Prudential Fox & Roach Realtors Philadelphia realtors real estate homes for sale

Janis Peterson, GRI, Realtor®

Philadelphia Main Line Homes and Real Estate

Tel:  (610) 642-3744

Fax: (610) 658-0267


Going It Alone: A Self-Move Can Be a Great Alternative
Each year at least 17 million American households move, according to Movecentral, Inc., a Boston-based company serving the relocation industry. And corporate transferees account for forty percent of these households, according to American Moving and Storage Association.

Up until recently, many companies assumed that all employees required a full-service move. After closer study and with an eye toward the bottom line, some companies have begun expanding relocation options to include two practical alternatives: the rental truck self-move and the pack and load self-move.

The Benefits. Both types of self-moves benefit families as well as companies. Employees like the flexibility. You, rather than the van line, drive the schedule. And because you pack and load the truck (and possibly drive it), you maintain greater control over your possessions.

Companies find that self-moving helps to control or trim the enormous expenses associated with corporate relocation. Thus, companies have an incentive to add this option to their benefits package. Some even go so far as to "share the savings" with employees. According to Mobility Magazine, self-moves come in at roughly less than half the price of a van line move. This can amount to several thousand dollars. If you're being relocated, ask your company's benefits manager about this program.

Rental truck self-move. Although driving a rental truck requires more precautions than automobiles due to the height and visibility limitations, most drivers shouldn't have a problem handling a truck. After all, the days of double clutching in a steamy cab have been traded in for a more relaxing and temperate ride. Self-movers can expect rental trucks to come equipped with automatic transmission and power steering, air conditioning and an AM/FM radio. In most states, no special license or training is required for renting a truck.

This option is the most physically demanding-you pack, you load, you drive. On the upside, you're rolling when you're ready to roll. A word to the wise: All styles and models of trucks may not be available at all rental locations. It's advisable to reserve your truck in advance, especially during busy times, such as at the beginning or end of the month, to be assured of securing a right-sized vehicle. Check out Web sites for Internet specials and printable coupons or to reserve a truck.

Pack and load self-move. This alternative rates high for customer-centeredness. Do-it-yourselfers stay off the highway and out of the truck rental office. On an agreed-upon day, the moving company delivers a clean, right-sized trailer to your door. You load the trailer and pay for only the space used. After you've finished loading, a professional driver picks up the trailer and delivers it to your new home. You unload it at your convenience and call to have it removed.

What about insurance? Truck rental companies offer inexpensive protection plans that generally include some form of these types of insurance: loss damage waiver, supplemental liability, personal accident and cargo protection. Because standard auto, home, credit card and auto club insurance does not cover the physical damage or theft of rental trucks, do-it-yourselfers should consider purchasing added protection. Still, check your policies or call your agent to verify the insurers' current policy provisions.

Is a self-move right for you? Before you decide whether to move yourself or have a professional move you, consider these questions: Do I have the time to drive the truck? Can I get two strong helpers in each location? Should I use this opportunity to see some of the country and vacation along the way? Will I need to drive my car to the new location? Could poor weather conditions hang me up?

Self-moves aren't for everyone. Time constraints, family issues, or physical limitations might prevent you from packing, loading and unloading, or driving a long distance. But for those who are prepared to use some elbow grease, a self-move can be a great alternative.

"Real Service in Real Estate." For a personal consultation on buying or selling real estate, Janis Peterson, GRI, Realtor® can be reached at (610) 642-3744, e-mail: Prudential Fox & Roach Realtors® is an independently owned and operated member of The Prudential Real Estate Affiliates, Inc.

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