Every once in a while, we receive a call from a frantic prospective customer. They need to move, and they need to move like yesterday. Sometimes, a last minute move happens. Either a spur of the moment job comes up, a job is lost last minute, or family or personal obligations mean a sudden change in life. We get it, and believe us when we say we will do everything in our power to help.
Last minute moves will throw just about anyone into a loop, especially if you are still working before your official resignation date. In many cases, every waking moment will be spent packing and organizing. The good news is, it can be done. In fact, it’s done all the time.
Make a List
The first thing to do is make a list. Fortunately, Real Simple has a great generic list, but your needs will be different. Edit as needed.
Find a Place to Live
Finding a place to live last minute can be a bit of a nightmare. If you can afford to take your time, consider a short-term rental before settling on a longer-term solution. When you need to find a long-term place to live, though, contact a Realtor. If you can go there, great! Spend a weekend with the Realtor. If you can’t go there, ask the Realtor to send lots and lots of pictures. Ask questions. Do you have pets? Do you have kids? How far is the home from your job? What are schools like? Try to sign just a 6 month lease, if possible, in case you hate the place.
Call a Mover
Movers book up quickly, especially when the weather is nice. Call as soon as you can. Ask friends and go to Yelp. Arrange for three estimates, but don’t automatically go for the lowest one. Compare apples to apples. Are the companies estimating by weight or by cubic feet? We’ll let you in on a secret. Each cubic foot is estimated to weigh seven pounds. Use that formula to make sure the estimates are within range of each other. If not, go through each estimate with a fine toothed comb. Did a company or two leave something off? Don’t be afraid to ask each estimator how they got to their numbers.
You should also ask for a “Not to Exceed” or “Binding” estimate, so you know exactly how much you’ll pay. Note that even Not to Exceeds or Binding estimates aren’t guarantees if the parameters of the move change, including if you move more items, or if you don’t get around to packing.
Pack (or Don’t)
If you are moving last minute, it’s a smart idea to consider asking the movers to pack for you. Unless you have a large home, they’ll probably pack you within a day. Yes, you will pay more, but it can be so worth it, especially if you’re short on time.
Make Your Travel Plans
If you are flying, book your flight as soon as possible. If you are driving, draw up an itinerary, and make hotel reservations along the way. Remember that it will take your stuff longer to get to you than it will take you to get to your new destination. If you have time, make a road trip out of it.
Be sure to separate out your take with you stuff. Take a few days worth of clothing, your toiletries, a microwave (if it fits in your car), an inflatable mattress (if you’ll be staying in your new, but empty, home), sheets, pillows, electronics, and valuables such as jewelry and critical paperwork.
Take Advantage of Your Mover’s Storage
If you don’t have a permanent place to live, let your mover store your items until you’re ready for delivery. Note that storage rates can vary far more dramatically than moving rates. It’s a good idea to ask, whether you anticipate needing storage or not.
Featured image public domain via Pixabay