It’s time to move and the Summer moving season is in full swing; according to the U.S. Census bureau, approximately 11.2% of the U.S. population moves each year. In a nation with over 350.0 million people, that percentage means many of us are moving.

Like a wedding, moving is one of those experiences full of decisions large and small.

Following are suggestions from the folks at AARP that should make the move less stressful, so that life at the new address can begin on a happy note:

Refuse Low-Ball Bids: It’s tempting to sign up with a company that offers to make the move for you at a low price. Companies that bid low to get your business often are unlicensed, uninsured and smaller. To get your items off the truck, some of these companies may demand that the consumer may it thousands of dollars; in effect, your move is held hostage. Check the moving industry’s trade group website,, for valuable information on how to choose moving companies;

Beware of Practices that raise red Flags: These include companies that price your job, sight unseen, who answer their phones with a generic greeting rather than with a specific, company or corporate name, who demand large deposits upfront and/or have trucks without company logos. Other things to watch for include no physical address for the business, no website with company information and/or no license or insurance information;

Take your Important Documents with you: Identity theft is real & happens in a blink of an eye. Don’t be a victim. Gather all your identifying documentation, such as passports, social security statements and cards, insurance policies, credit cards and statements, stock certificates, car titles, property deeds, etc. and move these yourself.

Keep Track of your Paperwork: Keep a copy of everything you sign. It’s especially important to keep the Bill of Lading, which serves as a receipt and shows that the company has your things. Also important to keep is written documentation showing when movers will pick up & deliver your things & an inventory list of items placed on the truck & their condition. Some homeowner insurance policies will cover lost or damaged items during a move so make sure to check your policy. If items aren’t insured, consider buying replacement value insurance coverage.

By following these suggestions, you’ll likely avoid aggravation and losses related to your move. Welcome Home!