5 Moving Expenses You May Not Have Considered

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Subject: Hidden Moving Fees

I used a company that charged me $6 for every roll of tape that they used. So they would drape my furniture in a padded moving tarp and then tape around the tarp to keep it on. Most reputable movers use bungees. These guys would use 2 or 3 rolls of tape on each piece of furniture. And any time they didn't finish a roll, they'd throw it on the ground and get a new roll for the next piece of furniture. At the end of the day, they had gone through over 25 rolls of tape. When we went back to our old place to clean up, we found about 10, barely used rolls of tape. They also charged us for stairs when they said they wouldn't. They also charged us for gas and tolls to come to, and go home from, our place (which they didn't include in their quote). While moving, they asked if I wanted them to pack up this tiny mirror for my vanity table (it's maybe 18"x12"). I thought they meant cover it in padding, so I said yes. They ended up using the biggest box they had to pack this tiny mirror that I could have put in my purse. The box was easily 4'x5'x3" and it ended up costing me $200 (plus however many additional rolls of tape). And all they did was throw it into the box. They didn't put packing peanuts or cover it in padding. It could have just as easily broken inside the stupid box. Definitely ask ahead of time for a copy of their standard contract so you can go over it, because I had asked these people for all their fees before I booked them and it still didn't save me. Our final price ended up being over twice our quote even though it took the movers half the time expected to move us. And don't let your movers pack anything!

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I second the original question (still unanswered). Speaking as someone who logged in today to try to find an attorney, I see this category as one that's exactly what I have my Angie's List membership for:

1. It's important that I find a good one
2. I'm not an expert enough to know myself who is a good one
3. The industry is full of advertisements and misinformation
4. I wish I knew what experiences other people have had

I don't care about lawns--I planted mine in clover and don't have to mow it. When I do need to mow I use a rotary Fiskars mower, which is great--or a scythe. That's right--a scythe (the European type, which is smaller, and it's very good exercise). Gas-powered mowers, chemical fertilizers and weed killers--all nasty stuff that gets into everyone's air, soil, and water. I'm sure my neighbor doesn't like my wildflowers, semi-wild pockets of fruit bushes, and unmown areas and yes, dandelions (I have 10 acres) but that's too bad. It's better habitat for wildlife, especially the pollinators on which our food supply depends. I think this obsession with the Great American Lawn is a waste of time and resources. Plant some food instead.

I'm not sure Angie et. al. want you to have a complete answer to this question. By re-subscribing at the Indiana State Fair in 2012, I think I paid $20.00 per year for a multi- year subscription. Maybe even less. At the other extreme--and I hope my memory isn't faulty about this--I think the price, for my area, for ONE year was an outrageous $70.00. And they debited me automatically without warning. I had to opt out of that automatic charge. I like Angie's List, but if some of the companies they monitor behaved the way they do in this respect, they'd be on some sort of Pages of Unhappiness. I'll be interested to see if this comment gets published or censored out of existence.

That's very difficult to answer without seeing the house. As one poster said, the prep is the most important part. On newer homes that don't have a lot of peeling paint, the prep can be very minimal even as low as a couple or a few hundred dollars for the prep labor.

On a 100 year old home with 12 coats of peeling paint on it, then the prep costs can be very high and can easily exceed 50% of the job's labor cost.

A 2100 sq ft two story home could easily cost $1000 just for the labor to prep for the paint job. That number could climb too. Throw in lots of caullking  or window glazing, and you could be talking a couple or a few hundred dollars more for labor.

Painting that home with one coat of paint and a different color on the trim could run roughly $1000 or more just for labor. Add a second coat  and that could cost close to another $1000 for labor.

For paint, you may need 20 gallons of paint. You can pay from $30-$70 for a gallon of good quality exterior paint. The manufacturer of the paint should be specified in any painting contract. Otherwise, the contractor could bid at a Sherwin-Williams $60 per gallon paint and then paint the house with $35 Valspar and pocket the difference. $25 dollars per gallon times 20 gallons? That's a pretty penny too.

That was the long answer to your question. The short answer is $2000 to $4000 and up, depending upon the amount of prep, the number of coats, the amount of trim, and the paint used.