Ready to move? Here is how to find the best insurance rates for your new home

Finding the best insurance rates

Whether you’re buying or renting a house at your new location, insurance is one of the most expensive costs you’ll have to deal with upfront. However, if you know the “ins and outs” of shopping for coverage, you’ll be able to get a great plan at an even better price. So, don’t think you have to just settle for mediocre coverage or pay a high premium when you purchase or rent a new home. Instead, follow these simple tips to find the best insurance coverage at an affordable price.

1. Bundle your coverage

Like any other company, insurance agencies want your business, and they are willing to give you a little incentive to get it. Most agencies do this by rewarding you with a better rate when you bundle multiple policies with them. In many cases, pairing your home or renters insurance and auto insurance with the same company can actually save you as much as 30 percent. In addition to those policies, many companies are even beginning to offer life insurance policies that can be bundled with your coverage to help you save even more. Bundling your policies isn’t only beneficial from a financial standpoint, though. Bundled policies typically simplify the claims and communication process, as it is the same for all of your policies.

2. Raise your deductible

Boosting your deductible is another way to save on your insurance premium. The deductible is the amount of the damage that you have to pay out-of-pocket before insurance kicks in in the event of a claim. Many policies with higher premiums are based on a $500 or $1,000 deductible. However, homeowners or renters who can afford to pay a little more out-of-pocket when filing a claim or who are willing to gamble that they won’t run into any issues may choose a deductible as high as $10,000 to save as much as 35 percent.

3. Update security

Most homeowners are aware that installing fire alarms and carbon monoxide sensors can lower their monthly insurance costs, but they may not realize that installing an advanced alarm system or otherwise improving the security of their home has an even bigger benefit. Alarm systems that are connected to a central monitoring system can often cut your premium by up to 10 percent, which is worth looking into as a new homeowner. And some systems may even cut your costs by as much as 20 percent, depending on what is included. While installing an alarm system may not really be an option if you are renting, you can still often get discounts on your policy for upgrading the locks on the door, improving the fire monitoring system, and taking additional measures to update the security of your rental property.

4. Shop around

Another great way to save on your new insurance premium is taking the time to shop around. Many new homeowners and renters are tempted to go with the first coverage they find in a hurry, but it really is to your advantage to get rates from at least three different companies to compare policies and rates. Make sure you’re getting a comparable quote from each company and compare the dollars and cents of each option.

5. Maintain a good credit rating

As you were looking for and finalizing your new home purchase or lease, you wanted your credit rating as high as possible. But, you might not have known that could also be beneficial for your insurance premium. Be sure to maintain good credit by paying your bills on time and avoiding a large balance on any of your credit cards to achieve a lower insurance premium.

Insurance is an important consideration when it comes to buying or renting a new home. From one location to the next, your premium could change significantly, so it’s important to take some time before you move to find the best insurance coverage and rate you can. Use these simple tips to secure the best coverage and have peace of mind as you move.

Michael Rogers, US Insurance AgentsAuthor
Michael Rogers is the Operations Director of With over 5 years of experience and knowledge in the insurance industry, Michael contributes his level of expertise as a leader and an agent to educate and secure coverage for thousands of clients.

Surviving your move: What to know about moving into your first apartment

Apartment moving pic

Written by Katie Peterson

At TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® we know moving can have its fair share of challenges. There’s the packing, the cleaning, and let’s not even mention move day itself. Moving into your first place is stressful, and apartment moving has its own set of headaches. Neighbors are more like roommates, there are a ton of rules and regulations while renting an apartment, and what about all those stairs? We’ve come up with some tips to help you survive your first apartment move.

Ask questions

-Ask the landlord about any concerns beforehand. Good questions to ask might include what kind of maintenance is available if something goes wrong in the apartment, how old the building is, and even questions about the previous tenants. Your landlord will love bragging about any new construction, and you will be making a more informed decision about your new place as a result.

-If you have a chance, talk to some of the current residents of the building while you are there. What do they think of the landlord? How are the other tenants in the apartment? This will help you make an informed decision about the apartment and give you a chance to introduce yourself to some of your future neighbors if you are already serious about renting.

Be prepared and organized

The actual move into your new apartment is all about being prepared and organized throughout the process. With these tips in mind, you’ll be ready for anything that comes your way.

Before your move:

-Make sure to bring paper documentation to your lease signing. This might include proof of employment or a copy of your lease with highlighted areas you might have questions on. Especially in competitive markets where multiple tenants are looking to rent, it pays to be prepared! This will also give your landlord a good idea of your trustworthiness and ability to bring important documents in on time (like your rent).

-Schedule a walk-through of the apartment with your landlord before you move in. This is a good opportunity to take photos of the condition of the apartment for reference when you are negotiating your security deposit. The photos can also be used to ensure you took care of the apartment when you eventually move out and want your deposit back.

-Measure the dimensions of your new apartment before you buy furniture or bring in items you already own. This will save you the headache of having to return any items that won’t fit, and the backache of your movers trying to fit the furniture through the door. Important spots to measure include the area for a washer and dryer and the nook for your refrigerator (if you have to supply them), tight doorways, and wall space for seating.

On move day:

-First things first, clean every nook and cranny of your new apartment! Scrub all those places you won’t ever be able to get to once your furniture is moved in, and even the places you will. It will save time and energy later in the day when all you have to do is a quick trip around the apartment with the vacuum.

-Schedule a timeframe to move into your new place at a reasonable and respectable time. The earlier, the better! Make sure you have enough time to finish moving in before residents in your apartment building are thinking about going to sleep. Your neighbors will appreciate meeting you during daylight hours as opposed to when they are complaining about the noise in their pajamas.

-Schedule any big items you’ve purchased to be delivered on separate days or spaced apart on the day of your move. Items such as mattresses and large furniture pieces will have their own deliveries and can create inconveniences on move-in day if arriving all at once. The day after your move, or a few hours after the movers have gone, are good times to schedule these deliveries to ensure the elevators and parking lots aren’t crowded and remain accessible to other tenants.

Be friendly and considerate

-This probably goes without saying, but be friendly! Introduce yourself to your surrounding neighbors. Even if you don’t go around knocking on your neighbors’ doors be sure to say “hi” in passing or on the elevator. You might make new friends, or at the very least, get to know their names in case their mail ends up in your box by accident.

-Make sure your landlord knows who you are and has a face to go with your name. It will be useful for him/her to know you in case you have a maintenance problem or you are a few days late on the rent. A little effort will ensure your landlord knows you as more than just a name on a check.

-Be considerate of the noise level and your activities at certain hours. Bouncing a basketball in your room on the third floor is never a good idea, especially if it’s at three o’clock in the morning.

Moving into your own apartment for the first time can be exciting, scary, and stressful all wrapped up in one. Making preparations beforehand, staying organized, and being considerate of your neighbors are great ways to help you survive your first apartment move!

What advice do you have for moving into your first apartment? We’d like to hear! Like us on Facebook for more helpful tips and updates. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward!

6 things people do to complicate their move

6 things people do to complicate their move

Whether across town or to a different country, moving can be one of the most stressful things you will do in your life. There are a number of things you need to do and take care of, some of which may or may not be in your control. And if you are a first-time mover, there is a good chance your inexperience will cause you to make costly and timewasting mistakes that end up making your move more difficult than it could have been.

Here is a quick look at some of the most common things people do to complicate their move and what you can learn from them.

1. Deciding to do everything themselves

Many people underestimate the amount of work involved in moving. They are confident they can do everything themselves, without letting movers, or even friends, enter the picture. True, if you have moved in the past and do not have too many things to pack, you may be able to execute a successful move on your own. But what do you think will happen if you injure your back on moving day, carrying heavy boxes down the stairs? Or say, the rental truck you hired is not big enough to load all your belongings?

Also, driving a huge moving truck is not the same as driving a car. You have to pay special attention to the weighing station and overhead clearance signs, while also keeping in mind  the truck has a larger turning radius and will need more time to come to a full stop when you apply the brakes.

2. Hiring the first mover they come across

Hiring the wrong moving company can cause you a lot of undue complications on moving day. To avoid getting trapped in such situations, thoroughly research your moving company before signing the contract. Ask your family and friends for recommendations. Never forget that a low-price quote does not always translate to a good experience. Go online to find out what customers have to say about their experiences with the mover. Do they regularly double-book to land more jobs? Are their employees permanent staff and not temporary employees? Will they give you a free estimate or better yet, a thorough walk-through of your home for an accurate estimate? Are there any hidden charges? Do they have a license from the Department of Transportation? Do they have enough insurance? Can they provide references?

Taking the time to research and speak with reputable, professional movers will ensure a stress-free move and overall great experience.

3. Failing to plan the move in advance

Planning a move well in advance will give you enough time to research all the variables involved and make the correct decisions. In addition to packing, moving entails a whole lot of other steps, including arranging for the utilities to be switched, requesting the necessary paperwork from your kids’ schools, arranging for the transfer of your medical records, booking flight tickets, submitting change of address forms, and of course, finding the new rental or perfect purchase you’ll call home. Most experts advise keeping a moving folder to track all paperwork related to the move. Remember, the better you prepare, the easier your move will be.

Don’t forget that most moves happen during summer before the new school year starts. As a result, most moving companies are extremely busy during this season. Failure to plan the move beforehand can leave you scrambling for a good (and available) mover with just a couple of days left for the big day. You don’t need me to tell you what that will do to your stress levels!

4. Not setting aside enough time for packing

Packing always takes more time than you think. People who wait until the last minute to start packing are left with no option, but to dump everything in the moving boxes without sorting or purging. This results in paying extra money to the movers for transporting stuff they are never going to use.

Moving offers you a great chance to cull the unnecessary stuff you have accumulated over the years. Discard, sell, or give away all the clothes, books, furniture, and appliances you haven’t used in the last year. This will reduce your unpacking time and save you a lot of valuable storage space in your new home. Who knows, selling your gently used items may even earn you some extra cash in the bargain!

Ideally, you should begin packing for your move as soon as you finalized the moving date. Start by boxing up what you don’t use on a daily basis or will not need until after the move, such as seasonal clothes, holiday dishes, and so on.

5. Skimping on packing supplies

Getting cheap, used cardboard boxes from your neighborhood grocery store might seem like a good idea at first – until the first one falls apart on your stairs on moving day. Or your wedding china fails to make the trip intact.

Invest in good quality packing supplies, such as strong, clean boxes, packing tape, bubble wrap, moving blankets, and so on. This will save you a lot of stress and headache come moving day.

6. Not packing an essentials moving box

An essentials box containing items you will need for the first few days in your new home or apartment will greatly simplify your moving process. All your jewelry, valuables, and important paperwork should also be packed in the essentials box and carried with you. If you have not done so, you may very well have to run around unpacking a dozen different cardboard boxes just to find toilet paper, plates, glasses, kitchen utensils, and towels to get you through the first night. Trust me when I say that this is not something you want to look forward to, especially after a particularly difficult day of hauling heavy boxes and driving hundreds of miles. Nope!


Kurt Jacobson, rentfinderKurt Jacobson is a snowboarding enthusiast with a background in real estate. Having moved 11 times in the past nine years, he thrives on helping others learn from his experiences. When he’s not out shredding the mountain, he writes about all things rental related for the website

Throw a housewarming party so good your friends will want to move in

Written by Jessy Howe

Throwing a housewarming party- tips from your local moving company TWO MEN AND A TRUCK

Congratulations, you’re a homeowner! The next best thing to transforming your new space and making if feel like a home, is filling it with all the people you love. Say “cheers” to your new house, it’s time to celebrate with a housewarming party!

Prep your home

Don’t wait too long to host your housewarming party, if you want your home to be absolutely perfect, you might never have one! Do be sure you are mostly unpacked with personal belongings put away. Having boxes cluttering the way for your guests will be uncomfortable and take away from the beauty of your new home.

It’s okay if each room isn’t fully put together yet, but remember to at least have a clean hand towel, soap, and toilet paper in the restroom.

Feed your friends (they’ll love you for it)

There are so many options, and all equally delicious! You can never go wrong serving drinks and buffet style appetizers such as pigs in a blanket, sliders, veggies, and mozzarella bites. Other crowd pleasers include a backyard barbeque, going potluck style and asking that everyone bring a dish, or roasting hotdogs and s’mores over the fire.


Who to invite can be tricky, especially if you’ve moved long-distance and don’t know many people in the area yet. This is an ideal opportunity to meet your new neighbors and co-workers in a fun, casual setting. If you’ve only moved a few blocks away, your friends and family will be excited to come and celebrate your new home.

If you’re extremely crafty, grab paint swatches from your local hardware store to create themed DIY invitations. If that’s not your thing, send a quick e-vite!


It’s a party, have some fun! Our favorite ideas and housewarming activities include:

  • Set out recipe cards for guests to share their favorite with you.
  • Place an address book out to gather your closest friend’s addresses.
  • Set up yard games such as corn hole, badminton, volleyball, or jumbo Jenga!
  • Get the kids involved and put them in charge of giving tours.
  • Create a playlist to play in the background and keep up the energy.
  • Buy a few disposable cameras for guests to capture the fun. You’ll enjoy the surprise of seeing what was taken.

Most importantly, enjoy having your friends and family over to help warm your new home! If you have any housewarming party ideas or tips, we’d love to hear them! For more inspiration, check out our Pinterest Housewarming Party board.

Like us on Facebook for more helpful tips and updates. TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Let us help move you forward!

Spot these go-to locations in your new city

Written by Nicole Harrison

Yippee, you’re moving! As moving day begins to creep up on you, there are a few places to take note of before you move to a new city, especially if you’re moving more than 25 minutes away. After racking our brains, we have come up with new buildings, landmarks, and events you should track down before your move.

Hospital or emergency clinic – Locating the closest hospital is crucial for a variety of reasons. You never know what kind of accident or crazy event could happen. In the event of an emergency, make sure you’re prepared and know how to get to the nearest hospital or clinic.

Schools and daycares – If you have children, research different schools and day cares in your new area. Where is the school located? How big is it? What is the graduation rate? Am I looking for a public or private school? All of these questions may seem silly, but it’s important to know what kind of school you are looking foIMG_9681r. Same goes when you’re looking into a daycare. Are you looking for someone to come to your home, someone who has an in-home daycare, or a large daycare operation? Know the type of environment you are looking for.

Post office – One day or another you will need to know where the post office is. Is it close to your work, house, kids’ school, grocery store? Once you find the post office, you will know when the most convenient time will be to stop by and run your errands.

Churches If you practice a religion and attend a weekly church service, spend time researching churches that practice your denomination and locate them. Although you may want to attend a few of them to find the best fit after your move, it will save you some time by finding their locations beforehand.

Grocery and convenience stores People need to eat, right?! Locate your local grocery stores, markets, and other convenience stores. Again, you are free to explore your new town and find the store that best fits your diet and lifestyle, but it will help to do a little research before your move to know the general location they are in. As an added bonus, see if there are any local farmers’ markets in the area where you can snag fresh produce at a great price!

Library – If you enjoy reading in your free time, track down a local library. If it’s close in proximity, see if there are any trails to walk or bike to the library! There’s nothing like enjoying a little exercise while getting the newest book you’ll be diving into.

Parks – Township parks and local trails are fun places to locate and take advantage of. If you have kids, it’s nice to know what kind of parks are in the area and different options you have to take your kiddos out for some exercise. If you don’t have children, or if they’re grown and moved out, parks and trails can be a great place for a date: have a picnic, go for a bike ride, walk, or run together! If you’re a pet parent, be sure to locate where there are dog-friendly trails and parks to take your furry friends out and get them exercise.

Museums – Does the city you’re moving to have any interesting museums to explore? HaIMG_9671ve fun researching nearby attractions before you move to your new city. Spend time in the first few weeks in your new town exploring the popular sites and learn what you can about the new city you now call home.

Events and festivals – Are there upcoming festivals, fairs, or events? Towns and cities are usually packed with fun activities in the summertime with multiple events taking place each week. Find a calendar with events for the season, and go out and enjoy yourself. If you are looking to meet new people, these types of events are the perfect social gathering to meet all kinds of folk. Check out MeetUp to join local groups with interests similar to yours.

Learn about the city – What is your new city known for? Are there any interesting historical facts? These are great talking point when you are meeting new people, or to spend some time looking into on your own. It’s always fun to know a little history about where you live. Consider downloading World Explorer – Travel Guide to learn all about your new city. World Explorer can act as your own personal travel guide when you go on vacations and weekend getaways!

While this topic may seem short and simple, oftentimes it’s overlooked and forgotten. If you’re anything like me, you’re a planner and it helps to familiarize yourself with your new city before you move there. It will help you adjust to your new home while familiarizing yourself with the local buildings and attractions.

TWO MEN AND A TRUCK® is the first and largest franchised moving company in the United States. Like us on Facebook to stay up-to-date on moving and packing tips! Let us help move you forward.

Tips for Moving with Pets

Written by Claire Schneider

Moving with petsMoving is a big life event for the whole family, even for our beloved four-legged friends. When changes are made to their living environment, pets can become uncomfortable and stressed. They may seem anxious and nervous during the packing stages of moving because they don’t know what is happening. They likely have developed separation anxiety from past vacations and other stays away from their owners. Many animals, especially dogs, are known to be emotional and to have a natural fear of abandonment.

Premove prep

Because of the attachment to their owners, it is always prudent to pay special attention to pets early in the process. If possible, give them comfort by taking them to visit the new home before the actual move to familiarize them with their new surroundings.

Prior to moving day, pet owners who make a little extra effort on their furry friend’s behalf will be rewarded with a less anxious animal. Just being aware of your pet’s feelings, just as you would your child’s, will give him a sense of peace amid the managed chaos the day is sure to present. Giving pets as much affection as possible will also reassure them they are still being cared for.

“Moving is very stressful for a family,” said ASPCA President Larry Hawk, D.V.M. “That stress is also experienced by the pets. They want to know that they’re part of the family and that they’ll be going, too.”

Moving can be especially stressful for cats since they are more focused on their surroundings and don’t adapt easily to change. Disruption to their environment can cause them anxiety which may lead to behavior changes. The best thing you can do is to plan a moving strategy which creates the least amount of noticeable change.

If your animals are anything like mine, they tend to get nervous at the first sign of packing, even if it is just an overnight bag for a quick trip away. To reduce their stress, spread out your packing over several weeks and start packing rooms pets usually stay out of to keep packed boxes and belongings out of sight.

A few weeks before moving day, plan a visit to the vet. This is an ideal opportunity for a quick check-up and to ensure records are up-to-date; I recommend asking for a copy of their veterinary records. If necessary, you may also ask if they have any recommendations for veterinary clinics in your new town; you can research online reviews to select your new provider.

Moving day

Moving with petsIf you hired movers, let your pet get to know them before they start moving your items. Animals are very territorial and may be hesitant to welcome strangers into their home. Give the movers some time to introduce themselves to your pet by slowly petting them. Having treats handy for the movers to dole out is a surefire way to get fast acquainted with any cat or dog.

Has a family member been assigned to caring for the family pet on moving day? This could be one of your children, a friend, or family member. To ensure their safety, put animals in a blocked off area (using a baby gate or boxes) so they become a spectator of the action yet safely out of the fray. Putting them in an isolated room could cause them further stress since they know something is happening yet can’t see it. Make sure they have food, water and, of course, their favorite toys to keep them occupied.

When packing up the car, leave plenty of room for your animals. By giving them ample space, they will be more comfortable and relaxed during the drive to their new home.

Hitting a high note in the new home

Immediately introduce your pet to the new surroundings, allowing them to explore each room.  Don’t rush them. Bring in their food and water dishes, along with their toys, to make them more contented. To help with the adjustment, place familiar items in locations similar to the old house—at least for a period of time. Also, follow their current routines; they have had enough changes already.

Invest a little time in planning ahead for your furry and four-legged friends, and the move will be less stressful for your whole family.

Here are some helpful tips for moving with specific animals:


• Before and after the move, surround your cat with familiar objects ― feeding and water bowls, toys, blanket, or bed. If you are using a crate, leave it in a place with which they can become familiar.

• Since cats are very sensitive to their environment, gradually introduce them to their surroundings by restricting them to one or two rooms at the onset.


• Like cats, dogs should be slowly introduced to their surroundings, then leashed outside until comfortable with the area.

• If you are unable to stay home the first few days following a move, consider arranging a friend or pet sitter to visit a couple of hours a day to ease your dog’s anxiety and to burn some healthy energy.


• Traveling is the most difficult part of the moving process for fish. Place fish in bags with a mix of new water and clean water directly from their aquarium. The less the fish are crowded the better. Put rubber bands around the tops of bags and place the bags inside a dark, insulated cooler.

• Let the filter run for a few hours before returning your fish to their tank, and try to limit their time away from their normal habitat to less than 48 hours.


• Use appropriate-sized carriers for birds and cover the bottom with litter. Remember to secure carrier doors with a clip from the outside. Keep the birds cool and protected from the sun at all times.

• Transport a supply of food and water from the previous house, then gradually switch from old to new supplies.

Small pets:

• Small pets such as gerbils, guinea pigs, and hamsters are more sensitive to drastic temperature changes. Take care to protect them from cold drafts or direct sunlight.

• These animals can travel in the cage they normally live in, but make sure it is well sealed so they cannot escape.

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.

Moving: From a teen’s perspective

Written by Claire Schneider

Moving with kidsWe continue our moving with kids theme by sharing what moving is like from their vantage point. I sat down with Megan, 16, and Grace, 13, and listened as they recounted their experience of their family’s recent move.

Q: How did your parents tell you about the move?

A: About two months before we moved, our parents explained they had been looking at houses and had found one they really liked. We then embarked on the rest of the process as a whole family. Visiting the house for the first time was exciting – but also a little scary! It was really cool to see what might be our new bedrooms.

Q: How involved were you two in the moving process?

A: We helped our parents get ready for the move. We coordinated portions of our garage sale held before the move. It was kind of fun having the garage sale because we were able to use the money we made for cool, new  clothes and getting our hair done. We also packed up our rooms and some areas of the house.

Q: Were you excited about moving? Why?

A: Honestly, we weren’t really enthusiastic to move at first. We were more surprised since we’ve grown up in our old house. But once we saw the new house and our new rooms, we became more excited.

Q: Can you share your thoughts about changing neighborhoods?

A: I think we were both pretty excited from the get-go, but we do really miss our old neighbors. Our new house is in a cul-de-sac, and our new neighbors are always outside in their yards; so far it’s been easy to get to know them. And everyone seems to have a dog. We are also going to have a housewarming party once we get settled which will help with meeting the neighbors, too.

Q: Tell me about your new house. What do you like most about it?

A: Our new house is much bigger and has an sweet basement where we can hang out with our friends. Our bedroom closets are also bigger which means we can shop and buy more clothes. Plus, our bathroom has two sinks, so now we don’t have to fight over the one. The backyard is awesome and has a mini zip line.

Q: Overall, how has the moving experience been for you?

A: It’s been pretty good but, yeah, a little stressful. We’ve made many trips back and forth from the old house to the new house to move things. It’s good we’re moving during the summer so we have more time to get moved in.

Q: Are there any tips or advice you have for other kids preparing to move?

A: Be open to moving and making new friends. Get organized well in advance and don’t put it off; it will help make moving day smoother. And make sure to get plenty of sleep!

For more tips on moving with kids check out our blog.

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.