7 Things to Consider When Relocating or Expanding Your Company

If done correctly, relocating or expanding your business to a new place can increase your revenues and profitability. However, it also requires some adjustment. Here are things to consider when relocating or expanding your company.

1. Site Selection

When selecting your new company location, consider why you are moving or expanding. For example, is one of your goals to move closer to potential or current customers? Or, are you seeking to locate operations in a lower-cost city? Your goals will guide you toward an initial list of potential cities.

Before you make a final choice, ask other business owners what they think of the location. Also, check if local organizations or governments provide relocation assistance, such as tax incentives, training grants, and site development help.

2. Market Research

Research the demographics, competitive landscape, and needs in the prospective location to ensure your product or service has a niche there. Also, understand consumer habits in the region before making a move. Your lender will want to ensure you’ve completed this research step if you need financing.

3. Financing

Often, a business expansion requires financing either through a loan or the equity of the current or additional owners. Before the move, consider which of these options will work best for you and take steps to put your financing in place.

4. Ecosystem Support

If you are trying to break into a new market, you’ll want as much support as possible. Consider who in your network knows people within the new ecosystem and ask them to help you create relationships in the new location.

5. Cost

Cost is a critical factor in every business decision, including locations. Cost affects you in several ways. The first is the rent, taxes, and utilities you’ll pay for the new space. The second is the cost of living for employees. If you’re moving from an inexpensive region of the country to a more expensive one, you’ll need to pay much higher wages to convince employees to work for you in the new location.

If you want to expand to an area with a small budget, consider the minimum viable expansion option to achieve your goals. For example, you may not necessarily need to open a large office at first. Perhaps you can start with a smaller space and one or two employees to test the market before committing to a more extensive operation.

6. Culture and Customs

Cities have different cultures. Some regions, for example, are more casual about appropriate dress or time schedules, while others are more formal. Employees also differ in their expectations of employers based on region.

7. Leadership Options

If you are relocating, you’ll want to identify key leadership candidates among your current staff and offer the necessary relocation packages to encourage them to relocate.

If you are expanding into a new location, you’ll also likely want an employee to relocate to head the new venture, at least initially. A current employee understands your company values and can better represent the brand than a new one. Once settled, you can hire a new head from among the local staff.

Office Movers, You Can Trust

Contact us for help with your office relocation. In addition, we can help you with the planning and execution of this significant undertaking.

How to Find Daycare in Your New Neighborhood

Finding good child care can be challenging, yet it is a priority when you make a household move into a new community. Here are some tips for finding daycare or other forms of child care in your new neighborhood.

Start Early

Start looking as soon as you know about your move. Some areas have a shortage of reasonable care, especially for infants who require a smaller child-to-adult ratio. Doing your research and applying early improves your chances of finding a slot in a highly-rated center.

Determine Your Child’s Individual Needs

Every child is unique and has unique needs. If you are already using daycare, you may know the types of programs that work best for your child. However, consult your pediatrician before deciding if your child has a chronic physical condition, such as asthma, diabetes, seizures, or allergies.

Use Apps and Websites

Various apps and websites can help with your initial search. Childcare.gov will link you to state child care search websites. Other apps include:

  • Winnie, a marketplace of daycare and preschool programs that is available on a site and an app
  • Sittercity, a Web-based platform to connect parents with sitters and nannies
  • Momni, an app that offers global care-sharing
  • UrbanSitter, an app and Website platform that provides sitters, nannies, and tutors
  • Care.com, a site that helps you find nannies, babysitters, tutors, and daycare facilities in your neighborhood

Visit Each Program

Visit each finalist in person to see what the classrooms and play areas look like, how teachers interact with students, and what a child’s typical day will be like. If you hire a nanny, interview the finalists carefully and see how your child and the prospective choice interact.

Specifically, look for things such as:

  • Can teachers always see the children?
  • Do teachers look the child in the eye when they speak to them?
  • Are both indoor and outdoor spaces used for play? And does the program offer a variety of toys?
  • Do you hear laughter?
  • Are areas clean and clean-smelling?

Ask questions, such as the program’s philosophy, how they handle challenging behaviors, and staff turnover rates. Ask how often children are allowed to play outside and how the program lessens the spread of disease.

Check Quality Ratings, Accreditation and Licensing

Not all states require daycare programs to be licensed, but the best programs usually are. Even among states that require licensing, New York requires a five-to-one adult-child ratio for 2-year-olds, but Florida requires an 11-to-1 ratio. Be sure you understand what licensing means in your new state.

Some child care programs are accredited through professional organizations, such as the National Association for the Education of Young Children. Accredited programs will also meet specific quality standards.

Finally, check quality ratings. Most states use symbols, such as stars, to indicate quality. The provider earns more stars as they meet additional quality standards. Remember that each state has its own quality standards and rating system, so research what each rating means in your new community. Your state’s resource page can provide more details about ratings.

Online reviews are another way to gauge whether a program is doing a good job.

Making the Move

Are you planning your relocation? You undoubtedly face a lot of work and tough choices during your move. Let us help with your relocation. We can handle the packing and heavy lifting. Contact us today for a free quote.

5 Home Security Tips for Your New Home

When you choose a new home, security might be an afterthought. That is, of course, until you move in and want to protect yourself and your belongings.

Home security can be an essential part of the residential moving process. Follow these tips to ensure you have the proper home security for your new space.

1. Increase the Lighting

If you haven’t had the opportunity, survey your home at night. It will be easier to spot dark areas. That way, you can figure out where you need to add lighting.

Motion-sensor lighting for your driveway and backyard is a wise idea. Add other types of lighting on a timer. Consider the lighting angle so it doesn’t keep you up at night.

Choosing outdoor lighting is less complicated than it used to be. You might be able to install battery-operated or solar-powered options in a few hours.

2. Make Valuables Hard to Find

As a general rule, burglars look for an easy win. They want to get something valuable with as little work as possible. Your goal is to make it harder for them.

Keep your valuables out of sight. Don’t place expensive equipment in easy view of a window. Do the same for your vehicle.

If you have expensive or irreplaceable things, consider additional protection for them. A small safe might be an ideal solution. You might even decide to store them elsewhere.

3. Change the Locks

When you get the keys to your new home, it’s a good idea to change the locks. Keys are easy to duplicate. Assume that any or all of your neighbors might have a copy.

If you are handy, take care of the switch; otherwise, consult a professional locksmith, and set a time for them to change the locks. They may be able to do this within a few hours.

Once you get the new locks, be careful where you put the keys. Leaving a set on your home exterior puts you at risk. Instead, consider giving an extra set to a trusted friend nearby.

4. Add Cameras

These days, it’s prevalent to put in a doorbell camera system at your front door. They often work in conjunction with alarm systems.

If you have other exterior doors, think about adding cameras for those. It’s essential for parts of the home that you can’t see from a window.

Keep in mind that cameras are only helpful if you use them. Installing a system with alerts might be the best approach.

5. Set Alarms

For the highest level of security, you might consider installing an alarm system. With this type of protection, you outsource some work to a third party. They help you keep an eye on your home and alert authorities if necessary.

Choose the most straightforward and consistent system that you can. If it’s too difficult to use, you won’t use it. Also, make sure that the control panel isn’t visible from the outside of the house.

Moving Assistance

Protecting your home takes multiple systems. To learn more about how you can have a better moving experience, request a free quote today.

Tips on Buying a House in a White Hot Market

If you’re currently trying to buy a house, you know that the market is very competitive. Depending on the area, homes are getting snapped up in hours or days instead of weeks or months. While many variables are driving these conditions, one thing is clear – it’s pretty challenging to buy a house.

Fortunately, challenging doesn’t equal impossible. But unfortunately, it can all feel overwhelming if you’re trying to navigate the real estate industry right now. Fortunately, here are some top tips on making it work for you to move to your new home.

Step One: Start With an Agent

Since homes are going so fast, it’s virtually impossible to keep up with new listings as they come and go. Unless you have the time, patience, and energy to manage these listings, it’s best to go with an experienced real estate agent. An agent can potentially secure listings that haven’t gone up yet, and they can help you coordinate elements like home inspections and walk-throughs.

When comparing agents, work with one with experience in a similar market. This way, you can be confident they know how to handle the stress and logistics of home-buying under these conditions.

Step Two: Get Financing and Inspectors Lined Up

Once you’re ready to make an offer, you need to be able to pull the trigger as quickly as possible. So, if you’re waiting on the bank to approve a loan, you’ll likely lose to another bidder. Ideally, you can make a cash down payment, but if not, a pre-approved mortgage loan is far better than nothing.

Also, inspections have to happen quickly so you can close faster. So have your agent line up some inspectors who can offer last-minute walk-throughs. This way, you can avoid potentially unwelcome delays.

Step Three: Be Ready to Compromise

Unfortunately, buying a house in a seller’s market means extra competition. For example, what if another buyer is ready to pay cash immediately for the property? What if a seller is willing to bid higher than you? Overall, you’ll have to determine which concessions to make ahead of time. You know what you’ll accept this way, and you’re ready to bargain immediately. Also, consider when you want to resell and move again. If you’re looking for a permanent home, you’ll have fewer concessions. However, if you’re planning to move within five years, you can be more flexible.

Step Four: Consider Fixer-Uppers

Right now, homes that are move-in ready will go almost immediately. But, even if you catch a listing and can go to an open house, you’ll be competing against many different buyers.

One way to avoid some of these hassles is to focus on homes with some issues. While you want to avoid any financial disasters (i.e., sunken foundation, outdated electrical wiring), figure out which problems you can fix yourself after moving in. Then, you’ll open yourself up to various options that may not sell so quickly.

Get Moving Help for Your New Home!

Once you close on a house, the next step is moving in. We can help you make the most of your new home, so contact us for a free quote.

Moving With Back Pain? What To Do

Moving with back pain can be a challenge! Whether you’ve recently injured your back or simply have a lot of back pain in your day-to-day life, packing and moving boxes gets more complicated when you’re in pain. Fortunately, you can do many things to minimize your pain and get through your household relocation with less stress.

Stretch Before Getting Started

Stretching can help make your muscles more flexible. Talk to your doctor if you’re unsure what stretches are safe to perform. If you have a chiropractor, they can show you appropriate, safe stretches. Wisely choosing your stretching exercises is essential since some can be harmful if you have a particular injury or back condition.

Pace Yourself, Start Early

Pacing yourself is crucial when doing something physically intense, like moving. Go slowly to avoid accidents. Take breaks whenever possible to avoid over-using your muscles. Pacing yourself may mean that you’ll have to go more slowly than if your back was in perfect health.

Start early to ensure you have enough time to finish all the work. Give yourself several months to get through the packing process. This will reduce stress and ensure that you can do everything you need to do.

Get Help When You Can

You don’t have to do everything all on your own. In fact, you shouldn’t! Instead, get help from those who are willing, whether it’s a friend, neighbor, family member, or member of your household.

Consider hiring a full-service moving company to get the work done for you. That could save you a lot of trouble and also potential back injury!

Listen to Your Body

Know when it’s becoming too much. If you feel like you need to take a break, take a break. If you need to rest for the remainder of the day, do it. If you think something may have gone wrong with your back, see a doctor. Don’t ignore signals that your back is in trouble: you could do more harm than good.

Speak to a Medical Professional

Talk to your doctor to see if lifting is safe for you. For example, if you have a back injury, your doctor may recommend no lifting boxes over a specific weight limit. Knowing your limits can help you avoid further damage to your body.

Lift the Right Way

Lift from the knees, not with your back. Keep your back straight when lifting heavy items, and hold the things close to your body to avoid additional strain on your back.

Pack Wisely

Avoid packing large boxes that are hard to hold. When packing heavy items, like books or dishes, put them into small boxes to avoid making them too heavy to lift.

Hire Professional Movers

You can get through your upcoming relocation without putting strain on your back. Hire professional movers to provide a full-service relocation. This will minimize your time spent lifting boxes. Contact us today to find out more about our services.

5 Ways to Maintain Good Morale at Home While Moving

It can be challenging to maintain good morale while making a residential move. The stress of an unknown future, the hard work of relocating, and knowing you’re leaving behind a familiar place can impact your quality of life. Fortunately, there are many things you can do to maintain good morale while relocating. For example, engaging with your family and turning moving into less of a chore can make your relocation more enjoyable.

1. Let the Kids Help

Moving can be hard on kids as well as adults. Kids often feel powerless when their parents need to move because so much seems out of their control. Let them participate in the packing process if you have children in your house. Give them a say over where their new room will be, and let them play a role in choosing colors to paint the new home. Letting the kids help takes some burden off you (which is good for your morale) and puts some control back in their hands (which is good for their morale as well).

2. Take Time to Have Fun

It’s easy to get caught up in all the work needed when relocating. But don’t let all that work get you down! Instead, take time to have some fun even as you’re packing and doing all the items on your to-do list.

Make a schedule of fun or relaxing things to do outside the house – like going to the park, visiting the beach, or just grabbing a movie. Getting out of the house and doing something enjoyable will help you and the other household members regroup and relax.

3. Make Packing Parties

Make packing more enjoyable. Bring together neighbors who’ve enjoyed living close to you, and make a “packing party.” The people you love can help you get ready to go, and you can enjoy music and pizza. Then, when you’ve completed the work for the day, watch a movie or play games in the yard.

You don’t need to invite someone special to your house to have a packing party. You can also enjoy packing by spending time with the people you live with. Just remember to make the food delicious, and keep the music playing!

4. Have Compassion for Stressed Family Members

Some members of your household will likely find moving to be very challenging. Even if you’re not feeling overly stressed about the relocation, you may know some people who are. Have compassion for the people in your household struggling to maintain their happiness and good morale. By showing them extra love and kindness, you can help relieve some of their stress.

5. Discuss the Fun Stuff Coming in the Future

Don’t forget to look toward the future for all the things you’ll enjoy about your new home! By discussing the fun stuff to come, you give yourself and other members of your household something to look forward to.

Get Your Relocation Off to the Right Start

The easiest way to take the stress off members of your household is to get your relocation off to the right start with a moving company that does the work for you. Contact us today to discuss your relocation.

Things to Look For in a New House When You Work From Home

Recently, working from home has had a significant boost and is more common than ever before. Moreover, as more jobs become available for remote workers, the idea of commuting to an office might be less desirable for some.

Working from home presents various challenges, so it’s good to adapt your living space to improve productivity. So, if you’re in the market for a new house, here are the elements to look for to make working from home that much better.

A Dedicated Work Area

Consider a home with a guest bedroom or home office so that you can maintain a division of work and personal home space. Ideally, you can separate your living area from your work area, making it easier to focus on business tasks. So, then, when working from home, you can avoid mixing your two lives as much as possible.

For example, you can set aside a specific number of hours for “work” and stay in the room during that period. If you need to take a break, step outside your home office for as long as necessary.

Natural Lighting

It’s hard to overstate how much nature can improve our moods and productivity. Working alongside plants and natural sunlight can help you stay focused and motivated. If possible, you may want to have a home with a covered patio or something similar. This way, you can do your work outside without worrying too much about the elements. Just make sure you can see your computer screen clearly.

Excellent Wi-Fi

Some homes are better suited to transmitting Wi-Fi than others. As a rule, concrete and brick houses can block or interfere with your signal, making it harder to maintain a strong connection. Also, where you live can make a difference. As a rule, rural areas have less access to wireless internet, while cities and suburbs are much more Wi-Fi friendly.

Energy-Efficient Heating and Cooling

If you work from home, you have to consider how the weather changes throughout the year. However, while an office likely has central air, does your home? If not, you could wind up melting in the summer and freezing in the winter. So, you should consider opting for a house that comes with a central HVAC system. Also, since you’ll be home more often, you need to be sure your utility bills won’t skyrocket as a result.

Pro-tip: change your HVAC filters and get the system inspected at least once per year. Ideally, a month or two before the coming season. For example, if winter is around the corner, get it inspected in October or November.

Get Moving Help Today

Once you find your perfect work-from-home solution, you’ll need help moving into your new house. Fortunately, we can make the transition as smooth and streamlined as possible. We can even pack your boxes for you and help you settle into your house. Contact us today to find out more.

How to Create a Moving Budget

Proper planning is critical to ensuring a smooth residential relocation. Creating a realistic budget is part of that planning. Here are some tips on creating a moving budget.

Take Inventory

Moving costs generally depend on how far and how much you have to move. Your first step is to decide what will go with you to your new place. List everything that will go, beginning with oversized items such as a piano or large sofa. Go from room to room with your list to ensure you don’t miss anything.

Develop a Budget Template

Once you’ve listed items, you can determine estimated costs. Then research average moving costs for professional movers in your area. Remember to include distance, the amount of stuff you have, and additional charges for specialty items such as artwork, pool tables, and pianos.

Once you’ve done your research, you’ll interview at least three experienced, reputable moving companies and obtain their estimates or bids. Then, you’ll revise your template, as necessary, depending upon these estimates.

Even if you plan to do most of the work yourself, you’ll still have costs, such as truck and equipment rental and transportation. Also, when you consider these costs, be sure to include the value of your time, especially since you will likely need to take time off from work. In most cases, hiring professional movers to do most or all of the work is most cost-effective in the long run.

If you need to store items, list an estimate for that. Also include deposits that you may have to pay for apartments or utility costs and short-term housing expenses, if necessary.

Once you’ve estimated costs, add at least 5 percent for contingencies.

Plan for Everyday Expenses

You’ll still have to pay most of your everyday expenses while you are in the process of moving. Every day expenses include school lunches for kids, dog-walking, and groceries. So be sure to budget for those when you calculate how much you can spend on your move.

Find Ways to Save for Your Move

You want to be sure you have enough money to pay for a reputable mover and buy or acquire appropriate boxes for packing. You can trim money from categories in your household budget to use for moving expenses. For example, if you typically eat out in restaurants, consider eating at home more or choosing less expensive restaurants. Put off buying new clothes (you’ll have less to move) and consider buying some household items and groceries in bulk.

Create an Emergency Fund

Despite the best budgeting, sometimes emergencies occur. For example, you may need to make a quick repair in your new home or find you need to make your old home spotless. You may need to take more time off work to help yourself or your kids get settled. If you buy or build a home, you may need to spend more time in temporary housing.

Having an emergency fund can help you deal with these unexpected costs. The emergency fund generally equals about three months of expenses.

Ready to Move?

Having a moving budget in place will make your experience less stressful. As you prepare for your move, select the best professional movers for your needs. Contact us today for a free estimate. We have the experience and know-how to tackle your move.

Making a New House Feel Like Home Through Your 5 Senses

When you move into a new home, you will likely appreciate all of the unique elements of your new place. But sometimes, to make your new house feel like your new home, you might crave some familiarity from your last location. The key to truly creating a cozy and comfortable feeling for you in your new home is to engage each of your five senses.

Check out some of the ways to make your new house feel like home by engaging your senses.

1. Create Familiar Visuals

Part of making the new place feel like home is to make it look like home. While you may not have enough time to unpack every belonging right away, you can work on some essential areas. For example, your new place will feel a lot like home if the room you wake up in looks like a familiar place. Therefore, it can be a good idea to get a few things unpacked in your bedroom, such as pictures or decor you would typically have on the walls.

2. Make the House Smell Like Home

Science tells us that scent, emotion, and memory are closely intertwined. Therefore, the more a new house smells like a home, the more it may be perceived as such. If you’re moving into a new build, the smell of new construction might make you feel content, but it’s possible some the scent of your new home doesn’t elicit positive emotions.

Try using the home fragrances you usually use, preparing a meal with familiar herbs, or even simply doing a few loads of laundry with your usual fabric softener. 

3. Add Familiar Sounds

What does home sound like to you? Every location and house can have its own collection of sounds. For example, maybe you could hear birds singing in your previous house when you opened the kitchen window. If those sounds are missing, consider doing something to make the environment sound more familiar, such as playing bird songs on a speaker.

4. Cook a Favorite Meal

Food stands at the center of everyday life, but we often don’t realize how much familiarity it brings to our lives. If you have yet to prepare a favorite meal at your new house, doing so may make the place feel more comforting. Whether it’s the family’s favorite entree, a yummy dessert that you’ve frequently prepared in the past, or simply grilled cheese sandwiches, pick something that tastes familiar and enjoy it in the new house.

5. Check the Thermostat

The more the new house feels like the old one, the faster it will feel like home. Sometimes, this may only be a matter of adjusting the thermostat to ensure the temperature is close to what you are used to. No matter the HVAC system, all houses can have temperature variances and drafty areas. If you have to adjust the thermostat a few degrees to make the place feel more familiar, it’s worth it in those first few days in the house.

Get a Free Moving Quote from the Pros

Moving can be a little emotionally challenging. However, when you have help from professional movers, you can have time to focus on what’s important: making a new house a home. Contact our team to get your free moving quote today to get started.

How to Help Kids Remember Their Old Home After Moving

Moving can be a difficult time for kids, especially young ones. Relocating to a new home is a time of uncertainty when kids might be fearful of change, forgetting their old house, and missing their friends.

Making the transition involves letting children feel sad about the move, even if they’re also happy about the change.

Here are a few ways to help your kids with their relocation, remember where they were, and keep it a part of their childhood memories.

Take Pictures

Kids often rely on visual things to help them remember. So before you leave, take pictures of various rooms of your house, your neighborhood, and maybe a few neighbors.

It doesn’t have to be meticulous or complicated. If you’re short on time, take a picture of your child’s bedroom, a photo of your house, and call it good. Follow tips for taking good photos, so you end up with lovely images. 

Make a Storybook

For kids, it can be difficult being in a constant state of transition. They may have some sense that they are leaving, but they don’t know what to expect. Making a mini scrapbook can help them process it.

The beginning of the book can be about the home you’re leaving and end with images and things about your new one. Start with a photo of your child in their old room. Then, gradually expand outward until you show your old home, your new neighborhood, and your new home.

Tell Stories

Even children who are in elementary school may have very few memories of their old home after moving. They will be more likely to remember their old house if you tell stories about it.

Make a brief list of your favorite things about your old home, like a big backyard or shady tree in the summer. Then, talk about those things on occasion, and help your kids situate themselves in the stories. Keeping that context for them makes it easier for your kids to put everything in the proper order.

Visit When Possible

Moving represents an interruption in life for many kids. They might have to change schools, make new friends, and meet new neighbors. Parents can help the transition by contacting good friends, especially if visits are possible.

Don’t force it if it doesn’t feel natural or practical. Driving by your old home on occasion can feel nostalgic, or it can feel awkward to some. It’s better to visit your old neighborhood as a way of seeing your old neighbors or letting your kids visit their friends.

Stay Positive

As with many things, kids are sensitive to parents’ negative energy. If you’re dying to leave your old home, they will probably pick up on that. So it’s better if you can stay optimistic about the process.

Instead of describing your old home negatively, present your new home positively. You may be in love with it already, but your kids could need a little more time. Keeping a balance allows them to retain fond memories of their old life while building good ones for the future.

Pro Movers Can Help With the Transition

Helping kids process the overwhelming feelings from a move is a great idea. Contact us for a quote to learn more about simplifying your upcoming move.