Long Distance Moving: Your Expectations Vs. Reality

Long Distance Moving Your Expectations Vs Reality
One of the most difficult aspects of your home move is managing your expectations. But does it all happen in the same way as you have thought and expected? What about the reality that may be faced during the process? We weighed the two to better prepare you.

At some points in life, we find out that our expectations don’t follow with reality, and moving is the same.

If you are on this page, your thoughts are likely about moving or in the process of changing house.

Pricing Van Lines wants to be sure that you have a smooth and less stressful move.

So, we have taken to our customer’s demand and compiled a list of moving expectations and the realities that many of them may face. Plus, how to handle the move to prevent such disappointments.

This will better prepare you for the challenges ahead and make things easier for you throughout their long-distance move.

Below are expectations of long-distance moves and possible realities they may turn out to be:

1. Planning

  • Expectation: Since you are a well-organized person, you will be thinking you will be able to pack and complete the labeling of your moving boxes one week before the move.
  • Reality: Oh! The movers are here, and you are still on packing and labeling.

If you have a move to perform on the way, giving more attention to the planning stage reduces the chance of leaving something important undone.

If you can get the planning stage completed before your mind becomes filled with all the moving-related emotions, then you would have reduced the risk of missing something.

Checklists are one great means to help you get everything done at the right time. We have made you a checklist guide below, so we advise that you take time to read everything and customize your checklist to your specific move before you enter the stress of moving home.

Read our moving checklist guide for a big move

2. Declutter

  • Expectation: You will declutter almost all of your belongings.
  • Reality: You will find it so much hard to let go of 20% of your items.

Decluttering is something you can do and have a huge impact on your house moving cost. Disposing of those items you don’t want or need any longer will lower your packing costs, loading and unloading timeline, and may even reduce the size of the moving van you hire.

However, you may find it hard to part with items you have an emotional attachment to, and there is always this voice that comes to your head that you might need the item someday.

There are many pieces of advice on the physical decluttering process and disposing of things that you are sentimentally attached to in our ultimate guide to decluttering and garage sale.

Read our post on How to Make an Interstate Move Affordable?

3. Budgeting

  • Expectation: I will monitor my moving expenses so that I don’t spend more than necessary.
  • Reality: Oh, why is the cost of my move three times higher than my predicted amount?

It’s normal to create a budget for residential moving expenses. This is much important if you are considering a DIY house move.

What if your friends refuse to come on moving day and you have to hire labor-only help?

What happens if you damage the rental van on the move?

There are a lot of ways to exceed your house moving budget.

Yes, if you decide to hire a reputable out of state moving company, and you have performed your research, give the actual list of things you are moving, and have considered their advice in your decision, you will have a more accurate of what the actual cost of your move will be.

However, there are still some things that can get beyond control, so prepare for a contingency fund for sudden costs.

For instance, what if there is a delay in the release of keys if those moving out are not prepared to leave when you arrive?

Maybe you will need storage, or overnight lodging, or maybe just two pizzas for the movers’ crew who had to work late into the night.   

Learn How To Make The Ultimate State to State Moving Budget.

4. Movers’ Service Delivery

  • Expectation: All moving companies are the same.
  • Reality: No, there are differences.

Some moving companies are better hired to move special items than others, some will have nice customer service (that is very important), and some will make use of agency staff while the rest will just use highly-trained full-time workers.

Some will make use of eco-friendly packing supplies and others won’t.

It is very important to spend enough time looking for a moving company that will offer the skills as well as services that you need for your special house move. Be sure to go through reviews and research very well about the moving company you are looking to hire.

Read How to Find the Best Movers

5. Coordinating

  • Expectation: I’m certain my friends will assist me on moving day.
  • Reality: I don’t know why my friends are out of reach on my moving day.

There is an adage that says more hands bring about light work, and that is right when moving.

When planning your moving process, you are required to coordinate with those that will assist with the move.

If you decide to rely on friends to assist with the move, be sure that you have their real backing for the moving day.

If your friends are not reliable for this great task, hire professional moving companies for peace of mind.

6. Furniture Setup

  • Expectation: The moving company will ensure the furniture fit through the narrow doorway.
  • Reality: The movers are not a

While there are ways that moving company can move furniture through the oddest spaces, they cannot shift walls or make items shrink magically.

To create a floor plan for your new household, get this done when you are beginning to declutter and before the moving company performs an on-site inspection. That will make sure you have time to sell, dispose or donate your excess furniture and the moving company will know the exact items to quote for your items.

Read Is It Cheaper To Buy New Furniture Or Move It?

7. Settling In

  • Expectation: I will unpack and settle in just a single day.
  • Reality: It’s a month already and I’m still not fully unpacked.

While settling in your home is not what you can do in a single day, your pre-move preparation and planning will be useful a lot when you moved.

Hopefully, you decluttered and move with just the things you need in the new home.

Also, you have labeled all your items so that the moving boxes have all been placed in the right rooms.

Solve this by unpacking one room at a go. Do not be distracted by any appliances as you proceed with unpacking until you are done. Make sure you enjoy the unpacking process.

Your ease of unpacking will also depend on how you packed your stuff. Did you pack right?

Read our post on Top Packing Tips For State To State Moves 

How to Stay Organized When Moving Long-Distance

What are the things you can do to make your move less-troubling?

The tips below are from moving professionals and will help you organize a long-distance move quickly and easily.

Here are tips and resources on organizing before, during, and after the relocation. 

1. Make a Moving Binder

Making and keeping a master moving binder is one of the most effective means of staying organized on a move.

Moving binders not only make it easy to know where all your moving contracts and receipts are, but they also assist in keeping all moving tasks into one easy-to-locate place.

Items that can be kept in a moving binder are moving receipts, a list of donations, moving checklists, floor plans, school records, financial documents, medical records, utility company phone numbers, design/décor ideas, moving company paperwork, contractor bids, and more.

2. Print Personalized Checklists

Relocating to a new house usually involves a lot of moving parts. From working with moving company logistics to take care of financial obligations, there are a lot of details to monitor during a busy move.

Sadly, finding out your next action to perform and when to perform it is not easy. The solution is to make a detailed moving checklist for your next move.

When you have this list of tasks, you will be able to manage the relocation parts of your move and get it in an organized and timely way.  

3. Color Code Moving Boxes

Do you plan to label your moving boxes by each room?

Improvise by using color coding on those labels. This will make it easier to locate your moving boxes on the truck and in your destination home.

Fortunately, color-coded labels marked with the right rooms are available with different retailers such as Amazon and Walmart.

You can also make use of color-coded system using tape of different colors.

For instance, assign all boxes marked with green tape to the bathroom, all boxes marked with red tape to the kitchen, and so on.

4. Make an Advance Packing Plan

Don’t just pack your stuff anyhow. Instead, create a plan of attack for packing each room in preparation for a move.

To start, pick the rooms and closets to work on first.

Begin with the rooms that contain the non-important item (such as items you won’t need in a couple of weeks to your move).

This could include a guest bedroom, bathroom, library, basement, seasonal clothing, storage closet, and playroom.

The kitchen and bedrooms are the rooms to be packed last.

These rooms will possibly need to be used in the days before your move.

Immediately you’ve come up with the time to pack each room, you will need to come up with the number of moving supplies required.

Read our guide on How to Choose the Best Moving Supplies.    

5. Packing an Essential Box for Moving Day

Lastly, remember to pack your box or bag of essential items. Your moving experience without it could be reduced to an unpleasant adventure.

We suggest you first make a checklist of your moving day essential items. This will make sure you remember something essential at the last minute.

Essentials may include an extra set of clothes, medications, toiletries, important documents, ID and credit cards, paper towels, trash bags, pet essentials, bottled water, toilet paper, and baby necessities.

Read How and What to Pack First When Moving

6. Arrange a Long-Distance Move Off-Season

If possible, try to pick your moving day to fall in the off-season. Moving in summer will not only cost you more but may also limit the availability of moving companies when needed or more time to complete your move because of their increased duties. So, stay away from summer move as much as you can. 

7. Hire Professional Movers

While everything is possible, organizing and pulling off a long-distance move by yourself may also be difficult.

Your best move is to hire a professional moving company that has the relevant experience and knowledge to simplify even a long-distance move.

The perfect full-service long-distance movers can handle the whole moving for you. From packing, transportation, and unpacking, you are in good hands.

8. Perform Your Research before Deciding

Before you decide, make sure you perform thorough research on your options.

Be sure all moving companies you are looking into are legit.

Check for ratings and reviews of the movers on the Better Business Bureau to obtain an insight into the things to expect from their services.

Finally, remember to obtain a few different moving estimates to make comparisons or prices and look for the highly-effective long-distance movers near me.


Lastly, your expectation will have an impact on your level of happiness on a moving day.

If you check your moving detail thoroughly, plan carefully, prepare for the worse, accepting the perfect relocation plan is only perfect until something goes wrong. Then your house move will be much easier and drastically less-stressful. 

We hope these planning, budgeting, and coordinating suggestions help you prepare for your move.

It is also helpful to chat with your friends and family that is experienced with moving so that you can set realistic expectations for yourself as regards your specific move.

Don’t forget, we are always ready to help make sure that you have a fast, easy, and efficient move.

Call on Pricing Van Lines now for assistance with your next move on 800-814-4884.