Category Archives: Get Ready To Move

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Tips to Safely Move Any Kind of Musical Instrument

You know that your couch, your dining room set, your clothes, and your books will all arrive safely at your new home. These items will stay solidly in place in the moving van, and they’ll show up at your front door intact. You don’t have to worry about them.

However, you probably don’t feel the same way about your musical instruments. These complex and somewhat fragile items could easily sustain damage during a trip across the country, even if the truck operator drives carefully. Instruments cost a lot of money, and they allow you to express your emotions through the language of music. If anything happened to yours, you would probably feel devastated.

Luckily, you can take steps to safeguard your instruments while they travel. Read the guide below to find out how.

Pianos and Organs

Most moving companies train their employees to safely move these instruments.piano You don’t have to worry about their wellbeing during the moving process. You can, however, take steps to prepare them for the move:

  • Close and lock the keyboard lid, if possible.
  • Remove any removable parts, like the music stand.
  • Provide blankets, towels, and lots of bubble wrap for wrapping the instrument. Secure all wrapping materials with packing tape or duct tape.
  • Put additional wrapping on the legs and pedals.

You can usually trust your movers to do all of the above. But if you want to supervise the process yourself, just follow those steps.

Violins, Cellos, and Other Stringed Instruments

Stringed instruments have more fragility than other instruments, which makes them tricky to ship. You don’t want fingerboards, bows, or sound-boxes to crack, but even something as simple as a speed bump could cause that kind of damage. Adverse weather conditions could also warp the wood.

To prevent cracking or warping, take the following steps:

http://thinkeryaustin.org/blog/science-woodwinds/

http://thinkeryaustin.org/blog/science-woodwinds/

  • Loosen the instrument’s strings a little bit. Don’t loosen them so much that the bridge falls over—just loosen them enough that the temperature won’t strain them. Cold temperatures will tighten them, while warmer temperatures will loosen them. Leave them loose so these changes won’t pull your strings so tight they snap the fingerboard or headstock.
  • Where applicable, loosen the bow’s hairs for the same reasons.
  • Where applicable, turn all the tuning keys parallel with the headstock so nothing can snap them off.
  • Add some extra padding. Bubble wrap makes for an excellent solution, but you can also use crumpled paper. Wrap your instrument and your bow in these items before placing them on the case. Do not use shredded paper or packing peanuts because these items could get inside your instrument. You’ll have a really hard time getting that back out.
  • If you don’t have a hard case, purchase one. Your instrument will stay safe from moisture and falls this way.

Once you’ve taken all these steps, very little could keep your stringed instrument from arriving at your new home intact.

Trumpets, Clarinets, and Other Brass or Woodwind Instruments

http://thinkeryaustin.org/blog/science-woodwinds/

http://thinkeryaustin.org/blog/science-woodwinds/

Luckily, most brass and woodwind instruments have fairly robust parts. However, a ding or dent in even one part could ruin the entire sound. Keep your brass or woodwind safe by doing the following:

  • Completely take the instrument apart.
  • Wrap all the pieces in bubble wrap.
  • Store them in a hard case. If you do not have one, purchase one. If you can’t purchase one, wrap the pieces in several layers of bubble wrap and towels. You don’t want the pieces to bump into each other or anything else.

These steps may seem simple, but they will help your instrument survive the trip unscathed.

Drum Sets and Other Percussion Instruments

Your drums only need simple protection as well. Simply buy a box a couple inches larger than the drum, then pad the sides, top, and bottom with bubble wrap. If you have larger percussion instruments, like a marimba, depend on your movers to relocate it the same way they move a piano. It will arrive safely.

Use these tips to keep your beloved instrument secure and intact as you move to your new home. Check out the rest of our blog for additional moving tips.

Senior Moving

A Stress-Free Guide to Moving Elderly Parents

As your parents grow older, you may see them begin to struggle living day-to-day. Perhaps they have begun to miss bill payments or have fallen and broken a hip. They may need increased care after developing Alzheimer’s or dementia. At some point, you will need to move them into a safer living environment.

Where will they live? Initially you may consider your home. However, this decision is a major life choice and deserves some serious discussion from you, them, and the rest of your family. Here are some simple things you can do to make the moving process easier:

Coming to the Same Conclusion

Your parents may feel emotionally connected to their home. Expect apprehension when you first bring up moving. They will need time to ponder and accept the idea. Many times seniors feel that moving means losing control of their lives. To help them transition, explain that their opinion matters and that they have a say in where they live. Giving them time to come to the same conclusion as you will help them feel more confident and less distressed.

Talk with your parents at a family meeting with their loved ones. This will give everyone the opportunity to share his or her opinions and views. Active communication in the family will also build a better support system for your parents.

Deciding on Living Arrangements

During this meeting, discuss the level of care your parents will need in their new home. They may require constant supervision and assistance with daily living activities. Most of the time, seniors movingsenior’s care becomes more challenging over time. Consider speaking with a social worker for advice. They can provide valuable suggestions and insight on required care and living arrangements.

The housing situation you choose for your parents will depend on needed care, available facilities, location, and finances.

Create a list of pros and cons for each housing option in your area. Include the distance to relatives as this may cause concern among siblings. Often, family members who live closer have more opportunities to get involved with parents’ care. It’s essential to create an open dialogue with your family and come to an agreement on living conditions.

Understand that your parents have the final say during the decision-making. After all, the living arrangement will ultimately affect them the most.

Before you all decide on a living arrangement, visit the facility. This will help your parents get a feel for the environment, which may play a role into their decision. Take notes on how the employees interact with residents, what activities they provide, and transportation arrangements. You can also research online reviews from past guests.

Sorting Belongings

Most seniors have lived in their homes for many years, which means they have a lot of stuff to sort througsenior_downsizingh. Before you start to pack, go through your parents’ home and organize their belongings. Organize possessions into piles you’re keeping, donating, throwing away, and preserving as keepsakes.

Keep in mind the emotional state of your parents as you go through their things. Allow them time to decide which pile to put their belongings in and reminisce as you sort. Their possessions are more than objects-they’re memories.

As you organize, picture where possessions will go in their new house. How much room do they have? Where will the furniture go? Create a model of the home on paper to help you envision what their new living arrangement will look like.

Hiring a Moving Company

Booking a moving company will help ease the stress on you and your parents. In fact, your parents may feel more comfortable talking with a subjective third party than speaking with their children. Moving companies who specialize in moving seniors will offer comfort to the family. They also take on the burden of lifting heavy objects and ultimately make the process smoother for everyone.

You may want to consider having them pack belongings. They have the tools and knowledge to ensure valuables remain intact.

This allows you to focus on your parents as they transition to their new home.

Cleaning

Even if you hire a moving company, you will still need to clean the home. Whether you plan to rent, sell, or pass the home to a relative, have the entire family come and help. Also, repair any damages now to avoid the problems getting worse. These repairs will prevent rentpianoers or new owners from claiming fake damages.

Settling In

Your parents may need days, weeks, or months to adjust to the new living arrangements. Check in with them often to make sure they feel safe and comfortable. Every person reacts to moving differently. Some feel relief from not having to take of their home. Others feel hesitant to make friends. Most will feel some loss from the life change. Give your parents plenty of family support during this stage. Who knows, they may end up saying, “Why didn’t I do this a long time ago?”

Take the moving process slowly to ensure you and your parents have a smooth transition.

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9 Reasons Relocating in the Winter is the Right Move

With some preparation, winter might be the easiest and cheapest time to move. Plus, who wants to wait until the busy spring and summer months to relocate? Here are the top 10 reasons to consider moving in the winter: 

Why You Should Move in the Winter

    • Moving in the winter can save you money when hiring a moving company. Most household moving companies have cheaper rates compared to the peakCoupon - Copy moving months (May to September). Bekins currently offers This is moving. Relocation Prograwhere you can save $150 and receive other service guarantees on your upcoming move.
    • Movers are more flexible with dates in the winter. You may not need to give as much notice or you may even get your household goods quicker.
    • Weather permitting, travel can be quicker due to the lack of cars and construction on the roads.
    • There are less homes on the market during the winter and sellers often are eager to move from their residences.
    • There can be fewer buyers during the winter because more people prefer to move in the warmer months.
    • Due to a decrease in volume during the winter, mortgage lenders usually have fewer loans and less paperwork to process.
    • Due to the slower market, real estate professionals have more time to devote to your search for a new home.
    • Lenders may forgo certain fees to stay busy in the off-season.
    • Because landlords want to fill vacant apartments and homes in the winter, they are more likely to entice you to move with bonus offers, lower rent or a smaller deposit.

To learn more about how to organize a winter move and how to make your move as easy and stress-free as it can possibly be, contact Bekins for a free moving quote. Don’t allow the thought of bad weather to interfere with making the right move!

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7 Tips to Make Your Winter Move Easier

Whether you finally found your dream home, or your job transferred you to a new location, moving in winter offers a lot of benefits. Winter is the off season for many companies, so you may enjoy better rates and more flexible moving dates. And in the colder seasons, roads tend to have less traffic, resulting in shorter, faster drives.

However, moving in winter also has its shortcomings. Poor weather and icy roads turn an otherwise safe journey into a harrowing experience. Fortunately, you can make the trip easier with these cold-weather tips.

1. Check the Weather

HeadlightsAs you pack and prep for the upcoming move, periodically check weather reports. Schedule your moving day during a bout of warmer weather, but give yourself a range of acceptable moving days in case the weather turns dangerous.

Even if the weather is supposed to be clear on your moving day, stay ready to call off the move at a moment’s notice. Weather can prove fickle, especially in Indiana. You’ll do better to postpone your moving trip in favor of better conditions than to work in the ice and the cold.

2. Keep Winter Supplies on Hand

Even if you plan to move to a warmer climate, you’ll want to keep your winter gear on hand while you move. Items such as a snow shovel, ice scraper, and salt will help you clear a path safely through the snow, while winter clothing such as heavier coats, hats, and gloves will help you stay warm while you move.

As you dress for your move, layer your clothing. Layers keep warm air from escaping and provide better insulation. This will keep you warmer during colder conditions. And since you may be moving heavier boxes and working harder, the layers enable you to shed unnecessary clothing to prevent overheating.

3. Clear Snow from Walkways

Moving boxes, appliances, and furniture is hard enough. You don’t want to have to deal with slip and falls on top of your move.

Use your snow shovel to clear a path through the driveway, sidewalk, and any other places Clear the Walkwaysyou and your crew will move consistently. Use salt to melt the ice faster and sand to provide traction.

If you hire a moving company to help you, make sure the company has a liability and protection plan in place. This will ensure that both the movers and your items have coverage in the case of an accident. If someone slips and falls on the sidewalk, you won’t have to worry about paying for medical coverage or for replacing your glassware.

4. Use Cardboard and Sheeting to Protect Floors

Even if you do a careful job clearing ice and snow from your driveway, chances are likely that you’ll track some of the slush into your home. The water, mud, and other debris can soak into and damage your carpet, and as a result, you may have to spend more time cleaning your home before you lock up.

Additionally, icy water on tile or wood floors poses a safety risk for you and your movers. The slick surface combined with limited visibility from heavy furniture create the perfect setup for an injury.

You can keep your flooring and your team safe by laying cardboard and sheeting near the entryways and other areas that see a lot of foot traffic on moving day. Keep towels near the front door to dry off dolly wheels and other moving equipment.

5. Board Your Pets

While you’ll want to take your beloved Fluffy along for the move, you don’t want your furry friend to frolic underfoot during the moving process. With multiple people traveling in and out of your home, someone might step on a paw or tail. Or in the excitement of the day’s events, your pet might slip out the door unnoticed.

Rather than spending hours tending to a pet’s injury or searching for a missing pet, take your pet to a local animal boarding facility. If you have a tight budget, consider asking your neighbor to watch your dog or cat for a few hours while you move.

6. Stay Warm with Hot Drinks

Constant changes between the warmth of your house anCup-of-black-coffeed the cold air from the outside take a toll on your body. While you might not immediately notice your dehydration, you may notice that it’s easier to become fatigued while moving heavier items.

Do your body a favor by drinking regularly while you move. If cold water sounds unpleasant in the chilly weather, opt for warmer drinks like hot cocoa, cider, or tea. Don’t forget to offer some to your moving team-they’ll likely appreciate it!

7. Call the Professionals

If you have a large family and a group of friendly neighbors to help you during the move, you may feel tempted to save money and pack your items yourself. However, not everyone is equipped to handle cold weather ventures, and this increases the risk of injury to you, your family, and your items.

When moving in winter, you’ll have better success transporting your valuables if you call on a professional moving team. With the right moving company, you can move your items quickly and safely. Don’t hesitate to ask professionals to assist you in your next winter move-with these tips, you’ll be out of your old home and into your new home in almost no time!

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9 Ways to Eat Healthy During a Move

We’ll be the first to admit that moving can be exhausting and stressful. It might seem like there aren’t enough hours in the day to get everything on your seemingly endless to-do list done. And chances are, cooking and eating healthy might be the last thing on your mind.

But by focusing on eating right during your move, you can save money and a keep few inches off your waistline. Eating healthy foods will also boost your energy, which will provide some much-needed motivation throughout your move.

Keep these healthy eating tips in mind as you prepare to move to your new home.

Before the Move

Free Bekins Weekly Meal Planner

Free Bekins Weekly Meal Planner

Preparation is the key to any successful move, and the same is true for eating healthy during your move. Before you even start packing, be sure to take the following steps:

  1. Make a plan.

How far out is your move? If it’s two weeks away, create a daily menu for what you’ll eat each day leading up to the move. Good meals to make during a move include soups and stews, casseroles, and pastas. You can make these dishes in bulk, so you’ll be able to eat them for at least two or three days.

Creating a menu will help alleviate the stress you feel as your schedule gets busier and busier. Once you’ve made your meal plan, set aside any utensils you’ll need to make these meals. You can pack these utensils together right before you actually hit the road.

  1. Clear out your refrigerator, freezer, and pantry.

It’s tempting to eat out every night leading up to a move. But you’ll save a lot of money by using food that you already have. Plan your daily meals around what you already have in your refrigerator and freezer. You should only buy food to complete these meals.

Bekins Weekly Meal Planner

While You’re Packing

While looking for a home and filling out paperwork is stressful, packing your belongings is perhaps the most stressful and chaotic task of all. Keep the following tips in mind as you strive to eat healthy while you’re packing:

  1. Keep time in perspective.

At the end of a long day of packing, all you’ll want to do grab some fPositive family preparing lunch togetherast food or order a pizza.  Keep in mind that it will take about the same amount of time to prepare a meal as it would to have a pizza delivered. Plus, you’ll feel less guilty after preparing a home cooked meal than you would after eating pizza.

  1. Ask for help.

Don’t be afraid to enlist the help of your friends or family members. Chances are, your friends or kids would be happy to whip up a healthy meal. Remember: many hands make light work.

While You’re Traveling

Whether you’re moving a few miles away or across the country, driving will make you tired. And when you’re tired, a burger and fries might sound like the most delicious thing in the world. But heavy, processed fast food will make you even more tired. Eat healthy while you’re on the road by doing the following:

Land O Lakes blog

Land O Lakes blog

  1. Pack your meals ahead of time.

Prepare a few meals the night before you hit the road. Store them on ice in a cooler, and be sure to replace ice as needed along the way.

Foods that travel well include:

  • Fruits: apples, oranges, grapes, and bananas
  • Vegetables: carrots, celery, snap peas, and bell peppers
  • Cold pasta
  • Green salads (be sure to keep dressing in a separate container)
  • Hummus
  • Hard-boiled eggs
  • Jerky
  • Pre-cooked or chilled meats: turkey, chicken, salmon
  • Pre-made wraps or sandwiches

Be sure to pack separate meals for every person in the car. This will eliminate the hassle of taking out all of the food and divvying it out to each person.

  1. Plan ahead if you’ll be eating out.

You don’t have to completely avoid eating out en route to your new home. If you want to eat out on the road, find a restaurant that serves healthy options.

  1. Stay busy while you drive.

Driving on long, wide highways can be boring. To keep yourself from dozing off, you may want to munch on salty or sweet snacks. Keep your munching to a minimum by listening to music and talking with those in the car.

After the Move

AhealthyfooditemsArriving at your new home will surely bring a huge sigh of relief. To continue your healthy eating habits and settle in as quickly as possible, keep the following in mind:

  1. Unpack kitchen utensils first.

Remember that box of kitchen utensils you packed right before you moved? That should be the first box you unpack in your new home.

Rather than ordering a pizza from a local restaurant your first night in the new house, make dinner. You can run to a local grocery store to pick up a few items to make your first meal in your new home. This will help make your new house feel more like home.

  1. Keep your meals simple.

You’ll want to keep your meals as simple as possible until you unpack all of your boxes and really settle into your new home. For simple, healthy meals, stock up on proteins and produce.

Moving doesn’t have to take a toll on your emotional and physical health. By eating healthy during your move, you’ll be able to tackle your to-do list and maintain a positive attitude.

King Park Indianapolis

The Secret of Moving to the Suburbs Without Losing the Perks of City Life

When you first moved to the city for college and stayed to build your career, you may have resolved never to leave. But now you’ve established yourself in your career and settled down to raise a family. At this stage in life, you’re not alone if you no longer view city life through rose-colored glasses. Gradually, you realize you’re tired of facing the realities of city life like:

  • Finding parking spots
  • Carrying groceries through streets and up flights of stairs
  • Dealing with noisy neighbors
  • Wrangling toddlers in small apartments with no yard space

Still, the city hasn’t entirely lost its allure. You hate to sacrifice what you love about the city just to overcome a few annoyances. Lucky for you, many suburban communities offer perks similar to city-dwelling but without the stuff that bothers you. If it’s time to consider a move to the suburbs, here’s how to do it without giving up what you love about city life.

Experience the Ambiance

The move from the city to the suburbs often causes people to wax nostalgic about the unique aspects of city dwelling. They don’t want to say goodbye to all-night take-out places, one-of-a-kind clothing boutiques, and well-maintained city parks. But, many suburban centers have similar perks. Plus, these sites are usually less crowded outside of city limits.

Make a list of your must-haves or nice-to-haves for a suburban community. Think rec centers, local theaters, concert venues, bars, nightclubs, or whatever else you typically do in the city. Then drive around and look for those options every time you go house hunting. Park the car and take a walk downtown. Go into the shopping mall. You might be surprised at the array of stores it offers. In short, be on the lookout for places that can become your new favorites.

However, be cautious about clinging too much to any one suburban downtown area. It’s only one factor in what creates a community’s atmosphere. Interact with the people you pass on the street. Many suburbs have replaced the isolated, city-life mindset with more neighborly patterns of interaction. Strike up a conversation with someone at the local coffee shop and ask about the area. Watch for friendly interactions among store clerks and customers to get a sense of the community atmosphere.

Visit Local Schools

Shutterstock.com

Shutterstock.com

In the city, a top school frequently means an expensive private school. But your kids can obtain a quality education at a public school in the suburbs. No wonder almost every family moving to the suburbs has “top-rated school system” at the top of their must-have list-even families without kids yet. As you evaluate area schools, examine these factors:

  1. Look beyond test scores. Kids are more than their test scores, and so are schools. Test scores are only an end way of measuring a school’s performance. Class size is a better indicator of how much personal attention your child will receive from teachers-smaller is better.
  1. Examine all grade levels. You might be making the move to the suburbs when your children are barely in preschool, but you could live in your new house until they head off for college. With that in mind, visit schools for all grade levels in the area. Make sure the middle school and high school options meet your education standards, too.
  1. Make sure your favorite extracurricular activities have community support. You can’t predict which hobbies your kids will adopt as they get older, but you can make a few good guesses. If you take your kids to the theater frequently, make sure the school district has a strong history of supporting the arts. If you attend sporting events, look for a school with an established sports program. You want your kids to have options when they start developing their non-academic skills.

Consider the Commute

For many people making the switch from city to suburb, the extended commute becomes a primary consideration. After all, what’s the point of finding a larger, quieter living space if you’re hardly home to enjoy it? For any community you consider moving into, think about these factors that will affect your commute:

  1. Public transportation. Does the thought of fighting rush hour twice a workday send your blood pressure through the roof? If so, look for a suburb with public transportation options built for commuters. Don’t just locate the local train station on the map. Actually visit it. You need to know about parking availability and overall convenience. You could even take a test train ride into the city to time the trip and gauge the crowds.
  1. Carpool lanes and toll roads. If you don’t mind driving, you’ll probably still want options to speed up your commute. When you make the hull out to the suburbs to house hunt, pay attention to the highway and calculate the cost of paying for less-crowded toll roads. Look out for carpool lanes. If you see any, ask around at the office if any co-workers would share the ride with you.
  1. Working from home. Increasing numbers of suburban dwellers have cut their commute down to the time it takes them to walk from the bedroom to the office-they telecommute. That might not be an option every day, but your supervisor might be willing to let you work from home a few days a week.

Finally, estimate how often you envision yourself heading into the city for reasons other than work. If you think you’ll visit it more than once or twice a month, look for suburbs just outside the main hub to cut down on your travel time. That way your favorite city spots won’t be too far away.

Your trek to the suburbs can yield many of the amenities that city life does. Use these tips to find the perfect community and home for you. Once you’ve found it, call a moving company to arrange moving your belongings. Get ready to make new memories that will last a lifetime in a space that won’t feel cramped as your family grows.

If you want to make the move from the city to the suburbs, a local agent  in your area will be able to assist you with all of your moving needs.

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Save on your Upcoming Move with Bekins

Black Friday is all about saving money for the upcoming holiday, but how do you save for an upcoming move? We can help! Take advantage of Bekins Van Lines “This is Moving™ Relocation Program” promotion that goes from now to May.

What you get:
$150 off the price of your move
• Timespan delivery guarantee – We’ll deliver within the agreed upon window or pay you $250 per day
15% off of For All It’s Worth™ Full Replacement Value ProtectionCoupon - Copy
$25 per day claims guarantee if the claims resolution letter isn’ t received within 30 days.

To receive these benefits, your move:
• Must be an interstate move in the contiguous United States weighing 5,000 lbs. or greater
• Commence between September 15, 2014 and May 1, 2015
• To receive 15% off Replacement Value Protection, you must purchase Replacement Value Protection
• Dates must be consistent with Bekins’ Transit Time Guide

Learn more about this special promotion by talking to your local agent.

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How to Take the Stress Out of Your Moving Process

You might be really excited about your new home, new job, or other changes happening in your life. But you have to admit: you don’t love the idea of packing up all your items and hauling them into a moving van.

On top of all the time and effort you’ll spend, you risk injury by transporting furniture and other heavy objects.

You can make your household moving process easier by hiring a moving professional or using the following tips to help make a plan and to safely lift heavy objects.

How to Get Started

Even if you are in a rush, think ahead before you start grabbing boxes. Wear comfortable, closed-toed shoes and clothing you can flex in. Decide what path you will take to move each object and make sure there are no obstacles in your way.

Consider the weight of each object before you lift it. Professional movers estimate that a piece of furniture weighs about 7 pounds for every cubic foot (up to 10 pounds for sturdier materials). You increase your chance of injury by lifting items over 50 pounds, so you may want to leave those extra heavy objects to the professionals.

Depending on your size and strength, you will most likely need help from another person or moving equipment for some large pieces of furniture. You can use the following equipment to help lift heavy objects:

A stair roller. This metal device attaches to a single step and features a rolling bar in which heavy objects can glide over,allowing you to quickly slide heavy items down the stairs. Stair rollers are used most often for IMG_8260moving pianos.

Moving blankets or pads. With a moving blanket, you barely have to lift the heavy object. Slide the blanket underneath your furniture or appliance and pull. Use the moving blankets to cushion your products in the moving truck afterward.

Furniture sliders. These tools have a plastic base and foam pad that conform to the shape of your furniture. They work like moving blankets; you put one slider under each leg and push the item across your floor.

A dolly. Dollies come in two types: one that stands upright with two wheels and one with a flat base supported by four wheels. Either type can help you move multiple items at a time.

Tips for Heavy Lifting

After you have a plan 7- heavy boxand all the equipment you need, all that’s left to do is to start lifting. Be kind to your body, and use the following proper lifting techniques:

  • Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart. Keep one foot slightly ahead of the other for balance.
  • Don’t bend your back; instead bend with your hips and knees. Keep your shoulders back, your back straight, and your head up.
  • Straighten your hips and knees to lift the object.
  • Hold the load close to your waist, around your belly button. This method works better than just gripping the object with your hands. Never lift an item above shoulder level.
  • Don’t twist or lean when lifting an object. Move your feet to turn.
  • Squat once more with your hips and knees to set down your load, then position your load after you have put it down.

By following this method or by hiring a professional mover, you won’t put as much stress on your back and spine, and you can avoid injury.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Packing

Once you have hired a moving service, you will have to decide whether to purchase additional services, and one of those services is packing. Packing is a tedious task that can be done for you, or you can do it yourself. Regardless of what you choose, here is the compiled a list of frequently asked questions when it comes to packing.

What packing services does Bekins offer?

Bekins offers a variety of packing services:

  •  Full-service packing, crating and unpacking
  •  Packing only difficult and/or fragile items
  •  Special packing for sensitive home electronics
  • Advice and quality packing materials

Of course, you can pack you own belonging and Bekins agent can offer suggestions and a full line of packing materials at competitive rates.

All Bekins movers are trained to handle your belongings with the utmost care and attention. To obtain packing materials including boxes, your local Bekins agent can provide these at competitive rates.

Can I leave the items in my dresser drawers?
Yes, you can leave clothing in your dresser drawers if your shipment will not need storage. If you will need storage at one of Bekins’ agencies, we recommend that all items in your dresser drawers be packed. We also recommend that all non-clothing items be packed, regardless of your storage needs.

Will the mover load the boxes that I packed?
Yes, the driver will load the boxes that you packed as long as the driver deems them safe for transport. Please note, the liability coverage for boxes that you pack yourself is not the same as the liability coverage available to you for carrier-packed boxes.

Can I pack and move my plants?
Typically, it is not advisable to move your plants. Most professional movers will only accept plants if the shipment is not going more than 150 miles and/or delivery will be within 24 hours. In addition, if you are moving across state lines, check with federal and state regulations for quarantines or other restrictions. Several states even require that plants be inspected and declared “pest free.”

What items cannot be packed?
Bekins wants your belongings to arrive at your new home safe and sound.

That means not moving certain items. Aerosol cans and hazardous materials are unsafe for transportation on a moving van. In addition, perishable items and those of personal importance are recommended for your individual transport. Read our comprehensive list of What Not to Pack.

How should I move my jewelry aDSCF3144nd other valuable items?
Bekins recommends you do not pack or ship your fine jewelry, precious metals, important papers (titles, tax forms, bank books, deeds, etc.), medical and dental records, prescriptions, coins, currency, stock certificates, notes or bonds. These items should be carried with you during your move.

How should I prepare my appliances?
All major appliances (washer, dryer, refrigerator, freezer, stoves, etc.) should be properly disconnected before the mover’s arrival. An authorized service firm can disconnect and prepare each appliance for transport. All refrigerators and freezers should be defrosted, cleaned and dried before the movers arrive. For more information, visit our how to move appliances page.

Will Bekins move my automobile?
Yes, Bekins has the capability to transport your automobile. There are several options for this service, including in-van service or use of a third-party carrier. If you elect to use in-van service, your automobile will be transported on a Bekins moving truck with your household goods. You can also elect to use a third-party carrier to transport your vehicle. Whichever option you choose, your local Bekins agent can arrange this service for you.

How will my mirrors and pictures be protected and packed?
Your local Bekins agent can pack all of your mirrors and pictures using specially designed cartons and wrapping materials to provide maximum protection for your goods.

What type of protection options do my belongings have during transport?
Bekins offers different levels of valuation options for your belongings. These options are not insurance, but provide for protection of your goods during shipping. Learn more about Bekins Valuation options.

More packing resources:

Bekins Packing Guide

Bekins Moving Checklist

Bekins Printable Labels

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Frequently Asked Questions when Preparing to Hire a Moving Company

Relocating your household goods is an extensive and complicated process, which can raise a lot of questions. We have compiled a list of frequently asked questions when choosing a moving service.

What is an interstate move?
Interstate moving is defined as those moves that cross state lines to get from their origin to their destination.

What is an agent?
An agent is a local moving company that books long distance moves through its van line. An agent usually performs local moves, intrastate moves, packing, storage and perhaps other services. Bekins Van Lines offers a network of 370 agents all over the United States.

What is the difference between a moving broker and a moving carrier?
Moving brokers are often described as a middle person between the customer and the moving company. A moving broker does not have the operational and logistic capabilities that moving companies have. Moving brokers are sales teams that book your move and sell it to an actual moving company. The broker provides a customer the opportunity to have access to many competitive moving quotes, however, despite there being reputable brokers, there are also rogue brokers who have left customers in bad situations.

A moving carrier, such as Bekins Van Lines, has operational and logistical capabilities, such as truck fleets and warehouses. We employ highly trained moving professionals and are licensed, insured, accredited by major business, transportation and regulatory organizations. Moving carriers are also responsible for lost or damaged goods and work very hard to prevent mistakes.

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When is the best time to move?
Whenever is the right time for you. However, the months of May-September have the highest demand in the moving industry. During the non-peak season September 15-May 1, Bekins has a special offer for customers moving during those months.

When should I begin researching and contacting companies about upcoming moves?
We suggest to start researching moving companies around eight weeks before you move. Many moving companies offer online options to receive a ballpark estimate, which would give you an idea if a moving company is in your price range. Once your narrow your search down to three companies, then request an in home estimate for the most accurate price. Then choose the right moving company from there about four weeks before your scheduled move.

What is an in-home estimate?
A local Bekins agent will come to your home and complete a visual survey of your belongings that you are planning on moving. The estimate is based on a wide variety of factors, the two main ones being shipment weight and distance to destination. In addition, the agent will evaluate the need for professional services, such as pack and unpacking, appliance preparation and custom crating and storage. Make sure all the items that you are planning on moving are in plain view, including items from the attic, garage and basement. If there are any household items are not making the move, make sure to point those out as well.

Along with providing a written estimate, your local Bekins agents will be able to explain the different types of estimates, your rights and responsibilities and valuation options.

What is a non-binding estimate?
A non-binding estimate is the carrier’s approximation of the cost, based on the estimated weight of the shipment and the accessorial services requested. The final cost will be based upon the actual weight of your shipment, the services provided and the tariff provisions in effect. To verify the weight of your shipment, the driver will weigh his trailer prior to loading your shipment and then reweigh his trailer once your shipment has been loaded.

DSCF0239What is an Order for Service?
An Order for Service is a signed written agreement made in advance with the moving company, authorizing the company to move your goods.

What is a Bill of Lading?
A Bill of Lading is the written contract between you and the mover which lists the terms of the agreement (services, dates and actual charges, etc.). The Bill of Lading also serves as your receipt for your belongings.

What is an inventory?
The inventory is the form that lists all of the items that you are moving and their condition. Both you and the driver will sign the inventory after the shipment is loaded and unloaded. The inventory is also used to document any change in the condition of your items or any missing items at delivery.

What are my rights and responsibilities when I move?
All moving companies are required by federal law to provide each customer a copy of Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move. Your primary responsibility as outlined by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is to select a reputable household goods carrier, ensure that you understand the terms and conditions of the contract, and understand and pursue the remedies that are available to you in case problems arise. You should talk to your mover if you have further questions. The moving company will also furnish you with additional written information describing its procedure for handling your questions and complaints, and a telephone number you can call to obtain additional information about your move.

What is Valuation?
Bekins goal is to delivery your household goods to your home in a safe and timely manner. Although Bekins takes every measure to assure that your items arrive at your new home without incident, sometimes damage occurs. To be sure that your goods are protected, we offer various levels of transit protection from full value protection to basic liability. Learn more about your valuation options and the different levels of transit protection.

What are the methods of payment Bekins accepts for my move?
Tariff provisions require the move is to be paid in full before the shipment is being unloaded at the destination. You can pay for the move at the time of delivery with cash, money order, traveler’s check, certified check or cashier’s check. With prior credit approval, there is an option to charge the cost of your move to a personal credit. Bekins accepts major credit cards: MasterCard, Visa, Discover and American Express.

What questions do you have about your upcoming move? Ask below and we will answer!