There are a bunch of reasons why you may find yourself needing to ship furniture long distance. Other than a full household move, the three most common reasons are: 1) you want to ship a treasured heirloom to a family member in another state; 2) you’re involved in an online purchase; and 3) you’re moving yourself, and you don’t have a lot.
Whatever the case, it’s not likely your furniture can be boxed, which means what you really need is a small move specialist. Didn’t know there were such things? You’re not alone. A small move specialist is a hybrid of a moving company and a freight shipping company. That is, you get mover-type service with inside pickup and delivery by a moving crew that prepares and handles everything. And you get pricing closer to freight shipping levels because your items travel on a truck with other loads – but without the need to box everything as freight service requires, plus a much gentler ride.
Here are a few tips to keep in mind when shipping anything from a grandfather clock to a small apartment’s worth of furniture.
image by Creative Leather Furniture
- Time of the Year is Pertinent – Schedule for the winter. You can actually save money when the temperature drops because fewer people move then. Although local movers’ rates are usually dictated by state law, long-distance movers’rates aren’t. They charge based on weight. And since they want to keep their trucks busy, they will often offer lower rates.
- Do You Really Need It? – Since long-distance moving companies do charge based on weight, take inventory of your items before you call. If you’re moving, do you really need to bring everything you own? Not if you’re only going to store and not use it.
- Prepare It Yourself – A mover will blanket wrap or bubble wrap your furniture. And charge you for it. So buy the bubble wrap and do it yourself. Make sure you have help. It’s all but impossible to wrap a sofa with bubble wrap all by your lonesome. Be careful not to under-wrap your furniture – you can never, ever use too much bubble wrap or other protective materials.
- Shipping Insurance – Always insure your items. At a typical rate of $4 for every $100 in declared value, it’s absolutely worth it.Even the best, most careful movers aren’t perfect. Damage is inevitable on at least a small percentage of jobs.
- Purchase Used & Recycled Boxes– If you’re the one who’s moving,you’ll need to box your other items like clothes and knick-knacks. Check out Craislist.org in your town for boxes. People who’ve recently movedsometimes offer good, serviceable boxes for cheap. Or even free, just to get rid of them. If you come up dry on Craigslist, try one of the large home supply centers. Or try your local liquor store, they always have tons of small to mid-size boxes they need to recycle. Whatever you do, don’t buy boxes at a local truck rental location. Their markup is huge.
Last but not least, do your research. Check the background and references of your small move specialist with Angie’s List, the BBB, or online review sites. Your items will be safe if you do your homework. And you can relax.
This guest post was brought to you by Transit Systems, a fully licensed nationwide moving and shipping company with over 20 years of experience in the industry. Cheap furniture shipping is among many of Transit System’s moving specialties.