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Another Moving Costs Thread...


Momof3
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We're moving in a month...1400 miles¬†ūüėĪ

We are currently in an apartment building, and there's no way to get a pod or trailer or anything overnight. We have to be able to load up & move out same day.

I think we have plenty of help to load a truck (NYC), and to unload (MN) once we get there. 

We don't have tons of stuff - couple beds, lots of dressers, and a dining room table are the biggest things. Then lots of books and clothes, etc. 

We do have money set aside for this, but are trying to keep costs down and also make sure our stuff actually makes the trip!

 

Options:

1) We fly my father-in-law to NYC, and he drives the truck for us (I don't drive). We're stopping in IN to be with my in-laws for a couple weeks on the way, so we'd have to unload the truck somewhere, and then reload *another* one...and both my in-laws would drive to MN, then they would drive back to IN from there. Complicated, I know.

2) We rent a U-Haul, and have them drive everything straight to MN where we have friends who can unload & store stuff until we get there 2 weeks later. 

3) We rent a budget company to do the same as #2. 

My thoughts:

#1 is maybe cheaper...but maybe not with paying for a plane ticket and all of the extra gas, hotels, not to mention the pain of having to unload & reload in Indiana. My in-laws are very willing to help out, but it's a long trip for them to make, too.

#2 & 3 have me a bit nervous...seems like sooo many things can go wrong with a move this big. #2 would be pricier than #3, but might be worth paying for better service?

Anyone have any idea of what the difference in cost between #2 and #3 would end up being?

Any advice?

My husband got a quote from Budget Van Lines today - they told him they'd load/move/unload everything for $3000. That seems super cheap to me (makes me suspicious of hidden costs/extra fees), and they have a lot¬†of bad¬†reviews online. Has anyone used them? Does this offer sound legit? I'm a horrible skeptic by nature and my hubby is a trusting soul.¬†ūüėŹ

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We don't close on the new house for 2 more weeks, so we're needing somewhere to hole up for that time...they're on the way, and it's a 12 hr drive to their place from the new house. We probably won't make that trip again for a while. 

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We moved 2 years ago and got two quotes- one from a regular moving company and one from an independent guy who came recommended by our best friends. The regular moving company estimated the cost, which was based on weight, but we had a TON of books and I knew they wildly underestimated the weight. I asked what would happen if we ended up w more weight than they estimated...and they said our bill would go up.  I think that is a common way for quotes from movers to increase. Once they get the truck loaded they weigh it at their facility, so by then you’re stuck. 

‚ÄėThe independent guys were awesome. That‚Äôs who we went with because it was a firm quote.

 

I hope you can find a suitable way to move, but in no circumstance would I unload and reload. Nope. Moving is tough enough, not doing it twice!

 

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Posted (edited)

Long ago, we made several long moves of the distance you are describing and longer. We also had a couple of situations where we had to move stuff into storage and then later move it to the final destination. After one very stressful day of discovering no storage places were available at our destination, we learned to reserve in advance. My dad went along on our first two moves, we handled the shorter middle ones ourselves, and my in-laws helped with the last one. The guys drove the truck and the women and child flew. We never used movers because even the one time we had a job allowance for moving, it wouldn’t have remotely covered the cost. All of the other moves were education related, so done on very tight budgets.

How many vehicles are you moving? We never had more than one so just towed it behind the moving truck, but we only had one child. Is the plan for you and your husband to drive the kids to Indiana while the in-laws are moving your stuff? Will it be a three day trip total to MN since you have to load and leave the same day?
 

 

Edited by Frances
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Posted (edited)

We paid movers for two long moves and both ended up being awful! The first changed the price after picking up and wouldn’t deliver until we paid (we eventually worked it out with a lawyer but had to pay first to get our stuff). The second was two weeks late and somehow a few big items never made it. We’ve moved ourselves since but never had such a long break. I guess if I were you I would probably rent a storage unit for the month to unload and then reload. 

Edited by Joker2
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Who is the "them" in your option #2 that would be driving straight through to MN and unloading your stuff?

As a veteran cross-country "mover", if you absolutely plan to stop and stay with the ILs, I'd hire a company that will move & store your items until you close on the house. Let them deal with the loading and unloading multiple times.

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28 minutes ago, Frances said:

Long ago, we made several long moves of the distance you are describing and longer. We also had a couple of situations where we had to move stuff into storage and then later move it to the final destination. After one very stressful day of discovering no storage places were available at our destination, we learned to reserve in advance. My dad went along on our first move from IA to NY and my in-laws helped when we moved from MN to OR. The guys drove the truck and the women and child flew. We never used movers because even the one time we had a job allowance for moving, it wouldn’t have remotely covered the cost. All of the other moves were education related, so done on very tight budgets.

How many vehicles are you moving? We never had more than one so just towed it behind the moving truck, but we only had one child. Is the plan for you and your husband to drive the kids to Indiana while the in-laws are moving your stuff? Will it be a three day trip total to MN since you have to load and leave the same day?
 

 

One vehicle, our family in that. 

In-laws in the moving truck. 

Yes, two days to IN, then another day to MN. 

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11 minutes ago, fraidycat said:

Who is the "them" in your option #2 that would be driving straight through to MN and unloading your stuff?

As a veteran cross-country "mover", if you absolutely plan to stop and stay with the ILs, I'd hire a company that will move & store your items until you close on the house. Let them deal with the loading and unloading multiple times.

Sorry, #2 would be hiring movers to drive our stuff to MN. 

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3 minutes ago, Sherry in OH said:

Talk with PODS.  They have a service specifically for city moves.   The POD is delivered on the day of your move.  The driver stays with the POD while you load it.  Then he takes it away.  The POD is delivered to your new location on the day you want it.  

Ooh, I will look into this. Thanks!

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Posted (edited)
6 minutes ago, Sherry in OH said:

Talk with PODS.  They have a service specifically for city moves.   The POD is delivered on the day of your move.  The driver stays with the POD while you load it.  Then he takes it away.  The POD is delivered to your new location on the day you want it.  

My MIL used this service because there was a couple months gap between leaving one house and moving into another. They did inadvertently put the POD on the wrong truck at some point and her stuff had quite the journey around the country, but it still made it to her final destination on time. The distance of her move was almost identical to the OPs (pretty much the same states in reverse).

Edited by Frances
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5 minutes ago, Sherry in OH said:

Talk with PODS.  They have a service specifically for city moves.   The POD is delivered on the day of your move.  The driver stays with the POD while you load it.  Then he takes it away.  The POD is delivered to your new location on the day you want it.  

I would do none of your ideas and do this.  

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1 hour ago, ktgrok said:

Can I ask why you are staying with you in laws on the way? Wouldn't it make more sense to unload your stuff at your new home, and see them some other time? 

I was going to say the same.  The logistics of driving back to see them after you move is going to be so much less complicated than combining a weeks long visit with moving.  

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39 minutes ago, fraidycat said:

Who is the "them" in your option #2 that would be driving straight through to MN and unloading your stuff?

As a veteran cross-country "mover", if you absolutely plan to stop and stay with the ILs, I'd hire a company that will move & store your items until you close on the house. Let them deal with the loading and unloading multiple times.

I agree with this, if it's within your budget. Cross country moves are already so stressful, lessening the work is worth the $$ if you can swing it. 

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If you don’t drive, I assume you are a one vehicle family? Why can’t you just drive a Uhaul and tow your vehicle behind? Your options seem really complicated and I am not sure why they are so convoluted.

I can’t imagine a full pack and move being <$3k. Sounds scammy.

My last full pack and move, corporate-paid, was over $26k. My goods were bundled with another household’s midway, which brought down costs. 

I personally prefer to pack. I do a better job of it than professional movers. (I have moved a LOT.) 
 

In our last move the movers stole/ lost 6 of our boxes and broke some antique furniture. Our other experiences have been much better.

If I had to do it again, on my own, I would hire people to load and unload on either side, but I would do the rest. I would expect to pay $2000-2500 each time, plus moving truck and gas costs, etc. I would also give considerable thought to selling it all and buying new on the other side. My sentimental stuff list is small.

 

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If you want movers to store your stuff, I think they will charge for the double loading and unloading as well as storage.

I think it would make more sense for your dh to do a one-way u-haul rental, drive the truck to MN, and unload it into a storage unit with friends' help. Then he can fly back and drive you and the kids to visit family. Later you guys can get an in town u-haul rental and move in (again with friends' help).

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Posted (edited)

Yeah, we declined on that one. Honestly, if I had to pay rather than work, there are all kinds of things I would never move or store. I would sell and move on.

Our last move was well over 2000 miles, cross country. The one before that was over 1000. This is normal in my circle, but there are lots of people, like my parents, who don’t know how to manage it and find it very overwhelming. 
 

In our last town a 10x12, climate controlled was like $175/month. It would take a few, but way cheaper than $1200.
 

Edited by prairiewindmomma
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For a small guest house move we used the U-Haul version of Pods called U-Box.   They were much more reasonably priced and worked well.   I would guess they service more areas since U-Hauls are everywhere.  You can pick them up with a car or they will deliver and pick up.   Just ask.  

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We moved IA to Ca then CA to IA as a military move and then IA to OR and OR to IA as corporate moves. 
 

Could you do a POD delivered to a storage facility and a Uhaul pull trailer with you to Indiana with stuff you need for two weeks?

 

Our last move was corporate, OR to IA but we flew home with ten kids. They would store but not deliver for a temporary stay and move again... so we chose carefully what we NEEDED while we stayed with family for almost SIX MONTHS (Thanksgiving to May 15th) until we moved into our current home seven years ago. It was VERY stressful but if I was just going to do a two week stay? Four changes of clothing and a few good books and an iPad. Done. Everything else in a pod stored in MN. Hire Two Guys and a Truck to move stuff into the new house when you get to MN. 

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14 hours ago, Momof3 said:

We are currently in an apartment building, and there's no way to get a pod or trailer or anything overnight. We have to be able to load up & move out same day.

Why is this? Most apartments allow POD type things for moves. Some allow just a few days but others are up to two weeks. If you haven't checked with your office, I would do so.

I would do none of your options, honestly. Stopping and unloading a truck, storing for two weeks, then loading again sounds like a logistical nightmare in the middle of an already stressful situation (moving). I also would not hire a moving company. We moved last year and in my planning I read so many stories about movers changing the prices (and some simply took off with people's stuff never to be found!), that we got rid of everything we could and moved the rest ourselves. The cost of replacing the furniture turned out to be about the same as what we would have paid movers, but we had much less stress doing it that way and I have no idea how to put a dollar cost on that.

You have received some great info here but I would also make an account on http://www.city-data.com/forum/  with your OP and ask there. They have a moving forum and it's very active. I got soo many great tips on there in planning our move!!  Once you're on the forums site I linked to, scroll down to the "General Moving Issues" sub-forum. As I type this post, the most recent thread is asking for trips on an out-of-state move.

In addition to PODS and Uhaul, there is another company that does the pod thing: ABF U-Pack. It's similar to PODS. Someone recently moved about the same distance you mentioned and used two cubes for a total of $2800 (this was posted not on City-Data, but another place I visit).  I have seen many good reviews on them over the last two years (that's how far back my notes go).  A family member might be facing a large move in the next year or so and PODS or ABF U-Pack is what we will recommend to them. 

I wish you luck. Moving is stressful.

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About hidden costs- there’s an industry standard surcharge to move in prime moving months May-September. Definitely ask about these fees as I once was quoted a surcharge of 75%. I can’t even tell you how close I was to not inquiring about surcharges and other fees. We ended up doing a uhaul instead.

Can you rent a storage shed in MN and unload your stuff, then go to IN to visit family? 

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12 hours ago, sgo95 said:

If you want movers to store your stuff, I think they will charge for the double loading and unloading as well as storage.

I think it would make more sense for your dh to do a one-way u-haul rental, drive the truck to MN, and unload it into a storage unit with friends' help. Then he can fly back and drive you and the kids to visit family. Later you guys can get an in town u-haul rental and move in (again with friends' help).

This. I would do this. But, I would use Penske. UHaul for such a long trip is a bit risky. The City-Data forum I linked to above has convinced me that UHaul is best for local moves and Penske is better for long trips. Uhauls break down more and Penske trucks are more comfy to drive/ride in. If you have AAA, they give discounts, too.

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When we had a big move 10 yrs ago, we decided that it was actually cheaper to get rid of most of our stuff and move the rest ourselves in a rented truck. We kept only 2 items of furniture and my DHs work bench (which I thought could be replaced, but I got out voted). However, we had the luxury of making more than one trip as DH moved earlier that the rest of us to start work and to work on the house. He took a load when he went (using our own truck and trailer), then we did a second load with the rental truck and the remaining vehicle full of pets.

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Posted (edited)

Try it backwards?

Imagine fitting into your vehicle 1) items that are irreplaceable or too valuable to entrust to other people (read: things you'd want to carry out of a burning building if all your family members were already out), and then 2) the minimum of other things you need on the trip, like a few outfits per person.

Then think about everything else you own and want to continue to own, and see how much it would cost you to replace once you arrive in MN.

Then estimate the costs and hassle of moving them, including boxes, any storage, etc.

It might be that the dressers, etc., are cheaper and easier to replace than to move, and a better plan is to re-home them as you pack.

Edited by Carolina Wren
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I don't have any input on your choices, but I'm throwing out some ideas.


Yes, if you hire folks to pack for you, they will pack everything including trash. If you don't want it packed, remove it all to one clearly labeled area.

Be sure to pack what you will need for the 2-3 weeks of moving/unpacking time. If it were me, I'd have that stuff moved to a clearly marked location, and everyone can only use that stuff for a week prior to the move so you can make sure you remembered everything. 

Think about what you are moving. I saw a lady have her pantry packed. Five bags of sugar? So many cans? The weight of those was high compared to not moving those. Some things should just be donated and buy new/used at the other end.  You really want to eliminate stuff like this (and consider any cheap furniture that you don't love and could live without for a while until you can replace it (garage sales, estate sales, furniture stores, whatever your choice is.)

Some moving companies will store the entire load for you (we had them do this one move - maybe for a month) so you don't have to do the unload/reload thing in the middle. I don't remember how much that was as it was an employer funded move. It was nice, but it does cost extra if you need to try to retrieve anything at all from that storage. 

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Hey, @Momof3, can you pack a moving van, drive it to your in-laws, then have you and the kids stay there while your Dh drives on to your destination and supervises unloading the van?  Then, your Dh can turn in the moving van and fly back to your in-laws house.  I'd give him an extra day of recovery/buffer before he has to fly just to be safe.  It would still be much cheaper than actual movers.  

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My son moved using the UHaul pod service - It worked really well for him. He hired two guys to help him move stuff out of his apartment. We helped him move in. Good luck.

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On 5/17/2021 at 8:51 AM, Wildcat said:

This. I would do this. But, I would use Penske. UHaul for such a long trip is a bit risky. The City-Data forum I linked to above has convinced me that UHaul is best for local moves and Penske is better for long trips. Uhauls break down more and Penske trucks are more comfy to drive/ride in. If you have AAA, they give discounts, too.

We used Penske for our last move. No storage was involved, though. We were told (can't remember by whom) that Penske keeps their trucks in better shape, while UHaul uses theirs until they are done. 

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You all have been such a help. Thank you!!!¬†‚̧ԳŹ

After much discussion & research (spurred by all of your suggestions), we're probably going to go with Zippy Shell - which will move everything in a trailer straight to MN and hold it there for us for up to 30 days. So we'll meet it there after our IN stop.

The PODS idea sounds wonderful - we looked into U-Pack and U-Box as well...but our landlord was giving us some grief with parking lot insurance and it was getting complicated, so this looks like it work best all around.

Looks like it's going to cost about the same as our original plan, and save us sooo much headache along the way. Bless you all!!

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On 5/18/2021 at 11:10 AM, Jaybee said:

We used Penske for our last move. No storage was involved, though. We were told (can't remember by whom) that Penske keeps their trucks in better shape, while UHaul uses theirs until they are done. 

Somehow I missed this.

I read on City-Data.com that Penske replaces their trucks after xx miles, too. Uhaul trucks are 'maintained' by the places that rent them. Like storage unit places. If I ever rent another Uhaul, it will be from an actual UHaul place that has a garage and not from a storage unit company. I had two storage unit owners tell me that they were getting out of their relationships with Uhaul because they were supposed to maintain the trucks as they were dropped off but they didn't know the first thing about them. I took that to mean that there was nothing being done beyond checking fluids and tire pressure. This was two places in different states. So, yeah, I don't trust UHaul trucks now. LOL.

All I know for sure is that the Penske we rented had a whopping 255 miles on it when we picked it up and the UHaul was nearing 70,000, and it showed. The Uhaul truck's tires were horrible and would be unsafe on a long trip due to the 'lot rot' they had (dry rot).

As an aside, in the last week, we saw two UHaul trucks broken down on the side of the road within 20 miles of each other. I can't say that I've ever seen a Penske truck on the side of the road.

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59 minutes ago, Wildcat said:

Somehow I missed this.

I read on City-Data.com that Penske replaces their trucks after xx miles, too. Uhaul trucks are 'maintained' by the places that rent them. Like storage unit places. If I ever rent another Uhaul, it will be from an actual UHaul place that has a garage and not from a storage unit company. I had two storage unit owners tell me that they were getting out of their relationships with Uhaul because they were supposed to maintain the trucks as they were dropped off but they didn't know the first thing about them. I took that to mean that there was nothing being done beyond checking fluids and tire pressure. This was two places in different states. So, yeah, I don't trust UHaul trucks now. LOL.

All I know for sure is that the Penske we rented had a whopping 255 miles on it when we picked it up and the UHaul was nearing 70,000, and it showed. The Uhaul truck's tires were horrible and would be unsafe on a long trip due to the 'lot rot' they had (dry rot).

As an aside, in the last week, we saw two UHaul trucks broken down on the side of the road within 20 miles of each other. I can't say that I've ever seen a Penske truck on the side of the road.

Our Penske move was halfway across the country, and we didn't want to risk a breakdown (any more than can happen to anyone). Having to shift everything from one truck to another was not on our list of "want-to" experiences. If I remember correctly, the prices were comparable. We had no problems with our move, other than we had a few things that we had to leave behind.

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