On moving day, attitude is everything – and your attitude is strictly business. Think of yourself as the CEO of this operation.
Before the moving truck arrives, try to make sure your children are somewhere else – a friend or relative’s home. Also, the dog, the cat, the goldfish, all these things should be out of the way. Have the caregiver bring the kids back home just prior to the truck leaving so the kids can see where their belongings are going.
When the truck does arrive, find out who is in charge of the move. It’s usually going to be the driver. Get his or her name. For the rest of the day, your communications should be with whoever is in charge, for him or her to relay to the workers.
Likewise, you should advise him or her that all questions about what to load and when to load it should go through you. Here is a check list that should help the day go smoother:
Task One: Mark and Set Aside Items You Don’t Want Loaded
Tell the driver what not to load as you conduct your preload walkthrough. Make sure the paperwork pertaining to the move doesn’t get packed and shipped with your household goods.
Task Two: Pack Special Items for the Kids
Have the kids pack a box of their “special” items; things that they’ll want to have as soon as you arrive at your destination. Make sure the driver knows this box needs to be unloaded first.
Task Three: Get Rid of Trash and Flammable Items
Eliminate as much trash as you can before moving day. Last-minute garbage will inevitably build up the day prior to and the day of loading. Try making a deal with a neighbor to use their trash container.
The crew will not load anything considered flammable. Understand what these items are so that you are not stuck with trying to get rid of them on moving day. If you are uncertain what items can’t be loaded, ask your estimator for a list. Because movers can’t transport most household cleaners, they will be available for you to use throughout the day. Also remember to remove items from inaccessible areas like crawl spaces or attics.
Task Four: Reserve a Parking Space for the Moving Truck
If you live in a congested area, ask friends to park their vehicles together in a space close to your home and do not move them until the truck arrives. The closer the truck can get to your house, the better your chances are of not incurring an additional charge.
Task Five: Clear Walkways
Make it safe and easy for your movers to get in and out of your house by removing all obstructions.
- Move potted plants and planters from front porch, walkways and driveways.
- Remove all door and floor mats.
- Remove all rugs. The crew will protect the floors with a specially designed floor covering that does not slip.
- Remove low hanging items such as wind chimes or hanging plants.
- Disconnect the spring on the screen door so that it stays open during the loading process.
- If you had the moving company pack for you, work with them to keep walkways clear for the driver and crew.
Task Six: Point Out Special Items
Set these items aside the day before the move. When the mover arrives, point out items that are most special to you during the walkthrough. All your items will be handled professionally but take a moment to show them which ones need the most special care. Also, point out the boxes you would like to have unloaded first at your home. These boxes may include kitchen and bathroom items, or your children’s toys.
Task Seven: Take Care of Your Driver and Crew Members
Consider having coffee and cold, non-alcoholic drinks available during the day. Doughnuts are a good mid-morning treat, and a pizza for lunch is always appreciated.
- Advise the driver and crew where to locate the drinks and food so that they do not have to ask each time.
- Advise the driver and crew which restroom you want them to use.
Task Eight: Decide on Tipping
Should you? It is completely up to you. Many individuals do tip the driver and let him disperse the portion to the crew that they think is appropriate. Completely up to you.
Task Nine: Before the Driver Leaves …
Make sure you understand all the paperwork before the driver departs for your new home. If there is something that is confusing to you, ask your driver to explain it before you sign it.
Provide the driver with your destination contact information. Take down any information the driver can provide such as his cell phone, pager and tracking information. Ask the driver if your shipment is the last he/she will be loading. Find out when the last shipment goes onto the trailer. This will give you an indication as to when they will be departing for your new home. Ask the driver about his/her plans for delivering your items. Find out as many details as you can prior to the driver leaving your residence.
The driver may give you a delivery date and time, but keep in mind it is really only an estimate. Many factors can change the schedule, so remain flexible. Ask the driver to call you with changes so that you can adjust your plans accordingly. If you have a delivery spread (a sequence of two or more days that your shipment can be delivered on and still be considered on time) understand that you can and may be delivered on any one of those days.
Take one last sweep of the house before the driver leaves. Look through all closets, shelves, in the garage, attic, crawl space, storage unit, under the stairs, on the walls and any place else things may be hiding. You do not want to find out, after the driver has left, that something was left behind.
A Last Few Practical Tips for Moving Day Include:
- Mark boxes to identify in what rooms they’re to be unloaded. This helps the movers be more efficient, and helps you know which boxes to unpack first.
- Pull out a few items upon your arrival at the new destination to provide instant familiarity. Label these boxes “Last in/First out.”
- Put children’s rooms in order right away to make them feel at home the first night.
- Prepare an easy-to-serve recipe like chili, soup or a casserole ahead. Then take a break from moving for a pleasant meal.