The secret to a straightforward relocation is careful planning. Planning can greatly reduce the levels of stress and anxiety associated with moving house. Outlined are the things to keep in mind before, during, and after your move to help it go a little smoother along the way.
Booking your removal...
When looking for a removal company it's often tempting just to use the first one you find, however, the more you shop around the more you will find that quotes from different removal companies will differ greatly. It is precisely for this reason you should make sure you have obtained the best possible price for your removal.
Before booking, read your quotation and service specification carefully, to satisfy yourself that the services you want are included. Always telephone first to confirm the date is available, before sending any deposit.
Your quotation will advise you of the exact amount. If your move is being paid for by a third party, an official order or letter from the organization, will be required. Until this is received, your booking will be treated as provisional. Note - company letters must not be signed by a beneficiary and must clearly commit the company to pay all charges including postponement charges.
Fridays are traditionally busy days and if you can avoid moving on a Friday you stand a better chance obtaining the date you need to move. Most removals companies are prepared to work on a Saturday at no extra charge. The end of the month is again, a very busy period, as are school holidays and the period immediately before Christmas. If you cannot avoid moving on one of these peak times, make sure that you give the company plenty of notice. Sundays and bank holidays will attract an extra charge.
Make sure that the company you are dealing with are fully insured for any damage which may arise to your property or possessions. Usually the removals company you are dealing with will have an excess amount. You should check the insurance excess amount that you may have to pay before an insurance payout take place if any of your goods get damaged before or during transportation.
Packing & Preparing...
You should have confirmed your actual moving date by now and can thus finalize your removal booking. Now is the time to start packing up china and small items if you have decided to do so yourself. Make sure that you have enough boxes and packing materials any reputable removals company will be able to supply you with these. It is very easy to under estimate the number of bits and pieces that come out of cupboards and drawers. Do a little each day starting with the leased used items.
Preparing other items:
Books and records these are deceptively heavy, half sized cartons may be available for these. As an alternative, half fill the larger cartons and put lighter things on top. Pack books spine down.
Chest of drawers can be left filled with linen and clothes, but ensure that heavy, fragile and valuable items are emptied. Drawers in divan beds should be emptied.
Lampshades should be removed and packed separately. You can leave normal light bulbs in your property for the new occupants if you wish, but it's probably worth talking long life/low energy bulbs with you.
Fridges and Freezers should be emptied and defrosted. Contents may be left in freezers provided that they are bagged and the journey is short.
Cookers should be cleaned thoroughly, as grease can lead to a nasty accident. Pack any loose fittings and shelves separately, for microwaves remember to remove the glass turntable also.
Washing machines should be disconnected the contents emptied. Remember to fit the transit bar if you still have it. Whilst it is possible to move a washing machine without this bar in place, and have had no problems, it should be noted that the fitting of this bar is usually part of the manufacturer's warranty.
Sheds and greenhouses should be dismantled in advance. Wrap the glass individually and tape into a manageable bundle.
Removals companies will not carry fuel canisters or calor gas bottles, whether empty or full as they are a safety hazard.
Garden tools should be cleaned as it will be going in the same van as your furniture. Most companies will normally load these last to keep them as far away from the household items as possible.
Swings and slides will have to be dismantled in advance. Squirt penetrating oil onto the nuts and bolts a few days before you intend dismantling them.
When packing plants pack 5 or 6 smaller plants into a carton, with some packing material in between them to stop them falling over, seal the box with the flaps up to give extra protection. Leave larger plants for the removal company to deal with.
Pets are your responsibility and should be kept out of the way during a household removal. Dogs, for example, may think that the removal men are stealing your furniture! Fish tanks should be drained to the gravel and the fish taken in your car in sealable bucket, half filled with water. Consult your local stockist for exotic species.
Children are always excited by the idea of moving, and you may want them to be present, but make sure that they are well supervised, and stay off the van.
Any items to remain in your old house should be clearly marked with stickers. This is particularly important where storage is involved.
Dismantling of wardrobes should only be carried out where absolutely necessary. The old style wardrobes divide in the middle, so all the pieces that cross the joint will have to be removed. Modern wardrobes dismantle into panels, great care must be taken with these sections as chipboard is very easily damaged. Start by removing the back, then if possible lay the wardrobe on its back. Tape any loose fittings to the relevant sections.
Wardrobe cartons should be provided on the day for the hanging contents of your wardrobes. Make sure all the hangers are the same way round, as this makes transferring them into the cartons easier. All other small effects in the wardrobes should be placed into boxes.
Your removal day...
Before your removal can commence, the van must be placed as near as possible to your property. If you live in a narrow, restricted or busy street, it is wise to contact the local Police to place no waiting cones for you. If your house is at the end of a long drive, with over hanging branches, consider a bit of pruning. Removal vans are tall - up to 13ft6" high - and very expensive to replace. Think about access at the other end. Note - if we have quoted for delivery to an address with good access, and the van cannot get close to the property, most removals companies reserve the right to make an additional charge.
Most removal crews are friendly and helpful people who are trained porters with considerable experience. They will be delighted have a chat with you, but you will not need to stand over them to ensure they are careful. They will not mind if you want to help out with the smaller items, but remember that they are ultimately responsible for the safe delivery of your possessions. Moving furniture is heavy work requiring continuous mental and physical effort, so the odd tea-break goes down well and gives the crew a chance to meet you.
The normal order of loading is: upholstered items first, then the bedroom furniture and other large items, lounge and kitchen effects, boxes, carpets, and finally kitchen equipment and garden things.
Before the crew leaves, make sure that everything going to your new house has been loaded. Check fitted wardrobes Surrey, lofts, airing cupboards, kitchen cupboards, garages and sheds. It is ultimately your responsibility to ensure that everything is taken. Turn off water, gas and electric at mains. In winter, drain the water tanks if the property is likely to be empty for some time. Finally, lock up securely when you leave. Deliver any keys to the estate agents.
For overnight delivery advise the foreman roughly as to what time you will be at your new property. An overnight contact number, as well as directions or a rough map of how to find the new property will be useful.
Delivering your goods...
It is important that someone is on hand when the van arrives so that the crew can be told where to put each item, as it is unloaded. Additionally, they will need someone to sign to confirm delivery. Your furniture will be placed where you want it, providing that it is reasonably possible to do so.
This is not normally included unless otherwise specified in our quotation. If you want to get as many boxes emptied as possible on the day, advise the crew, as the van is being loaded so that the boxes can be last on, and first off. Arrange to have a few friends or relatives on hand, as an "unpacking squad".
Whilst many companies reserve the right to ask for prior payment, you will be presented with the bill on completion of the work. Unless you have arranged otherwise, you can generally pay the foreman in cash, bankers draft or building society cheque. Personal cheques are generally not accepted unless 7 days in advance of the move. You will be required to sign a receipt for your goods, to confirm that you have read the contract conditions and agree that the bill has been calculated.
Things to consider after the move...
Find out where the main shops in your area are. You will need to know where the local supermarket is and if you are not staying in a serviced apartment, you might also have to buy new furniture. Speak to your neighbours for suggestions if you are renting private property or to your concierge if you are staying in a serviced apartment.
Find out where the local hospitals and petrol stations are along with your nearest police and fire stations.
Make sure that your insurance policies cover you for where you have moved to. Speak to your current providers for information and advice.
If you have moved to a new area it is a good idea to register with a doctor and dentist. Bear in mind that you may need your old medical files and details of your medical history. If you are staying in a serviced apartment your concierge should be able to point you in the right direction.
One of the main reasons that relocating is stressful is that you do not have familiar things around you. If you have a favorite vase or ornament, display it prominently to help you to feel at home.
And good luck...