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Guide To Packing Your Library/Books

If you’re a book lover, you may be struggling with the best way to move your library from one home to another. It’s really not as difficult as it may seem. Even if you have thousands of titles on your shelves, packing books is not difficult, nor is moving them from one location to another. The biggest challenges are space conservation and moving efficiency.

Packing Books

How to Pack Your Books to Minimize Damage

If your mover is charging you by the weight as many long distance movers do, then you should make sure you really want to keep every book you move. There’s no sense paying for moving items you don’t want to keep. So go through your book inventory and separate the books you want from the ones you don’t prior to your move. Hold a yard sale to get rid of your unwanted titles, donate them to a mission or library, or toss them. You’ll save yourself a bundle if you do this first.

Next, acquire good solid boxes. You don’t want to pack books in flimsy boxes that will fall apart. You need sturdy boxes that are not too large – less than a 3 cu. ft. size is recommended for books.

Wrap your hardcover books in kraft brown paper and pack them in boxes with the spines against the side of the box. Use acid-free paper if you’ll be storing books in a storage facility for a long period of time. Acid-free paper won’t turn yellow or deteriorate over time. Don’t pack them too tightly. Instead, pack them as if placing them on a shelf.

Other books of high value such as photo albums, coffee table books, or special editions should be packed with a piece of cardboard between them to prevent the spines from bending. Books tend to shift during a move, and that could cause some spine or cover bending, which will de-value the books.

When packing paperback books, stack them with covers face up or down, or, alternatively, pack them with spines down. If you stack paperbacks with spines up, the pages will bend and the books will warp.

If you have empty space between any books, fill it with bubble wrap or paper. This will prevent shifting and warping of your books. It’s typical that you will have books of different sizes in the same box so you will have some empty space. When your boxes are full, tape them closed and label them ‘books.’

If you plan to store your books in a facility for any length of time, make sure it is dry and cool.


How To Pack Up Your House For Storage

Not all residential moves involve packing and shipping items from one home to another. Sometimes you need to pack items in your home for storage – for a variety of reasons.

Maybe you’re downsizing and you need to put some items in storage because you don’t have room for it all. Or maybe your new home isn’t quite ready yet, your old home has sold, and you need to move out and rent for a while until your new home is ready to move into. You’ll need to pack your belongings for movement to a short-term storage facility. Here are some practical tips to help you do that efficiently.

  1. Secure all your breakables – This includes plates, glasses, china, picture frames, etc. Wrap each individual item with tissue paper, or old newspaper. You can also wrap items with linen such as towels or bed sheets. You want to prevent clanging and friction between these items so they do not break or crack.
  2. Stack heavy items on the bottom – Avoid putting the heavier boxes on top of the lighter ones. In your storage unit, put your furniture on the bottom and stack boxes, heaviest first, on top of those.
  3. Stack large boxes on bottom – Whenever possible, put the heaviest boxes on bottom and the lighter boxes on top, but if you have larger boxes and smaller boxes, then put the smaller ones on top. Try to avoid putting large light boxes on top of small heavy ones. If necessary, draw a stacking plan to make maximum use of your storage space.
  4. Cover the storage unit floor in plastic – Especially for outside storage units, you’ll need to cover the floor with plastic because it will likely be made of concrete. Winter temperatures can cause the concrete floors to get sticky as compensation builds up. Ice can form on the floor, which will destroy your boxes. If you cover the floor with a sheet of plastic, you’ll protect your boxes and furniture from the weather.
  5. Cover your appliances – Before putting boxes and other items on top of appliances, cover them to prevent scratching. Also, clean your appliances before storing them. Your best bet is to store appliances in a temperature-controlled storage facility. Otherwise, they may build up rust or bacteria over time. Appliances are not allowed to be plugged-in.

storage box storing spaces in garage lockers units or container
Storage facilities have restrictions on what is permitted to be stored in their facility. This is for the protection of not only your possessions, but also the other customers storing their belongings and on-site employees. As a general rule, items that are considered inherently dangerous will not be allowed. If you have any questions, be sure to ask ahead of time.

These are some of the items that should not be stored:

  • Combustible, Flammable, Hazardous or Toxic Materials
  • Perishable Food and Animal Products
  • Any Animals or Plants (alive or dead)
  • Expensive Valuables (such as jewelry)
  • Income tax information if it will be needed for tax preparation

OR STORE with RJ MOVING in our ‘climate controlled warehouse’ – let us take care of your storage needs!!


5 Most Frequently Asked Moving Questions

There are some questions that potential movers ask more often than others. Here is a list of our top 5 most frequently asked moving questions.

  1. When it the best time to move? In short, any time of year is a good time to move except winter. The winter months in Minnesota are notorious for involving snow and ice, which create moving hazards. If you have to move in the winter, you will be responsible for snow/ice removal at both locations to ensure the safety of the crews.
  2. How long does it take to pack and move? Every move is different. The length of time it takes to pack depends on how much you have to move. The actual move varies as well. The more you have, the longer it will take to load and unload the truck. And don’t forget to add in the time it will take to drive from your old space to your new space. An experienced mover will be able to give you a good estimate of the time required.
    Young couple watching movers move boxes from the moving van
  3. How far in advance should I plan a move? Good question. You really should start as soon as you know you are going to move. When possible, you should notify your moving company at least six weeks prior to the move. If your employer is paying for the move, you should start even earlier as you’ll have to submit your estimates to the employer and it will take your employer some time to compare bids and choose a moving company. You should know which company you are using to move at least four weeks before the actual move date.
  4. How are moving costs calculated? It depends. Basically, local moves are calculated by the hour. Long distance interstate or intrastate moves are calculated by weight and distance.
  5. What if something is damaged during the move? Moving insurance is highly recommended. If an item is damaged, moving insurance should cover the cost to repair or replace it. You should determine the value of your movable items and buy insurance based on that value. Some homeowners insurance policies insure items during a move, so check your policy first.

If you have additional questions on moving check our Moving FAQ’s – you might find an answer there. If not, please contact us – we’d be happy to help.


Types of Moving Services and Moving Companies

Moving services are not all the same. It comes as a surprise to many people when they learn about the different types of moving companies, but it will benefit you in the long run to know which type of moving service you need before you hire one. So here’s a handy guide.

3 Basic Types of Moving Services

There are three basic types of moving services. Each type has a few subcategories beneath them, but we’re going to start with these three basic types of moving companies because almost all moving services fall into one of these categories.

  1. Local movers – Local moving companies specialize in moving people from one home to another within the same city. Depending on your moving company’s permit, the local geographic area of coverage can be a single zip code, an entire metropolis, or an MSA region. This includes rural moving services. You can often get a better deal with a local moving service if you are just moving across town.
    RJ Moving Truck
  2. Long Distance Moving Services – Long distance movers typically charge by actual weight of the load plus the distance you travel. These companies specialize in moves state to state.
  3. Commercial Relocation Companies – Commercial movers specialize in business moves. If you have a small business or a major corporation and you are planning a move, whether it is across town or hundreds of miles away, a commercial relocation service will put together a package that meets your business needs.

Which Type of Mover Is For You?

In determining which type of moving service you need, start with a local mover. If you are moving long distance, then step up to the next level. If your move involves a business, try a commercial relocation service And in some cases you might need two moving companies: one for your business and one for your home.


Tips for Packing Electronics

Packing electronics for a move can be a tedious process, but it’s very important if you don’t want your electronic gadgets busted, broken, or dysfunctional upon arrival. And if you’re moving anywhere in this century, there’s more than even chance that you have some electronics – and parts to move.

Tv And Box On White Background. Isolated 3D Image

Here are some of our best tips for moving your electronics so that they remain intact from origin to destination:

  • Save your original boxes or your moving company can loan flat screen TV boxes on the move day. Your electronic equipment will fit better in the boxes they came in than in any other box, and that includes the packing materials such as peanuts and form-fitting foam.
  • Before you disassemble your electronics, consult your owner’s manual. The manufacturer may have included a section on moving your electronics. Follow their guidelines because the manufacturer knows best about how to protect products they make during a move.
  • If you don’t have the original boxes, get boxes that are close to the size of your equipment and pack old newspapers around them to keep them from moving.
  • When disassembling electronics with a lot of power cords, tape small colored stickers on both ends of each cord and label them so you know where to connect them again when you reassemble them.
  • Make a list of all the components that go together and put it inside the box with your electronic equipment. Make sure you have the proper tools before you start taking apart your equipment.
  • Put your nuts, bolts, and screws for each electronic gadget in separate zip top baggies, label them and place inside the box with the appropriate equipment.
  • Wrapping electronics in linen or clean paper can help prevent dust build up during your move.
  • Use box tape to keep boxes closed tight around your electronics.
  • If necessary, use climate-controlled storage units for TVs, computers, and other sensitive electronics.

The main thing to keep in mind with electronics is to keep them safe during the move. If you have to, write “fragile” on the outside of boxes to notify movers that they should be careful of banging things around.


Moving Insurance: Is It Really Necessary?

You might be tempted to cut a few corners when moving your home or office. Maybe you’re moving across town and you figure you can get by without bubble wrap. Perhaps you can. But the one area you should not try to skimp on is moving insurance. It really is necessary. RJ Moving offers .60 per lb. per article at no cost to the customer or you can purchase $15,000 Maximum Value Protection @ $90. Your homeowner’s policy may cover your move, so also check with them.  RJ Moving crews work hard to provide a claim free move for you.

The purpose for moving insurance is to cover the replacement or restoration of furniture and other items should they get damaged during your move. Trust us, accidents happen, event with the best of movers.

What Kind of Items Can You Insure?

No matter how careful you are in choosing moving companies, and no matter how good your moving company is, accidents can happen. And it may not necessarily be the movers fault. But if you do hire a mover to relocate your home or office—whether in the same town or across country—and an accident causes something to be damaged, you will not get it replaced without insurance. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

So what can you insure?*

  • Furniture
  • Kitchen items such as bowls, plates, and silver ware
  • Appliances
  • Electronics
  • Books
  • Clothes
  • Knickknacks
  • Fine art (should be crated to ensure protection – ask your representative)
  • Antiques
  • High-value items
  • Jewelry (should not be moved with any movers)

* Please Note: RJ Moving cannot insure individual items. It is everything or nothing. Boxes packed by homeowner are not insured unless the box shows mishandling.

Typically, what cannot be insured are items of significant emotional or sentimental value. You may be able to file a claim against lost jewelry, for instance, but that broach that Aunt Martha bought you for Christmas when you were ten years old cannot be claimed for more than its actual value. You can’t recover sentimental value. Family photos typically fall into that category.

For that reason, if you have items of significant sentimental or emotional value, you’d be better off moving them yourself.

What Kind of Damages Can You Recover?

Fragile Handle With Care Sign

Recovery for damages is another item altogether. Generally speaking, you’ll only be able to recover the actual value of something that is lost or damaged. The tricky part is declaring that value. Movers will want estimated purchased date and price and will use the internet for compared item.

Most moving companies use weight as a measure for .60 per lb. per article coverage.  Total weight of an item, times .60 per lb. per article is how it is figured. If you lose just one item in the mix, an industry standard or the internet will assist in putting a weight to an item.

Let’s say you have a load that is valuable. You can assess the value of your items and purchase insurance based on that assessment. This is very important for items that are very valuable, such as rare pieces of fine art, antiques, and the like.

To assess the value of your belongings, you should take pictures and list each item you are moving on a manifest. If something is not on the moving list, you will likely not get recovery on those items if they are lost or damaged.

Be sure to meet with your moving company representative to discuss your moving manifest and the value of any of your specialty belongings that require extra care.  Your crews will perform a pre-move/post-move condition of your goods.  An inventory and a post-move inventory of your items will be provided IF moving into RJ Moving warehouse storage.


Packing Supplies to Make Your Move Easier

Packing Supplies to Make Your Move Easier

What kind of supplies do you need to pack your items for a move? Whether you are moving a home or an office you’ll need certain materials to make that move go more smoothly. Here’s a short list of items you may want to have on hand for your next move:

  • Packing Paper – Bubble wrap may be fine for wrapping some items but it is very expensive and isn’t so great for inserting into things like glasses and bowls. Packing paper is better suited for that task since you can crumple it up and stuff it inside. It prevents the glass from shattering upon contact with other items. Also use it to pack between items. RJ Moving encourages packing paper over bubble wrap as it is more environmentally friendly and will save you money too.

Cardboard Box And Packaging

  • Boxes – Boxes – you can’t move without them! Collect more than you think you may need in various sizes.
  • Packing Tape – You’ll need something to secure your boxes with.
  • Packing Labeling – Use a marker to label boxes to avoid a label coming off during the handling of your boxes – especially in cold climates. Keep your move organized – use a system. Write which room where each box goes into on their final destination and list the items of the box. That way, when you get to where you’re going, you aren’t looking for what you need.
  • Stretch Wrap – Large items won’t wrap well with packing paper or bubble wrap. RJ Moving will provide shrink wrap for necessary items.
  • Hand truck – Also known as a dolly, or “two-wheeler.” It’s a great tool to have around for moving large items that you can’t carry. This includes book shelves, appliances, and even multiple or large oblong boxes. RJ Moving trucks are fully equipped to move your goods for you.
  • Blankets – Blankets make nice cushions to shove between furniture and other large items in your moving truck so they don’t bang up against each other and get scratched. RJ Moving trucks are fully equipped including industry moving pads to move your goods for you.
  • Tie Downs – Secure your items on the moving truck with tie downs. If things can’t move, they can’t bang against each other. Even if you use tie downs, however, you should still use blankets and stretch wrap. It never hurts to be safe rather than sorry. RJ Moving trucks are fully equipped to move your goods for you.
  • Furniture Sliders – You’ll inevitably have to slide heavy furniture across a floor. Furniture sliders will make that easier. Hire RJ Moving – we do the lifting and carrying of your furniture!

Don’t try to make your move without the proper moving supplies and moving tools. Start collecting these items a couple of weeks before your move so you’ll be prepared. Hire RJ Moving to save you, your family and friends from the hard work of moving with our well-equipped truck and professionally trained crews.


Items You Must Move On Your Own

When it comes to moving your household, there are items that you should plan on moving yourself. Some of those items are restricted by laws while others are personal items that you should want to move yourself.

Moving Hazardous Materials

Every household has certain hazardous materials that pose a threat when relocated by a moving company. These items are best carried to your new home by you so that everyone involved can be safer during the move. Items such as these go on that list:

• Aerosol cans
• Guns and ammunition
• Car batteries
• Charcoal and lighter fluid
• Cleaning solvents
• Darkroom chemicals
• Fire extinguisher
• Gasoline
• Liquid bleach
• Matches
• Motor oil
• Nail polish and remover
• Paint and paint thinner
• Pesticides
• Poisons
• Pool chemicals
• Propane tanks
• Scuba tanks
• Weed killer
• Anything flammable, corrosive, or explosive

You should plan on moving these types of items in your private vehicle. Otherwise, such items could get banged up enough or heat up enough in a moving truck to spontaneously combust. You could lose your furniture and other valuable items. More importantly, someone could get hurt, or worse.

Moving On Out!
Moving Your Personal Items

Some items are so personal that you should move them yourself. It isn’t necessarily the monetary value of such items you should concern yourself with as the sentimental value. Things that provide you with personal benefit that you can never get back if lost should go on your “move myself” list. These may include:

• Address books
• Airline or event tickets
• Car keys, titles, and insurance papers
• Cash
• Cell phones
• Checkbooks
• Financial documents and insurance policies
• Jewelry
• Laptop computers
• Medical and dental records
• Medicine
• Photo albums
• Plants
• Professional files with sensitive information you are required by law to protect
• School records
• Stocks and bonds

These types of items are valuable in ways that money can’t buy. Even those items that hold financial value (like laptop computers, jewelry, and financial documents) are difficult to replace if lost. If you keep them on your person or within your control during the move, they’ll be much safer.

Also, if you are moving perishable items, move those in your vehicle so that they can go straight from the storage area of your old home to the storage area of your new home quickly.


How to Compare Moving Company Bids

The surest way to ensure you find a solid moving company that will move your home for a fair price is to take bids. By getting moving companies to compete for your business, you remain in control of the process and have the benefit of choice.

The first thing you should do is realize that different moving companies use different methods of bidding.

Factors that influence the cost of a moving service include:

  • Cumulative weight of all the items you are moving
  • How far you are moving (mileage)
  • Whether or not movers will have to navigate stairs during the move
  • Distance from the moving truck to the front door
  • Weather conditions
  • How much the moving company does versus how much you do

Screen Shot 2014-11-12 at 4.17.32 PM

Compare Apples to Apples

It’s best to determine beforehand what exactly you want your moving company to do. Will you pack your items and have the moving company pick them up, or do you want the moving company to pack your items too? Make that decision before you call any mover because you don’t want to compare a quote from a moving company that didn’t factor in you packing your items against a quote from a moving company that did factor it into the cost. Compare similar services.

Ask each moving company to list additional fees they add to their service. For instance, if one company adds a stair fee and another one doesn’t, make sure that you factor in the difference in your comparison.

Also, if moving companies base their prices on different factors, try to convert one of them to match. For instance, Moving Company A quotes you a price of $1,800 for 1,000 pounds of household items you plan to move and 50 cents per mile while Moving Company B quotes you $2,000 to move 500 miles. That 50 cents per mile with Moving Company A means you’ll actually pay $2,050 for the 500-mile move. If there are no additional fees with Moving Company B, that would be the better deal.

Get Your Moving Quotes in Writing

The most important part about taking bids from moving companies is to get a quote in writing. Otherwise, you may show up on moving day only to find out the cost of moving has changed from what you were originally quoted. Compare all moving quotes based on written estimates only.


Steps to Moving Seamlessly With Your Utilities

When it comes time to move you’ll have to take your utilities with you. Leaving them behind means paying for services you aren’t using and that may even be benefiting someone else. So how do you make that move successfully? Shut off utilities too soon and you’ll be in the dark at your old place. Move them too late and you’ll be in the dark at your new home.

Outdoor electricity meter

These are some simple steps you can take to make your utilities move go much more smoothly. Here’s what we recommend:

  1. Plan ahead. Waiting to the last minute to call the utility company and make the move is sure to result in you being in the dark – most likely at your new home or place of business. You need to give your utility company plenty of notice. Start at least three weeks out from your move date.
  2. Make a comprehensive list of utilities with phone numbers. Write them down. Will you need to transfer garbage collection? Electricity? Phone services? Water and sewage? Whatever utilities you happen to subscribe to will need to be transferred, so make a comprehensive list so that you don’t leave anyone out. The last thing you want is to move into your new home and realize you forgot to call the electric company.
  3. Get your payments current. Some utilities companies may not give your deposit back or delay your transfer if you fall behind on payments. Make sure you’re up-to-date on payments, and ask what you need to do to get your deposit back.
  4. Check the meters. The last thing you want to do when you move out of your old home or business is check the meters. If there is a billing discrepancy after you move, you’ll want to know what the meter readings were on the day you moved out. Take a picture with your cell phone, but also write down the meter readings and keep them in a safe place.
  5. Relax. After you move in and you’ve tested all of your utilities to ensure that your transfer was made successfully, relax and take a hot shower.