7 Things Professional Movers Want You to Know About Moving in 2022

published Jan 11, 2022
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Woman watering her plants in the process of moving house
Credit: Getty Images/ Justin Lambert

Whether you’re moving across town or across the globe, the process may not look like it did when you’ve moved in years past. The pandemic has significantly affected almost every area of life, and moving is no exception. I talked to some professional movers to find out what you need to know and do to have a successful and trouble-free move this year.

Expect Delays — and Consider a Plan B

According to a recent survey by moving site moveBuddha, moving companies are struggling to keep up with the high demand for their services. “In 2021, 71 percent of moving companies reported experiencing delays,” says Ryan Carrigan, one of moveBuddha’s cofounders. He believes that 2022 won’t be any better. “People moving long distances should expect delivery delays and plan accordingly,” he adds.

Carrigan says moving companies are experiencing staffing shortages and schedules are filling up quickly. “The truck driver shortage has been a significant issue for the trucking industry, especially moving companies — and in 2021, the lack of drivers, paired with a spike in demand for long-distance moving services, led to a 250 percent increase in last-minute cancellations by moving companies and a 71 percent increase in delivery delays.”

He recommends booking a mover as soon as possible, and also having backup options in case of a cancellation. “I’d also recommend having a plan for if your delivery gets delayed so you aren’t stuck in an empty house for longer than you want to be.”

Hybrid Moving Is Going Mainstream

As a result of the pandemic-related labor challenges and disruptions to the supply chain, Mike Glanz, president of HireAHelper, believes that 2022 will be the year that hybrid moving finally goes mainstream. Hybrid moving is part DIY and part full-service. “Instead of being entirely ‘hands-off’ and fully surrendering their belongings to a full-service moving company, more and more people are hiring hourly movers to simply load and unload a rental truck or a moving container for them,” Glanz says.

By self-managing the transport and letting hired laborers do the heavy lifting, Glanz says you can save a significant amount. “A full-service move normally costing $2,600 could be done for $800 using the hybrid approach — and it gives people greater control and access to their belongings, providing invaluable peace of mind.”

Credit: Getty Images/Susumu Yoshioka

Time Is Money and Money Is Time

If you’re paying movers by the hour, Cameron Brown, owner of Austin, Texas-based Einstein Moving Company, says you should move as much small stuff yourself as you can. “If you have time in between when you can move into your new place and when you have to vacate your old place, bringing over some of the random stuff that goes into your garage, [taking] stuff that is packed into your cabinets and drawers, and hanging pictures on your own before can reduce the stress of the move and save you a ton of time/money on move day,” Brown says. Believe it or not, he explains it’s not the big stuff that takes all of the time. “It is the small miscellaneous stuff that adds a bunch of trips back and forth to the truck that causes moves to go long,” Brown adds.

Make Sure You’re Prepared for Movers

Collin Flynn, owner of UniMovers, says that one of the biggest complaints he hears from movers is that the customer wasn’t prepared when they arrived. “We do provide packing services, however people often opt to save money by packing their boxes themselves.” 

Still, if everything is not boxed up when the movers arrive, it can disrupt the process. “What many people don’t know is that movers have a system when packing and loading a moving truck — certain items should go on the truck at certain times, and if everything isn’t ready, it can throw that whole system out of whack,” Flynn says. In addition to adding time to the move, he says the movers won’t be able to pack the truck as efficiently and safely. 

Transparency Is Key

Since moving companies are being stretched thin, Flynn also recommends being completely transparent with them. “Since we’re often on a strict schedule, it is imperative we know everything that will be moved, so we can give a proper estimate and we can stay for the full duration of the move.” Sometimes, people think if they don’t include everything in their request, they’ll end up paying less. But this strategy could have a negative ripple effect. 

“It puts us in a really tough spot, and we have to decide whether we’ll push back the next customer, and the movers might lose the break they were going to have between moves, plus, your price might be significantly more than you were expecting,” Flynn explains.

Give Friends and Family Plenty of Advance Notice

It’s not just moving companies that you need to contact far in advance. “If friends or family are helping, you want to get a commitment ASAP,” advises George Rohlfing, owner of Brookline Transportation, Inc. in Hanover, Massachusetts. The amount of support you get from them may determine how much you’ll need the movers to do — or even if you need movers at all. But if you wait until the last minute to ask friends and family and it turns out that they can’t help, it may be too late to book a moving company or extend your scheduled moving time. 

We’re Still in a Pandemic

Lastly, don’t forget to follow pandemic protocols — and make sure your movers do, too. “With variants of COVID-19 continuing to develop, we are still following health and safety precautions such as wearing a mask, avoiding handshakes and using fresh, clean moving supplies,” says Steven McKenna, vice president and general manager of Allied Van Lines. “Many professional movers like Allied are also providing virtual in-home estimates as a safer option to in-person walkthroughs.”