"May you move a thousand times" runs an old Irish curse, thus capturing for posterity the dread of moving experienced by many new apartment owners. But wait, isn't the new apartment the fulfillment of your dreams? Shouldn't you be looking forward to, not dreading, the process of moving there?

Our suggestion is that a considerable part of moving anxiety is the result of lowered morale; and that that lowered morale is brought about by problems with the buyers, the sellers, the boards, the lawyers and the contractors. Renovations, especially, often pose a scheduling problem, sometimes requiring constant nerve-wracking revisions. To dispel your gloom we offer you not only our sympathy, but also practical advice on the steps to come: Budgeting, hiring a mover, packing and unpacking. If you follow these suggestions, all should go smoothly, and your enthusiasm will be restored.

1. After closing on their apartments, most people are over budget. Investing good money in a move at this time seems almost frivolous. And prices from moving companies span an extremely broad range. Why shouldn't you just choose the cheapest? What do the expensive companies offer that the cheapest don't?

The answer can be found by following the money behind the scenes. In the moving industry, very experienced and skillful movers can earn double what beginners do. Generally speaking, in the better companies, the ratio of these veterans to novices is much higher. This is reflected in higher moving rates. In fact, manpower cost is THE most substantial factor in determining a mover's price. The amount you spend on your move, therefore, should be proportionate to the skill you think your job requires. If your furniture is sturdy and inexpensive (and your nerves are good), you might consider a lower level of skill and of expense. If your furniture is valuable and fragile, consider the higher cost to be an investment in peace of mind and the time you might otherwise spend settling claims.

2. Packing is the key to a painless move. Professional movers cushion items inside boxes. Make a careful decision about how much packing you want to do yourself. If you don't believe the movers can pack the Oriental vase better than you can, you've got the wrong movers. Ask yourself if doing the packing yourself will help you organize, maybe even pare down...or will it just be tedious and time-consuming? The friends or relatives you're thinking of recruiting - have they done this before? Also, will packing cause you to miss work? If it does, then are you really saving money?

That said, there are a few items the customer should pack, or keep on their person: daily or weekly medicines; remotes; the book you’re currently reading; any small items that might be needed immediately, but would be hard to find in a mountain of boxes.

3. Unless you're the happily obsessive person who enjoys the process of organizing small stuff, you'll probably find unpacking, which occurs at a particularly vulnerable time, to be the most unpleasant part of moving. Unpacking is not included automatically in the moving price, but you do have the option of hiring your mover to do it. Professionals can unpack rather quickly.

The curse can be lifted. For more tips on choosing a mover, see the next page. For a printable version of this page, please click here.

Brownstone Brothers
Moving & Storage
Tel. 718-665-5000

*Always check personally as to the exact progress of your renovations. Contractor’s estimates are often overoptimistic. Many times we’ve had to reschedule a move at the last minute because the customer put off visiting the new apartment and, one day before the move, found that the floors were not finished.