Tips to keep connected when moving

If you are moving internationally and taking your desktop or laptop with you, you’ll want to be sure to stay connected especially if your move is work-related. There are many things to keep in mind and be aware of before you leave the U.S. so your connection to your computer with the local system is completely compatible.

Many countries are not digitally connected yet like here at home. And something you won’t want to forget, electric-compatible connectors and adapters so your high-tech equipment can work.

Tips staying connected:
Voltage – As mentioned, find out what the country’s voltage is and what type of built-in adapters you need to take with you. Ask if the telephone plugs are hard-wired directly into the wall or is it digital. Digital signals vary and your modem may not work. Purchase a modem and voltage adapter based on the power voltage of your new country of origin.
Surge protector – To avoid having a full meltdown of your computer if for some reason a power surge occurs and you don’t have a surge protector, find out if the power or electricity is reliable and what specific power protector you should have.
Modem – There are some modems that don’t run properly in certain countries. Make sure to find out what type of modem that is compatible.
ISP – Make sure to find out what local Internet Service Provider (ISP) is best to use. Local ISPs are much cheaper than the granddaddy ones and more reliable too.
Software – Check to ensure you have all the correct software and programs that are compatible in your new home. In addition, there are some local software packages that makes it easier to use your programs in another country.

It’s easy to take for granted when living in the states how everyone is connected especially with smartphones and smart TVs. Digital has made things much better but not every country is up-to-par yet. Do a little research, purchase pertinent adapters and you’ll be able to stay connected before moving out of the country.

Safe moving!

Tips moving golf clubs

In recent blog posts, I have provided tips on how to move a piano, motorcycles and other important items. This week, I’m going to give you tips moving your golf clubs. Hey, they are expensive and need attention when you are moving especially if it’s overseas.

Stiff Arm
Believe it or not, golf clubs can be damaged despite the way they look and feel. Make sure to purchase a Stiff Arm, an adjustable 3-piece telescopic stick that fits in any golf travel bag and will absorb any moving force of impact during the move. You might know it as a golf protection device that eliminates damage during a move.

Tips packing golf clubs
Club heads – The head of your golf clubs are the most important pieces to cover. Purchase head covers at your sporting goods store, they should have plenty to choose from. If not, then wrap them in towels or even use small pillows between each club.
Secure each club – Bubble wrap is one of the best packaging materials to put over each individual golf club. This is one of the best ways to protect each club during transit. Also, use zip ties or something similar to keep each club securely in place in your Stiff Arm.
Soft bag – I would recommending using a soft bag to put all of your bundled clubs together. Use additional bubble wrap, towels or sheets to fill up the bag so that your clubs are secure.
Rattle and roll – Once in the soft bag, rattle the clubs and shake them to be sure they are not moving inside the travel bag.
Close it – Once the clubs are packed, close and zip up the bag and it’s then ready to be packed in your household goods. When your assessor arrives to go over the goods you need moved, make sure to let him or her know that you have golf clubs. They will then pack it in a crate or box that will further protect them during the move.

Use these tips to protect your valuable golf tips so you will be ready to play the game in your new town or city of destination.

Safe moving!

Tips forwarding mail when moving overseas

Even though many of us receive packages via FedEx or by other means, we still have important snail-mail to collect. When moving overseas, you want to ensure you receive it at your new home or residence. With technology today, you can now manage your mail from abroad by using mail forwarding services.

Moving can be stressful especially moving overseas, but be sure to select a mail servicing company before heading out so that important letters, correspondences and yes, even bills are still sent to you.

Tips and types of mail-forwarding:
• Mail sent monthly, bi-monthly or as requested
• Add an Internet account so you can view the status of your mail and specify specific shipping dates
• Shipping and customs documents can be handled by the shipping service you choose
• Categorize or select which parcels of mail you want to receive overseas

The U.S. Postal Services regulates commercial receiving agencies (CRMAs) and requires a form to be filled out (you can download it here: and have identification documents handy when filling out the form. If you have a significant other and you’re not married, each person will need to fill out a separate form.

Mail-forwarding services eases a lot of worries when heading overseas and this is just another convenient service to use when moving overseas.

Safe moving!

Tips moving on a budget

If you are planning to move overseas whether on your own or due to work, it can become very expensive but there are certain steps you can take to make your move less expensive.

As I discussed last week, moving a wine cellar isn’t easy and can be pricey but you can save money overall if you follow budget moving tips below.

Tips moving on a budget:
Lighten the load – When you move, this is a great time to get rid of non-important things and items you never use such as books that have been in your shelf for years or a chair that you never use. Less the household goods, less you’ll have to pay. Plan on giving away your extra un-needed items, donate, sell or recycle them.
Dedicated mover – Make sure to hire someone that has been in the business for years and is reputable as discussed in blog #97. At Rainier, you will receive dedicated and personalized service. In addition, we know hundreds of agents throughout the world to provide you the very best price.
Purchase insurance – Movers know how to transport your belongings but accidents do happen. A reputable company will always offer insurance coverage. If something happens during transport, you’ll know you won’t lose everything monetarily.
Moving date – Generally speaking, movers are extremely busy during the summer months, weekends and at the beginning and ending of each month. If you can be flexible about the date of your move, the ideal times are middle of the months, November through early December, February through April. These are some of the least busy times and some movers may provide discounts during the slow months.

Follow these simple steps and you will lower your moving expenses and will also be organized and prepared for the big move.

Safe moving!

Tips for moving a wine cellar

Now that you have found an excellent and reputable moving company, you will need to know some tips on how to protect your wine collection when moving overseas. Your wine cellar probably took many years and lots of money to build up the valuable bottles in your collection so you will have to ensure it is protected during the entire move.

Here are some tips in protecting your wine cellar:
• Let your mover know – It’s seems simple but many times people do forget to tell their movers about a wine collection to be moved. Please advise your mover that you have a high-value wine collection among your belongings to be moved. Your mover needs to know so they can take precautionary measures to safely move and appraise your collection.
• Find out how much your wine is worth – When you contact your movers, make sure to tell them to have the surveyor or even a wine appraiser to come over to find out how much your collection is worth. That way, a monetary value is placed on your cellar before it’s moved. Upon knowing its worth, I would highly recommend purchasing insurance through your mover so it’s protected before your fine wine heads overseas.
• High-value inventory form – When moving your wine cellar, your movers should ask and provide you with a high-value inventory form. Just like jewelry and other high-priced items, your wine is valuable and this will qualify you to receive protection and replacement plans your mover has to offer.
• Take photos – Be sure to take lots of photos of your wine collection especially your expensive bottles. Take additional photos as your wine cellar expands. This ensures you have a complete record of your entire wine collection before your move.

Preserving a fine wine takes its time and be sure to take time when moving your valuable wine cellar to a new home.

Safe moving!

Tips for tipping movers

One of the most hardworking people in the moving industry are professional movers who pack your belongings in boxes and load your furniture and place them in the moving trucks to get them to your destination.

Movers are part of the service trade. In other words, they are service professionals and you base your tip on the services performed. Yes, you do tip movers but it’s not expected. Most people will buy them lunch for their tip and or provide cash.

If a mover is late, has a bad attitude and isn’t attentive to ensure your belongings are packed properly, you certainly won’t tip them or provide lunch. However, if the movers job performance was attentive, helpful, professional and packed your items appropriately, then give what you believe is fair.

Here are some tips for tipping movers and recommendations:
• Offer the movers to buy them lunch especially if it’s at least a half-day move. That’s just as good as a cash tip. Some people do both but it’s not necessary. If you do buy them lunch, don’t assume it should be hamburgers or pizza. Keep in mind, you are not the only one that they are moving your life belongings for. Ask what the movers feel like having.
• Make sure to have small items on hand such as bottled water (easier to carry around than a glass of water), sodas and light snacks. Don’t offer them alcoholic drinks like beer, it’s stereotypical, movers can’t drink on the job and there are liability issues.
• There’s really no percentage amount to give to movers like there is in other service industries such as restaurants where waitresses or waiters receive 20 percent for excellent service. About $10 per person is proper and if it’s a full day, then about $20 or so per mover.
• If you do give a cash tip, don’t give it all to the driver or one person but to each mover. That really recognizes individual’s efforts and is fair overall.

If your movers are professional, polite and do a good job, reward them like anyone else in the service industry. Plus, they’ll be more inclined to insure your belongings reach your destination safely, securely and in good shape.

Safe moving!

Tips to cleaning up everything before you move

Whether you like it or not, you need to clean your home and make sure your new home destination is in tip-top shape as well. It’s the normal process of moving but if you make sure to schedule cleaning task before you move, it will be a lot easier process when you head overseas.

First, make sure you purchase the proper cleaning supplies so you can use cleaning tools for specific items such as counter tops, appliances etc. Some of the suggested supplies to purchase include some of the following:
• Windex cleaner
• Shower and bathroom cleaners
• Magic erasers
• Duster
• Step ladder
• Paper towels and cleaning rags
• Specialty cleaners
• Trash bags

The best way to approach cleaning your residence is to schedule a specific time when you will begin to tackle the cleaning. Once your time has been allotted, move through your home room-by-room and scrub the rooms top to bottom, clean the interior and exterior of your appliances and then save your floors for cleaning them last.

Once your current residence is ready to be rented out or purchased, you will need to ensure the new home your moving into is cleaned as well. Here’s some simple tips:
• If moving into a new home, find out if the former homeowners plan to clean the home before they leave. You never know, it may not happen and the last thing you want is to have your belongings moving into a dirty home.
• If you are moving into a rental, find out if the management company or owners plan to have your new home thoroughly cleaned and be sure to ask when it will be cleaned and ready to move into.
• By chance, if your new residence won’t be cleaned before your move, I would recommend hiring a professional cleaning service. It might be a few more dollars to add to your moving budget but will save you a lot of time and will ensure your new home is totally cleaned.
• If you clean your new home yourself, schedule a time in your calendar to make sure you plan ahead and have the proper cleaning supplies on hand. I wouldn’t hesitate to invite friends to help you along with your family members and provide snacks and even dinner for their cleaning efforts.

By being prepared and scheduling time to clean your new home, it will make your move clean and stress-free!

Safe moving!

How many pros do you need if you are moving in a hurry

When you decide, or must move across the country or overseas, many folks ask me, how many movers will I need to move all my personal belongings especially if you need to move quickly. One of the key factors I tell my clients is, how much stuff you can part with. In other words, what items can you store or just get rid of. This is one of the best times to clean out and get rid of personal belongings, furniture etc. and eliminate unused or unwanted items.

After you have completed your own inventory, you can get a better idea of the personal belongings you will need to move or put in storage. This will save you a lot of time and money too.

The best way to know how many movers you will need to move quickly and to receive a fair price when you move? Make sure your moving company hires or has a reputable moving assessor to go over all your belongings you plan to move. He or she then will take notes and assess the weight, size and any special items that need to move such as a piano or pool table; you will need a 3 to 4-person crew with professional experience to get the job done fast and safely.

Here’s something that you do know because it is nothing but common sense knowledge – the more professional movers you hire, the faster they will get the job done. Ok, that statement may not always be true, but let’s assume for that moment that it is so. But even if your utmost desire is to have the move completed in record quick time, it’s the price you will have to take into consideration as well.

So, more movers will mean less time, but more movers will also mean more money. Ultimately, you will have to strike a reasonable balance between time and money to stay within the happy medium of moving overseas. That’s why it’s so important to have a reputable assessor to take care of this for you.

Carry distance
Also, keep in mind that sometimes the carry distance to the moving truck will come into play too if the price of your move doesn’t include your home distance. And if you are calculating from a timing standpoint due to your “rush move,” include movers that may have to carry boxes and other items of your personal belongings a long way such as 50 feet or so, be sure to add about an hour and a half of the total time you want to have your move completed.

If you have a flight or more of steps to get into your home, your assessor will take this into consideration regarding the entire cost of the move and if you are in a hurry, add about an hour for each flight of stairs.

The best way to move in a hurry, hire a reputable moving company with terrific assessors and don’t ever try to skimp on a cheaper mover that provides only a “one-person” band to try to get the job done. And always purchase moving insurance before you move.

Safe moving

Make sure you are fully insured before moving overseas

In my last blog, I recommended for you to move during the winter if possible. It’s less expensive and easier to schedule your move. This week, I’m recommending and always recommend purchasing insurance during your move overseas.
Insurance is one of the most important things you need to take care of and ensure you are covered before you leave overseas. I’m talking about personal insurance for you and your family members as well as insurance to protect your household goods.
Group policies
If you are relocating abroad with your home-country employer, check the insurance provisions your employer may have on a corporate basis to cover employees who relocate internationally. Sometimes companies with large numbers of internationally located employees have negotiated group policies. Some of the provisions may be applicable and useful to your circumstances and sometimes, you will need to make your own arrangements to ensure you are covered.

Household goods insurance
If you are moving overseas for work, be sure to know who is making the insurance arrangements for your household goods. Your employer may provide insurance for some of your household goods but then again, maybe not. Also, if you are shipping pricey items and over-sized belongings which may be excluded from coverage, make sure your employer knows this so that if items need to be insured, either by you or your employer, it will be covered.

Shipping insurance
Find out if shipping insurance, for example, is being arranged through your corporate office or through an agent abroad, and whom you should contact in the event of a problem. You will also want to know exactly what each policy covers; when coverage begins and ends; and what the claims procedure and the deadlines are.
By taking steps and knowing what your employer will or will not cover, you’ll be in a great position to ensure your items are covered. If you use our international moving service, we will be happy to guide you through the process and provide you with peace-of-mind knowing that everything will be taken care of when you move to your new country.

Safe moving

Move now before the craziness starts

The winter months are the best time to move because rates are usually lower and there’s not a lot of people moving at that time. You can receive the best moving deals and your personal household goods will more than likely be shipped faster.

It’s crazy for movers during the summer months because it’s the busiest time of the year for moving. Almost one-third of all moves take place in the summer, peaking in June, according to the U.S. Census. The busiest times are often near the end of the month and on weekends.

Scheduling your move mid-month or mid-week can reduce stress and sometimes result in savings. Begin contacting moving companies at least one month to two months prior to your move. Reputable moving companies can reach capacity quickly, and procrastinating may result in missing your preferred move date.

Make sure to ask your moving company for referrals and testimonials too. Here at Rainier, we provide free in-home estimates for the move at no obligation to you. Even if you are considering handling the move yourself, you have nothing to lose by inviting us into your home so you can find out if a professional move is the best option for you (highly recommended).

If you decide to go with another moving company, be sure the mover has a federal motor carrier, or MC, number so you know your mover is legitimate. You can verify their status by contacting the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration by visiting You can also visit the Federal Maritime Commission for overseas moves at

Safe moving!