Is it really that time again? Time to “Hit The Road,” Pack Em’ Up and Move Em’ Out? Well, for most, I hope not, but for those few who face the daunting task of moving-never fear. Your bargain buddy is here!
Here are my favorite moving products and companies on the web and in Los Angeles for those planning an out-of-state move.
FREE is the best option, but if you just can’t stand the idea of “used” boxes- I have some alternate ideas to share.
SOURCES FOR FREE BOXES:
Photo compliments of “out of florida”
- Liquor Stores (try them right after a busy weekend in the morning) Not only are these colorful, but they are great for books, and the perfect size to keep you from overpacking.
- Tobacco Stores (They always have hundreds of cartons packed in big boxes. These shops are low on storage space and will be more than happy to get rid of them)
- Right outside your house in the alley – To most, this idea sounds repulsive, but recently I snagged three wardrobe boxes and dozens of larger hardly used boxes from my new neighbor who was unpacking and ditching the boxes in the alley.
This company has figured it out. A few innovative thinkers out there got clever and decided to set up a network for local businesses and individuals selling and buying used boxes for less than wholesale. Just visit the site, type in your zip code and you will immediately be linked to the nearest box seller or buyer, depending on what you need. All sizes and shapes of boxes are available.
This company is a little more pricey, but you order them in advance and they arrive at your doorstep within a week. I have used this company and I am here to tell you, they seem like brand new boxes. I actually questioned their “recycled” label. Just log on to the site and pick out your boxes, then call it a day.
IT’S IN THE BAG:
These are amazing!! As a matter of fact, I prefer to use these bags over a bulky box any day. Not only can you put anything in them, re-use them, label them, and store clothing in them, but you can pack liquids as well such as cleaning products. They are great for packing loose items and then consolidating several bags in a large box. If you are a last minute packer and the movers are coming at 8:00 am, but you are still scrambling to pack up those last few items- just throw them in a bag and have the movers box them up to transport them- no biggie.
They come in several sizes and varieties depending on your specific needs:
DON’T PACK THE VACUUM YET!
These are truly amazing. All you need is a normal vacuum cleaner with a hose attachment, a lot of bulky stuff- clothing, pillows, blankets, heck, I even sealed dog toys and beds, and a Space Bag. These will save you such much space and are easy to use. I went to Target and bought them out of their hanging Space Bags. The cheapest place to purchase is actually online at Ebay.
MOVERS: WHO TO HIRE AND WHO TO FIRE
There are several options, well, more than several and that is why it is important to go straight to the most reliable source when making the decision to hire a moving company, the Better Business Bureau online website. Companies are rated on their performance and for whatever reason they have negative ratings, you will be able to see exactly why they earned the “bottom rung” position.
If you are a Los Angeles local, be sure to check out North Star Moving Company. We recently used them and they were excellent. At $99.00 per hour with a three hour minimum, I was shocked there were no extra “drive time” fees and they finished in 2 1/2 hours. They were professional and worth every penny.
Also, if you are considering a move on the West side near Malibu or Santa Monica, I must tell you about The Malibu Labor Exchange. The Malibu Community Labor Exchange believes that no community, city or country can ignore the existence of poverty. Moved by the reality of poverty even in the midst of affluence, the MCLE has established a day labor hiring site to provide a humane and organized center where the poorest workers in the community have an opportunity to acquire day work that could lead to regular employment and a better future.
are pretty expensive, however, when moving across the country, they are worth their weight in gold. I have used ABF Freigh
t in the past, and was very pleased with the service and reliability of the company. If you do not end up using one of the containers you ordered, they will not charge you for it and will pick it up when they pick up the loaded container. I like to be safe rather than sorry, so I reserve at least two 8 X 10 containers and they bring them to me a few days prior to my move. You pack them up, call the company to come and pick them up, and that is it. All done. Just be sure to have your own combination locks to close them up and I recommend the kind with keys rather than having to keep up with five different lock combinations.
BE A MOVER AND A SHAKER
THE PICK UP PLEASE VVA ORGANIZATION
While you may not even have time to think about sorting through items in the midst of moving, if you plan ahead, you can actually lighten your load and help out a great cause in the process. The VVA is a non-profit organization who offers a 24-hour prior reservation to have anything you are willing to donate picked up at your doorstep. It costs you nothing and allows you to give back to those who fought for the freedoms we enjoy everyday. You don’t even have to be home and they come rain or shine!
LET’S TALK TAPE
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Photo compliments of James Oliver Gallery
Get The Gun- Tape Gun That Is
The tape gun will get you going and keep you rolling- no pun intended. It is great if you don’t want to spend all day cutting pieces of tape and biting it when you misplace your scissors or knife. Spend the $6.00 extra bucks- it is really worth it.
Seal The Deal
This makes taping up all those boxes a little more fun and a lot easier once you are in your new place and the movers didn’t want to read your poor penmanship.Do not be angry that your pots and pans are sitting in your guest bedroom because your little tiny hand-written label was ignored by sweaty movers who care more about their lunch break than where your pots and pans were supposed to go- make it easy on yourself and others.
Here are a few things to help you move smoothly and easily to your new humble abode. Good luck and let me know if you have any other products or resources I need to know about for my future move.
MAKE A LIST AND CHECK IT TWICE
There are so many different apps out there and free online sources to offer you a much needed hand when compiling a list of to-do’s and home inventory as you count down the days before the big move. Check these out:
SHOW AND TELL
How cute are these little C.O.A. cards?! I am just having a fit over them. Check out all kinds of tiny little prints online at Tiny Prints.