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By Ryan Cox
Director, Allied Consumer Moving
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Tips on Moving Out of State: What to Do Before

Planning a long-distance move is essential, especially if you are not a spontaneous individual. Of course, making prior arrangements reduces the risk of common mishaps when moving to another state. Having a plan before, during, and after moving to stay on top of things is wise, so here is our guide to moving out of state. 

It’s important to stay on task during a long-distance move despite the excitement of new surroundings and cultures. Our full guide to moving out of state is below. You’ll discover valuable tips with our long-distance moving checklist and learn how our specialists can help you start a new, exciting chapter in your life. 

Plans to Consider Before Moving to a New State

Maybe you have a place in mind or are still figuring out where you want to go. The bottom line is you need to prepare to move out of state, and the following are critical items you should look into before making the change.

Find Your New Location

Finding a place to live can be as easy as placing a pin on a map. However, this is not always the best option for picking the area you want to call home. If you already have a place in mind, you can visit it before permanently relocating to find out if it is what you want.

If a pre-visit is not a feasible option for you, utilize online tools to explore the area. Once you have picked your preferred location(s), you can conduct some in-depth research on the local character to decide if you want to make it your new home.

Preparing for Your Out-of-State Move

Besides the new view out your window, there are many other important factors to consider when moving to a new city, state, or country. Take, for example, the cost of living, natural disaster risks, and understanding the demographics of your new home. To help you better understand the risks, benefits, and curiosities of your surroundings, follow the below tips for moving out of state to help:

Do Your Research

Moving without carrying out some reconnaissance could lead to you living in a city that doesn't fit your lifestyle. Conducting some simple checks will ensure you end up in a place you love. 

  • The demography: Does it match what you are looking for - are you looking for a retirement community, a young population, or both?
  • The area's culture: Are they a sports community or more entertainment-centered? Find out about the location's cuisine and what they are known for — their local celebrations or unique aspects.
  • The cost of living: Assess the property and income tax rates. Is the pay rate feasible for earning a living in the area? Are there tax-free opportunities, especially on retirement distributions? Is renting or property ownership expensive? What is the average cost of groceries, entertainment, and commute?
  • Crime rate: How secure is this new location? Will you and your loved ones be safe from crime? You can use NeighborhoodScout to assess the safety of your preferred neighborhood.
  • Risk of natural disasters: Ensure you are familiar with the weather and climate of your desired location.
  • School Districts: You can also check out the area's local schools to check their affordability, accessibility, and performance. Is there a high rate of delinquency? Do the kids attending these schools get a quality education? Use to research local institutions of learning.
  • Recreational facilities and areas: Are there opportunities to swim, enjoy nature walks, cycle, or dine in exciting restaurants? Are there kid-friendly social amenities, packs, and activities if you have a family?
  • Employment opportunities: Unless you want an ideal retirement location, you'll want to scout the job market in your new state.
  • Health care access: Are there highly rated providers in the area who take your insurance?
  • Transportation system: How is your daily commute to work going to look? Some places have multiple modes of public transportation connecting every inch of the city, while others are lacking. An interconnected transit system makes it easy to maneuver within the area. Affordability is equally vital. If everything you earn gets lost in transportation costs, it would be impractical to live in the area.

Budget for Your Move 

Moving across state lines can be expensive, so it's essential to plan ahead so you can budget costs accordingly.

  • Get familiar with often-forgotten costs, like moving supplies, food for the long-distance drive, and hotels, if necessary, before your moving day.
  • Determine which size truck you need. A portable container is a pricier option but is more convenient than other methods of moving.
  • Incorporate fuel costs to cover long-distance travel. Account for fuel wasted during traffic hours.
  • Find the right insurance coverage to protect your goods against risks that may arise during transportation.
  • Plan and manage all the relocation logistics — from packing, loading, offloading, and unpacking.
  • Consider any costs associated with guests coming to stay or help with your move.

Alternatively, you can hire a moving company to handle many of the unpleasant parts of relocation with interstate moving services.

  • It’s important to compare the rates of different companies to find the right fit. 
  • Reduced breakage risks because of specialized equipment and tools storing your valuable and fragile belongings.
  • The moving company does the heavy lifting on your behalf. The moving team is swift in packing, labeling, loading, stacking, observing cargo during transit, offloading, and re-arrangement.
  • The moving company covers all costs from fuel purchases, vehicle servicing, moving permits, and security during transit.
  • You do not need to worry about the travel logistics because the moving company does that for you — though not all are created equal. 
  • The moving company also provides insurance coverage for your possessions, protecting them against risks prevalent during moving.
  • Timely relocation because of proper planning and management.

Packing Strategies for Long-Distance Moves

Now that you’ve picked your moving company, ideal truck size or moving container, and secured your packing supplies, it’s time to get packing! Of course, packing is not something most people look forward to, especially for a long-distance move. 

At Allied, we’ve got you covered. Fortunately, there is nothing to worry about if you are relocating with a moving company. The one-time payment affords you the luxury of staying worry-free as the moving company works on your behalf. You get to have professionals in the field with expertise in transporting cargo between states.

Nevertheless, if you decide not to use our packing services, our free checklists and packing guides can help make packing a breeze. We have tips on how to label boxes effectively, how to sort items to maximize space, which boxes to choose and how to secure them, and more.

If you are transporting your belongings alone, there are a few things you need to consider: 

  • Ensure your vehicle is serviced and carry tools just in case of a breakdown.
  • Make plans for rest and sleep during transportation if the distance goes beyond one day.
  • Factor in traffic and layovers from highway patrols in your timeline.
  • Mark out areas where you can re-fuel and check your vehicle and container.
  • Budget for emergency situations.
  • Plan your route ahead of time and have alternatives just in case.

Selecting the Right Moving Service

With so many options to choose from, selecting the right long-distance or cross-country moving company for you can be complex. At Allied Van Lines, our reputation has been established for nearly a century, leaving us a lot of room to become one of the most reliable and trustworthy companies with a vast network and a plethora of services and resources.

Whether you need packing, unpacking, loading, unloading, storage, or standard moving services, we’re sure we’re the right company for you no matter what city, state, or country you’re headed to. 

If you’re not yet convinced, here are some things to consider when choosing a moving company.

For moving companies, relocating charges depend on

  • Size of your current home: They estimate the volume and weight of freight. It also enables the moving company to choose the right vehicle and transportation equipment.
  • Distance: Provides an estimate of fuel usage per mile.
  • Time of move: Busy seasons like the holidays are usually more costly than off-peak seasons.
  • Job complexity: When the tasks are demanding, the cost of the move goes up.
  • Insurance: The type of policy you get impacts the overall cost of the move.

Set aside money for expected and unforeseen expenses if you plan on moving independently. Some risks can occur during the move, and you have to have cash in hand to avoid getting stuck. On the other hand, you can budget for the one-time fee that a moving company charges and make the transition stress and hassle-free.

On the Day of the Move

Before packing away and securing your household items, the next step is to make sure you have everything you’ll need with you while you’re traveling, including non-transportable items and essentials like identification, a driver’s license, a cell phone charger, and keys to your new home. 

Here is the easiest way to move long distance:

  • Have a schedule for unpacking to avoid living in piles of boxes for a long time.
  • Change your car registration and number plate as soon as possible.
  • Update your billing and mailing address.
  • Have your resume ready in case you have not landed a job.
  • Make plans to familiarize yourself with the neighborhood, make friends, and enjoy the new place.

Settling Into Your New State 

Finally, you get to reap the rewards that come with careful planning, preparation, and utilization of important stress-alleviating resources. As a part of your strategic unpacking, it’s important to learn the best ways to become a part of the new community you’ve moved into.

Check out local businesses: Spending time at locally owned businesses like eateries, coffee shops, and farmer’s markets can be a great way to see what’s important to the residents. Many will have community boards to advertise upcoming events for locals, too. The city’s public library will also provide insight into what’s happening near you. 

Join local groups: If you’re a family with kids, joining local social media groups can be a lifesaver for parents, helping families discover new child-friendly places and make new connections.

Research emergency services: Researching the medical services closest to you is important. Look into the closest emergency room and the best-rated doctors or specialists to better understand the options available to you and your family. 

Be familiar with local rules: Brushing up on local laws, especially after moving out of state, can be especially helpful. Following your local police department and local news stations on various social media channels can provide perspective into common problems that occur in the community, new or changing law announcements, traffic checkpoint locations, upcoming events, and more. 

Join online communities: Lastly, joining community-specific apps can help you navigate your neighbors' general attitudes and demographics and make new friends.

For more tips for out-of-state moving, packing, and more, don’t hesitate to contact us to speak with one of our Allied Van Lines moving experts. Call us at (800) 689-8684.