Author Archives: Czarina Carden

5 Fun and Crafty Uses For Leftover Moving Boxes

published by on April 3, 2014After You Move Tips

You moved. And unpacked. Hooray!

Give yourself a pat on the back because the hard part is over. Now what do you do with all those pesky moving boxes cluttering up your garage?

You could break them down and recycle them. Or even give them away. But if you’re crafty, not afraid of a little elbow grease and feeling somewhat adventurous, give these ideas a spin…

1. Turn Them Into Moving Announcements

 

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2. Entertain Your Kids And Encourage Their Imagination

A cardboard castle fit for any ‘lil prince or princess

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A rocket ready for takeoff!

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Wearable art

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3. Create Storage To Keep Your New Place Organized

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4. Pin memos and announcements with a DIY bulletin board

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5. Showcase your fave moments with cardboard photo frames

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Have other box inspiration ideas or photos of your finished products? Share them in the comments!

 


Truck Talks With…All My Sons Moving & Storage in Phoenix

published by on February 24, 2014For Business

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Like many moving companies, All My Sons Moving & Storage is family-owned and operated, with four generations of moving experience over the last 20 years. Today it is a large national partnership with nearly 40 locations nationwide.

We recently chatted with Ron Clair (GM) and Jeff Akin (Director of Business Development) from All My Sons Moving & Storage in Phoenix, to find out more about how their location focuses on building relationships with clients to deliver the best moving experience.

MCR: When booking a move with you, what can customers expect?

All My Sons Phoenix: Bottom line, the best moving experience ever. Our first-rate services include quilt-pad wrapping of their furniture, disassembly and reassembly of the same and the allowance to leave clothing in their dressers. We provide white-glove service at its finest.

Clients can take advantage of our pristine packing and unpacking services or opt for do-it-yourself packing. We work hard to understand your moving needs before ever lifting one box. We are all about relationships, education and communication. And we really believe that with each client, it is not a one and done but a long-term relationship that will last a lifetime.

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MCR: Tell us about a challenge thats unique to being a part of a large franchise. And how do you overcome it?

All My Sons Phoenix: Technically we are not a franchise. We are employee- owned and just as we build relationships with our clients here in Phoenix, we must have outstanding relationships with other offices around the country with open communication. We are all part of the big picture and it will take all of us to continue our success and push our growth as we move forward.

MCR: Do you have any fun industry lingo you want to share with our readers? (i.e. “put a bead on it!”)

All My Sons Phoenix: “Laughing” for sure.  It’s not industry lingo but we use a great movie quote. Before our drivers go out to handle their Pre-Trip inspection, we use the quote “Let’s kick the tires and light the fires baby.” Can you name the movie this quote came from?

MCR: Aside from helping customers have happy moves, how do you help bring happiness to your community?

All My Sons Phoenix: We work with our Chamber of Commerce and work closely with Move for Hunger. We volunteer time with certain events through Move for Hunger. We actually had our trucks out at the R n R marathon here in Phoenix and picked up over 7500 pounds of food for Move for Hunger and took it back to St. Mary’s Food Band for distribution. Also our foreman John worked last year with his club and All My Sons and collected 2500 toys during the Christmas holiday and took it directly to the Phoenix Children’s Hospital. We have amazing employees.

MCR: Tell us about some of your most memorable moves.

All My Sons Phoenix: There was a time we worked with a pro baseball player when relocating his family for MLB, his son’s bed was made out of old baseball bats. We also moved a huge musician and went to do a visual for them and had the opportunity to play in his studio together for hours.

MCR: What’s the best advice you could give about moving across the country?

All My Sons Phoenix: Do not take the Internet as the gospel. So many independents are now using reputation defenders to clean up their reputation online or placing fake reviews online. Find a ProMover and to take it to the next level, find a Certified Moving Consultant. The Certified Moving Consultant credential has come to represent a fundamental competency and adherence to ethical conduct of the sales force for the Household Goods Moving & Storage Industry.

MCR: What’s your favorite part of the move process? 

All My Sons Phoenix: When we hear the clients’ feedback on how great their moving experience was with All My Sons.

MCR: What do you see is the single biggest challenge for the professional moving industry right now? 

All My Sons Phoenix: Quality! There are too many people coming into the industry without the proper skillsets cutting prices to get work. These companies do not follow regulation and work without authority.

MCR: What do you predict is the future of moving five years from now and 10 years from now?

All My Sons Phoenix: Current to five years, we’ll see continued pressure on Congress to strengthen federal consumer protections against rogue operators — unlicensed movers — as well as to require container company compliance with federal household goods regulations. Beyond 5-10 years, it will likely be more container shipping for interstate relocation.

 

 


Self-Storage Tips To Ease Your Move (And Mind)

published by on February 18, 2014Before You Move Tips

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Guest post by Ken Susman, of OnlineSelfStorageDirectory.com. The Online Self Storage Directory makes it easy to research and reserve self-storage facilities anywhere in the United States.

In this hyper-partisan era, there are few things that everyone agrees on. However, one of those rare items of agreement is this: moving can be a real pain, and even more so when you’re moving to a new city. This won’t be news to regular readers of the MovingCompanyReviews.com blog. In fact, it’s right there in MCR’s mission: “we want to make it easy for you to find great movers.”

Finding good movers is a critical step to a successful move. But when people are relocating, there are many other issues to consider. If you’re thinking of renting a self-storage unit as one of your options, here are a few ways a self-storage unit can ease your move – and your mind – when it comes time to pack up and move.

Don’t buy yet! Rent first!

Often, when people are transferred and don’t have much time to find the right place, they choose to rent a house or apartment temporarily so they can take their time before committing themselves to a permanent home. This is something worth considering.

For instance, if you’re moving from Milwaukee to Los Angeles, you might want to spend a few months learning about the traffic patterns to and from your new job before locking yourself into a beautiful home that requires you to sit in bumper-to-bumper traffic for an hour each way.

Some apartment complexes will even let you sign a six-month lease, especially if you’re going to be moving in during a slow time of year, like late fall. You will often pay a slight premium for the shorter lease, but it very well might be worth a few extra bucks for six months, and you may be able to negotiate a lower deposit or a waiver of the application fee.

One item that concerns people about renting an apartment, particularly if they’re moving from a house, is what to do with all of their stuff! This is where self-storage can come to the rescue (wearing an orange cape, of course). Assuming that you’ll be using your bedroom and living room sets, a couple of TVs, the majority of your kitchen utensils, and all of your clothing, you should have little trouble packing the rest into a five foot by ten foot (5 X 10) or a 10 X 10 unit. And many moving companies will make a stop at the storage facility and unload for you. Just make sure that you have the truck packed so those items are at the back and they don’t have to unload the whole thing!

Sell your home fast.

I learned the lesson well when I tried to lease my condo after my wife and I purchased a house. We spent countless hours cleaning and organizing the condo so it would be neat and tidy for prospective renters. Even still, it wasn’t until the condo was basically empty that people really started to show interest.

This is another time when storage can help. Renting a nearby storage locker can help relieve the pressure on your closets and basement.

Moving temporarily? Travel light.

As many of our military men and women know, not all moves are permanent. Maybe you’re being sent overseas for a year or two to set up a branch office, or will be out of town for several years doing a residency, or are joining the Peace Corps. In many of these cases, people know that they’ll be moving back when the experience ends.

For moves like these, it is probably easier not to take that antique dining room set and 65” 3D television. The solution, of course, is self-storage. One small-to-medium sized unit would do the trick.

But… are storage facilities safe?

This is the biggest concern many prospective renters have, and it’s an important one. Storage facilities sometimes have the reputation of being shady and unscrupulous operators. Whether or not that was ever true is a question for another day, but in today’s world, it’s simply false for the vast majority of facilities.

Most modern companies employ professional facilities managers who live on the property and are experts in handling storage-related issues. Additionally, they employ security companies to monitor the property 24 hours, and often require a PIN to open a gate before you can even get to the units. They are usually well-lit and well-maintained. All that’s left is for you to buy is a quality lock.

The Wrap

Modern self-storage facilities are a safe, reasonable solution to many of the problems that arise during complicated moves. They offer features and convenience to meet just about anyone’s needs.

 

 


Self-Storage Tips and Tricks

published by on January 9, 2014Before You Move Tips

Protect your stuff in storage.

Tips Provided By: Grace Bailey, a freelance author and content contributor for Removal Service London and other sites. 

Over the years, it’s highly likely you may have changed your place of residence several times, so you might be aware of the good sides of using storage units. There are quite a few great reasons why you would want to rent one and the following tips will give you the tips and tricks you need to know to get the job done right.

Let’s start with the first one on our list:

Focusing on pallets

If you want to keep your items away from the floor, then you will need to do so with pallets. You should always make sure you have a few available unless you want to experience damage when an accident happens. Floods may not be common, however things happen and it’s best to be prepared for them ahead of time. Depending on the type of self-storage facility you’re using you may need it, so better to be safe than sorry.

Wrap your belongings

Each time you’re using a storage unit of your choice, you should wrap things in either bubblewrap or industrial plastic to ensure things are tightly sealed up and safe from bugs and vermin. You could do that with shrink wrap as well in most cases due to its flexibility.

Using a good lock

You should also focus on putting some locks of your own in your storage unit if you want to place some sensitive items in there. As much security a place has, you can never have enough of it. Strongboxes for sensitive documents or jewelry are a good choice for that, especially when combined with a good lock.

The power of labeling

You should always be aware of what you’re putting inside the storage unit at all times, so this means you will need some type of labeling system now. You will want to avoid any confusion further down the line if possible. Make sure you label all the objects you store while also keeping tally of what you have in there. Making a floor plan or a numerical system of boxes also doesn’t hurt in the long run.

Plan ahead for changes in temperature

Though you may not experience that everywhere, in some locations the changes of temperature combined with humidity can be a real issue, particularly with mold and similar situations. Any sensitive items should be stored carefully and double wrapped just to make sure they’re fine.

Keeping your footing

If you have to reach your storage unit outside in winter conditions, you should always make sure you have a good deal of sand so you can safely walk across any ice patches that may have formed. Cat litter or even plywood can also do a good job at keeping you safe if you don’t have sand around.

You can read more tips and tips from Grace here.


Top 6 Tips For Winter Moving

published by on December 4, 2013Before You Move Tips

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Baby, it’s cold outside. But you really can’t stay?

If you’re planning a winter move, bravo! We admire your courage.

Winter moving might seem daunting, with the extra prep and stress of having to do battle with the elements. But it can also mean more cost savings if you hire professional moving services. Business is slow this time of year, so movers are usually more willing to compete for your business and accommodate your schedule.

Like any big undertaking, a little planning goes a long way. Read on for our top tips to keep you safe, warm and sane when moving in the face of snow, ice, frigid temperatures and other trying winter obstacles.

1. Dress For Success

Suit up for the occasion in warm layers, water-resistant/non-slip boots and gloves with a firm grip. Dressing appropriately will not only keep you warm, but also safe as you trek back and forth schlepping your stuff or supervising your movers. Slipping or falling is dangerous enough without adding heavy loads to the equation.

2. Plan For Extra Travel Time

If roads are less than ideal for travel, you’ll definitely want to give yourself and your movers plenty of time to safely complete your move. Stay on top of current weather conditions and in constant contact with your movers. Being prepared, aware and flexible can save you a lot of unnecessary stress over elements you can’t control. (We mean you, Mother Nature.)

3. Clear A Path To Your House

Smooth the way for your movers (literally!) by clearing a direct path to your home, both old and new. Shovel any snow, clear any debris etc. and salt or sand your driveway and pathways to ensure safe and easy access to your house. Make sure your walkways and staircases inside are also dry and not slippery, to avoid falls, injuries and potential damage to your stuff.  And if you’re parking in the street, pay attention to snow removal “no parking” rules.

4. Bundle Your Stuff Up

You’ll want to pack up your items carefully, regardless of the time of year. But with winter in mind, consider using plastic moving boxes and crates. They’re not only reusable, durable and sometimes more affordable, but they’ll also protect your stuff better than cardboard moving boxes if exposed to snow, water and other elements.

5. Protect Your Floors

Put down old sheets, rugs or plastic to keep your floors clean from all the trips to and from the moving truck. Tracked in snow, ice and debris is not only a slipping hazard, but can result in extra clean up for you, so play it safe and protect your floors and stairs.

6. Let There Be Light (And Heat!)

Schedule utilities accordingly so that you have the heat, power and electricity turned on at your old residence and new digs. In case inclement weather delays your move-in, you definitely don’t want to shut the utilities off too early at your old home until you’re completely moved out.

Are you a winter moving veteran? Send your best tips and tricks to ccarden@movingcompanyreviews.com.


New Request For Quotes Feature And Post-Launch Learnings

published by on November 14, 2013For Business

MCR-RFQ
When we launched our Request For Quote feature (for consumers) and subsequent MCR Referrals Program (for movers) in mid-August, we weren’t quite sure what to expect.

We knew we were pumped to give consumers a way to connect with movers they wanted to hear from, and deliver free Referral business to movers with claimed listings. But truth be told, like most new product and feature launches, we were just hoping to get any results and interaction.

And did we ever. (phew!)

Now three months and more than 600 request for quotes later, we’ve learned a bit about pre-move consumers and even more about search trends on our site.

Read more…


Dealing With Your Move, Stress Free

published by on November 13, 2013Before You Move Tips

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By Guest Contributor – Hannah Hilzer, Direct.TV

Moving is stressful. That’s just the reality of the cumbersome task we all must do at some point or another. The packing, transitioning, organizing and cost can make moving all the more stressful. Thankfully there are easy steps you can take to alleviate the build-up of moving stress and anxiety. Here are four things to help you deal with your move, stress free.

Read more…


New Home Buyer And Seller Survey Shows Tight Credit Standards Still Thwarting Some From Home Ownership

published by on November 6, 2013For Business

Dream of Home Ownership

The National Association of REALTORS ® (NAR) published their latest annual survey of recent home buyers and sellers covering data on the demographics, housing characteristics and consumer experience for the real estate market.

The insights were gleaned from 8,700+ survey responses from buyers who purchased a home between July 2012 and June 2013.

Read on for some key highlights and takeaways. You can also watch leaders from NAR and the REALTOR® Magazine discuss the findings in this recap video.

Read more…


Happy Moves Just Got Happier: Review By Phone Is Coming

published by on October 29, 2013News

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You just moved another happy customer, and the details are fresh in their mind. It would be a perfect time to collect that feedback, but they don’t have Internet yet and booting up their computer is probably the last thing they want to do.

With our new Review By Phone option (coming very soon!), your customers can now record a mover review right on their smartphone – in about five minutes or less. And get a free pizza for sharing their move story!

Read more…


Truck Talks With: Big League Movers

published by on October 23, 2013For Business

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After a successful stint of small campus moves for friends and students that gradually grew by word of mouth, two friends decided to expand their business to fill a niche for a full service moving company with a lot of hometown heart. So in 2008, owner and founder Steve Reed and Jonathan Greer, VP of Sales and Marketing, recruited a few more friends to join their business. And because former college baseball players filled most of their lineup, Big League Movers was born.

Read more…


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