While relocating can be an exciting process, getting things in order can also be exhausting, complicated and a constant source of stress. Moving doesn't have to be a tedious process; planning ahead and keeping to a reliable move schedule will ease the stress and confusion of relocation.
When planning to move, scheduling a company should be one of the top priorities of the planning process. Because moving is a multifaceted process, it's best to plan your move as soon as possible. Knowing when you are going to move is crucial to following a reliable move calendar and making a detailed moving checklist.
It's a good idea to book your movers as soon as possible, but the general rule of thumb is four to eight weeks in advance.
Book your move as soon as you can
Planning your relocation process far in advance saves you from troublesome surprises and costly mistakes. Deciding on a convenient moving date is the first step in scheduling your move.
The biggest advantage to booking early is that you have a multitude of moving companies to choose from. You have time to gather estimates from various moving companies in order to determine which option is right for you.
There are various advantages to scheduling your move in advance:
- Lower cost: When you schedule a move in advance, your rates are usually locked in from the start. This saves you money overall, because paying for a moving company makes up for the majority of your moving budget.
- Better organization: Locking in your desired moving day allows you to concentrate on other aspects of your move such as packing, scheduling transportation to your new home, getting rid of unwanted goods and other activities on your moving timeline.
- Preferred choice of movers: Booking in advance allows you to choose from top movers in your area and ensures that proper equipment is available for specialty items.
There are several factors in determining how far in advance you should schedule your move. These factors are the most important elements to consider when booking your move. Failure to do so can lead to your move costing more than expected or having to go with movers that can't fully accommodate your moving needs.
Book earlier if moving from May through Labor Day
How far in advance you should schedule movers depends on the season. For professional movers, winter months are typically the slow season. It is recommended to book two to four weeks ahead of your desired moving date during this season.
During the busy season, from May to September, it is common for moving companies to be booked up. Summer months are the busiest, because the weather is good and children are out of school. It is recommended to book two months before your move date during this season.
The longer the distance, the earlier you should book
The distance of the move will also impact how early you should book your move. For longer distance moves that require further organization, advance notice is necessary.
- Local moves take less planning and therefore usually only require a four week notice
- For cross-country moves, secure a company eight weeks in advance
- For reliable and affordable international moves, book three to four months in advance
Large and complex moves require advance notice
Move size and complexity are also things to consider when booking a move. When a moving company gives an in-house estimate, the amount of equipment and manpower is taken into account. For larger sized moves, it is better to book further in advance to ensure that the moving company will be able to accommodate the size of the move.
If you are moving specialty items, such as pianos, antiques and artwork, it is important to give advance notice so that the moving company can guarantee they have the essential equipment available on the day of the move.
Other factors that complicate the moving process include:
- Long carries
- Stair carries
These elements also need to be accounted for when factoring the difficulty of your move.
Avoid booking a last minute move
If you are ever faced with a last minute move, the first step in your plan should be to start calling moving companies as soon as possible. You should never intentionally book your move last minute. You will have to settle for subpar movers or might even fall victim to a moving scam.
But in the case of an emergency relocation, act as soon as possible. Your options decrease significantly the closer it gets to your deadline. And depending on the situation, it might be necessary to self-move.
When booking an emergency move, it's still important to do a background check by verifying the USDOT number and looking over their complaint history.