College moving 101: tips for your first move

Written by Corinne DeVries

Where do you even begin?! Preparing for your first move to college can be stressful and overwhelming, to say the least. The uncertainty surrounding what will soon be your college life is looming ahead. You’re not sure where everything on campus is, where your room is, what you should pack, if your new peers will be welcoming, or if you’ll get everything done before your move in date.

Thankfully we have quite a few college moving experts on hand to offer their advice on expertly preparing you for your move, so you’ll have one less thing to worry about!

Getting started and getting there

Most universities and colleges begin sending brochures, flyers, and check-up emails a montCollege movingh or two in advance to prepare you to move in. Often, among these materials will be a list of suggested items you need to bring. This is a good way to start your list of items you know you need to bring.  Another important thing to remember is most campuses get crazy busy during move-in days. A high influx of cars are on campus, makes parking and getting to your dorm or apartment just short of impossible. Be sure you check what time you are scheduled to move in and where you can park to unload your belongings, and try to stick with this schedule!  A lot of students will be moving in on the same day, and if you try to move in at a different time, there may not be a place to park and unload. Lastly, on move day, give yourself a little extra time to get there—there are many people in one area, and getting through campus or around town can take a lot longer than usual, and you want to make sure you are punctual for your move-in time.

Roommate bonding

It’s a good idea to get to know your roommate and become familiar with them so you don’t feel like you’re moving in with a total stranger. Meeting up to grab lunch is the best way to introduce yourself but if you don’t have time, or you roommate doesn’t live near you, you can always chat online or over the phone. This way you can find out what they like to do in their free time, as well as figure out who will be bringing what items. The typical list of items students share with their roommates are things like a futon, fridge, microwave, TV, carpet, etc.!

Sharing a bathroom

Check if your dorm is suite style or community bath. If you’re in a suite style dorm, you will want to stock up on cleaning supplies. Usually with four people plus your friends that come over, your bathroom gets gross pretty quickly. Get to know your suitemates and set up a weekly cleaning schedule for the bathroom. Since cleaning supplies can be a hassle to pack, you will most likely want to find the local convenience store once you move in, and get cleaning supplies for your bathroom.

If your dorm has community bath, you will probably want to invest in a carrier for your shampoo/conditioner, tooth brush, razors etc. to make trips to the bathroom simple. You can just grab your carrier rather than trying to carry everything in your arms. Sometimes toiletries can be awkward to pack. If you don’t want to deal with trying to find a place to squeeze your toiletries in with all of your clothes on move day, you may want to wait and buy these items at the convenience store once you arrive.

 Other essentials

Be sure to read through all of the information the university has sent you about measurements. All dorms are different, so before buying your futon, carpet, or fridge, check the size of your room to ensure what you’re buying will all fit in your room. Also, double check things like bed size. Some bunk beds or lofts in college dorms are longer or a different size than your average twin bed. If you’re planning to buy your own sheets, double check the bed size to make sure the sheets will fit.

Linen agreements

Some campuses offer linen agreements for on-campus living. So if you don’t want to go out and find sheets that fit, check to see if your campus offers a linen agreement. Often linen agreements include washing the sheets as well as shower towels. These items usually need to be returned at the end of the year during checkout, but it’s one less thing to pack!

In addition, check the laundry situation in your dorm. There may be washers and dryers in your dorm hall. Some campuses may include the use of the machines in your housing contract. However, some may require you to use cards or quarters. If this is the case, you may want to bring quarters or find a nearby location where you can exchange cash for quarters!

Survival kit

Some things you may not think about when moving into the dorm is that you will most likely get sick whether it be a cold, the flu, migraines, or maybe you will get a really bad paper cut! Or for those bad days where you seem to be spilling everything, whether it be on your carpet, desk, or even on yourself, there are a few things you will want to pack:

  • First aid: bandages, antibiotic and hydrocortisone ointments, pain killers, digital thermometer, decongestant, and antacids
  • Laundry: detergent, stain remover stick, and fabric softener
  • Cleaning: antibacterial wipes, glass cleaning wipes, microfiber dust cloth, roll of paper towels, broom, and dustpan

Tips

  • Pack light
    • The dorms aren’t very big and there isn’t a lot of room for clutter. Try to only pack the essentials with maybe a few decorative items such as pictures of family and high school friends to make it feel more like home.
    • It may be easy to pack clothes in a suitcase, however there isn’t a lot of storage space in a dorm room so try to pack clothes in garbage bags or something that can be easily thrown away or stored for when it’s time to move out again.
  • Pack like things together
    • If you pack similar belongings together, it makes unpacking on arrival so much easier.
  • Tool kit
    • Bring a tool kit for move in day and have it handy in case you want to loft/de-loft your bed, put together a table you brought, or something of the sort.
  • Explore
    • Introduce yourself to people living on your floor or in your hall. The friends you make in college will likely become lifelong friends.

Also find nearby convenience stores because we all know there is that one thing you forgot to pack and you won’t be able to wait for mom to send it to you in the mail.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. To learn more moving and packing tips subscribe to our blog or like us on Facebook.

First time moving with pets? We’ve got you covered!

Moving to a new home can be a very stressful time for our four-legged family members. Here are some great tips to minimize stress before the move, during the transition, and when arriving at your new home.

Get the 411: If moving to a foreign country (or even Hawaii), be aware of quarantine or travel requirements that may take additional planning. If moving within the US, familiarize yourself with local pet regulations, ordinances, and zoning laws. Many cities have specific laws regarding leashes, pet licensing, breed restrictions, and allowable number of pets per household. In fact, some cities will even issue a citation for walking your dog on a public beach. For exotic pets (birds, Dr2reptiles, monkeys) or agricultural species (pigs, chickens, and goats), special permitting or zoning laws may apply. If you will be residing within an apartment community or condo, you should double check to ensure your pets are permitted. This should also be plainly stipulated within your rental agreement or within the homeowner’s association rules.

Good to go: Prior to moving, plan a visit with your pet’s veterinarian to ensure your pet is up-to-date on important vaccinations and is healthy enough for travel. Remember to obtain sufficient medication and prescription diet to last at least two weeks (until you are able to establish a relationship with a veterinarian in your new area). Ask your current veterinarian to refer you to a veterinarian in your new area or conduct your own research using the AVMA or American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) websites. If you are traveling across state lines or internationally, you will need a corresponding certificate of veterinary inspection to be filled out by an accredited veterinarian. In addition, some airlines require an acclimation certificate for air travel that must also be signed by an accredited veterinarian. Request a copy of your pet’s medical records to share with your new veterinarian. Consider having your pet microchipped as a quick and minimally invasive way to locate your pet if he or she should ever become lost. If your pet is already microchipped, remember to update your new information with the microchip company.

Carry me home: Leave yourself enough time to find a suitable pet carrier with sufficient ventilation. Your pet should have enough room to stand up, turn around, and lie down comfortably. Get your pet accustomed to the carrier before you travel by using the carrier as a pet bed for several days to weeks. Try to increase comfort and security by placing your pet’s favorite blanket, toy, and/or treat within the carrier. If your pet is prone to motion sickness, consider trying to slowly acclimate him or her by taking short car trips well in advance of your move. Progressively increase the duration of the car trips and monitor for improvement. Also, ask your veterinarian about prescription medications that work well to alleviate motion sickness in pets.

Pack it up:  Shortly before your move, your pet may become anxious while witnessing the packing and moving of household items. Consider a doggy day care, boarding facility, or have your pet visit a well-known friend during times of increased activity. Alternatively, assign a well-ventilated room of your home as the “pet room” to provide a sanctuary away from the chaos. Place a “do not disturb” sign on the door to avoid people unnecessarily entering the room.  Keep in mind that cats may show a tendency to run away or hide in boxes when stressed, so a “pet room” will help to keep tabs on your tiny tiger. Avoid straying from your usual routine during the moving process. Extra attention and special treats can serve as good short-term distractions while extra walks/increased exercise are a great outlet for excess nervous energy.  Pheromone-based diffusers and sprays are also available to help calm dogs and cats during stressful times. If you are concerned about your pet’s level of anxiety, speak to your veterinarian about medications available to help control your pet’s anxiety throughout the moving process.

Leave it out: Remember to leave out the following pet-related items that are needed for travel:
Prescribed medications (ensure you have adequate supply for the entire duration of your trip plus an additional 4 days)
-Food and water (ensure you have adequate supply for the entire duration of your trip plus an additional 4 days)
-Travel carrier or crate
-Pet bed with favorite blanket
-Several favorite toysDr

-Collar with leash or harness; ensure your pet is wearing an updated information tag including your pet’s name, new phone number, and new address
-Litter pan/cat litter
-Health certificate (interstate or international) +/- acclimation certificate for air travel
-Photo of your pet (in case your pet should become lost)
-Plastic poop bags
-Roll of paper towels

-Current veterinarian’s phone number

Other items to consider:
Medical records (especially if your pet has a current medical condition)
Pet first aid kit
Favorite treats
Pet seat belt and/or vehicle barrier
Pet brush

Dr. Anna Ligman is a small animal veterinarian and owner of The Veterinary Center at Hunter’s Crossing in Gainesville, FL.  Dr. Ligman is very passionate about preventative medicine and focuses on strong client education to enhance pets’ quality – and quantity – of life.

Help! I’ve never moved before!

Written by Nicole Harrison

If this is your first time moving, there is a lot of information you need to know in addition to hiring a professional moving company, or bribing your friends with free pizza to help you move. Even if you’ve moved before and have never used a professional moving company such as TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®, there are many things to be aware of in preparation for the big day.

An accurate estimate. When you are ready for your free estimate, think about any additional storage spaces (garage, shed, attic, basement, and storage unit) you may have. In many cases customers forget about additional storage so the final bill is more money than the estimate because of these forgotten areas. Be prepared to provide the number of rooms your current house has since this will also help the estimator indicate a time frame. Finally, let us know if there are tight corners, or narrow stairwells in your house, apartment, or condo (smaller than standard doorways). Mention those hard-to-maneuver places when you are getting your estimate.

Scheduling your move. Schedule your move in advance. As soon as you know you’re moving, give TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® a call. If you are moving during the busy summer months, it’s especially important to book as far in advance as you can. We are very accommodating to last minute moves, however, during the busy months, it may be OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAdifficult to get a move crew the same day or week you call. Booking early will help secure your ideal move day.

Parking. Do you live on a steep hill? Do you live in an apartment community? Is your driveway new? Is it a long walk to your house, apartment, or condo? Does your building have an elevator? If yes, do you have to reserve it for your move? These are all important things to consider before the moving crew arrives. If there are any obstacles near your home it’s important to notify the moving company so they can plan ahead of time. Our movers typically drive a 26-foot truck, if you live in an apartment, condo, or senior community, check with the property manager to see if there is a load or unload zone on the property. Help us help you by doing some research before your move.

Packing. Will you be packing some of your own items before your move? TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is a full-service moving company, and we are more than happy to help you get packed. If you would like our specially trained packers to pack your items, let us know when you book your move so it can be included in your estimate. We also sell a variety of moving boxes and packing supplies for your convenience. We post moving tips on our Facebook page every Wednesday, if you’re packing your own items, check them out!

Number of boxes. If you’ve never moved before how would you ever know how many boxes you need to fit your stuff? Use this handy guide to help decide the number of boxes you will need to pack your items. Note: the number of boxes will vary depending on the number of items you have in your house. Ask the franchise you are moving with if they will buy back unused boxes.

box estimator

What to expect on move day: Ask for your mover or driver’s phone number for the day of your move. That way, you will be able to contact them if you have any questions or if you need to give them specific directions upon their arrival. Your movers will call when they are on their way to your house. This will help you accurately prepare for their arrival. Also keep in mind to plan for the weather. Rain and snow do not scare us! We will move you under many weather conditions. Remember, movers are people, too. If it’s a blistering hot day, it may be nice to offer your movers water, tea or some other refreshing drink to cool off and keep hydrated. Same for the winter, if it’s brutally cold, allow your movers time to warm up either in their truck or in your home. The time movers take for breaks will not be counted on your final bill.

In the whirlwind of planning and this life changing event, sit back and soak it all in. You are about to embark on an exciting new adventure. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. We are subject matter experts and have many moving, packing and organizational tips for you! To learn more about TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® like us on Facebook and subscribe to our blog.

Wrapping up Movers for Moms®, 230,000 items collected in 2015!

Movers for Moms® 2015 has officially come to a close!

At TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®, we believe every mother deserves to be thought of on Mother’s Day, regardless of her circumstancm4mes. Because of that, we came up with the Movers for Moms® program eight years ago, and it runs as our annual spring program. Our franchises team up with local schools, businesses, and other organizations to collect essential care items for mothers in need who are forced to stay in domestic abuse or homeless shelters around the time of Mother’s Day. Our franchises distribute collection boxes around the community to gather the items, and deliver them to their local shelter partners on or before Mother’s Day weekend.

The Movers for Moms® program continues to grow year after year. It was first created with just 20 Michigan franchises and eight years later, we’re proud to say our franchises have collected more than 600,000 items for moms in need over the years! This year alone, our fantastic franchises collected more than 230,000 items for delivery to local shelters!

Movers for Moms® success is built on the generosity of local communities coming together to support at-risk moms. We want to thank everyone who has generously acted as m4m5a donation drop off location, our customers who so thoughtfully give items to the cause and support their local women’s and homeless shelters, and to our businesses and schools who work so hard to collect items for local moms!

We’re proud to live out our core value of giving back to the community, not just when running our annual Movers for Moms® program, but all year long.

The photos illustrate the impact Movers for Moms® not only has on moms in need, but on the entire community as they come together to support those in need.

m4m2 m4m3

Follow Movers for Moms® on Facebook, Twitter!

Throw a rockin’ Fourth of July party your guests will never forget!

Written by Nicole Harrison

The Fourth of July is one of the most anticipated days of the summer. Fireworks, sparklers, hotdogs, swimming, and special time with friends and family are some highlights. Whether you are heading to the lake, or staying home, we have a few pointers to make your Fourth of July bash a blow out!

Food

Luckily, almost every year on the Fourth of July, the sun is shining, there are blue skies and beautiful weather. It’s the epitome of the summer season. The food menu can be one of the most stressful aspects of party planning. Whe n you Memorial-Day-Partythink about the Fourth of July, you think about grilling or cooking over a campfire. Both options are perfect for the summer season and being outside with friends and family! Hot dogs, brats, and hamburgers are delicious meal options, and relatively inexpensive. Popular side dishes can include: baked beans, fruit and vegetable trays, potato salad, potato chips, the list could go on and on! Pinterest is also a great resource for festive displays of foods and fun recipes.

Beverages

It’s important to stay hydrated throughout the day, especially if you’re spending it outside in the warmer temps! Consider purchasing metal or plastic buckets to hold the drinks you are serving. All you have to do is fill them up with ice and bury the drinks in the ice. You can also fill beverage dispensers with homemade punch, various lemonades, water, tea, etc. Most likely, it’s going to be a hot day, make sure you have plenty of ice to keep your drinks cool and refreshing!

Yard Games

My favorite part of the Fourth of July! If you’re competitive like me, plan out fun yard games and make a friendly contest out of it. Here are a few popular games everyone will enjoy: corn hole, water balloon fight/toss, scavenger hunt, bad mitten, 4-square, kickball, etc. The Fourth of July is all about celebrating our independence as a country and enjoying fellowship. Plan fun activities for everyone to take part in!

Musicmemorial day

Pump up the tunes! If you have a stereo or speakers, turn on the summer jams! Pandora and Spotify have energizing playlists you can spend the day rocking out to. Some of our favorites: summer hits of the 2000’s, Classic Rock, throwback, beach vibes, and Fourth of July party playlists.

Sparklers/Fireworks

Leave the fireworks for the professionals. If you have never had your own firework display, we recommend going to a local show. If you’re set on lighting off your own fireworks, do enough research beforehand and make sure you are a large distance from the observers. Fireworks are fun, but can be very dangerous. No matter what you decide to do, have fun! Sparklers are an easy way for the kids (and adults) to have fun and express themselves. See who can spell their name in the air before their sparklers burn out, or encourage the kiddos to wave them in the air or twirl in circles.

We hope you have a rockin’ Fourth of July party! As always, be smart and safe out there!

Smile and snap a photo: TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® Moves Me contest starts today!

Written by Nicole Harrison

 

Help us celebrate our 30 year anniversary by participating in our summer photo contest!

We have exciting news! Beginning today, our summer photo contest: TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® Moves Me is launching! We hope you will participate, whether it be by submitting a photo or by voting on your favorite picture!

DSC_0017_edited What is TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® Moves Me?

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® Moves Me is a national photo contest that will run from June 15 until July 17. We are giving away 1,500 awesome, super-cool TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® t-shirts from our vintage 1985 line to help celebrate our 30th anniversary!

To participate in the contest, all you need to do is snag a free shirt, take a fun, creative photo of yourself wearing the shirt, and submit it to our Facebook page. Once the submission period is done, a team from our corporate office will vote and narrow down to 30 finalists.

After the top 30 finalists have been selected, you will be able to vote for your favorite picture. The three photos with the most votes win!

Did we mention the amazing prizes?! First place will receive $1,000, second place receives $500, and third place receives $250!

Click here to view the official contest rules.

How do I get a shirt?

On each of our social media accounts: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram, we will promote a special code that will allow you to order one of our vintage shirts for FREE. If you’re interested in getting a free shirt and participating in the contest, check out our social channels and order your shirt today!

Disclaimer: We are giving away 1,500 shirts across the United States. Our vintage tees are first come, first served and will only be available (for free) until we run out!

How do I participate?

  1. Get your FREE vintage TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® t-shirt from one our social media channels: Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram.
  2. Get a photo of yourself in your totally awesome new shirt! The more creative, the better.
  3. Submit your photo on our Facebook page: facebook.com/TWOMENANDATRUCKINTERNATIONAL between June 17 and July 5
  4. On July 7, the top 30 photos will be open for public voting until July 17
  5. The three photos with the most votes will be announced on July 30

Here’s what we’re looking for:DSC_0036_edited
Creativity– Wear your shirt while sky-diving, rock-climbing, or doing something that’s not an everyday event. Don’t be shy! Snap photos of you in your shirt with our movers during a move, or following our core values such as giving back to the community. Props such as boxes and moving equipment are an added bonus!
Quality photo– Blurry photos or selfies that do not show your entire TMT shirt will not make the cut! We want clear photos that clearly show you out and about in your new TMT shirt.
Description– A unique description will be taken into account when narrowing down to the top 30 photos.
Family friendly– We are looking for family-friendly photos of you in your TMT shirt. Would your grandma approve? Nothing inappropriate will be accepted in the contest i.e. inappropriate hand gestures, clothing, smoking, drinking … you get the idea.

Contest timeline
We’re glad you asked! The contest starts today and officially ends Friday, July 17.
Here are the important dates to remember:

June 17- July 5 — Submit a photo of yourself to our Facebook page.
July 7 — Top 30 photos will be announced!
July 7-July 17 — Top 30 photos will be open for public voting. You can vote for a photo once a day for the duration of the voting period.
July 20 — Announce the top three winners!

We can’t wait to see your photo! If you have additional questions please email TMTMovesMe@twomen.com. Good luck!

Why hire a professional moving company this summer?

Written by Nicole Harrison

 

It’s the peak of busy moving season! Each summer, families frantically pack and move while the weather is cooperating and before school starts back up in the fall. Moving is already a dreaded event in many peoples’ lives. You have to coordinate schedules, pack your belongings, and find a crew to move you if you decide to hire a company. As tempting as it may be, bribing your family members with beer and pizza is not all it’s thought up to be. Yes, they love you and want to help you, but you don’t want to burden them with moving day stresses. Most likely, they are too nice to tell you they don’t want to do it, anyway!

We are a professional moving company with many years of moving and packing experience, and we are true subject matter experts in all things moving. Check out some of the reasons you should consider hiring TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® for your upcoming, summer move.

Full-service moving company. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is a full-service moving company. That means we not only do the heavy lifting, we offer packing services to pack any and all items for you prior to the move — this is perfect for busy households who don’t have time to pack themselves. Along with our packing services, we also Two Men and a Trucksell moving boxes and packing supplies if you choose to pack yourself.

Professional movers. All of our movers are friendly, professional, and in uniform. They are also put through extensive training before they conduct any moves. This provides peace of mind for our customers, as it’s often stressful enough for strangers to come into your home to pack and move all of your prized possessions.

Background checked. Each mover and driver is background checked and drug screened prior to their hiring. Our movers and drivers go into your home to move your most precious belongings, and interact with your entire family.  We want to make certain they are stand-up men who will do an exceptional job while exceeding your expectations.

Understanding employees. We know moving is tough, but we understand this stress and work together as a team to eliminate it as much as possible. Our TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® teams do everything they can to give you a smooth transition. That way, you can put your feet up and enjoy your new space in no time!

Padding and stretch wrap service. We offer free padding and stretch wrapping for your furniture and delicate items to ensure they are protected during the move and to eliminate any damages that may occur.  We are moving, after all, so damages-free moves are never 100% guaranteed. However, by offering these services, it means you can rest a little easier knowing your items are protected during transport.Customer Service photo

Customer service. At TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®, we’re extremely proud of our 96 percent customer referral rate. We pride ourselves on our top-notch customer service and expertise. Our employees are passionate about what they do, you can tell in their positive attitudes and friendly manner! Moving day doesn’t have to be stressful — you can always interact with our movers as they’re in and out of your home during the day. They love our customers, but even more, they love knowing they’ve made an impact on families during their move day.

Give back to the community. One of our core values is to give back to the community. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®’s Founder Mary Ellen Sheets donated her first $1,000 she made. She divvied the profit into 10, $100 donations and distributed them to various charities in the Lansing, Mich., area. Since then, we have supported numerous charities and causes throughout the country and donate 10 cents of every move to the American Cancer Society. This money goes to various branches of the American Cancer Society around the country!

These are not the only benefits of hiring TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®, the list could go on and on. Summer is already known for its busy months, planning get-aways, and if you have children, a surplus of camps and activities all summer long. Hiring a professional moving company will give you a little more free time to focus on what matters most, your family!

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the largest and first franchised moving company in the United States. To learn more about us, subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook. If you would like a free moving quote visit: www.twomenandatruck.com.