A few weeks ago, I shared a post with you titled, “Moving? Here Are Some Things You Need to Know.” This post focused largely on tips and tricks for working with movers. But what if you decide not to contract with movers? What if you have a relatively small amount of stuff, and want to move it yourself by renting a truck?
In some respects, moving your own possessions is easier and more cost-effective than going through a moving company. In others, however, it is certainly more complicated. Then there is the issue of downsizing. If you are moving into a smaller home, you might need to rent a storage unit and move some of your items there. In this article, I will share a few important tips and tricks for dealing with both moving and storing your possessions.
1. If you can move in stages, do.
In some scenarios, you may have to have one specific “moving day.” But there are sometimes situations where you have more time than that. You might even have a week or two to get all of your items transferred to your new residence.
If you do have that extra time, make full use of it. Try making a few trips before the big day. Even if they are relatively small, you will be glad you did it when that final day rolls around. That day will feel a million hours long—and yet you will be rushing the entire time. The less you must do, the easier it will be.
2. Shop around before you select a truck to rent.
A lot of people just go with the first rental company they think of—usually the most popular one. But that is not necessarily the least expensive option, nor the best. There are some less expensive truck rental agencies out there which offer higher-quality trucks, and which are faster and easier to deal with. So, shop around, read reviews, and ask questions. You might be able to save a lot of time and money this way and make your overall experience less stressful.
3. This is the best possible time to downsize and declutter.
If you have been thinking about decluttering but haven’t gotten around to it, there is no better time to tackle that project. You are already going to be moving everything around, so you may as well go through your stuff. The more clutter you can get rid of before moving, the less expensive moving and storage will be.
There are thrift stores all over San Diego; they really are a dime a dozen. You should only have to drive a few blocks to find one in most locations. So even if you are pressed for time, you can take the time to donate your unwanted items. There are a lot of people in this city who struggle financially and can use the items that you no longer need. So, don’t let anything to waste. Don’t forget that donations are also tax-deductible.
4. Need a storage unit? Ask about rent hikes, because they are almost universal.
Storage units are in high demand in San Diego. So, if you are going to be renting one, there are a couple of questions you should ask before you sign the contract. First, are you getting special promotional offer? If so, what will your rent go up to when it expires?
Secondly, what kinds of rent hikes can you expect going forward? Do not be surprised if you will be paying double or triple what you are now in a few years on the same unit. Many storage companies will not openly admit to this, but raising rents continuously is pretty much par the course in the industry, regardless of market rates.
If you can avoid this, you will save yourself a lot of hassle. Otherwise, you will find yourself moving all your stuff from one storage unit to another in a couple years—or trying to fit it into your new home.
5. If you can pick a storage unit, try and get one on the ground floor.
If you do need a storage unit and prices are comparable, try and snag one on the ground floor, preferably outdoors. Moving a lot of heavy, unwieldy boxes in or out of a storage unit on a balmy day in San Diego is already a pain outdoors—moving them up or down a flight of stairs in a stuffy, window-less building is even more intense.
Now you have some useful advice for renting a truck for moving and dealing with storage units if you are downsizing. Hopefully these tips will help save you time and money if you are moving across town in San Diego!