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It should come as no surprise that spring kicks off one of the busiest times of year in the housing market. Warm weather makes it more comfortable to see and display homes, leading to more listings and open houses.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the average person in the United States changes residences more than 11 times in his or her lifetime. With each move, the process of moving may become more familiar. But even the most practiced nomad can find moving to be an overwhelming experience.
Those on the cusp of moving and nervous about packing up and leaving can employ a few tricks to make moving much easier.
Research areas carefully
Buyers are advised to do their research when seeking new towns or cities to call home. There are many factors to consider, including school district ratings, proximity to shopping, distance from work/commute times, availability of transportation, climate, and crime ratings.
Before falling in love with a particular home, potential buyers can visit the area in which the home is located during a typical weekday to get a feel for the atmosphere. Check out shopping centers, observe the residents and drive by the schools and businesses. This can help paint an accurate picture that may or may not differ from that depicted in the real estate listing.
Stack the deck
Working with qualified professionals who have gone through the moving process before can make for easier work for buyers and sellers. Ask for recommendations regarding real estate companies, real estate attorneys, home inspectors, insurance agents, and all of the other people who will assist with buying, selling and moving. Carefully vet these professionals, relying on third-party reviews as well as any information provided by the Better Business Bureau.
Secure temporary storage
It can help to put some belongings into a storage center prior to moving, and then gradually take items from the storage unit to your new home. This will free up space to make repairs to your new home and give you time to figure out decorating schemes while ensuring clutter won’t get in the way of renovation projects. New homeowners also can take their time sorting through boxes and getting rid of items they may not need in their new homes.
Get estimates and verify licensing
The BBB advises consumers to verify all licensing for movers. Solicit at least three in-home estimates and get those figures in writing. Confirm insurance coverage for the company chosen, and be sure to have all agreed upon information spelled out explicitly in a written contract. Red flags to consider include movers who don’t make on-site inspections for estimates and those who demand payment in advance before the move.
Have a first-week survival kit
New homeowners can pick up takeout restaurant menus and premade grocery store meals. In addition, stock up on staples such as paper plates, toilet tissue, light bulbs, and cleaning supplies in advance of the move so you won’t have to unpack everything at mealtime or when you want to clean after arriving at your new home.