Monday, December 29, 2014

How To Do A Move Out Clean In 20 Steps:

My absolute least favorite part of moving out is the move out clean. It seems so pointless. At the end of a brutal day or three of backbreaking cleaning, you end up with a spotless home that you have to leave behind. Why couldn't it have looked like that when you lived there?
Of course, the reason it didn't look like that when you lived there is because you lived there. People are messy. Just maintaining a decent amount of cleanliness is hard enough. Who has time to spit-polish the floors and appliances?
Unfortunately, if you rent, that’s what the landlord expects. If you own, the new owners didn't charge you a security deposit, but it is courteous to leave them a clean home, unless they are renovating.
I promised myself that the next time I move out, I will hire professionals. As with the entire moving process, you have to weigh the value of your time vs. the cost of the service. If you decide to do the cleaning yourself, here are some steps to make it easier, or at least more thorough.
1. Invite a friend. This had better be a close friend because it’s damned hard work, but it will make everything go so much quicker.
2. Once the home is completely empty, except for cleaning supplies and a source of music, vacuum thoroughly. Vacuum the walls and the blinds. Vacuum inside all drawers and cabinets. If the carpet is stained, hire a professional to clean it.
3. Remove nails and screws from the walls and putty them.
4. Clean the baseboards and clean any marks on the wall. If the marks don’t come out, you may need to paint – always use a neutral color, preferably the same color as when you moved in.
5. Clean the windows, both inside and out.
6. Wipe down wall switches, outlets and doorknobs.
7. Dust ceiling fans and wash light fixtures and replace burned out bulbs.
8. Thoroughly scrub inside all cabinets, re-line if necessary.
9. Remove soap scum from bathtub and shower and bleach the grout.
10. Clean the bathroom fixtures, floors and the mirror.
11. Vacuum the fan.
12. Thoroughly scrub inside all cabinets, re-line if necessary.
13. Scrub all appliances inside and out.
Remove all the shelves and drawers from the refrigerator and clean them thoroughly. Wipe down the inside of the refrigerator and freezer.
Run the oven cleaner, if there is an automatic one, but be sure to remove all the ash at the end of the cycle. The oven cleaning is best done before move out day, so it has time to run through the cycle and cool.
If you don’t have an automatic cleaning oven, you’ll have to buy oven cleaner. Be sure to wear a mask when you are spraying. Still, you’ll want to do this before the move out day, since it will need to sit for 24 hours and then you’ll need to thoroughly scrub it out. Remember, the broiler pan is made from the same metal as the oven, so it will withstand both the heat of a cleaning cycle and the oven cleaner in a can.
14. If the sink is not stainless, remove all stains (bleach if necessary).
15. Finish off all surfaces, including counters, chrome faucets, mirrors and sinks, with window cleaner. It will make them shine.
16. Pull out the appliances and sweep under them. Wipe down the sides and the back as they are pulled out.
17. Clean the tile and hardwood floors.
18. Run the vacuum one more time and you are done with the inside.
19. Tidy up the outside, including mowing the lawn and pulling weeds.
20. Sweep and hose down the garage, patio and driveway.
Once you’re done, take a lot of pictures in case your landlord claims you have damaged something or that the place is dirty. Oh, and be sure to empty the trash.

Monday, December 15, 2014

10 Ways to Move Your Stuff Without a Moving Truck:

Moving to a new location can get pretty expensive if you have to hire a moving truck. Depending on how much stuff you have and how far you’re going, it can be accomplished in many other ways. Before calling the movers, take a look at your situation and see if there’s a better way to accomplish this daunting task.
  1. Trailer – The first thing I would do is locate a trailer to use. You can rent one, of course, but ask around and see if someone you know has one you can borrow. If you have a lot to move, especially if it’s a long distance, you could possibly save money by purchasing a trailer. Enclosed trailers can be used for extra storage even after the move or you can sell it to someone else.
  2. Pickup – If you don’t own a pickup, you probably know someone who does. This is the most common method of moving stuff. Just make sure everything is securely fastened down before heading out on the highway.
  3. Van – If you don’t have access to a trailer or pickup, a van would be the next best thing. Depending on the size of the van, you might be somewhat limited on larger items like appliances, but for smaller furniture and the rest of your junk, it just might work.
  4. Your car – You’d be amazed how much stuff you can actually cram into an average sized car. It might take you a few trips, but for short moves without a lot of furniture, it can be done.
  5. Storage units – Portable storage units can be the way to go. They drop the unit off at your location and you can pack it yourself. This would work especially well for a situation where you have to move out before you can move into your new place.
  6. Ship it – If you don’t have any furniture or large items to move, you may want to just pack it up and ship it. Be careful to compare the cost to any of your other alternatives first.
  7. Friends – When moving time comes, you can always count on your friends to pitch in and help. By pooling their resources you might be able to get all your stuff moved without renting anything. Make sure you treat them right and throw a party when you’re done or you may find yourself friendless afterward.
  8. Anything with wheels – For short distances like just next door or down the block, start looking around for anything with wheels. Pallet jacks, two-wheel carts, wagons, and furniture dollies can all be used to move your stuff from one point to another.
  9. Carry it – If you’re just moving down the hall or across the street, a strong back may be all you need. For heavier items you may need a few strong backs. You might want to treat yourself and friends to a good massage afterward.
  10. RV – If you or someone you know has an RV this could be another option. You can load up all your stuff and hit the road. Then you have a place to stay while you get everything unpacked in your new home.
I don’t know anyone who thinks moving is fun, but you can save cash by doing it yourself. Instead of trusting your possessions to strangers who may not care about it like you do, take a look at your other options. With a little ingenuity you could be surprised at what you can accomplish with just a little help from your friends.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

6 Great Ways to Compare Moving Companies:

  • Compare movers prices

In many of our articles you can read our advice to check out several moving companies’ ratings, reviews and prices and to compare them. But what exactly does comparing mean and why would you need that? Lots of people who intend to move don’t pay enough attention to this important factor and consequently they risk hiring movers with whose work they’re not going to be happy. There are a few basic factors to have in mind when comparing moving companies and if you take them into consideration, you will significantly increase the chance of finding a reliable, professional mover for your relocation. Nobody wants scammers or irresponsible moving labor, right? Well, here’s how to avoid unpleasant situations with moving companies during your next move.

Comparing Moving Companies

Whether you are moving locally, long distance or internationally, making a moving company comparison is important for your home’s safe move. Here’s how to find out which mover can offer the best services to you.

Their presence on the internet.It may seem like an obvious thing, but to many people it isn’t. If a mover is reliable and trustworthy, the company will want as many people to know about it as possible, and what better way to do this than going online and creating a website? This is a sign that the moving company isn’t hiding anything. In their website you should see their name, address, phone numbers and other contact details, plus their USDOT, MC, etc. numbers. Of course, usually movers add on pages with positive feedback from customers, details on what services they offer, lists with packing materials and their costs, if they sell any. A scammer wouldn’t usually have a website. Companies that strive to show they are worth hiring will do their best to convince you through their website.

Compare the quotes by movers in order to find out which is more affordable and save money!
The service. Once you contact a mover, they will be helpful, kind and ready to answer every question you have. If you ask them about the moving company services, they will let you know; if you wish to see their office and the moving trucks, you will be welcome. A scammer wouldn’t have an office at all. On the other hand, a reliable mover would be happy to show you their office and where your household goods will be uploaded. In this way you can have confidence in the moving company.
Moving labor. The moving labor has to be experienced and well trained. If the moving company personnel is new, how and when did they got their training? Usually movers provide regular trainings to their staff but since these are going to be the people handling your house or apartment belongings, it is your right to ask and to make sure they will be doing this job well.
The USDOT number. Checking the USDOT number of a mover is important because it will give you information about how a moving company does its job. That is why before we ask you to compare movers quotes, we usually advice you to check the numbers in the system of the FMCSA. You can do this here. The USDOT number gives information like number of accidents, number of available trucks and drivers, general reliability assessment, etc.
Read reviews. Here is a list with the top websiteswhere you could find moving company reviews. Reading reviews when you want to compare moving options that you have is a great way to learn how professional a mover is. Since reviews are written by people who have moved, people like you, they will describe the work and generally the services provided by a removal firm. If the majority of the reviews are positive, then you may have come to the right moving company to ask for an estimate.

Before you sign a moving contract, take into consideration the tips in this article in order to make a better choice!
Compare movers quotes. This is the final thing to be done. Compare moving company prices after asking for a quote. Whether you needs pods, you want to move a motor vehicle, you are interested in storage, etc., the quotes are a great way for comparing movers because they give you information about the expected cost of your move. When you compare movers and packers’ quotes, you will find out which one has fair prices and which companies charge expensively compared to the others. Just be careful and beware of low-ball estimates – usually scammers give very low quotes and once you sign the moving contract, it comes out that many of the moving services you need are not included in the quote and sometimes extra taxes come up unexpectedly. Compare movers quotes before making your choice is something that will allow you to take a step in avoiding a possibly unpleasant situation that may take place if you choose a mover offering you a quote much lower than the other movers.

  • Ways to compare movers