficult to predict without a complicated equation of fuel efficiency and gross tonnage. You're also responsible for all tolls, incidental road costs (meals and such), and any hotel rooms you might need on especially long moves. The per-day cost of the rental truck is the only reliable number you can work from.
Whichever method you decide to use, always remember this: a number from an online moving cost calculator is not a guarantee. If you're moving on your own, try to budget for as many factors as you can think of. If you're getting help, be sure to get the company's estimate in writing, and familiarize yourself with the contract in order to avoid any hidden surprises in your final bill.
read the full article
February 28, 2014
Relocation WrapUp 2013 INFOGRAPHIC
Last year was a big year for moving. More than 35 million people relocated in the United States in 2013. In fact, Americans move more frequently than the vast majority of the world. The only country with a more "nomadic" population than the U.S. is New Zealand.
Of those 35 million movers last year, over 17 million of them were considered long distance. The abundance of more affordable and flexible moving options made relocating across the country a much easier prospect. Services such as moving containers and full-service moving companies, both of which take the actual driving burden off the client, were popular choices.
But those options come with a price. The average cost for a professional household move came in at just over $12,000. Contributing factors to that final number included square footage of home, weight of belongings, distance of move, and client involvement (whether or not the customer packed, loaded, and unloaded their own boxes).
It's not surprising that customers were willing to pay extra in order to avoid the usual hassles of moving. Studies have shown that unpacking and packing are considered the most stressful parts of the entire moving process, which is an impressive claim, given the inherent stress of the entire process itself.
Some movers were able to save money by adjusting their timetables. The most popular relocation month in 2013 was August, with Friday being the most popular day of the week to load. Experts agree that, by avoiding these "peak" moving times whenever possible, customers can shave a little bit off the overall cost of the move. Only 18% of all the moves in 2013 took place during the winter.
The research also shows that moving is very much a young person's game. Americans ages 18-34 moved more than any other demographic in 2013. And we may be moving more: the average American moves 12 times in their entire life, up from 11 as little as a few years ago.
read the full article
February 27, 2014
Comparing the Different Ways to Move
Knowing your options when it's time to move can help get your relocation started right, rather than planning for one method but having to change horses mid-stream. Here are some of the pros and cons of the three main moving options.
Full Service Moving Companies: Pros
Full Service Moving Companies: Cons
- The majority of the work is done for you. You pack, and they load, drive, and unload.
- Given the nature of the service, you can get your total move done faster, if you find yourself crunched for time.
Moving Containers: Pros
- While they may be able to move you faster than you could on your own, you will have to fit your move into their availability, which can sometimes make for a frantic bout of packing.
- Full service moving company rates are generally higher than other moving options. However, many companies will reduce their costs if you agree to load and unload the truck yourself.
Moving Containers: Cons
- The unit can also double as a storage unit, so you don't have to make an extra trip to a storage facility.
- Moving containers sit low to the ground, with no ramp to negotiate, so load-in is faster and easier.
Rental Trucks: Pros
- While you do get more bang for your buck with moving containers, you also pay a monthly fee for the convenience.
- Depending on the kind of truck container company uses to deliver and unload the unit, you may not be able to get the container closer than the curb, which might mean a bit of extra hauling distance from your front door.
Rental Trucks: Cons
- Renting a truck is easily the most affordable of the three moving options.
- The rental truck industry is very competitive, so not only are the prices lower, but there are many options available. Chances are, a rental office is not far from your home.
- Timeframes can be tight, and picking up and returning the truck can eat into valuable loading and unloading time.
- It can be a nerve-wracking experience driving a large, unfamiliar vehicle down a crowded highway.
Different situations may call for different moving options. Self service movers may find themselves in need of a little full service help, and full service aficionados may want to consolidate their moving and storage options with containers. Whatever your situation, do your research and find the moving option that's right for you.
read the full article