Moving in a winter wonderland? Save time and money!

Written by Arika Ford

Grandma rule_photoTake the wonder out of moving during the winter months with TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®.

With the snow flying outside and the temperature dropping, inclement weather can make for hazardous moving conditions that can prolong your move. Below are frequently asked questions our customer service representatives get asked during the colder months, along with the answers to clear things up for your winter move.

Q: If it is snowing, sleeting, or raining, will the movers still complete the move?

A: Yes, our movers will still complete moves even in precipitation (hail, drizzle, snow) unless it’s truly severe. For example, if it starts to snow so hard enough it is not safe or the movers cannot see ahead of them, they will wait it out in the truck. Typically these types of weather breaks are not on the customer’s bill. Please keep in mind that travel may take longer due to hazardous roadways. We want to ensure not only the safety of our movers, but also your belongings.

Q: Does my sidewalk and driveway have to be clear of snow and ice?

A: The movers will shovel and salt your walkway or driveway for you, but the time it takes to do this is an expense of the customer. To save money, it is best if this task is taken care of in advance. For safety purposes, it needs to be done before the move can begin.

Q: If it gets really cold, will the movers continue to work in low temperatures?

A: The movers will dress accordingly, but if it gets too cold, they are encouraged to take breaks to warm up either in the customer’s home (with permission of course) or in the truck. Additionally, this time is not usually counted toward the customer’s final bill.

Q: What’s protocol in blizzard-like conditions?

A: Our movers are allowed to take breaks at their discretion. If the weather is hazardous and poses safety issues, they are encouraged to break. If the weather is too extreme, the customer always has the option to reschedule.

Q: Will my belongings get snowed on and wet?

Two Men and a TruckA: Almost every piece of furniture will be stretch wrapped, but ideally we encourage customers communicate with the movers about those possessions about they’re most concerned. This allows the movers to ensure proper or extra protection of special items during the move. The customer can even request to have their items pad wrapped, which is when the movers put a furniture pad over your belongings then wrap them with stretch wrap for ultimate protection against the nasty winter elements. Mattresses are not usually stretch wrapped, so it is up to the customer to purchase mattress bags prior to the move. The movers will be happy to put them into the bags for you.

Q: Will my plants and pets be too cold in the truck during the move?

A: TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® cannot move anything living in the truck. The customer must take all living things with them in their personal vehicle where they will be safe and warm.

Holiday moving tip: If you’re moving around the holiday season, and need your presents moved, make sure to mention it to the movers. They can organize the move to take extra care of them. They will even make sure to place the presents in the truck so they’re hidden and will take them off before your kids get home.

The customer should also ensure the garage and driveway are clear of vehicles so movers can back the truck up as close to the door or garage as possible. This helps the move to go quicker, more safely, and as dry as possible. Communication becomes even more critical during the winter months so please communicate with your movers and ask questions; they are very happy to help any way they can so you stay warm and comfortable throughout your moving experience. Hiring TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® allows you to leave the moving to the pros!

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised 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.

Downsize your home using these 5 easy tips

DSC_0274Written by Claire Schneider

Are you currently in the process of downsizing your home? Whether you’re an empty nester trading your home for a condominium or you’ve decided on a high rise in the city, what to keep is often the toughest decision in the process. We’ve compiled a few tips to help you organize and prepare for downsizing your life to make the most of the tighter space in your new place.

Assess your actual needs

In my opinion this is the hardest phase of downsizing, but it is the most crucial. It’s tough to go through every belonging and decide what needs to move with you and what needs to go. Make it easier by determining whether you would need to replace a specific item if you got rid of it prior to your move. Go through room by room starting with the kitchen, since kitchen items don’t typically hold as much sentimental value. Also, keep in mind how often you’ve actually used each item. For instance, that oversized platter you only take out for Thanksgiving. If you’re considering keeping something “just in case,” it’s a good indicator you should either donate it or place the item in storage.

Another way to decide if an item should move with you is to think about how much space you’re willing to give that item in your new home. The giant, decorated vase may be very pretty, but are you willing to give up floor space for it? Instead, think of ways you can incorporate shelving or storage into your home décor.

For those sentimental items you can get rid of or put in storage, think of different ways you can keep it. Could your kids’ or grandkids’ artwork be kept in a scrapbook rather than a box in the closet?

Go through current storage areas

Storage spaces are areas we often ignore because the idea of sorting through them seems like a daunting task. Go through your basement, attic closets, and even your junk drawer. Take everything out and sort through each item, only putting back what you have used in the past year and donating the rest. Think about the storage spaces you will have in your next home and only keep what will fit.

Create a mock layout of your new rooms

Create a mock layout of the new rooms in your home to avoid realizing your oversized sectional won’t fit in your new living room on move day. This way you’ll have a great visual of what furniture will actually fit in the space, and avoid the unnecessary move day stress. Smaller home dwellers know it’s vital to avoid cluttering spaces with things which don’t serve a specific purpose. Instead, think of items that could serve dual purposes and incorporate them into your design elements.

Organize your move

DSC_0257When beginning to pack, be sure you pack items from the same room in the same box. This will reduce many headaches during the unpacking process. Label all boxes by what room they go in. You may want to buy different colored tape and coordinate it with each room in your new home.

If you’re moving to a condo or apartment with shared parking or an elevator, check with building management to see about reserving a parking space for the moving truck and if you can reserve the elevator on move day. This will not only make the move much easier, but if you hire movers, it will also save you time and money.

Be creative with new storage spaces

As noted previously, smaller homes generally lack storage. Once you’ve moved in, identify spaces where you can add storage space. A common hidden storage treasure is under staircases. Here you can use the wasted space to create a shelving unit or cubbies to hide items you use enough to not put in a storage unit. Instead of using a typical coffee table, invest in an ottoman and a tray. This way you can still have a place for your drinks as well as extra storage inside the ottoman. In the kitchen, use bench seats at the kitchen table; these are trending hot so there are a lot of choices, and, best of all, they provide ample storage.

At TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® we realize moving needs are unique for every customer, so we’re ready to customize a move to ensure the best moving experience. Our uniformed movers and drivers undergo extensive training; they are permanent employees, undergo background checks, and are subject to random drug testing. They are committed to exceeding expectations and ensuring your move is completed efficiently to keep your moving costs affordable.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised 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.

Your moving (and sanity) guide for making the college transition

Written by Claire Schneider

With stores setting up their back-to-school displays, many 18-year-olds are getting ready to embark on the thrilling adventure of going off to college. While preparing a move to college might seem fun and exciting at the time, it also has its challenges. As a parent you want to be there help them in the moving process while making sure to not overstep. With these helpful tips, moving to college might be the easiest thing your college student does all year.

First, check the paperwork. By this time you’ve received numerous pamphlets and emails from the college containing information about the upcoming year. Remember to re-read everything the residence life dean sent, paying particular attention to check-in times, locations, and procedures for dorm move-in day. Some schools let arriving students and their families pull cars right up to the dorm door, while for others it’s first come, first served. See that you have all the necessary paperwork easily accessible.

College roommates Get to know the roommate. It’s important for roommates to meet before move-in day, so they don’t feel like they’re moving in with a stranger. This is a busy time of year, so if you can’t find a time that works to meet-up, connect with them on social media to learn their interests, hobbies, and interior decorating ideas. They should also take this time to decide what large items they can share and who will be responsible for bringing them.

Create a checklist. Together with your college student, make a list of the necessary items and stick to it. Make sure to include photos of friends and family and other sentimental items which will help make the dorm feel like an extension of home. Keep in mind everything will have to fit in your vehicle; otherwise, there might be too much stuff. This is the perfect time to go through the overstuffed closets and drawers to identify those favorite clothes and shoes which will make the journey to college.

Assemble a “living” kit. A “living” kit contains little items, which are not liquid or bulky, a teen may not think of as necessary but will need at some point. Items include:

• First aid: Bandages of assorted sizes, antibiotic and hydrocortisone ointments, pain killer, digital thermometer, contact solution, decongestant, and antacids
• Laundry: Detergent pods (they’re small, easy to store and easy to use), a stain remover stick, and fabric softener sheets
• Cleaning: Antibacterial wipes, glass cleaning wipes, microfiber dust cloth, roll of paper towels, broom, and dustpan.

Remember, storage space is minimal so anything in a convenient, flat-shaped packaging is ideal.

Locate the store oasis. No matter how prepared you may think you are, there will always be those items you’ll need to make a trip to the store for. Before moving day, find out where the nearest Target, Staples, and Lowes (or similar stores) are.

Know your time and arrive early! Colleges take a lot of time planning out all the inner workings of moving day to ensure things run smoothly. For a lot of colleges there will be limited parking space, so the earlier you arrive the better. Just remember there are so many others moving in that day as well and are just as stressed as you are. Be sure to stick to your designated time of arrival. If you come before your time, it could throw the housing staff completely off.

Only bring one or two suitcases. Even though they make it easy to move, especially if they are on wheels, you won’t need many while you’re away to college. Instead pack your belongings in large storage bags; these can easily be stored until you move out.

Moving tip: Keep clothing on hangers, place a trash bag over them, and tie the bottom. Then secure the hangers together so they don’t fall back into the bag. This will keep all of your clothes together and protected during the move. Then all you have to do is hang them up in the closet, rip the bags off, and you’re ready to go!

Bring tools. A tool kit with a basic hammer, screwdrivers, and pliers can be a handy thing on move-in day. You may need to bunk the beds, raise or lower mattresses, or deal with minor repairs.

Relax. Going to college is a fun and exciting time. Don’t get stressed with the move. Instead have fun and take this time to bond as a family. Make a fun and upbeat moving playlist prior to keep everyone in good spirits. Maybe include a few songs which have special memories for your family.

Of course you could always avoid the college moving day drama and hire a moving company. Here’s a fun video showing just how relaxing moving day could be for you.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised 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.

Eight interns and a truck – Part 3

Written by Cheyenne Yost

Mark List – Human Resources

MarkMark List is one of two human resource interns here at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®/International, Inc. I call Mark a veteran intern because he knows the ins and outs of Home Office, and it is his second summer interning here. When I met Mark on my first day, I didn’t even realize he was an intern, he was very helpful and organized; I assumed he was a long-term employee! After interviewing Mark, here’s what he had to say about his second summer as an HR intern.

Q: Tell me a little bit about yourself and your background.

Mark: I was born and raised here in Lansing. My father is a civil engineer for Golder Associates, an international firm, and my mother works here at Home Office as the IT service operations manager. I have one older sister who is an electrical engineer at Dematic in Grand Rapids, Mich. I attend Grand Valley State University where I am majoring in business with a human resources emphasis and considering using it as a pre-law degree. I also run cross country/track and field for Grand Valley.

Q: What made you decide to intern at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® for a second summer?

Mark: This company has directly influenced my life. My mother has worked here since I was eight years old, and I am so thankful for that. After I interned here last summer, I was really just excited for the brand and telling people how I worked here. Once I got back to campus and started my classes, I saw the bigger picture with everything this company had taught me. I learned so much here last year that I wanted to return because of the practical knowledge I gained at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®.

Q: What are your day-to-day tasks here at the office?

Mark: I monitor scores and information through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration about our franchises and their safety on the roads. I bounce back and forth between here and the Lansing franchise to help with monthly meetings and spot checks. I also assist with the internal risk management newsletter and gather that information. I get to see a little bit of everything, and I’m very lucky to always be on the move!

Q: What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned while interning here?

Mark: The most valuable thing I’ve learned is to always ask questions if you don’t understand or are unsure of something. The people at this company have always been so helpful. Last year I had so many questions as I tried to figure out who handled what and inevitably had to go outside of my department to find the answers. No matter who I asked, they were always patient and very helpful toward me. The Home Office employees are amazing like that!

Q: Has the internship taught you anything about your field of study?

Mark: Risk management is “in” if you will. The priority for TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is to keep its employee’s safe while exceeding our customers’ expectations. This means always updating policies and finding new technology that helps keep us safe in the office and out on the roads.

Q: Do you have any advice for the other interns?

Mark: Absolutely! I have two things: First, get to know everyone you possibly can here, and at the Lansing franchise. I asked for help so much last year and everyone supported in any way they could. Second, take this whole experience in. This is an international company and interning here means something, so continue to grow.

Q: What are your plans after graduation?

Mark: I’m hoping to stay on here in the risk management department if the opportunity arises. If not that, I am considering going to law school and specializing in employment and labor law.

Q: Okay, final question. If you were stranded on an island and could only bring 3 items, what would you choose and why?

Mark: Alright the three things I would bring are:

  1. A Bible. I’d bring this because my parents raised me in the church and it always has the answer.
  2. A hammock. Reading my Bible in a hammock in the shade …yes please.
  3. A fishing pole. Going fishing in my spare time would be pretty great. Not a bad life to live!
  4. A best friend named Wilson (who happens to be a volleyball). Simply because without anyone to talk to, I’d feel like a castaway.

If you are interested in working at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® visit our careers website.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised 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.

5 staging tips to sell your home faster

Written by Claire Schneider

Looking to sell your home quickly and for top dollar? Staging your home is the best way to meet these objectives. If you think the cost of staging your home outweigh the benefits, think again. In fact, 95% of staged homes  take an average of 11 days or less to sell and are sold for 17% more than non-staged homes. So what are the key tried-and-true home staging tips?

We found a staging expert and Tomie Raines Inc., real estate agent, Katie Spyke, to share five simple yet effective home staging tips to get your house sold quickly and at the best price possible. Check out this video to learn how painless home staging can be!

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised 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.

Eight Interns And A Truck – Part 1

Written by Cheyenne Yost

Jay Burzych – Finance

JayJay Burzych is one of the finance interns here at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® / INTERNATIONAL, Inc., and he’s also a fellow Spartan! When I first met Jay in the office, my first impression was that he was funny and was always cracking a joke. Jay definitely has the right mentality of working hard while having fun. Here is what Jay had to say about being an intern.

Q: Can you tell me a little bit about yourself and your background?

Jay: I grew up in Okemos, Mich., and I’m now a finance major at Michigan State University, with aspirations of working in the banking sector after school. I played water polo, golf, and basketball in high school. In my free time I enjoy playing the guitar and saxophone, going up north to Lake Charlevoix with friends and family, and playing golf with my buddies.

Q: What made you apply at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK®?

Jay: Nobody else wanted to hire a freshman. I actually came here when I was younger and job shadowed the CFO Jeff Wesley for a day. He set me up in meetings with different people all day and I really got a good vibe from everybody who worked here. When I discovered the company is in total growth mode right now, I thought it would be a very interesting and dynamic place to work this summer.

Q: What are your usual day-to-day tasks here at the office?

Jay: Working with the procurement and logistics project team, I wouldn’t really say I have a set list of day-to-day tasks. My main project this summer will be projecting future growth and capital needs for all of the franchises when they visit Lansing for the annual Truck Expo in September.

Q: After looking at our core values on the website, what is your favorite TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® Core Value and why?

Jay: My favorite Core Value has to be Care. I am a total people person and always think about what’s best for other people. Being surrounded by people who also care about the genuine wellbeing of others is refreshing and fun!

Q: What are your interests or hobbies?

Jay: There are not many better feelings than the cold splash of water engulfing my body. Whether it’s swimming in a pool or water skiing up north, I love being in the water. I am also a huge golfer and love getting away from everything and walking a quick nine or 18 holes with friends.

Q: Who has been the best mentor or teacher for you?

Jay: If I was being honest, then I would say my dad, but I feel like using a parent for this question is cliché. One of my dad’s close friends, Dave Campbell, has been a big part of my life. He has taught me a lot about business and life in general. I am certain wherever I end up, he will have helped me open that door.

Q: Has your internship taught you anything about your field of study?

Jay: Definitely. One particular aspect I like about this internship is that I have gotten exposure to so many different things. I have learned so much about business practices in general. Rather than only taking a finance mindset into a meeting, I am now able to analyze where each participant is coming from and why they might be thinking a certain way.

Q: What are your plans after graduation?

Jay: Well according to the statisticians, 50% of my generation’s eventual professions have not even been created yet, so I guess I will just have to see what is happening in a couple more years.

Q: Okay, final question. If you were stranded on an island and could only bring 3 items, what would you choose and why?

Jay: If I was stuck on an island, the three things I would want would be a water filter so that I could drink the water, a slingshot so that I could kill things to eat, and a Gameboy Advance because its battery lasts forever.

If you are interested in working at TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® visit our careers website.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised 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.

Busiest moving days are here! Prepare for a smooth experience.

Written by Hannah Conlin

TMAAT525-2258159751-ONot only did we just complete our five millionth move, we’re about to dive into our busiest moving days of the year!In addition to being entrenched in the busy season, the entire system will see its busiest move days taking place this weekend, Saturday, June 28, and Sunday June 29. The Home Office finance department has calculated that TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® will complete 4,941 moves over the two-day period, equating to 2.1 moves each minute, and recognizing almost $4.3 million in revenue. This is a major increase from last year, when the company was projected to collect around $3.5 million in revenue, a 23% increase. Needless to say, in a few short days, we will be moving a record amount of people forward onto their next life chapter.

This is our crazy-busiest time of the year, and we could not be more excited. We love serving our customers, and we will keep our promise to continuously exceed our customers’ expectations. In order to make your move as easy and seamless as possible, please consider the following to ensure your experience is top-notch:

Pre-pack and centralize

Having all items packed the day before the move and place all boxes in one central location; these steps are an immense time- and money-saver. Place all packed items in one room of your home, such as the living room or the garage for an overall quicker move as our movers will be able to grab your belongings and load the truck with ease.

Disassemble

Completing 2.1 moves each minute over the course of 48 hours will not be an easy task; however, if our customers can make the packing of their items a quicker process, the overall experience will be enhanced. Disassemble all furniture prior to movers arriving, storing all pieces in one room of the home. This will not only save on time for our movers to pack up your furniture but will ultimately keep you on budget.

Be patient

All of our locations are well-prepared and plan, but with so many moves taking place in such a short span of time, please try and be patient as our movers are working their hardest to ensure your move is flawless. Although we cannot promise perfection, we will promise to come as close as possible. We take pride in our 96 percent customer referral rating, and we work every day even in the busiest of days to live up to our high standards.

Have fun

TMAAT443-2258122996-OOf course moving is stressful; still, we want you to enjoy the experience. There are opportunities to enrich the moving experience with children. There are effective ways to minimize the negatives for pets in transition. Additional services we can provide will even help you get set up in your new space faster and with less headaches. We are professional movers with experience. Relax, and count on us to take care of the details so you and yours can best enjoy the excitement of moving forward to the next step in your life.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised 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.