When renting a moving truck
for your relocation, there a variety of
factors to think about. What size truck will you need? How long will you need
it? Do you need insurance? Read on for more information about what you should
consider when renting a truck.
The size of your home
You will have to consider the size of your
home and the volume of your furniture and belongings to determine the truck you
require. You want to ensure that the rental truck has sufficient space to avoid
making multiple trips to your new home. Truck rental agencies suggest choosing a
truck size that is about 10 percent larger than what you expect you'll
The following are the suggested truck sizes for a variety of homes:
- 26': 4+ more bedrooms
- 24': 3-4 bedrooms
- 17': 2-3 bedrooms
- 14': 1-2 bedrooms
- 10': studio or small one-bedroom apartment
Keep in mind how
highly-furnished your home is--if you have a large three-bedroom with many rooms
of furniture and other items, you would opt for the 24-foot truck rather than
The distance of the move
When relocating via rental truck,
distance is a major factor to consider. The cost of your truck rental will be
mostly dependant on the mileage, fuel, and the time it is in your possession.
- Mileage: How far are you traveling? When reserving your truck, make
sure you are aware of how much mileage is included in your price (if any), and
how much you'll pay for each additional mile. When shopping for truck quotes,
this will make it easy to compare prices from a variety of companies.
- Fuel costs: After you have determined the distance you are traveling,
you can calculate the amount you expect to pay for fuel so you have sufficient
funds available. Most rental truck agencies will supply the truck with a certain
amount of fuel in the tank and require it is returned at the same level.
Research diesel fuel prices in the states you will be traveling for a more
accurate estimate of the costs you will incur.
- Time: How long will it take you to reach your destination? When you
reserve your truck, you will have to provide a drop-off date. Consider rest
stops and hotel stays when determining the length of your trip.
When you rent a truck, you will have to choose
a drop-off location to return the vehicle after your move is complete. If you
are moving locally, you can often return the truck at the same location you
picked it up. This is usually the less expensive option. However, if you are
moving to a distant city or cross-country, you will have to return the truck at
a different location. This is known as a "one-way move" and often carries extra
fees. Discuss these details with the rental agency before making your
reservation to choose a drop-off that is most convenient for you.
The time you are moving
The summer--specifically May to
September--is known as peak moving season. During this period, truck rental
reservations will fill up quickly. If you will be moving during the summer, be
sure to book your rental truck several months in advance.
The end of the
month is also a popular time to move. If you plan your move for off-season or
mid-month, you may get a better price.
The agency's background
Just like moving companies, truck rental
agencies are sometimes accused of fraudulent behavior and unsatisfactory
customer service. Before automatically choosing the company offering you the
lowest quote, conduct a thorough background check. Check the company's profile
on the Better Business Bureau, and scour RipoffReport.com
for outstanding complaints against the company.
Common complaints against
rental truck agencies include estimate switches, faulty trucks, failing to hold
reservations, adding on hidden fees, and claiming false damage when the vehicle
Loading the truck
While a do-it-yourself move will save you money, it
requires much more time and effort than hiring full-service movers. Loading a moving truck
with a household's worth of boxes and
furniture is exhausting and backbreaking work. Be sure to enlist the aid of a few strong friends
to lift and carry your
furniture and appliances out of your home and load them onto the back of the
Always follow the proper procedures for handling heavy items
, and use the appropriate tools to make
the process easier. You can also hire moving labor
to simply help you load the truck. While this will cost a little
extra, it is usually still more affordable than hiring full-service movers to
both load and drive.
There are several essential moving tools
you will need to load your belongings
into the moving truck. You can usually rent these from your truck rental agency.
When you are reserving the truck, inquire about what types of hand trucks,
dollies, straps and furniture blankets they can provide and the costs. You may
have to reserve the items at the same time as the truck to ensure they are
available for your move.
Depending on your auto or home insurance
policy, you may or may not be covered for damage in an accident. Be sure to find
out this out in advance, so you can inquire about purchasing coverage from your
rental company. The agency will provide you with insurance on the vehicle for a
small fee per day.
The company may also offer you coverage for damage to
your shipment. Ask about your options and the cost of each plan, then make the
optimal choice for the distance of your move and the value of your goods. Check
with your homeowner's insurance for possible coverage of your goods before
purchasing a policy from the rental agency--some policies offer protection for
your belongings during a move.
Some questions to ask your rental truck
agency about insurance options:
- What is the deductible?
- Is there collision protection if I'm not at fault?
- Am I covered in all states on my route?
- Are my goods protected in case of damage?
- Are my goods protected in case of theft?
Transporting your vehicle
If you are driving the moving truck
long distance, you will have to plan
a way to transport your personal vehicle. If you are moving alone, you could
consider asking a willing relative or friend to drive your car to your new home.
If not feasible, you may have to enlist the services of an auto transport
to ship your vehicle.
Depending on the volume of your
belongings and the type of vehicle you have, you could also opt to hitch a
moving trailer to the back of your vehicle.
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