Chicago Moving Blog
Posted on Sep 28, 2016
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Moving to Chicago may be necessary for a new job opportunity. If you’re planning to relocate to Chicago or you recently moved to the city, you may be concerned about how you will handle storing your car for the winter. This is especially true if you own a convertible or a sports car you don’t plan to drive again until spring.
Storing your car during the Chicago winter might seem tricky, but there are plenty of options available to you. Here are a few of the best ways to handle this situation after moving to Chicago.
A Heated Storage Garage
Many storage companies throughout the Chicago area offer heated storage for vehicles. Sometimes, this is referred to as “climate-controlled” storage and it’s the best choice for those looking to store a convertible or a sports car.
Some of the fluids in a vehicle can freeze during Chicago winters. However, if you choose a heated garage for storage, you won’t have to worry as much.
If there is any possibility you will drive the vehicle during the winter, covered parking may be a better option for you. While your vehicle won’t be protected from the cold, it will be protected from the snow and ice. You will need to winterize the vehicle by checking the fluids and flushing any fluids that could freeze.
Specialty Sports Car Storage
Some companies throughout Chicago offer storage for sports cars, such as Ferrari’s. They may offer in and out services to allow you to drive your vehicle whenever you want. Another big plus of a specialty storage company is the battery tender service and other mechanical services they may offer.
This type of car storage in Chicago won’t be inexpensive and can run as much as $250 per month or more. However, you will usually have options to make sure your vehicle remains in good, running condition all throughout the winter. You won’t have to worry about a dead battery come spring if you choose the right specialty storage company.
Of course, you can always park your vehicle in a long-term outside parking facility. This will be the least expensive of the car storage options and will probably require a good car cover, along with full winterizing of the vehicle. However, if your budget is tight, outside parking may be the right solution.
A Private/Friend’s Garage
Many Chicago residents will rent out garage space of their own for winter car storage. If you can find a good place near where you live, this may be a good option. Of course, it’s even better if the private garage happens to be owned by someone you know.
While there are plenty of options for car storage during the winter in Chicago, some of the best options fill up fast. It’s important to make sure your vehicle is winterized if it won’t be stored in a heated garage. Make sure you go through all of the steps to winterize your vehicle or you may discover major issues come spring.
Posted on Sep 21, 2016
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Even the most organized person can quickly become disorganized during moving. Residential moving is one of the most chaotic and stressful times in most people’s lives. However, proper labeling of your moving boxes will help to ensure it’s a less stressful process.
With a smart labeling system, you will make unpacking much easier and there will actually be a system to loading and unloading the truck. It’s best to start the labeling process as you start packing. Here are a few tips to help you label your moving boxes like a pro.
Get the Right Labeling Tools
You need more than just a sharpie to label your boxes. The best type of labeling system requires markers in a variety of colors. Make sure they are good quality markers, as you don’t want one to go out halfway through the process.
Quality markers won’t be the cheapest on the shelves. Make sure they come from a brand you can trust and you get at least five different colors. It’s also best to use permanent, waterproof markers for labeling moving boxes.
Along with the markers, you should get colored tape matching the colors of your markers. While most of the packing tape you will use will be clear, a roll of each color will help with your labeling process. If you are using our Chicago Green Moving Boxes, use masking tape and mark where the boxes need to go. We can supply most of these items here and here.
Use a Color Coding System
Now that you have your markers and your colored tape, it’s time to put together your system. Choose a color for each of the major rooms, such as green for the kitchen, red for the family/living room, blue for the bedroom, orange for the bathroom(s) and yellow for the dining room. You can assign the colors to any room you want, as long as it makes sense for you.
Now, as you pack up each room, use the marker with the corresponding color to write on each box. Write the room name in large, capital letters one each box. Then, list out the items in the box in smaller print.
You will also want to use the colored tape on each box. Just one strip on the top or on the side of the box will be enough. It just provides another easy way to recognize the color for the room.
Let Your Movers Know About Your System
When the movers arrive to pick up your items, have a sheet of paper printed out with each color and what it means. If they don’t know your system, they won’t be able to put the boxes in the right place when they arrive at your new home. Giving this sheet to the movers before they pack up the truck will allow them to better load the truck, as well.
Using a color coded labeling system will take the guesswork out of unpacking. You’ll be able to easily spot an out-of-place box and your movers will know where the boxes go before they arrive.
It’s also important to make sure you tape over or black out any old markings if you’re reusing boxes. When you write the description of what’s in the box, you should be as specific as possible, as well. This will help with your own confusion as you start unpacking.
Posted on Sep 14, 2016
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When it’s time to hire a moving company, it’s best to understand the full range of services offered. Many moving companies do far more than just pick your stuff up and deliver it to your new location.
For example, when hired as a local moving company, The Professionals Moving Specialists can provide these additional moving services to Chicago movers.
Maybe you don’t want to worry about having your professional moving company pack and unpack for you, but you need supplies. Most moving companies will sell you boxes or even rent them to you, and we’re no different. At Chicago Greenbox, we offer moving box rentals, including green moving supplies and boxes that are made of 100% recyclable materials.
Yes, you can hire your moving company to come and pack up all of your things. This service can help save you time and will take away the worry of packing things incorrectly. Also, with us handling your packing, you will know the right boxes and supplies to use to ensure every item arrives undamaged to your new location.
Of course, your moving company can also unpack things for you. Some of the best moving companies will do this for you. However, if you allow the moving company to unpack for you know that they will likely empty boxes onto countertops and the like to give you a head start. This will allow you to place things where you prefer and avoid the headache of trying to figure out where everything went.
Handling Specialty Items
Whether you need to move a pool table, piano or piece of fine art, we can handle it for you. It’s not necessary for you to figure out how you will get your specialty item from your current home to your new home. Most of these types of items require a specialized process to ensure proper care and handling, and that’s a service that we pride ourselves on.
Remember these before you plan your next move, as they are only a few added options that we may provide for you. Be sure to check the full range of services offered to find a move that fits your scenario. And if you have any questions, don’t hesitate to call or email The Professionals Moving Specialists today!
Posted on Sep 8, 2016
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When you get an online estimate or an in-person estimate for moving from one place to another, it’s nice to know what goes into it. There are several factors used to determine the total cost for your move. Here’s a look at some of the major factors used in a moving estimate.
Your New and Old Addresses
The address you will have your belongings picked up at and the address where they will be dropped off is where the moving estimate starts. Good moving companies will ask for this information before they move forward with anything else. The more details you provider, the more accurate your quote will be, as well.
For example, if you’re just moving from one apartment to another, the addresses are great, but knowing what floor the apartments are on is even more helpful. You may also need to inform the moving company if you have things at a second address needing picked up along the way.
The Amount/Size of the Things Needing Moved
Along with the location your stuff is going from and to, the amount of things and the size of the things you have will also be factored into the moving estimate. If you have a grand piano and a large pool table needing moved, along with regular household belongings, your moving estimate will likely be higher due to those large items. Again, the more details you can give a moving company about the things you want moved, the more accurate your quote will be.
The Time of Year You Want to Move
In Chicago, moving in the winter may have a different cost compared to moving in the summer. Just like any industry, moving has peak times and off-peak times. If you move during a peak time of year, it will likely cost you more because many others are also moving during this time of year.
Often, in Chicago, the peak moving times are in the spring and fall when school is starting and ending. However, you may run into other peak times, depending on what is going on and when you plan to move.
Factors Making Your Move Less or More Expensive
While the main three things going into your estimate are the locations, your things and the time of year you move, there are other factors that will affect the price. Here are a few things you should understand when it comes to a moving estimate.
The number of actual movers required to get your belongings from point A to point B is a huge factor in how much it will cost for your overall move. For example, if you have a heavy piano needing moved, it may require a third mover for safety reasons. Without a heavy item, the moving may be able to be done by two movers, which won’t cost as much.
The number of hours spent on the actual job also factors into the overall cost. If the move is estimated to take only 3 hours, it won’t cost as much as a move estimated to take 6 hours.
Long distance moves cost more than in-town moves. If you’re just moving a few miles across town, it won’t cost as much as moving the same belongings outside of the city.
Understanding what goes into a moving estimate is necessary. Not only will the estimate make more sense to you, but it will also help you compare one company to another.
Posted on Aug 31, 2016
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Moving fine art isn’t the same as moving a couch or another large item. It’s fragile, may be very valuable and needs to be moved properly. Since this type of item is rather unique, it cannot be lumped into the moving estimate with all the other items.
Fine art, such as paintings, sculptures, collector’s items, chandeliers, statues and pictures requires a professional moving company capable of moving the type of item you own. The cost may vary widely, depending on the item or items you need moved. Here are some of the considerations a professional moving company will make when quoting a price for moving fine art.
The Value of the Art
If you plan to insure the fine art during the move, the value will make a big difference in the price. You may need to pay for an appraisal before the item is moved to ensure its value is correct. More valuable pieces are more expensive to move simply because they will cost more to replace if damaged or lost.
The Size of the Art
Size is another huge factor. It’s not going to be the same price to move a simple 24″ x 36″ painting compared to a 300-pound statue. The larger the item is, the more you can expect to pay to have it moved, especially if the larger size means more weight.
With heavier items, moving companies may need to bring out special equipment or staff an additional mover to ensure the move is handled properly. This will cost more and just one extra mover can up the hourly rate by $75 or more per hour.
How Fragile is the Art
Fragile art requires special packing materials and a specific strategy for moving. For example, if you have a highly valuable chandelier you need moved made of crystal, it will probably cost more than moving a painting. The chandelier may be large, oddly shaped and incredibly fragile, while the painting can simply be crated and moved.
If you own very fragile fine art, you should expect the cost of moving it to be much higher compared to moving a handful of valuable paintings. While all fine art must be handled with care, fragile items require an even higher level of care.
Benefit of Hiring a Professional to Move Fine Art
While it’s very hard to narrow down even a simple price range for moving fine art, there are several benefits to hiring a professional moving company to handle your fine art. The benefits include:
- Safety – Professional movers know what they are doing and you will no longer be risking yourself when moving.
- Less chance of Damage – With a professional moving company, your fine art will be packed properly leaving the chances of damage at slim to none.
- Saves you Time – You no longer have to spend the time tracking down the right materials and packing the art yourself.
- Affordable – Usually, the cost of moving fine art is far more affordable than trying to handle it yourself.
The cost of moving fine art will vary widely, depending on what needs to be moved. Just as art can be very subjective, so can the estimate for moving it. If you need to move fine art, it’s best to get an estimate from a professional moving company specializing in fine art moving.
Posted on Aug 23, 2016
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If you didn’t use Chicago GreenBoxes (we HIGHLY recommend them if it’s not too late!), you might have a huge stack of cardboard boxes left over. If they are properly broken down, you may have some options to recycle, donate or even sell your used boxes. Here are some of the options for your moving boxes in Chicago.
Use BoxCycle or Freecycle
BoxCycle allows you to list your boxes for sale. They will sell them for you and you just collect a profit. This is a great way to get a little bit of your cash back and allow someone else to get moving boxes at a discount.
Freecycle, on the other hand, allows you to list items you would like to give away free of charge. Every now and then, you can find moving boxes on the site and many look for moving boxes here. There are several groups found in the Chicago area where you can list your boxes and give them away.
Another place to give your boxes away free of charge is Craigslist. There are always free ads on the Chicago Craigslist site for boxes. This is a popular place for people to look, so why not give it a try to get rid of your boxes?
If your neighborhood or building has a recycling program, you may be able to recycle your used boxes. Sometimes, you have to look up a place in the area that will take a large amount of cardboard for recycling, however. While this isn’t the best or easiest option, it’s still better than tossing the boxes in the trash.
Local Charities and Libraries
The library may need some of your boxes for moving or storing books. If you have any heavy duty books, you can ask your nearby library if they can use the boxes. Often, they will take some of the boxes off your hands.
Other charities may also need boxes, such as Goodwill, Salvation Army, Churches, Schools and anywhere else that might have a need for boxes. Community enters often need boxes for different reasons and with a few phone calls to local organizations; you can probably unload all of your boxes.
Use a Box Broker
There are actually box brokers in Chicago that will sell your used moving boxes for you. You can easily do a Google search and find a few brokers to choose from.
Check with your Moving Company
Some moving companies will recycle the used boxes for you by giving them to others moving or simply recycling them. Always check with your moving company if you’re not sure what to do with your boxes. If they are local to Chicago, they may be able to connect you with someone needing boxes, as well.
While it’s not a good idea to trust used boxes for moving your belongings, they can still have a purpose, if broken down correctly. There are many ways to reuse your moving boxes. You can sell them, give them away, donate them to charity or use a local recycling program. No matter what you choose, all of these options are better than just tossing them in the dumpster. Again, hopefully you are using Chicago GreenBoxes, which are made from 100% recyclable material, and much sturdier.
Posted on Aug 17, 2016
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Moving is a big deal and may be one of the most stressful life events, if you don’t do it right. However, with the help of a moving company, along with the right strategy, you can avoid losing things during your move and eliminate some of the stress.
It seems like something always gets lost or broken during a move. It doesn’t have to be this way. Here are a few tips to help ensure you don’t lose anything during your next move.
Pack One Room at a Time
It may take you a bit longer and it may seem like a pain, but packing one room at a time is a great way to ensure you don’t lose anything. When you’re not floating back and forth between rooms, you’re less likely to misplace an item or put it in the wrong box. It’s much easier to label things properly when dealing with one room at a time.
Create a Proper List
The right list will also make a huge difference. You should create a master list of all of the things you are pacing. As you go room by room with your packing, just make an inventory list of the things you are packing. Make sure everything is on the list and you also inventory where it was packed.
Use Small, Ziploc Bags
There’s nothing worse than getting to your new home and realizing you lost an important piece to your furniture or something else. Even the smallest piece can be lost and if it is, it could make a big difference.
When you use Ziploc bags for small items, you won’t have to worry about losing them. These helps with computer and electronic cables, screws, nuts and bolts and anything else small.
You want to take the bag to the electronic device or piece of furniture the items in the bag belong to. This can make the entire move go much smoother and unpacking much easier.
Don’t Send the Personal Items on the Moving Truck
Even if you hire the most trusted moving company you can find, there are some items you just don’t want to send on the moving truck. You never know what will happen and having personal items, such as photo albums and important documents travel with you is very smart.
There are lasso other items you cannot pack on a moving truck, in some cases, such as your collection of alcohol, fertilizers, gardening chemicals, unsealed foods, perishable foods and gasoline.
If you’re not sure if you can pack an item and send it on the moving truck, check with the company you hired first. Make sure all your small valuables, extra cash and important documents go with you, however.
Use these tips when you move and you will have a better moving experience. Of course, you can always eliminate the moving headaches by hiring a moving company to pack your items, move them and unpack them. Remember, they are professionals and know the best strategies to ensure everything gets to the new location without getting lost or broken.
Posted on Aug 10, 2016
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Moving is a huge hassle, especially if you have heavy items, such as a real, slate or marble pool table. Large, heavy pool tables are not easy to move and often, trying to do it yourself can lead to damage to the table or someone helping you move it. When an item weighs as much as a pool table does, it’s best to pay a professional moving company to handle it.
With a professional moving company, you don’t have to worry about getting injured or hurting your table. They’ve moved many pool tables and they know how to do it efficiently. In addition, they will have special equipment to make moving your heavy pool table much easier.
Answering the question, “how much does it cost to move a pool table,” isn’t as easy as just providing a number. There are some specific factors that must be considered.
First, what type of pool table are you moving? Is it a drop pocket table? Does it have plastic pockets, leather pockets or a ball return system?
Second, how heavy is the pool table? The weight of the table may determine how many movers need to be on the job, which will factor into the cost.
Third, is the pool table going up or down any stairs? Moving a large item up or down stairs makes it a more risky and difficult job, therefore, it may cost a bit more compared to moving a pool table out of the first floor and into the first floor.
Finally, how far will the pool table be traveling from its’ current destination to its’ final destination? The price difference from a local move to an out of city/state move can be quite different.
Should you Move a Pool Table Yourself?
After answering the questions above and getting a quote from a professional moving company, you may consider moving the pool table yourself. However, this could be a huge mistake as damage and injuries can occur.
Videos on YouTube and information found online might show you how to take the table apart and move it piece by piece. However, if you’ve never assembled a pool table, you might be very disappointed with the results once you get it together. Plus, disassembling and reassembling a pool table for the first time may lead to damaging it in ways you haven’t even thought of yet.
Trying to move a pool table in one piece is ridiculous to even attempt. Most slate tables would require 5 to 7 guys and there’s a very good chance at least a few end up with a serious injury. This should not be attempted.
So, How Much Does it Cost to Move a Pool Table?
Getting back to the original question, it costs between $750 and $1000 to move a typical pool table, in most cases. Reassembly will usually require a specialist to level and custom fit the billiard cloth that covers a pool table. The price may be on the lower side if your table is only 7 feet and it may be on the higher side if it’s a 9-foot table with stairs to negotiate.
Here’s a brief video showing our team taking apart a pool table for transportation. Easier said than done! Contact us if you need help with moving your pool table today!
Posted on Aug 3, 2016
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Moving is a huge undertaking, especially if you’re moving to a new city. Most people dread the process of moving, even if they know the new location is far better for them. The packing, lifting, unloading and unpacking are not something most look forward to.
There are several reasons to hire professional movers and many benefits. Whether you simply don’t have the time or you want to eliminate some of the stress of moving, the right professional moving company makes a huge difference. Here are five reasons why you should always hire a moving company.
Free Up Time for Other Things
Moving day is one of the most hectic days of your life. Every single time you go through it, you wish there was an easier way. Not only do you have to get all of your belongings from one location to another, but you also have to handle other things, such as turning off/on utilities, getting your family to your new home, changing your driver’s license and many other tasks.
Hiring a moving company will allow you to concentrate on other tasks instead of moving. Some moving companies will even pack and unpack all of your things for you.
No Need for Additional Equipment or Supplies
Whether you just need to move furniture or you have a valuable collection to move, the right equipment makes a difference. Sometimes, you have to rent or purchase additional supplies or equipment for specialty items or heavy items. It may be something as simple as a tool you need to take apart a piece of furniture.
A professional moving company will have the tool you need, along with all the other equipment/supplies necessary for moving. It doesn’t matter if you’re moving fine art or just basic household furniture, hiring a moving company will give you everything you need for moving day.
You Won’t End Up Injured
One of the most common things people forget about when moving is their own health. Moving heavy items isn’t easy for somebody not doing it on a daily basis. Professional movers handle things like heavy pianos and oddly shaped pieces of furniture every single day. They know how to move these items safely.
If you try to move everything yourself, you may be sore for a few days. Even worse, you may end up in the hospital with an injury because you didn’t properly lift or handle a heavy item.
Your Things Remain Insured and Safe
With experienced professionals, you have the ability to safely move your belongings without as much concern. Not only are they experienced in moving, but they also carry insurance for your belonging. This gives you additional peace of mind when moving.
In addition, professional movers understand how to properly wrap and pack your items. Even fragile items are well protected when you hire a professional moving company.
You May Actually Save Money, in the Long Run
Without professional movers, you may end up in the hospital, with broken items, lost items or racking up unexpected moving expenses. You have to rent a truck, put gas in the truck, get the right tools and equipment and you may need to provide food and refreshments for those helping you. It can add up in a hurry.
Professional movers will give you an estimate and you will only need to pay what they charge. There won’t be additional charges for equipment you didn’t know you needed and you won’t underestimate the amount of gas you need, either.
There are several excellent reasons why you should hire a professional moving company. If you want to take the stress out of your next move, a professional is the way to go.
Posted on Jul 26, 2016
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Moving to Chicago is a big jump for many looking to relocate to the big city. You might be used to hopping in your car and heading to work, the store or anywhere else on a daily basis. While you can certainly do this in Chicago, it’s not a necessity with the public transportation options and the ability to walk to many things nearby.
Keeping your car may allow you to travel outside of the city. You will need a place to park it or store it and this can be expensive. You will also need to get a city vehicle sticker for your car.
Do you Need a Car to Commute to Work?
Commuting to work in Chicago with your own personal vehicle can be challenging. You may have to deal with long rush house from 6:30am to 10:30am and from 3:30pm to 7:30pm. This may be enough reason to ditch the car for public transportation for some.
You don’t need a car to get to work, in most cases. The Chicago Transit Authority or CTA, will get you to every corner of the city. You also have the option to get a bike and ride it to work. Of course, you can always share a ride with UberX or Lyft and there’s always the option of hailing a taxi.
Where will you Park?
If you decide you will be keeping your car, you may need to have a lawn chair or something else ready to call “dibs” on a parking spot. It’s very difficult to deal with parallel parking in Chicago and if you leave a spot open, it will be taken by the time you come back. You have to pay attention to the parking signs and tow zones, too.
In the winter, you will have to fight the snow, which means you may have to claim your parking spot. Just because you shovel it doesn’t mean it’s automatically yours. You have to mark the spot with lawn chairs and other items you are not using. Even by marking the spot, there’s not guarantee it will be open when you come back.
Research the Neighborhood Before Deciding
Chicago is full of unique neighborhoods and some are more car-friendly than others. For example, parking in Hyde Park is much easier than Lakeview. Each neighborhood is a bit different and you may want to make sure you understand what you’re getting into before you choose to keep or sell your car.
There are many things to consider if you keep your car. You may have to pay high parking fees and it may be difficult to find a parking spot. Make sure you take the time to consider all of the possibilities and your personal needs before you move to Chicago with your car.
Moving is already stressful enough without additional decisions. It may be best to make the decision to keep or sell your car before you hire a Chicago moving company and prepare everything for transit. At least it will be one less decision you will have to deal with.
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