Dear Angie: I am moving out of state from Denver to Florida and am looking for tips to make the move go easier. We plan to pack boxes ourselves to keep the costs down. What advice can you give on how to pack and how to find a good, affordable mover? – Linda M., Denver
Dear Linda: Moving can be a stressful time, so finding a good moving company to make it a smooth move can make all the difference.
You might be able to save some money by packing yourself, but before you decide how much to do on your own, call at least three moving companies to get estimates for what they charge for different levels of service, from packing all of your stuff and transporting it, to loading and transporting only. If you pack it yourself, the moving company’s insurance might not cover any damage to those items, so be sure to ask about that before making any decisions.
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If you do decide to pack yourself, instead of using cardboard boxes that can often be flimsy, aren’t always easily stackable and are usually only good for one use, you might look into using recyclable boxes. Many moving companies are offering this more environmentally friendly option of stackable, durable, plastic boxes. Some will deliver the boxes to you, and then pick them up from the new location.
I do recommend you transport high-priority items yourself. These typically include personal items you can’t replace – like family photos, personal documents and jewelry – or items that you might need access to at a moment’s notice like your wallet, car keys or medications.
One way you can make the move easier – and save money – is by weeding out items you don’t need. Have a yard sale or find a local charitable organization and donate items you no longer use, clothes you no longer wear, etc.