Senior Resources » 10 Best Tips for a Successful Move

10 Best Tips for a Successful Move

two movers with boxes and a moving truck

Sean Joseph, CEO of Jordan River Moving & Storage in the state of Washington, shares his top ten tips for a successful move.


1. Get an up-front, in-home estimate.

Joseph says, “A move is a big deal. You’re giving them everything you own. Don’t you want to see who you’re dealing with, to build trust?” Choose a local company from the neighborhood. An in-home estimate is your insurance. You want them to come out to you, to meet them. While there, they can survey your items, and they won’t be able to charge more than 10% above the amount quoted in their estimate. You can ask the proper questions, and they’ll estimate the number of boxes you’ll need, and the types of boxes you’ll need. Most people underestimate how many boxes they’ll need. If you don’t have time, you can meet virtually, but definitely do hire a local company, where you can visit their offices. 


2. Pack yourself to save money; supply deliveries should be free; don’t order boxes online. 

moivng day

Online boxes are cheap but are not strong enough or durable enough for a move. The company that did your quote already knows from their estimate how many and what types of boxes you’ll need. A firm like Jordan River Moving & Storage will deliver those boxes for free, and only charge for the ones you use. They’ll also deliver additional boxes for a fee. Some firms can provide you with good used boxes for a discount. Jordan River picks up your boxes after your move once you’ve unpacked.

3. When you pack, fill up boxes all the way to avoid damage.

If you’re doing your own packing, the moving company is not liable for damages to boxes. To avoid damage, prevent items from shifting inside the boxes. To do that, fill each box completely. If they’re sealed and flat, they can be stacked faster in the truck. Line the bottom, pack in layers, and if you have empty space, stuff it with filler so items won’t move around. Always mark the room it’s going to, and the contents if you’d like. A good company will provide color-coded smart tape, so movers can quickly tell by color where each box belongs. Local movers are working by the hour, so save money and seal your boxes. If they’re unsealed, movers will have to spend extra time to seal them. 

4. Organize your house for the move.

moving day

Movers want to arrive and just see furniture and boxes. Then they don’t waste any time and can get started right away. If packing isn’t completed, or boxes aren’t taped, it takes them more time. 


5. Do not sign blank paperwork under any circumstances.

no lady

Scammers work by saying they have to change their estimate, then get you to sign a blank paper. Make sure you get a copy of their estimate. Jordan River Moving & Storage uses tablets; when something changes on the estimate, they will send a new completed electronic estimate.

6. Stay with the crew, but stay out of the way.

two movers with boxes and a moving truck

Let the crew work, they know what they’re doing. Observe all the time. If you have questions or problems, don’t hesitate to call the office.

7. Do space planning at your destination before your move.

Make sure you know where you want your furniture to go in your new home. You need to be able to show the movers where to unload items. If you haven’t done that ahead of time, local movers are being paid by the hour while you decide. Sometimes you don’t end up liking where you wanted that couch to go, and they’ll move it to an alternate spot. On a long-distance move, they’ve only been paid to put your couch in one spot and will have to charge extra for moving it to various spots in your living room.

It starts with marking your boxes clearly, and not in cursive.


If you’re moving from a larger house to a smaller one, space planning is essential. Joseph says, “People are not prepared for moving bigger to smaller. So many times movers have to stack boxes all the way to the ceiling, and then the people can’t get to them to open them. What could we do?” Arrange for offsite storage or have some of the boxes placed in the garage.

8. Observe the truck being weighed before and after packing. 

moving day

Personally observe the truck on the scale before and after packing so you know how much your stuff weighs, because that is the basis for the price you’re being charged. You also have the right to have the truck weighed at the destination. 

9. Always pay by weight, not cubic feet.

Move by weight, not volume. Cubic feet are not a precise measure. The same boxes can be arranged to take up different amounts of space. Scammers can leave big open gaps within stacks of boxes on a truck so that the boxes appear to take up more space than they really do. If you don’t have a precise measure, you don’t have control over the price. The military, governments, and corporations all ship by weight for a reason. The scale is your best friend, weight is an absolute measure.

10. Inspect the empty truck after delivery, before the crew leaves.

moving boxes

It’s on Jordan River Moving & Storage paperwork, to initial that you’ve inspected the truck. Nobody wants to have items accidentally left behind on the truck. You’ll feel more comfortable knowing that if you can’t find something, it’s somewhere in your house, and not on the truck. It gives you closure.

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Originally published March 25, 2024


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