Did you know that around 40 million people move every year?

Moving to a new house is what everyone hates the most, but changing economic opportunity makes it a necessity. Moving to another city or moving states adds more strain to the process. But what about a long-distance move to the other side of the country?

A long-distance move proves to be a logistical nightmare for most people who aren’t prepared for it. Fortunately, we’re here to give you some moving tips before you say goodbye to your old neighborhood.

Keep reading for 9 things you should consider when moving long distance.

1. Ship Your Car for a Long-Distance Move

Reasons to Hire Professional Movers

Moves are tricky because you only have so many people that can drive, but you can’t have them all driving to maximize efficiency. It’s in your best interest to have both adults present to deal with and drive a single moving truck. Hiring the mover to do the driving could be expensive, and you don’t want to impose upon family members.

With such limited drivers, that means your car risks getting left behind. In that case, you should find a car shipping company. They’ll take your vehicle to your final destination for you, without any damage to it.

Car shipping means you focus on getting your belongings there, and leave a professional to your vehicle.

2. Plan Well Ahead of Time

People move all the time, and chances are that you are moving at peak moving season. Moving trucks and movers often get booked far in advance. If you call only a week or two ahead of time, you may struggle to find anyone who’s available–or affordable.

Get moving estimates and shop around. Doing your research can save you a lot of money. You won’t be scrambling at the last second when the time comes.

3. Use This as a Chance to Get Rid of Old Junk

It’s tempting to cling to everything you own. But think of a move as a fresh start and a clean slate. This is the perfect time to sell, give away, or discard the stuff you don’t really need.

Think about the last time you used an item. Was it months, or years ago? With a few exceptions like photo albums and seasonal decorations, you can probably get away with trashing it.

4. Bring Appropriate Furniture

Your new home may be smaller, or much larger. Even if there’s more space, the furniture for your old, small house may be too little. Consider the new home you’ll be moving to, and what things it requires.

You might be able to get away with bringing a few necessities such as a bed, couch, and so on. Then you can buy the newer, more appropriate stuff at your destination.

5. Take the Time to Label Boxes Well

How to prepare to move

Label boxes on multiple sides giving clear info on what’s inside–and if it’s fragile. Take the time to organize the boxes according to the contents. This will make it a lot easier to load and unload.

This helps organize movers that don’t know your stuff as well as you do. You could label them by room and just have the movers work off of that alone.

6. Know About Valuation Protection

Believe it or not, the moving company is responsible for any damaged items in transit. This is usually a cent per pound sort of deal. This means you can get partial or complete compensation for anything that doesn’t make it to the other side.

Read your contract and look out for the rights and responsibilities section. This is regulated by the Fed, which means you have legal backing in all fifty states.

7. Set Aside Priority Items

Obviously, you should keep some clothes, your phones, and other necessary items on hand. But have you considered things like nail kits, tools, or printers? These may be things you need for the trip, or things you’ll need immediately upon arrival.

Keep these things in the moving truck’s cabin with you if possible. Pay attention as you’re packing things that might fit into this list.

Also, don’t be too trusting of the movers! Items tend to disappear along the way, sometimes because your movers make that happen. Keep valuables close at hand and never take your eyes off them.

8. Choose the Off-Season for a Move, if Possible

Summer is the season of choice for most people to do their moving. It’s when the weather is best, and when the kids are out of school. Consider if you can instead move during another season.

This will make your move cheaper since movers will lower their rates to stay competitive. You’ll also have to deal with less traffic–as long as it’s not a holiday move.

9. Get Acquainted With the New Area First

How to move heavy objects with simple tools

Don’t make the mistake of moving into a new neighborhood without knowing the locale first. Make a visit to the area so it’s not a complete shock when you roll into town. Get a feel for where the stores are located, what the good parts of town are, and what the people are like.

Get to know your neighbors. Be friendly, give gifts, and do anything you can to get into their good graces. Chances are, they might be a valuable source of help when you are still adjusting to the neighborhood.

Plan Your Long-Distance Move Now

A long-distance move takes the hell that is a normal move and amps it up to one hundred. Prepare ahead of time with these nine tips to make the process as smooth as possible. Don’t be afraid to make it easier on yourself by shipping your car to the destination and moving in the off-season.

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