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.

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.

Parents who are moving with kids, keep your cool

Written by: Arika Ford

Our children mimic our behavior and as parents, we are their first teachers in life with a strong influence over them for many of their developmental years. The years when our children are growing and developing can be tumultuous at times, there may be many ups and downs, but it is crucial to stay positive.

Moving is a big life change and can be extremely overwhelming for adults and children. Sometimes, families move as a result of less than ideal situations, such as divorce, job loss, or other changes that makes this stressful event even worse. It is imperative we remain calm and positive, not only for our sake, but for the sake of our children whom we love and want to succeed in all things. Below are simple efforts you can do to keep calm, and maintain your game face for your kids during the move!

Maintain normalcy-If you regularly have a family movie night or game night, I encourage you to keep it scheduled and to not be tempted to cancel it. This is time well spent bonding and relaxing with your family. Many feelings and emotions can come out during normal activities with your kids and move time can bring on a lot of those. It is in everyone’s best interest that kids have a time to express their emotions verbally to you so they don’t act them out physically. Even if you ask them what is wrong, they are likely not able to vocalize their emotions simply Truckie’s Treasure Chestbecause they don’t have an understanding of what they are feeling or why. For these reasons and many others, keep a normal schedule as much as possible for as long as possible. Children feel secure with a routine. Play a moving game with them, get the toy trucks out and play “moving to a new house”. Who knows, you may enjoy it more than they do, and find it as a good way to release emotions as well.

Maintain positivity-If you are managing a move, you are likely dealing with an increased number of people, who may not seem as sensitive to your situation as you would like. This can easily build up frustration as your patience is being spent on interacting and managing your feelings around strangers. If you need a release, be sure you aren’t taking it out on your children. It is important we are aware of our own emotions during this time. We must remain positive, especially in front of our kids, and sometimes that means we need to have a little alone time to wind down. It’s okay to do that! If you need to talk with your spouse, siblings, or best friend to vent a little in order to come full circle in your own thoughts and feelings, do it! Be sure you also reflect on the positive side of things as this will not only help you, but your family as well.

Keep them involved-Moving is scary. Young kids may not understand what is happening, and there’s a good chance they’re nervous, too. “What’s the new house going to be like? Will I make friends there? What if no one likes me?” These are all common questions that go through kids’ minds. Keep your children involved throughout the moving process, tell them what their new home will be like and keep them updated throughout the move. You can even have them help you get packing done to prepare for the move!

Maintain work life-Yes it is tempting to use work time to handle all of the moving business we must take care of such as changing your address for the entire family, or finding new local schools, stores, or the many other searches we can conduct online to Moving with Kidssooth our nerves about an upcoming move into an unfamiliar area. But don’t do it! Now is not the time to slack at your job, you must keep up with deadlines and the pace to maintain business as usual. Don’t be sucked into conducting personal business while on the clock. Of course take care of important needs after the workday or during lunch breaks, however keep a regular schedule as much as possible, and take the time to learn exciting new places of interest once you have settled into your new home. Make it a fun event by taking the family out to explore as a fun way to relax once the move is said and done.

Playing creative and fun games with your kids during this time can certainly ease their stress, which will in turn, ease yours. Just remember to stay positive about all moving aspects, there is a bright side to most things in life and moving can definitely be one of those bright sides! To make moving with kids even more stress-free and positive, hire a professional moving company to take the stress away on move day.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. We work day in and day out to move people forward®. To learn more about us, subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

4 tips for a stress free move to a new city

Moving to a new city where you don’t know anyone can be scary, but at the same time, exhilarating. Face it, not everyone gets a chance to start afresh in life, without baggage from your past. Here are a few tips to make your move to a new city all the more thrilling and less stressful.

Be brave

In the initial days, there may be times when you wish you were back home among familiar faTMAAT358-2258095496-Oces, where you knew everyone and everyone knew you. You may also feel perilously close to a breakdown at times, with all the moving and trying to settle into a new life and most often, a new job. Relax; it’s only normal to be afraid of all the changes going on in your life. If you feel like getting down on the kitchen floor and sobbing your heart away, do it. It’ll make you feel better. But instead of always thinking about how easy life was in your old city, try embracing the differences in your new life wholeheartedly. Instead of waiting for others to welcome you into the fold, take the initiative and extend a friendly hand. Invite your new neighbors over for a cup of coffee. A positive attitude brings about warmth and happiness in you and in people around you. Whatever you do, give yourself some time to acclimate to your new life. Don’t take any decision in haste.

Use technology

These days, you can find out which are the most happening places in your new city in less than five minutes with the help of technology. Google Maps, Yelp, and AroundMe are great for finding the best restaurants, the most popular malls and multiplexes, coffee shops etc. in your locality. If you are looking for handymen or contractors to fix up your new home, you can try the site Porch. Want to find people who share your same likes and interests? Use Meetup.

Get out and get going

Whatever you do, resist the urge to dive under the covers and spend the entire day at home, watching reruns of old movies on television. Walking is the best way to get to know a new neighborhood. It helps you get a feel of the place and the people, something hard to figure out from the isolation of a vehicle. Just make sure you are carrying a map with you so you don’t get lost. Find out where people hang out in your locality and go there. Strike up conversations with people you find interesting. Volunteer at charities that are important to you. If someone invites you to a party, don’t refuse thinking you hardly know anyone.

Take up new hobbies or revive old ones

Since you are starting your life all over again, it’s a great time to take up new hobbies or even, revive old ones. Set aside a few minutes every day to do something you enjoy. If you are fond of reading, but never used to get time at your old place, join a good library or book club in your new locality.

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Kurt Jacobson is a surfing enthusiast with a background in real estate. Having moved 10 times in the past 7 years, he thrives on helping others learn from his experiences. When he’s not out shredding waves he writes about rental homes for www.rentfinder.co.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®’s own Dapper Dad

Written by Nicole Harrison

 

We have great news! President Randy Shacka will be strutting his stuff once again at the Dapper Dads event downtown Lansing, Mich., on June 11.

Dapper Dads is a fundraising event hosted by Women Working Wonders (W3), who strive to support the physical and psychological health of women in mid-Michigan.Randy

Each year, mid-Michigan community leaders are recruited to be on the Dapper Dads and Dudes panel. The top 12 finalists are featured in the Dapper Dads calendar.

Dapper Dads consists of online voting and a fashion show in downtown Lansing. We encourage you to support Randy and help us raise money for women’s health in mid-Michigan.

“Dapper Dads is a fun event,” said TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® President and Dapper Dads contestant Randy Shacka. “What other chance do you get to dress up, walk a run way, and have a crowd to cheer you on? You get to have fun while raising awareness and money to support the Women Working Wonders volunteers, so becoming involved makes it a no brainer.”

Randy’s favorite part about participating in the Dapper Dads event is interacting with the other dads and dudes who are participating.

“It’s pretty comical seeing other business owners fighting for a spot in front of the mirror prior to going out on stage!”

This will be Randy’s third year participating in the fashion show. The past two years, he’s as able to create wonderful memories, and last year’s performance will be hard to beat!

“My favorite memory had to be last year’s event where I had the help of Ramone and Trent, two drivers from the Lansing office. They wheeled me out to the stage on a dolly and proceeded to dance and get the crowd going. It was so fun hanging out with these two while trying to keep up with their dance moves!”

Not only is Randy living the core value of “be your best and have fun”, he is also giving back to the community by supporting a great causdapper dad 2014e.

We need your support! Each vote is a $5 donation and supports the mission of women’s health. Last year Dapper Dads raised more than $325,000 and we want to beat that this year! You can vote online now until June 11.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. If you are interested in learning more about TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® check us out on Facebook.

Career Move Month 2015 an overwhelming success!

We are enthused over this year’s Career Move Month results! After hiring 1,209 employees across the system, we surpassed our target of 1,000 new hires for the month of March. We couldn’t be more excited to begin our busy season with our new team members across the country!

Although Career Move Month is over, TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® locations nationwide are still hiring to fill open positions. Franchises are continually hiring for positions such as movers, drivers, customer service representatives, managers, marketing coordinators and other various support roles on their teams.

Working at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is not just a summer job, it’s the beginning of a fun, advantageous career. This year, we have written a variety of blogs covering what it’s like to work for TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®. For more career-related stories, check out our HR blog.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move your career forward! It’s time to join the moving company with 64 straight months of rapid growth. For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.

We recently launched a new careers website! Check it out and apply to become part of the TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® team. https://careers.twomenandatruck.com/

A big move and even bigger change

Written by Nicole Harrison

Moving is a difficult time in many people’s lives. Imagine moving after living in a home for more than 30 years. You have deep roots in your home and within your community. Your family grew up there, and essentially you’ve built a life in your home. All of your fondest memories and special milestones were made there. Could you ever say goodbye?DSC_0980

Byron and Jo Anne lived in their family home for 38 years. After raising their two children, they decided it was time to downsize and move into a condo closer to their kids and grandkids, which was just a few hours from their long-time home. I was able to meet Byron and Jo Anne during their recent move and chat with them about their moving and downsizing experience.

After decades in one home, it’s no t uncommon to collect both investment pieces and useless clutter without even realizing it. Imagine living in a home as long as Byron and Jo Anne did. For them, the most difficult part of the move was the de-cluttering and downsizing process.

“After living in our home for so long, getting rid of items we’ve accumulated over the years was the hardest,” said Byron.

I have a feeling most people in their situation would have to agree.

Curious, I asked them if it was difficult to say goodbye to their home they lived in for so long and created so many memories in.

“The memories we made weren’t attached to the actual house.” Byron said smiling, “The memories were more about the kids, their friends, and other family members. We still have the memories – and of course lots of photos! A lot of the furniture and pictures came with us.”DSC_0982

Byron told me the most difficult part of their downsizing process was decision-making. Determining what to keep and what to get rid of is always the hardest part. Byron and Jo Anne made a good team and worked together while making decisions on what to keep and what to get rid of.

“I would say we got rid of about one third of the household-type possessions. Our kids took some of them and we donated a lot to thrift stores,” Byron said. “A majority of the stuff of which we disposed were paper products like newspapers and magazines we’ve collected over the years. Also, a lot of it was the kids’ stuff we’ve collected over the years.”

Once Byron and Jo Anne listed their house, they started de-cluttering and getting rid of small knickknacks. They did their best to donate all the items they could before throwing them into a landfill. Throughout the downsizing process they remained sensitive to the environment. They were even able to leave a few of the larger items for the young couple who bought their home.

As we know, downsizing can be a daunting and emotional process. Luckily, Byron and Jo Anne gave one crucial piece of advice for couples who are looking to downsize. Start early. Start today. Start right now.

“Once you start thinking about downsizing, start weeding things out. We’ve been downsizing for years.”DSC_0973

It’s smart to go through your home a few times a year and clean out what needs to go and make room for new items. Even if you’re not downsizing, it will save you from living in a cluttered home.

Ultimately, Byron and Jo Anne moved to be closer to their family. They have always lived on a busy street, so locating to a quieter area was on the top of their list when searching for condos. They are looking forward to seeing what the future holds for them in their new home.

Have fun on your new adventure, Byron and Jo Anne!

Check out our recent downsizing blog for help deciding what to keep and donate: Preparing Yourself to Downsize.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward! For more helpful tips and information on moving services subscribe to our blog and like us on Facebook.