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9 Rookie Moving Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

Feb 24, 2021

In a survey of 1,000 people in the U.S., more than half plan to move in 2021. Apparently, people are totally fed up with hunkering down and are ready to get up and go.

Many of these people are on the move in response to safety issues and the coronavirus. Others say they are relocating because their jobs are less rigid about working from home. 

But when that move actually gets underway, it is ripe for possible mishaps. And some of these errors can lead to lost money, lost valuables, and plenty of headaches. 

From space issues to insurance, moving is fraught with issues that you need to consider before leaving your keys for that last time. 

In the following article, we’ll look at 9 rookie moving mistakes and some sure-fire ways to avoid them. 

1. The Time Moving Takes

When they get ready to move, many people don’t allow enough time to get the packing and moving done. This leads to an exhausting final push.

Usually, this comes from underestimating how long it will take to box up all your belongings. Another reason this happens is that you’ve been asked to move on short notice or an emergency has come up. 

Whatever the case, do not assume that you will be able to get out of your space in a few days. To get started, begin to pack first the rooms with the least foot traffic. One rule of thumb is to put together a few boxes a day (if you have time). 

These early boxes should include things that you know you won’t need until after the move, like seasonal clothes and little-used items. 

And don’t discount how long it will take you to pack places where you store stuff. These areas often take more time than you think. Pack clothes, the kitchen, and frequently used electronics the week before the move. 

A final good idea is to call in professional movers to help get your things together if you haven’t left yourself enough time. 

2. Not Buying the Right Supplies

It’s tough to move without the right tools, and chief among them are sturdy boxes of varying sizes. 

Other tools you may find helpful? You’ll need a good many spools of packing tape and a dispenser, a permanent marker, rolls of bubble wrap, packaging tissue, foam dish covers, and spools of plastic wrap to cover large or awkward items with. 

Also, have a screwdriver and a box cutter on hand to take care of any surprise fixes, disassemble furniture, or to open a closed box. Unfortunately, opening closed boxes happens more often than people might like. 

Many times moving companies will supply a certain number of boxes to their customers, so don’t forget to ask.

It’s helpful to use the larger boxes for clothes, lamps, and bulky items. Do not overstuff or overpack the boxes.

A good way to get into trouble is to pack larger boxes with dense or cumbersome items. Make sure to put books and other heavy items in smaller, sturdier boxes. 

Lastly, do not over-pack fragile items even if you have what seems like an appropriate-sized box. These breakable items should fit into the box snuggly with plenty of packaging paper or bubble wrap around them. 

3. Not Using Professional Movers

Moving is a big task even if you leave plenty of time to do it, so don’t feel you have to go it alone. And don’t forget, getting out of your existing home is one thing. Getting into your new home is another kettle of fish. 

If you hire a professional moving company, they will guide you on packing and organization. They’ll help you assemble and disassemble large furniture and help get your new space set up.

An experienced mover and their crew can help your get in or out of a space in the fraction of the time it takes an amateur with the help (hopefully) of friends. 

4. Shorting the Moving Truck

Another moving mistake is getting a truck that is too small. If you are asked for a space estimate, always inflate it a little bit.

You do not want to leave yourself with multiple trips in the moving truck, especially on moves of more than 50 miles. Reserving a larger truck is usually more cost-effective than the time it takes to make multiple trips. 

5. Not Sorting and Tossing

Sure, many hassles crop up when moving, but one of the biggest missed opportunities when changing your living situation is not purging some of your clutter.

Moving is a big change for people, and you might as well come out of it with a sense of renewal rather than a sense of being surrounded by junk.

Get rid of duplicated and damaged items, as well as items that are ugly and outdated. 

If you haven’t used an item in a year, consider chucking it. The same goes for items that won’t fit or will be out of place in your new space. Also, keep your eye out for pieces that will cost more to move than to replace. 

If you have enough lead time, try selling items on social media or having an old-school lawn or garage sale.

6. Not Labeling the Boxes

There’s nothing worse than a trip to the storage unit and not being able to find your belongings. Or having no idea which room a box needs to go to in your new apartment. 

Use that permanent marker to mark boxes clearly. You’ll thank yourself later. 

7. Separating Valuables; Insurance

Do not pack away valuables. Keep anything of value — jewelry, money, watches, pricey small electronics, photos, and important documents — with you. Do not pack these items away in a storage unit that can be broken into or damaged by water or fire. 

Also, consider insurance for your possessions. This is a great way to ensure that you are fully compensated if items get lost or damaged in transit.

8. Packing the Truck Wrong

Another reason to hire professional movers is that it’s no easy task packing a moving truck, even if you have the right size. This is a task for people with experience. 

Items will shift and fall if not packed in the truck properly. Any sudden application of the breaks or lurch will send items moving if not properly secured. Make sure to have plenty of moving blankets to help protect items in the truck.

9. Not Leaving Time to Clean

Sadly, one of the most demoralizing moments for people moving is seeing how much they have to clean once their possessions are out of space. 

Cleaning inevitably takes more time than you allow for, so give yourself a few extra hours. These hours could make the difference between getting your deposit back and leaving your condo empty-handed. 

Inquire about a maid’s service if you have the money to spare. This is a great way to leave your old space headache-free. 

Make a Checklist for a Successful Move

If you’re moving across the street or across the country, the one thing you absolutely need is a checklist. This list should incorporate the tips above and other to-do list items like forwarding mail, turning off utilities, and making accommodations for any furry friends.

A crossed-off checklist is also a good way to feel confident that everything you needed to get done for your move was accomplished. 

Are you ready to start your move? Contact us today to talk to a representative and get started. 



    Move Date*

    Moving Sizes*

    Stairs (Origin)

    Stairs (Destination)


    Mon 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
    Tue 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
    Wed 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
    Thu 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
    Fri 8:00 AM – 6:00 PM
    Sat 8:00 AM – 1:00 PM
    Sun CLOSED


    Mon-Sun 7:30​ AM – 8:00 PM 
    (or until we finish the job)