How can I get the best deal in hiring a moving company?
Immediately after the contracts are signed-even though your moving date may be months away-you should begin calling moving companies. Try to get recommendations from friends or colleagues.
Call a number of movers for estimates. You'll have to provide them with the number of miles involved in the move and the approximate weight of your belongings. The mover will help you in making this estimate.
Do not use a mover whose estimate seems too low. The services provided may be second rate.
Ask in advance about extra charges for heavy items, stairways, or pianos. Be aware that having the movers pack for you will increase your moving bill by about 30%. Also, you may pay a premium if you schedule your move during busy moving times, generally after the 25th of the month or before the 2nd.
How can I minimize the problems in moving?
Right after you have scheduled your move, start taking care of the following items.
- Decide which items you are leaving behind for the new owners, and tag them.
- If your move is job-related, ask whether your employer will reimburse you for part of the cost.
- Save any receipts relating to the move, since part of the cost will be deductible.
- Start shopping for a new bank in your new neighborhood.
- Get a change of address kit from the post office, and start notifying everyone of your impending change. Note that you will need to follow the directions given by credit card companies, banks, and others to effect a change of address-sending them a change-of-address card will generally not be effective.
- Call the schools in the new area to enroll your children.
- Get copies of your medical and dental records (and veterinary records). Be sure your move is covered by insurance-either the moving company's insurance, or your homeowner's insurance. Also, take care of transferring your homeowner's insurance to the new home.
As you get closer to the date of your move, take care of the following.
- Call utility companies and tell them to turn on service in the new place, and arrange terminate service in the old place.
- Switch your direct payroll deposit, and any automatic payments, to your new checking account.
- Two or three days before you move, take the money out of your old account and transfer it to your new account. Be sure to leave your new address with the old bank.
- Shop for auto insurance in the new area (if moving out of state).
- Transfer your brokerage account to your new area.
- Defrost your refrigerator.
- On moving day, check your contract with the mover. Be sure the total cost of the move is clearly detailed. Make sure the moving date, location, and insurance information is correct.
Whom should I notify of a new address?
Here is a list of people you should notify when you change your address and phone number. Although the list is not all-inclusive, it can be used as a starting point.
- The IRS-use Form 8822-and state and local taxing authorities
- The U.S. Post Office
- Insurance agents-home, auto, and life
- Debtors and creditors-mortgage holders, car lien holders, other lenders
- Credit card companies
- Clubs and services to which you subscribe
- The Social Security Administration
- Any organization that periodically mails you a check
- Doctors, dentists, veterinarians
- Motor vehicle departments
- Places of worship and non-profit agencies you are involved with
- The registrar of voters
- Utilities, telephone service, answering service, and trash collectors
- Your CPA, your attorney, and your broker