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Sweet winter home

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!

job-interview-session

An Employee’s Guide to Corporate Relocation

So you’ve been offered your dream job. Congratulations! However, this dream job has one big caveat-it’s located far away from where you currently live. Deciding to make the move may seem like a hard decision, but actually making the move could be even more difficult.

Don’t get overwhelmed by the idea of a difficult move. Instead, use these tips to take advantage of your job opportunity-no matter where it takes you.

1. Find out if your employer offers a relocation package

Before the economic downturn, many firms offered generous relocation packages to their employees to acquire the best talent. Now, fewer companies offer financial compensation for their employees to move. But it never hurts to ask.

And if you take time to negotiate, your company may compensate you for at least a few of your expenses.

Relocation packages could cover:

  • Trips to find a new home in the new location
  • Professional moving services
  • Moving costs for specialty items
  • Travel costs for you and family members
  • Rent of temporary housing for a short period of time
  • Loss-on-sale protection (if you lose money selling your current home)
  • Closing costs
  • Relocation bonus

You should also ask your new employer if you should take advantage of preferred providers. The company may work closely with certain real estate agents or moving companies, and they may only reimburse you for moving costs if you use those providers.

business handshake2. Ask how you will be compensated for relocating

Companies have different types of relocation packages: lump sum, reimbursement, direct bill to employer, and third-party relocation packages. Find out which method your company uses before you start spending money on moving.

Lump sum: Your company will give you a one-time payment that you and your employer previously agreed upon. There are no restrictions on how you spend the money, but you won’t get any more.

Reimbursement: Your company determines an amount that they will reimburse you for moving-related expenses. You typically need to show receipts to receive the reimbursement.

Direct bill to employer: Your company pays all or some of your moving bills directly through the moving company. Generous employers will combine this payment type with lump sum payments or reimbursements.

Third-party relocation: Your company uses a relocation company to coordinate and manage your move in its entirety. You may be required to pay the relocation company yourself, or the company may contribute with one of the payment plans above.

3. Figure out how much money you’ll spend out of pocket

Your company will likely not cover every single cost of your move. You’ll probably have to pay for the travel expenses of you and your family, your food, any stays in hotels, and home selling costs.

Here are some costs you should think about (note that some are also listed in possible relocation package bonuses):

House hunting trips: You should research your new location thoroughly. Many people who relocate take at least one trip to the new city to search for a new home. Do your research before you arrive. You should look at school systems, crime rates, cost of living, home values, and any other information you think is valuable. Then when you get there, schedule walk-throughs of several potential homes so you can decide which one suits you.

Remember, the expense of traveling to search for a new home may fall on your shoulders, so be economical with your time. If you fly, take rental car expenses into account.

skd273191sdcLease cancellation or closing costs: If you’re currently renting, you will typically have to pay a cancellation fee to get out of your lease. The cost could range anywhere from one month to three months’ rent.

If you sell your home, you may have to spend as much as 10% of the price of your home to get it sold. Take into account real estate agent costs, listing costs, and closing costs. You may also have to accept the possibility of selling your home at a loss.

Miscellaneous expenses: Remember to account for the little things. You may have to store your belongings in temporary storage while you wait to move into your home. You have to prepare your home for the move. You have to get the new home ready to move into. You’ll have to pay security deposits for utilities in your new home.

4. Find temporary or rental housing

If you’re selling your home, avoid paying two mortgages at once. Unless your current home sells right away, live in a rental unit for a portion of your time in your new location. Often, people who relocate for work live in temporary housing for 1 to 3 months. 3 months is more typical if you owned your previous home.

Living in temporary housing gives you a chance to live in your new environment before you make a final purchase of a home. You don’t risk as much of a monetary investment. If you hate your rental housing, it’s not a big problem, because you can easily move.

5. Make the move

Now that you know where you’re going and who’s paying for your move, you’re ready to move you and your family to your new location. Visit our Corporate Relocation Services page for more information.