Let’s get one thing straight: moving across country often proves to be the toughest type of residential moving, challenged only by complicated cases of international relocation.
To move to a new residence that is located hundreds or thousands of miles away is definitely not something you can joke about – the mere thought that so many things could go wrong during that intensely transitional period is enough to send you into a state of panic.
This is exactly why we’ve created this seriously important moving across country checklist so that you can take your long distance move seriously.
What would you be willing to give to have a fairly simple, straightforward, and affordable cross country move? 7 minutes of your time would be enough.
Read the next 15 tips for moving across country in order to better understand the challenges you’ll soon be facing with your decision to move to another part of the country.
Stage One: Important tips for moving across country
Getting ready to move across country requires impeccable organization on your part – know what things to do before you move across the country in order to take full advantage of the weeks, days and hours you have until your moving date and keep the stress level to its minimum while keeping the efficiency as high as possible.
#1. Moving checklist
Regardless of the move distance between the two homes (neighboring state or coast to coast), the one thing that will remain unchanged is the myriad of tasks that are waiting for you and you alone. The number of those jobs can be so overwhelming that you may quickly find yourself confused about where to begin. Moreover, the exact order of completing those pre-move chores is very important for keeping you in complete control of the remaining time.
Don’t waste time you can’t afford to lose – set up a day-by-day/week-by-week moving checklist for yourself and populate with it personalized and prioritized move-related jobs.
#2. Cross country movers
Deciding to move across country is a guarantee that you won’t lose valuable time resolving the ever-present dilemma: self-moving or professional movers? Because of the jaw-dropping distances of moving coast to coast, for example: New York, NY – Los Angeles, CA (2800 miles), Miami, FL – Seattle, WA (3300 miles), the only way you can have a normal household move without problems of any sort is to hire one of the top-rated cross country movers out there.
There’s a good reason why self-moving is only suited for local moves – factor in the forgotten costs of moving by yourself and things will suddenly become clearer than ever.
#3. Compare movers
It won’t be long before you realize that moving across country by yourself is a bad idea due to the great distance and the increased costs and risks that the extra mileage will introduce. Faced with a fairly complicated long distance move, your best option is to contact an experienced cross country moving company and hire their quality services. Okay, a professional moving company – check. But which one?
The thing is that you won’t really know which long distance mover is right for you until you do a comparison analysis of a few relocation service providers in your area. Basically, it comes down to making an informed decision after exploring your available options as far as price and additional services go.
#4. Price calculation
It’s hardly a surprising statement that the cost to move across country is almost always higher than the cost of moving locally. The real question is just how much higher, right?
Having your moving price calculated long before Moving day is something you just must do as it will introduce more clarity into your family budget and will hopefully ease your mind too.
Ask a few reputable cross country moving companies for price estimation. Do not settle for online or phone estimates because they can never be as accurate as you need them to be. Instead, request in-home consultations from moving company experts for much more realistic prices in the quotes.
#5. Home inventory
Do you know exactly what items you’ll be taking with you to your new place? The most cost effective way to move across country is to simply leave all household items behind and literally take just a handful of valuable personal belongings. Tempting, right? Not really because such long distance moving scenario sounds more than science fiction than reality.
Complete a home inventory so that you do know what items you’re really moving to the new house or apartment. As you’re going from room to room with a trusted notepad or an electronic gadget in your hands, remember to decide the fate of each possession of yours – Keep, Sell, Gift, Donate, or Recycle?
#6. Moving furniture across country
Most furniture pieces are big and heavy, and therefore you should focus on resolving the dilemma of whether it’s better to pay to have your furniture moved to another home or not. In some cases purchasing new pieces of furniture upon arrival proves to be more cost-effective than paying professionals to pack, load, transport, and unpack the pieces that you own right now.
It’s a tough call, no doubt, but unless you have priceless antique furniture that you can’t even think about leaving behind, doing the math often favors moving as few furniture pieces as you possibly can. What’s the cheapest way to move furniture cross country? Find it here.
#7. Moving across country with children
No matter the reasons to move across country, expect much more worries and difficulties when you’re embarking on that moving journey with kids. The added responsibilities will only make the tough relocation even harder for you so it’s important to think ahead and get ready for the challenges as they come one after the other.
Consult our Moving with Kids Guide to keep the stress levels from escalating. In it, you will find detailed information about what to expect from and how to prepare your baby, toddler, pre-schooler, school-age kid, or teenager to have a smooth transition not only between the two homes but between the two worlds as well.
#8. Moving across country with pets
Moving with pets across the country will keep your hands rather full as well. Non-surprisingly, pets have their own needs, so you are advised to find time to tend to those special needs in order to keep your animal friend safe and calm before, during and after a house move of such magnitude. Whether you’re moving with a loyal dog, a graceful cat, or an exotic pet, you can be sure that it won’t be long before they sense that something big is about to happen soon.
Remember that even the best cross country movers are not allowed to transport pets, so you’re in charge of finding the best way to transport your pet to another state. Make sure that they are healthy before the trip (a pre-move visit to the vet is a must) and that their routine remains as unchanged as possible under the circumstances.
#9. Driving or flying?
Your long distance mover will be charged with the task of protecting and transporting your possession from Point A to Point B, but what about you and the people you are moving with? How do you plan to reach the new address?
Moving across country in your car is the most common way to reach the destination of a long distance move. And if that’s your plan too, then remember to have your transportation vehicle serviced prior to Moving day so that the moving trip goes as smoothly as silk. Also, plan your car journey well in advance to avoid possibly bad last-minute decisions.
On the other hand, if you intend to fly to your new home, then you should definitely think about how to move your car across country. Contact a few top-rated auto transporting companies and get price quotes so that you can select the best offer in terms of pricing and conditions.
Stage Two: Serious packing tips for moving across country
It comes as a little surprise that everybody’s looking for the cheapest way to move across country. Why? Moving to another home is an expensive affair, especially when that new residence is located far away and the professional services of a long distance mover have been hired.
The truth is that you will need to secure the services of not just a random moving company, but rather one of the best long distance movers on the market as of today so that you can have the peace of mind that your prized possessions are being cared for throughout the entire household move. The definition “the best” when it comes to relocation professionals often means a reasonable balance between high-quality service and affordability.
How much does it cost to move across country? Believe it or not, the American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA) claims that the average cost to move across country (an interstate move) is roughly $4,300-6000 for a distance of 1,225 miles and a shipment weight of 7,400 lbs.
Even though that is only an average moving cost and the price you pay will most likely differ substantially (request moving estimates to know for sure), it does give you a strong incentive to always take advantage of proven cost-saving strategies when moving across country on a budget – see below for some real-life moving tips that will actually let you save hard-earned money.
Make sure you know this: What is the average moving cost?
#10. Let’s move for less
More often than not, the best way to move across country is to hire the services of an affordable cross country mover and then do most of the packing job by yourself. This tactic will let you have the best from both worlds – you’re still getting professional assistance for the special items that only specialists know how to pack and transport safely – pianos, pool tables, hot tubs, gun safes, antique furniture, big and heavy furniture pieces, heavy electric appliances, special-purpose equipment, etc., but at the same time you’re saving loads of money from packing on your own the more ordinary stuff in your home.
#11. Free moving boxes
While you’re looking for inexpensive ways to move across country, one thing that you shouldn’t underestimate is the cost of the required packing materials. While you probably won’t find yourself too worried about the price of Bubble wrap, packing paper, and packing tape, just think of the overwhelming number of cardboard boxes you’ll need to move your stuff across the country!
Packing boxes make up the biggest packing expense so find a way to lower that cost and you’ll have a cost-saving trick that’ll actually work. Access the full checklist with the places where you can get free moving boxes in good or even excellent condition.
#12 Purge your home of anything unwanted
When looking for cheap ways to move across country, know that each and every small decision to move an item that you won’t really need after the relocation will lead to a classic instance of losing money – the very thing you’re trying to stay away from.
The more things you plan to take with you, the heavier the total weight of your shipment will become. And, as you can easily deduct, that will increase the amount on the estimates you get from professional cross country moving companies.
Prepare to pack only the things that will be useful to you in the near future and get rid of the rest: organize a moving sale to pocket much-needed cash, gift still usable items to friends, donate to charity, or consider recycling the stuff that stopped being practical long time ago.
#13 Pack your furniture like a pro
It’s best to leave large, heavy and/or antique furniture to be handled by professional furniture movers. Still, you can safely pack up some of the smaller and lighter furniture pieces you own – a pro-active packing action that will let you save a good deal of money in the end.
Do this in two major stages: prepare your furniture pieces to be moved across the country by emptying, cleaning, and then disassembling them as far as they will go. Then, follow these furniture packing tips to secure and protect your prized possessions unless you find out that that job is too much for you to handle.
#14 Pack the right way
When getting ready to move across the country, one of the worst things that can happen is to run out of time before you happen to complete the packing project. Your options will be severely limited if you still have piles of unpacked boxes when your movers start knocking at the door on Moving day. To prevent that stress-inducing scenario from happening, make sure you follow this excellent packing timeline.
Starting the packing process early is key – as soon as your cross country move is confirmed, get down to sorting out and packing your belongings with a clear plan of action in your head. Start with the storage areas in your home as they are the hardest ones to prepare for shipping.
#15 Pack with safety in mind
Unless you hire professional packers /How much does it cost to hire packers?/ to wrap up your stuff, packing safety is paramount when moving across the country because your items will be on the road much longer compared to a local move. A few simple safety rules are all you need to remember to keep things running smoothly and damage-free.
- Always tape the bottom and sides of each cardboard box before starting to fill it in regardless of its condition.
- Always place a few pieces of bubble wrap or several wads of paper (newspaper is also fine) on the bottom of the box before packing fragile items.
- Don’t skimp on bubble wrap and soft packing paper when packing breakables.
- Always fill in any spaces inside the box once it’s been packed so that no shifting is possible during transport.
- Write FRAGILE, THIS SIDE UP, and HANDLE WITH CARE on the boxes that contain easily breakable items.
Contact Worldwide Moving Systems for a free estimate! We will help you MOVE!
Moving can be a pain so why not let the pros handle it! We are certified ProMovers of the American Moving and Storage Association. We will be happy to come out to your home and to survey the property to give you the best estimate! Also,we can do a virtual survey and connect with you via video chat to survey your property. We want you make your move stress-free so give us a call today or visit our website and fill out our quick contact form for us to contact you and arrange a survey for your free estimate!
We look forward to hearing from you! 301-870-5300