You’ve hired a great moving company and you’re counting down the days until you make the transition from your current home to your new one. You’re excited…but you want to make sure you’ve got all of the bases covered before moving day. Here are 5 important items to cover before the movers pull up to your home.

1. Have everything packed before the movers arrive.
When a moving company gives you a quote, they’re looking around to see how long it will take them to move all of your items. This assumes that everything is packed and ready to go when their truck pulls up in front of your home. If they arrive to find you still packing, you’re likely going to hold up the process—costing them time and money. Do this and you risk being charged more…or having your moving appointment cancelled altogether. Be respectful of their time and they’ll work hard to get you moved safely, quickly and with no additional charges.

2. Discuss plants and large appliances with your moving company to see what rules or restrictions apply.
Some moving companies won’t handle plants at all. Others will only move certain kinds of plants. Large appliances pose their own set of circumstances, as some of them need to be prepared by certified technicians. Talk to your moving company to find out if there’s anything you need to be aware of regarding plants or appliances before the big day arrives.

3. Put important documents and items together and keep them with you.
Don’t pack extremely sensitive/valuable items or paperwork in boxes with other belongings. This includes things such as passports, cash, important files, legal documents and extremely expensive jewelry. Purchase a small plastic bin or a duffel bag in which to store these items and have them travel with you.

4. Pack an overnight bag with items you’ll need during the first few days.
The first day or so after your move will be like a bizarre vacation in which you don’t really have access to the items you need, so pack a bag with this in mind. Even if you have all of your packed boxes sitting neatly in your new home, you might not be able to find a pair of pajama pants or your toothpaste. To make things more efficient, simply put together a travel bag with the essentials—a few sets of clothing, toiletries and medication for the first few days. This way, you can focus on organized unpacking and not get lost on a wild search for a clean pair of socks.

5. Keep your pets out of the way during loading and unloading.
Nothing can make your moving day more stressful than a pet getting lost or injured as the moving company is working to get your belongings moved out or brought into your new home. It’s also an unnecessary distraction to the moving crew if they have to deal with pets running around as they’re trying to carry heavy items in and out. Put dogs in a crate or in the backyard and sequester your cats in a small room—both for their safety and for that of the movers.

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