Making a Long-Distance Move? Here’s What You Need to Know

9 March 2023
Here’s What You Need to Know

Moving to a new home can be stressful, especially over a long distance. With many challenges involved, such as finding a reliable moving company, understanding the costs, and protecting your belongings, planning and preparing ahead of time is essential.

This blog post will discuss the importance of planning and preparation, choosing a reliable moving company, overall costs, storage options, and preparing for moving day. With this guide, you’ll transition smoothly to your new home.

1. Plan Ahead

Plan Ahead

Choosing A Reliable Moving Company

We recommend that you start planning as soon as you know you’ll be moving.

Look for companies with a good reputation and experience in long-distance moves. Check if they’re registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and have a valid USDOT number. This number is a unique identifier for the company and tracks its safety record and history of compliance.

Request quotes from multiple companies to compare prices and services. Remember to read reviews and ask for references. It’s beneficial if they offer coverage to ensure your goods are protected while in their care and custody. protection as well.

Creating A Moving Checklist And Timeline

Once you’ve chosen a mover, create a moving checklist and timeline to keep track of important dates and tasks.

Start by deciding what items to take and what to leave behind. This determines the size and type of moving truck. Contact the mover and get an estimate of the cost of the move, including any additional fees. Plan for any arrangements, such as transferring utilities or scheduling a

cleaning service.

Next, create a timeline of tasks leading up to moving day. This should include setting a date for packing, organizing your belongings, and scheduling the movers. Be sure to allow enough time for unexpected delays and last-minute preparations.

Creating a moving checklist will help you stay organized. Include tasks like forwarding your mail, canceling subscriptions, and notifying banks and other service providers of your change of address.

You might like: Tips for Moving to a New State

2. Understand the Cost

The Costs Of Long-Distance Moves

Long-distance moves are typically priced based on the weight of your belongings and the distance of your move. The farther you move and the more items you have, the more expensive. Other factors that affect the cost include the time of year, the type of service you choose, and additional services such as packing, unpacking and storage.

Getting An Accurate Moving Estimate

Get at least three quotes from different moving companies for an accurate moving estimate. Be sure to provide a detailed list of all the items you plan to move and any additional services you require. This helps the moving company provide a more accurate estimate.

Here are a few things to keep in mind when collecting quotes from moving companies.

Saving Money On Long-Distance Moves

To save money on your long-distance move, consider downsizing and getting rid of items you no longer need. This will reduce the weight of your belongings and save you money on overall costs. You could always pack your belongings yourself! Additionally, consider moving during the off-season or on a weekday when moving companies offer lower rates.

3. Prepare for Packing

Preparing for packing ensures that your belongings arrive safely at your new home during a long-distance move. Use high-quality packing materials, such as sturdy boxes, bubble wrap, and packing tape.

Pack your items tightly to prevent them from shifting during the move, and label each box with the contents and the room it belongs in. Be sure to label the boxes on their sides so that you can see the contents and room when the boxes are stacked.

Pack items you need immediately upon arrival in a separate box and label them “OPEN FIRST.” This box should contain essentials such as toiletries, bedding, and kitchen utensils.

If you would prefer to save some time and hire professional movers to do the packing, you can still prepare by decluttering and reducing the items you do not want to go with you. The packers will be fast and efficient and do not have time to stop and ask if each item is going or not.

Ensuring The Safety Of Valuable And Fragile Items

Use specialized packing materials like padded boxes for valuable and fragile items like glassware. Wrap each item individually with bubble wrap or packing paper and mark the box as “FRAGILE.”

For items such as jewelry, artwork, and essential documents, consider transporting them yourself or using a secure courier service.

Here are five guaranteed ways to make your move easier!

4. Consider Storage Options

Consider Storage Options

The Benefits Of Storage Options For Long-Distance Moves

When planning a long-distance move, consider storage options for your belongings. Whether you need temporary storage during the transition or long-term storage for items you can’t bring, there are benefits to using a moving company that also offers storage solutions.

For one, you can declutter your current space and start fresh in your new home. Additionally, storing items you won’t need immediately will help you focus on unpacking and settling in faster.

Most long-distance movers will have the option to store your goods at origin or destination, depending on your specific moving needs.

Choosing The Right Storage Option

To choose the right storage option for your needs, look into the unit’s size, the facility’s location and security, and the rental cost. Search for climate-controlled units if you’re storing items sensitive to temperature or humidity changes.

Take your time in researching and comparing different storage facilities to ensure you find one that meets your needs.

Storing And Protecting Your Belongings Properly

As we mentioned, when properly storing and protecting your belongings, sturdy packing materials and labeling boxes help quickly locate items.

For fragile items, bubble wrap, moving blankets and packing peanuts help prevent damage during transport and storage. You can also invest in a storage protection policy, also known as valuation to protect your items in case of unexpected damage or loss.

5. Know Your Moving Rights

Know Your Moving Rights

Knowing your moving rights ensures a successful and stress-free long-distance move.

The Legal Requirements For Long-Distance Moves

It’s essential to know the legal requirements for long-distance moves. The FMCSA regulates long-distance moves, and moving companies must have an operating license. Check if your moving company is registered with the FMCSA and that they have a valid USDOT number.

Handling Issues During The Move

There are steps you can take if you experience any issues during the move. If you have a complaint, contact the moving company first to try to resolve the issue. If that does not work, you can file a complaint with the FMCSA or consider legal action.

Keep all documentation related to the move, including the contract, inventory, and any communication with the moving company.

To protect yourself and your belongings during the move, read the moving contract carefully and address your concerns.

Take the stress of moving off your hands. Get a quote from us today.

6. Prepare for Moving Day

Preparing for moving day is the final step in making a long-distance move. This is the day when all your hard work and planning come together, and it’s important to be as organized as possible.

Start by confirming the details of your move with your moving company, including the date and time of your move, the address of your new home, and any special instructions.

Ensuring A Smooth And Efficient Moving Day

Make sure all of your belongings are packed and ready to go. Arrange for someone to be present during the move to answer any questions and provide direction to the movers.

If you have extra time, pack a moving day survival kit with essentials such as snacks, water, toiletries, and a change of clothes. Important documents to keep on hand include your lease or mortgage papers, ID, and medical records.

Finally, do a final walk-through of your old home to ensure nothing is left behind. Take a deep breath and relax, knowing you have taken all the necessary steps to ensure a successful move.

For more detailed advice on this process, consider reading our blog on how to prepare for a long-distance move effectively.

Bottom Line

As challenging as it is, long-distance moves are easier with proper planning and preparation.

Remember to research and choose a reliable moving company, understand the costs associated with your move, consider storage options, and prepare for moving day.

Following these tips can make your long-distance move successful and more efficient. And remember, a professional moving company can help you with all aspects of your move, from packing, and storage to transportation, taking plenty of the weight off your hands!

With multiple locations throughout California, Arizona, and Washington, CMS Companies offer reliable moving services to customers moving locally, across the country and even around the globe.

Our fleet of trucks, both local and long-distance units, is well-equipped to handle any moving needs. Get in touch with us today.


1. How Can I Choose A Reliable Moving Company For My Long-Distance Move?

Start by researching different companies and reading reviews from past customers. Ensure the company is licensed and insured, and ask for an in-person or virtual estimate. Compare estimates from multiple companies and choose the one that best fits your needs and budget.

2. What Are Some Ways To Save Money On A Long-Distance Move?

To save money on a long-distance move, consider downsizing your belongings and selling or donating items you no longer need. For a lower rate, choose an off-peak moving season, such as fall or winter. Pack your belongings to avoid paying for packing services, and consider renting a portable storage container for a more affordable storage option.

3. How Can I Ensure A Smooth Moving Day For My Long-Distance Move?

Prepare your boxes beforehand, and make sure your movers have clear instructions on what to load first. Be available on moving day to answer any questions and oversee the process. Take inventory of your belongings before and after the move to ensure nothing is lost or damaged. Lastly, confirm the details of your move with your moving company beforehand.

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