How Much Will My Move Cost?

How much will my move cost is one of the most common questions that our customers ask us. And of course, we aim to give them as precise an estimate as we possibly can. The best way to get an accurate estimate for your moving costs is to schedule one of our estimators to come to your place, meet you, and see what’s there to be moved.

If you’d like to start with a more general overview, we can also do that if you give us as much information as you can about your move. Most of what we list here would be discussed during an in-person estimate.

Here is what we typically need to know:

  • Is this a business of residential move?
  • What kind of building are you moving from? And what kind of building is your new one?
    • Are they walk-ups or elevator buildings?
    • Does service access include a ramp, flight of stairs, or the required use of multiple elevators?
  • Will you be needing short- or long-term storage in addition to moving services?
  • Do your buildings have any restrictions around when you can move?
    • For example, are moving hours restricted to week days, or are weekends OK too?
    • Do you need to reserve an elevator?
    • Will the movers need to provide a certificate of insurance?
  • Will you pack your own boxes, or would you like movers to pack for you?
  • How many rooms of belongings do you have? Is there a basement storage area?
  • How many people are living or working there?
  • How long have you been at your present space?
  • Are there any items to be moved that will require special handling (i.e., piano, major appliances, art, mirrors, computers, office partitions, console printers, safes)?
  • Are there any other special considerations like needing a child’s room set up first, specific placement of work stations, desks, shelving, etc.?

Of course, all of this is without talking about the furniture you have. We will want an idea of that, too.

A good mover will ask about these things, either in person, or on the phone.  As you can see, doing this by email will quickly get tedious.

While we gain a sense of the scale of your move, you will get a sense of the importance we place on understanding you so we can best work together.

How to Simplify for Smaller Space

How to Downsize and Simplify for Smaller Space

Moving on to your next living space is not always a case of bigger is better. Sometimes it makes sense to downsize your living space. For example, if you’re merging two homes into one, moving into a more desirable neighborhood, or have an empty nest, you might realize you need less space than your current home.

Of course, less space also means you’ll need to downsize your belongings.

Here are some easy steps to simplify and downsize without becoming overwhelmed by the process:

The Destructor Beam Disaster

Sometimes it takes a little imagination to see what you really want to keep in your life.

So imagine this: What if a giant destructor beam from outer space reduced everything you had to dust and left you only a prepaid debit card secretly loaded with enough value to replace only 2/3 of your belongings.  Once you exceed the secret limit, you will be back to rubble again with no more chances. What to do???

You will need to prioritize, what will you NEED to replace, what will you WANT to replace, and what will you thank the destructor beam for destroying. Taking stock of the belongings that have meaning to you can make it easier to let go of the things that you know are just taking up space. When you can clear away the clutter that doesn’t add to your life, your life has more room for including only those things and experiences that enhance your being.

Try A Little Help From Friends

Scaling back your possessions can be an emotional activity. Get help from someone who doesn’t live with you – a friend, family member, or even a professional organizer. We have worked with several over the years and would be happy to connect you.

Having an objective party to help you sort through your things and decide what you truly love and need will make it much easier for you to choose only the things that you really want in your life. They will help you let go of your out-of-date party outfits, books you know you’ll never crack open again, and the worn-out, faded furnishings.

Turn Trash Into Cash

As it’s been said many times, one person’s trash is another person’s treasures. Some of your belongings may be in good shape, but just not appropriate for you. Give them a new home and make some extra money for yourself by selling off your goods.

An easy way to sell off your goods is to post them on Craig’s list and create your own virtual stoop sale. If you have valuable items and want to maximize the sale, you can post your items on Ebay and get potential buyers to bid for it.

Keeping Precious Items

Sometimes, you find that there are still belongings that don’t fit in your new home and you’re not willing to give them up. In this case, you might consider securing them in a storage space.

You can keep your belongings safe and sound in Rainbow Mover’s secure storage space located next to the offices. We can pick up any belongings you want to store and place them safely in the space. When you’re ready to take them back, all you need to do is give us a call and we’ll arrange a time to deliver them to you.

Contact us to learn more about renting space in our storage and for recommended resources for downsizing your home.


Checklist to Reduce Moving Stress

Pre-Moving Checklist to Reduce Moving Stress

Moving is known as one of the top 10 most stressful events for many people. But you don’t have to give into stress. At Rainbow Movers, we believe happy is good! We have created happy moving experiences for thousands of customers by helping them reduce moving stress.

When you’re getting ready to move, planning ahead helps create a happy, stress-free move. Not sure where to start? No worries – here is a pre-move check list for you:

6-8 Weeks Before Your Move

  • Book a free, in-home estimate with your mover (earlier is better).
  • Create a moving file to keep track of checklists, quotes, receipts, and other important information.
  • Once you have your estimates, see if the movers you like will fit your budget. Consider the hourly costs, materials charges, and whether you feel the estimate (and estimator) has been thorough and realistic. Consider whether the charges have been explained so you understand them.
  • Create a budget for your moving expenses.
  • Gather copies of records you need to transfer – medical, dental, school, etc.

6 Weeks Before Your Move

  • Create a change-of-address notification list for magazines, clubs, subscriptions, financial accounts, etc.
  • Get change-of-address cards from your local post office.
  • Clear out the clutter – purge your belongings of the things that you don’t love, want, or use.
  • Plan to sell, give away, or donate your excess things.

4 Weeks Before Your Move

  • Start researching your new neighborhood or ask for recommendations – where to run errands, which parks are nearby, closest dog runs, leisure options, etc.
  •  Buy packing boxes and supplies for your belongings.
  • Schedule disconnect and connect dates for phone, cable, Internet, gas, electric, water, and trash

2 Weeks Before Your Move

  • Organize your belongings in boxes by room. You can label the upper right hand corner on the sides of each box with just a few letters – BR1, BR2, K, LR, O, etc. It’s quick and will ensure things are placed where you want them to be.
  • Create an “I Am HERE” box with all of the necessary items you’ll want to unpack first when you arrive. Some of these things include bed linens, bath towels, medicines, vitamins, important and pacifying toys for kids, starter items for the kitchen (i.e., coffee cup, wine glass), connecting wires for electronics, battery chargers, light bulbs, and toilet paper.

1 Week Before Your Move

  •  Your mover should check in with you to make sure you know what to expect on moving day. They will finalize any details with you and answer any questions that you have about timing, building schedule coordination, and payment.

It’s never too early to start discussing your upcoming move. If you’re planning one in the next couple of months, give us a call for a free estimate.

How to Pack China and Breakable Items

We do our best to treat your things as if they were our own. After moving hundreds of trucks full of your favorite furnishings, prized possessions, and delicate items, we’ve learned a few things about keeping your belongings safe from breakage.

In fact, we have a fool-proof way for packaging your dish wear. Wether it’s fine China or hand-me-down ceramics, this method will protect your tableware even if the box it’s packed in is accidentally dropped from waist height.

Before you get started, make sure that you have the right sized boxes and all of the materials that you need. We have plenty of supplies in our boxes and supplies store that we can deliver right to your doorstep. Once you have what you need, you can use our highly-effective way of protecting your most delicate items.

Pack Dishes with The “Lasagne Method”

What is the Lasagne Method, you may ask? It’s simply a layered approach to packing your dishes to minimize the potential for cracks, shatters, or chips. It was named the “Lasagne Method” by one of our customers.

Layer 1:  In the bottom of the box, add well crumpled paper or a couple of inches of shredded paper. This will provide sufficient cushioning for where you will put your dishes.

Layer 2: Wrap your plates well. Each plate should be wrapped in a couple of layers of paper to keep them safe. This will protect them if they knock into each other.

Instead of stacking them flat in the box on top of each other, stack them on their edge as if putting them into a dish washer or drying rack. Why on their side? Because if the box is accidentally dropped, there will be minimal surface area that comes in contact with the floor. Less surface area = less likely to break. This is science!

Layer 3: Add crumpled or shredded paper around the sides of the dishes to protect them from the sides of the box. Pack it so that nothing can shift around. Then add additional paper crumples or shreds on top of your dishes.

Layer 4: Wrap glass wear well. Each glass should have a couple of layers of paper, just like your plates. Lay your glassed down on their sides, on top of the layer of paper (aka layer 3).

Layer 5: Add more crumpled or shredded paper around your glasses so that they cannot move. Once they are sufficiently immobilized, add more paper on top of your glasses.

You can use this method for any other delicate items that you have to move. If you’re packing a number of items of varying sizes and shapes, it helps to keep the heaviest of them on the bottom of the box. And as long as you put enough padding around each item and in the space between items, they should stay safe from breakage.

Of course, if you want us to pack some of your more delicate items, or you have particularly difficult items to move such as mirrors, electronics, or odd shaped items, we’ll gladly pack them for you. Just get in touch with us for an in-person moving estimate and we’ll help you make your move happy and stress-free. Because happy is good!

Find Your Best Time to Move Apartments

Four Tips to Find Your Best Time to Move Apartments

Historically, May 1 was known as Moving Day in New York City. That’s because all rental agreements expired on the same date. On February 1, also known as New York City’s Rent Day, landlords would communicate any rent increases, and between February and April, tenants would search for new places to live. When the first of May rolled around, there would be mass chaos of everyone switching apartments on the same day.

Fortunately, moving has changed a lot since the early 20th century, and even since Rainbow Movers started. However, planning ahead and finding your best time to move can reduce stress and make the transition easy.

Scheduling: Know YOUR Moving Season

The most popular months for moving are May through September. For many, it’s because transitioning to a new home is easier when kids are out of school for the summer. The downside is that summer can be more difficult to book your move on the day you wish since many others are moving at the same time.

Know your new building’s rules

Many New York City buildings, particularly those with elevators and doormen, do not allow weekend moves. In addition, many buildings only permit one moving company at a time to access the service elevator. Planning your move ahead of time is key to ensure that your movers will be able to get to your apartment without delays.

If you are moving from house to house, you won’t have the same sorts of restrictions, but you may need to consider other factors like traffic.

Peak season vs. off-peak

If your new home is near a beach route or weekend getaway place, midweek summer moves (Tuesday-Thursday) will save you money by cutting the time your movers are on the road.

During early spring or late fall, you may be able to book your move whenever you like. If you’re buying a place, you might find better deals with fewer buyers on the hunt.

Winter can be even easier to find exactly the home that you desire and the ideal move-in date.

Book your move ahead

The earlier that you can book your move, the more likely you will be able to choose your ideal move date. Because summer is such a popular time to move, many movers get booked weeks in advance.

It’s not wrong to plan a move that’s 6-8 weeks or more in the future. Knowing that you have secured your date can give you peace of mind and reduce your stress.

Discover your best time to move – contact us for schedule options and your free estimate.

Last Minute Moving Glitches

What Now? How We Handle Last Minute Moving Glitches

Our moves go smoothly because we work with our clients and plan well in advance.  However, there are times when forces beyond our control intervene and block our plans.  More often than not, the culprits can be a varied cast of third parties – a buyer, seller, or tenant; lawyers, bankers, and title people, a realtor or building manager; or an elevator going out of service.  And then there are hurricanes and blizzards arriving on schedule, and babies arriving early.

Any of these events can mean switching the date of the move at the last minute, necessitating a progression of other re-schedules: elevator reservations, insurance start and end dates; utility, phone, and cable installations; days off from work and child care…. and of course, the movers.

For us, the movers, a change in plans can mean a lost day of work, when we turned away others to honor our commitment to you, our client.  It is why we ask for a small deposit to secure any reservation.

It is an important part of our preparations with customers to inform them that we want them to be sure enough of your moving dates. So when you book with us, you agree to accept that a date change may mean the loss of your deposit, except where childbirth, blizzards, or hurricanes are the cause (see “working with people” below) if we are unable to re-fill your slot.

The benefit of working with Rainbow Movers when things like this happen is that we are actual people and enjoy working with people.  We understand that these things happen, and we will work with you to find a good solution to get your move done at the earliest possible date, help with the calls to buildings, etc.  And we will support you if it is possible to recover your deposit from whoever may have caused the change.

As we’ve said before, we have been in business since 1978.  While we can’t say we’ve seen it all before (this is New York City, after all), we do have a lot of experience to draw upon in navigating our way around unexpected bumps in the road.  At the end of that road, we expect you will find yourself happily moved into your new home, the detours having been traveled with a minimum of stress.

Moving Boxes: Why Size Really Does Matter

Here at Rainbow Movers, we talk about boxes a lot on when we meet customers for free moving estimates, and also on Facebook and Twitter, because it is very important to use the right size boxes when you are packing to move or store your belongings. Here’s why:

1.  Things Fit: Moving boxes are designed based on decades of experience. When you pack a book box (12”x12”x17.5”) with books, the vast majority of books fit nicely into the box. Dinner plates nestle safely inside a dish box (18”x18”x28”) which is also thicker than your average box, allowing plenty of room for insulating materials to keep them whole. Of course there will be items that don’t fit perfectly, like an oversize World Atlas or a large serving platter. But for the most part, these boxes make it easy to organize and pack your items, and keep them safe during the move.

2. The Right Boxes Weigh Just Enough: Have you ever lifted a box of books? Books can be very heavy. So if you fill a larger box with all the books in your shelf, it might seem efficient, but you may injure yourself trying to move that box. A book box fits just enough books to be efficient and safe. The same goes for a wardrobe box (22”x24”x48”).  You can compress over 2 feet of hanging clothes onto the hanging bar in a wardrobe box. With a dish box, you can line up your wrapped dishes, or nest your wrapped bar glasses and still be able to lift it without throwing your back out. We aim to keep all our moves stress free and injury free!

3.  Specifically Sized Boxes Are Easier to Identify: When the time comes to unpack your things, the boxes can easily be identified first by their shape and size and then by the identification labeling. If you see a book box, you and the movers will know immediately that it goes in the rooms with the bookshelves. If you see a dish box, it goes straight to the kitchen or dining room. Organization on both ends of a move is a key element of a smooth, efficient and low stress move.

We are happy to advise you on the quantities and types of boxes you will need for your move. We also supply a wide array of packing materials, including boxes, bubble wrap, packing paper, tape, pads, dollies, and even plastic covers for chairs, sofas and beds. When you hire Rainbow Movers for your move, we offer free delivery of your packing supplies to your door.

Contact us to tell us about your move!

It’s Storming on Moving Day! What Now?

It’s Moving Day!  You’re all packed, and you’re ready to move to your new place.  You wake up early and look out the window, and what do you see?  RAIN!

What do you do now?

You can plan and pack and organize like an Olympic champion.  But one thing you cannot control is the weather.  Some seasons are better for a move than others, but each one has its own delights, be it cold, wind, heat, humidity, rain, snow, or worst of all, ice.  This is when your mover needs to step in to turn your clouds into sunshine, if you’ll pardon the metaphor.

We generally know in advance about the access routes to your buildings, and the degree of weather protection they might offer.  Some have completely covered parking for our trucks, but most do not.  We then do all we can to minimize the impact of the weather by having with us the equipment we need to protect your belongings.  Each piece of furniture needs to be securely wrapped.  This may entail shrinkwrap or plastic furniture bags especially for sofas, mattresses, and other upholstered items.

If we are also doing the packing, we will ensure that each box is closed properly.  We also want our movers to be protected with the right gear and shoes to avoid slipping.  If you are doing the packing yourself, we can provide you with the materials and bring additional materials on Moving Day.  The distance between the buildings’ exit or entrance and the moving truck is usually minimal, so the boxes and furniture have only limited exposure to the elements.  In the event that the distance to the truck is greater than usual, our preparation provides the necessary protection.

Our movers will work as quickly, efficiently and safely as possible to make sure your move goes smoothly.

The bottom line is that we know what to do.  We are experienced and conscientious, and we have dealt with weather issues successfully many times.  We will get you into your new home no matter what Mother Nature throws at us.