Category Archives: Get Ready To Move

roadtrip

Family Fun with Road Trip Games

All of your household belongings are packed in the Bekins truck and now you are making a road trip to your new home. Make your journey interesting with a few of these road trip games. It is a great way to pass the time as well as bond with your family as you embark on your new adventure.

Spot the Bekins Truck
Here at Bekins, one of our favorite games to play on a long road trip is spot the Bekins truck. Count how many Bekins moving trucks you pass while traveling to your destination. Whoever spots the most wins! One of the Bekins trucks could be the one moving your belongings!

Bekins_Triple Crown Muffucci

I Spy
This is possible one of the most popular games of all time. One person chooses a nearby object and says, “I spy with my little eye something that begins with ____________ or something that is the color ________.” The player who guesses the correct object gets to go next. Remember, it’s best not to choose something that will be out of site in a few seconds, such as a moving car.

Banana Game
Similar to “Spot the Bekins Truck,” anyone who spots a yellow car shouts “Banana!” and gets a point. You can make up your own point system. For example, a school bus could be worth five points or a little yellow corvette could be two points. It’s your game, so you make the rules!

License Plate Game
There are many ways to play the license plate game and adjustments can be made depending on the age of your kids. Young participants can call out spotted license plate letters in alphabetical order. The first one to Z wins. Next, have them look for doubles of letters or numbers on the plates. Older kids can spot out-of-state plates they see. To make it harder, they would have to spot state license plates in alphabetical order.

Name that Tune
The winner here is the one who figures out the name of the “mystery song” first. You can sing, whistle, or hum a tune after choosing a theme for the game, such as show tunes, movie or TV themes, or contemporary music. The winner gets to be the singer for the next round. You can also guess songs on the radio by hitting the “seek” button.

I’m Going On A Picnic…
One person begins by saying “I’m going on a picnic, and I’m bringing…” and then whatever they choose to bring, according to a special pattern or rule that only they know. Maybe it’s only things that are a certain color or start with a certain letter. Other players try to guess the secret theme of the picnic by suggesting their own items to bring. The picnic planner then tells them whether or not they can bring that item based on the secret pattern. The first person to guess the pattern wins and gets to lead the next picnic.

Seven Questions
The rules are simple: Players must take turns asking each other questions. Any player who hesitates, laughs or actually answers a question loses. The game can be played for points or just for bragging rights of not getting disqualified. Of course, the best way to win is to get into your opponent’s head: “Are we still playing?” “Did you just hesitate?” “Do you think we can pull over soon for a bathroom break?”

What are some fun games that you and your family pass the time on a long car ride?

 

 

 

References: http://www.minitime.com/trip-tips/Top-5-Road-Trip-Games-article, http://www.edmunds.com/car-reviews/top-10/top-10-road-trip-games.html, http://www.pbs.org/parents/summer/road-trip-games-for-kids/

5 Questions to ask during an In-home Estimate

Knowing the right questions to ask during an In-home Estimate is crucial to making it a success. Time is of the essence, so make your next estimate worth it by checking out a few must-ask questions.

promover_colorAre they a Pro-Mover?

A good question to ask when considering a moving company is whether or not they are Pro-Mover certified. Avoid a loss of time and money by ‘scammers’ by asking a few simple questions. Look for the Pro-Mover certification confirming that the company is indeed reputable and professional.

Full Explanation of a Pro-Mover.

Are there reviews readily available?

Do a little research on the company. Ask where you can find organic reviews and feedback from customers who have used their services. Of course being realistic and using good judgment when reading reviews is necessary. Also consider awards that the company has received.  Viewing Better Business Bureau and Angie’s List are both reputable companies to start the review research process.

Online sources through social media outlets can be resource to use when searching for reviews. However, keep in mind using realistic judgment is necessary when reviewing. Extreme opinions are often expressed over social media platforms, yet still might be worth checking out.

What is an estimate based on?

Be sure to inquire what the estimate is being based on. There are many ways that the costs of a move can be calculated. It will be in your greatest interest to fully understand the way in which your estimate will be based.

What does the travel look like?

The moving and storage industry is a unique industry and often more complex than one might assume. Inquiring about the route your household goods will be taking once departing from your home isn’t a bad idea.  This can prevent miscommunication and misunderstanding throughout your relocation process.

QUESTIONWhat questions do they have for you?

It’s equally important the moving company asks you questions. You can assume the move will be detailed oriented and professionally handled when a company inquires about the specifics on your move. Any company that does not go the extra mile to consider every aspect of your move should be removed from your list.

 

Less is More: Housing Market Trends

Small house_don't careThe popular saying of ‘less being more’ couldn’t ring more true in today’s housing market. What are buyers really looking for when searching for a house to call home? According to recent housing trends, it is less about the space available and more about having a cozy, well-maintained property. And can you blame them? Properties requiring less keep-up are becoming more attractive for today’s buyers, who have many other demands of their time.

No surprise, purchase price is also a huge factor in buyers’ decision making process. The current market puts house hunters in a great spot to get the best deals. Don’t be shocked when a counter-offer is thrown back from buyers; it’s a competitive market. However, this shouldn’t be problem for well-kept spaces that offer a great deal of value to the buyer. Use this as a selling point when marketing your house.

Small AND Mighty

While the houses trending on the market today are smaller, they are not to be underestimated. Potential homeowners put a tremendous emphasis on the value the house will have when it comes to resale. Decorative details are important. Buyers are more attracted to upscale finishes such as granite countertops and wood floors compared to laminate countertops and tiled floors. Such details can make the difference to the prospective buyers.

Filling the rooms with high-end furniture and upscale decorative choices is preferable to having large spaces. Having updated, quality details will compliment this trend well.  The need for large houses with several rooms is a thing of the past to current buyers.

The Great Outdoors

In addition to a desire to downsize, the housing market is seeing a demand for greater outdoor spaces. The outdoor amenities have almost equal importance as the indoor ones. Therefore, taking careful consideration of curbside appeal is extremely important. Maintaining the outer appearance of a house is arguably one of the most important selling points for home buyers. A well-groomed lawn and exterior of a house can go a long way when selling your house.

Well, there you have it. You have all the secrets that the buyers are looking for in a house. When the big moving day comes, don’t stress of the boxes and relocation of your household goods – leave that up to Bekins, it’s kind of our area of specialty. Check us out at: http://www.bekins.com/.

Moving Your Antiques

Antique_Cropped  As a child, some of my favorite memories are times spent with my great grandmother. Every year, she would plan a week-long visit during the winter While visiting, my family could be sure we would get our fill of home cooked meals and endless stories. My great grandma lived to be 100 years old and we cherish the fond memories of her. After she passed away, she left me a picture frame that hangs in my home. It has quickly become a prized possession of my family.

Like you, I understand the importance of keeping your antiques items safe during a move. Below are some steps to properly prepare and ensure fragile antiques go unharmed when being transferred to a new location.

Before the move

The first step in protecting your antiques is getting them appraised by a qualified person. Knowing the value of your personal items will be necessary for your homeowners’ insurance policy. It also will assist you in choosing the proper valuation level with your mover. It also won’t hurt to do some research on your antiques. Do they need special cleaning treatment before or after the move? Visit local antique and hardware stores for cleaning products for such items.

In addition to getting an appraisal of the items, it is a good idea to take photos of each of the antiques before the move, paying special attention to any scratches or damages as you’ll have to note this on your mover’s inventory.

When you get your in-home estimate be sure to point out to the agent the high dollar or fragile items so special packing arrangements can be made. Although you may pack yourself, it’s a good idea to trust the professionals with your specialty items. We can build special, customized cartons to suit each item and ensure it’s fully protected.

 Moving day

It is crucial that you or a trusted individual is present during the packing process. This ensures any questions that the Bekins representative might have concerning your valuables can be answered. It is a good idea to address such details before a move, rather than trying to pick up the pieces afterwards.

Arriving at your destination

When you arrive at your destination, it is important to take inventory all of your household goods, especially your high dollar possessions. If your belongings need immediate attention upon arrival, make arrangements with your destination agent to do so.

Taking these steps will help your antiques and memories arrive successfully to your new home!

How-to Guide: Moving Estimate Appointment

How do I start?

Bekins Van Lines knows that the moving process can be intimidating and overwhelming, especially if this is a first-time move.  It’s hard to know where to begin when it seems like there’s a whole mountain of tasks to accomplish.  Take a deep breath though.  If you’re working with Bekins, you’re working with an expert in the moving industry with over 100 years of experience. We’ll be with you every step of the way – beginning with the Estimate Appointment.

Once you contact Bekins, a representative will set up a time for a moving agent to visit your home to meet with you to figure out the details and logistics of your move.  Read on to see how to prepare and what to expect out of this appointment.

How To Prepare

The Estimate Appointment is your first chance to get to know the moving company that you could potentially work with.  It’s important to be prepared for this meeting so you will get as much out of it as possible.

The most important way to prepare for the Estimate Appointment is to have a clear idea of which items will and won’t be moved.  Bekins moving agent Shellie Law says, “I can’t stress enough that the consumer should be as accurate as possible when telling me which items will be moved.  This will eliminate a lot of stress further down the line, and I guarantee the customer will be happier in the long run”.

Quote inside a thought bubble

Another good preparation item is to allow the moving agent access to all parts of your home.  If a room such as an attic is not accessible, it’s important to provide the agent with a detailed list of items that will be moved.  This adds to the accuracy of the estimate.

What Should I Expect?

Typically, the meeting will begin by the agent asking you questions about your move such as where you’re moving, the size of your new home, the items you want to take with you and what you expect out of your move.  He will also be more than happy to answer any and all your questions about the moving process as a whole.   After the conversation ends, the moving agent will want to walk room-by-room through your house to take notes on the items that will be moved.  The appointment time varies from person to person, but typically, the meeting shouldn’t take longer than two hours.

When Will I Know?

A moving agent greeting a customer.   The function of a  Moving Estimate is to determine the approximate cost of your move, so many customers want to know how long until they know the cost.  In most cases, the agent will get back to you within the same day, but depending on how many appointments he or she has, it could take up to 24 hours. 

More Helpful Hints

  • It’s a good idea to get at least three estimates from different moving companies.  That way you’ll be able to compare prices and make a more educated decision.
  • Estimates are only valid for 60 days. If you receive the estimate more than 60 days prior to your move, there’s a chance it could change.
  • Remember, the estimate accuracy depends on the accuracy of the information given to the moving agent.
  • Packing Bonus: Bekins provides customers with used free boxes upon availability however we always provide new boxes to our customers for purchase at a very low cost.

Celebrate National Moving Month with Bekins Van Lines

When you think of the month of May, you might think about budding flowers, the end of the school year, and the beginning of warm weather. We at Bekins Van Lines are thinking about celebrating.

May is National Moving Month and we are excited to share and celebrate our wealth of information about all things moving with you. Starting tomorrow, every day this month we will post a different moving tip that can help your planning, packing and moving experience to go more smoothly.

Also dispersed throughout the month will be interesting statistics, articles, images and posts about other moving trends and information.

We look forward to celebrating this month with you! This is Bekins and this is moving.

 

horiz_banner_promover

To view all of Bekins’ National Moving Month Tips, click here.

Planning: The key to a successful move

As professional movers, Bekins wants to help you make your relocation as peaceful as possible. One of the keys to a smooth, successful move is planning and organizing the details. Sweating the small stuff sooner than later can help prepare you for a stress-free move. Simply print this list and check off the items as you go. You’ll be in great shape when moving day arrives.

8-12 weeks before you move

 Set up house hunting trip
 Research banks, doctors, and schools in new location
 Moving for work? Discuss relocation assistance with employer.
 Host a garage sale or donate items (or both).

4-8 weeks before you move

 Contact your local Bekins agent for free in-home estimate
 Make list of people and companies you need to notify of your move.
 Check with school about transferring school records.
 Check with IRS or accountant if moving expenses are deductible.
 Contact insurance agent.
 Contact doctors and dentists to transfer medical records.
 Obtain change of address cards from post office or online at www.usps.com.

3 weeks before you move

 If you are packing, begin packing your belongings.
 Compile personal records.
 Change address on credit cards and magazines.
 Arrange to have utilities disconnected the day after loading.
 Arrange to have utilities connected before your scheduled move in date.
 Arrange to have trash disconnected and connected.
 Arrange to have cable disconnected and connected.

2 weeks before you move

 Plan to use up meals in refrigerator and freezer.
 Donate non-perishable food items to Move For Hunger, or local food bank.
 Cancel all current delivery services, such as food and newspaper delivery.
 Drain all oil and gasoline from lawn mower and other power tools.
 Dispose of all flammables, cleaners, paints, aerosols, ammunition if they are to be moved.
 Transfer current prescription to new pharmacy.
 Clear out safety deposit box and arrange to take this information/documentation with you.

1 week before you move

 Finalize all travel plans.
 Provide Bekins with contact numbers and email addresses.
 Confirm pack, load and delivery dates with Bekins agent.
 Ensure major appliances are cleaned, unplugged and ready to move.

Moving day

 Review all paperwork with your Bekins driver.
 Be available to review inventory of all items being moved.
 Select “For All It’s Worth”replacement value protection on Bill of Lading.
 Double check that nothing was left behind.

“To Move Or Not To Move?”: That Is The Question

Whether you are relocating because of a new job or for a change of scenery in a new part of the country, Bekins Van Lines recognizes moving is a huge decision in your life. That is why we at Bekins want to provide you as much information and insight as possible when deciding whether or not to move.

If you are offered a job in a different part of the country, recognize the pay as one of the most important factors in deciding whether to move. A new salary should allow you to maintain your current lifestyle in your new area. Consider making a chart the compares the cost of living and real estate prices in your current city, to those of a new one. In addition to housing costs, research the costs of everyday goods like groceries, laundry and gasoline. Keep tabs on the housing market trends and if you own a house, remember that the financial equation can change. For example, it may be more beneficial to stay in your current house if you are expecting a loss after its sale.

If you do decide to relocate because of a job offer, think about ways of minimizing both financial and personal risk. For example, consider temporarily renting a house or an apartment in your new area because it will lower your financial risk rather than making a long-term commitment on a new home. Be sure also to research other job opportunities in the same industry if your new position does not work out. 

Finally, don’t make plans for moving for a job until you have received an offer in writing. It is wise to contact your new employer and request an e-mail or a document in writing that states what the company has offered you. Some companies ask new hires to sign an agreement that they will pay back or cover moving expenses if they don’t remain employed for a specified amount of time.