Moving in 2017? How to Plan Your Move

Moving in 2017? How to Plan Your Move

It’s only a couple of months in, but already 2017 is proving to be a dramatic time in the national news and world events. Perhaps that’s not on your list of concerns right now, and you’re more focused on getting your belongings from your old home to your new one. Have no fear, because the modern world has given you a lot of new tools. Moving in 2017 can be easier than it ever has been, but it requires a little effort to make it work.

Easily Available Moving Guides

Gone are the days when you need to physically visit businesses and office parks to get ahold of helpful brochures or documents. Our detailed moving guides are available for free on our website, such as our general overview guide on the common moving tasks you will need to address and how we can help you with them. We also have an essential checklist that will make sure you have all of your bases covered. This includes everything from ending your snow plowing contract to defrosting your freezer.


The smartphone era has given people who plan to move in 2017 a collection of free tools to help make relocating as easy as possible. From Google Maps to tracking apps to free apps, the number of digital tools people have at their disposal is phenomenal.

Most people know how important it is to label their moving boxes with a permanent market. Well, the smartphone app Sortly can provide a list of what is in every box, assuming you are willing to enter that information into your phone. There’s also a paid version that allows you to print out QR codes so you can scan individual boxes and read what’s inside them without opening them.

If you and your family members are working together on a complex checklist, consider making a shared document in a Google Spreadsheet. This will allow instant updates on each family member’s smart phone so the list can be updated dynamically and quickly.

Moving in 2017

Even with all of the exciting and powerful tools you have available, the fundamentals of moving still haven’t changed. You need to start planning six to eight weeks before your move-out date, and you will need boxes to pack your belongings and a truck to move them in. Someone will have to load and unload this truck. Your electricity will still need to be shut off at the old home and turned off at the new one.

It’s entirely up to you how many of these tasks you take on and how many you hire a moving company to perform. It’s common for busy, successful people to make their lives easier by hiring our workers to load the truck and drive it to the destination. People on a tighter budget can rent a truck from us and drive it themselves. It all depends on your circumstances.

People with even busier lives can hire our packing professionals to box up their possessions safely and ensure it arrives safely. People who want to pack for themselves can purchase all of the needed items from our store, including special boxes made to safely transport fragile household items and sturdy packing tape to hold the boxes together.

Regardless, whatever options you choose, you will benefit from starting with our moving tips brochure and utilizing our moving checklist to ensure every last task is taken care of. The modern world has made moving easier, but it still requires people to use the tools available to them.

Need More Help?

Do you still need help planning your 2017 move, such as needing a storage site to hold on to some of your belongings? You can reach us at 1-(800) 233-6683 or visit your local Massachusetts moving company to learn more about what we can do to help you.

Managing Your Time During a Move

Managing Your Time During a Move

Efficiently managing your time is essential to a stress-free move. With all the things you have to deal with, it’s easy for them to spiral out of control if you don’t plan ahead. Here are some things you can do to maximize your time in the months leading up to your move and on moving day itself.

Work Out Your Schedule

Organize your schedule in the months and weeks leading up to your move. Make a list of all the important tasks you need to complete for moving day. Also look at everything that you do in your normal daily schedule. You’ll want to see what you can cut from your daily tasks to get ready for your move instead. Make goals for what you’ll do for your move each week: cancel all subscriptions, contact doctors and dentists to inform them you’re moving, pack up the attic, etc.

Write It All Down

Write down everything that you need to get done and use reminders on your phone so that you don’t forget. Make a list of what you need to pack and when it needs to be packed. It’s best to pack the things you won’t need leading up to the move first to get them out of the way. Write down any deadlines for moving utilities or companies, and any subscriptions you’ll need to cancel before the move.

Make a list of moving supplies you’ll need, like bubble wrap, boxes, or tape. Make sure that you have this planned for everything so that you can get it all done in one trip to the store. Going shopping more than once will just limit the time you have to do everything else.


Make a file with all of the important papers you need to take with you such as doctors papers, birth and marriage certificates, insurance, school records and any other important documentation. This way you’ll know where everything is and won’t lose anything or spend time trying to find scattered papers.

You should label the boxes as you pack them, as well as what room they will go in when you reach your destination. It will save you the time of searching for something if you realized you packed something you desperately need right away after the move.

Consider a Moving Company

No one does moving better than a moving company, especially your local experts at Ayer Moving & Storage. Get help from experts and organize your belongings ahead of time. They will help make sure everything runs smoothly and you’ll have a group of experts to entrust your items with. This will help ease your stress and give you less to worry about come moving day.

Enlist Help

Whether you are getting some help from a moving company or doing it yourself, you’ll want to enlist the help of friends and family. You’ll have the piece-of-mind knowing that you won’t be the only one responsible for everything on the day of your big move. Recruit them ahead of time and make sure they know everything they need to do. Write it down so no one forgets.

Keep Valuables Close

Anything extremely valuable and portable, like grandmother’s pearls, or stock certificates, should be kept separately in your own possession. Movers won’t always know what to prioritize and have to divide their attention between the entire contents of your home. If there is anything incredibly important to you or that you know you need right away, take it with you.

Moving Day

For moving day, you’ll want a time schedule written out to manage your time. Write it out in short time increments including when you get up and when you need to eat. You’ll want to get up early to get the most out of your day and don’t want to run out of fuel during the process.

You should also be prepared for things to go wrong throughout the day. No moving day can go perfectly, so it’s best to expect at least a few mistakes. This will keep you from stressing too much when they happen. Have a backup plan for anything you’re really worried about. Things will get where you need them to go; you just need to stay calm.
Lastly, make sure that you have EVERYTHING packed up before moving day hits. Your day will be full enough without having to pack up those last few things. You won’t need to stress about forgetting that one thing you left to the last minute if you don’t leave anything to the last minute.

In order to manage your time well and efficiently, you need to stay calm, and procrastination will certainly have the opposite effect.


Need More Help?

You can reach us at 1 (800) 233-6683 or visit your local Massachusetts moving company to learn more about what we can do to help you. Download the Ayer Moving & Storage Timeline for a Stress-Free Move!

Aquarium of Fish to Move? No Problem

Aquarium of Fish to Move? No Problem

Moving an aquarium full of fish is an intimidating process. As you prepare for the move, you’ll want to consider whether or not you’re are ready to take on the challenge yourself or if you should hire a professional mover. If you decide you’re up to the task, here’s what you need to know to do it right and help ensure the safety of your fish.

You Should Know

There are a few things you should be aware of before you make the move.

Fish are very sensitive and delicate creatures, especially regarding changes in their environment. Moving is a stressful time for them too and they are often too stressed to eat. If you do it right, you can preserve many of your fish, but be aware that some may not survive the trip. For the best odds, you’ll want to minimize the amount of time they are out of their aquarium. Pack your aquarium last before moving and set it up first when you get there.

If you have a long move ahead of you, there is one option you may want to consider: Start fresh with a new collection of fish. The chances of the majority of your fish dying during your journey increases the further away you move. Your best option may be to give them away before you move and then visit a local pet store at your new home. If you don’t know anyone who would like to take your fish, try an online classifieds page like

Before The Move

When looking at your new home, scope out a location for your fish. Find a spot that is protected from the sun and has access to electricity. Make sure to check that the surface is sturdy and smooth to support your tank.

Your fish won’t want to eat during the move and it is a good idea to not feed them a full day in advance. You want to keep the water as clear as you can. Don’t worry, fish can go a week without eating so you are not putting them at risk by not feeding them.

Emptying the Aquarium

Make sure that you have a siphon hose, several 5-gallon buckets and a fish net for getting everything out of your aquarium.

Use the siphon hose to drain some of the water into the 5-gallon buckets. Only fill them about two-thirds of the way to make sure they don’t spill during the move. Then, catch your fish with the fish net and gently place them in one of the newly filled water buckets. Depending on how many fish you have, you may want to put them in more than one bucket. Please don’t forget any fish.

If you have them, put the tops on the buckets. Make sure that fresh air can still get in. You can poke holes in the top or get an air pump to make sure there is enough oxygen in the water. If you don’t have a top to the container, you can use grocery bags, which will keep the water in and still allow air through.

Next, remove any decorations from the fish tank and dry them thoroughly. Then wrap them in packing paper or bubble wrap. You can pack them in another bucket or just in a cardboard box. If you have any living plants you can put them in a plastic bag with some water and move them by hand.

Drain all the remaining water into the remaining buckets and get as much as you can. Any water left in the aquarium can crack or shatter the bottom when you move it. Remove any sand or gravel at the bottom of the aquarium and put it in a spare bucket to transport.

Packing the Aquarium

To pack up the glass structure you will want to thoroughly wrap it in bubble wrap. Be sure to seal it with tape so the bubble wrap doesn’t fall off. You’ll also want to wrap it thickly in blankets to make sure it stays safe.

If it is a large aquarium, enlist some help from friends or family to move it to the moving vehicle.


As said before, unpack your aquarium first when you arrive at the new home. Ignore all other boxes. Move the tank carefully to your previously picked out spot. Once in place, double check to make sure that the structure and what it’s sitting on is sturdy and intact.

Once you carefully remove all the blankets and bubble wrap, you can put the transported gravel back in. Set up your pumps, lights, filters, and heaters but do not turn anything on. Doing so without water in the tank can injure you and your fish.

You can now put all the decorations back in the tank and refill it with the water that you transported. After the aquarium is filled with some of the water, catch your fish with the fish net and gently set them back into the tank. Fill the aquarium up with the rest of the water. You may need to add some dechlorinated tap water to finish filling the tank.

Allow the tank to sit for approximately, a half hour so that the water can equalize with the room temperature before you turn the heaters on. After that, you will want to check that everything is functioning properly and continue to check on your tank and the fish for the next few days.

It is a good idea to find a fish store in your area. If you have any problems with your fish or tank, or if there is something you need to replace, you’ll know just where to go.

Sound Like a Lot of Work?

Good luck! If that sounds like too much work, call us at 1 (800) 233-6683  or visit your local Massachusetts moving company to discuss hiring expert help. Also, consider downloading our packing guide for more expert moving advice.

How to move a couch upstairs without getting frustrated

How to move a couch upstairs without getting frustrated

Moving a couch up the stairs is the classic moving day challenge. It’s a heavy, bulky object that can be a big hassle if you don’t plan ahead. Perhaps you moved to an apartment building without an elevator, or maybe you have a room upstairs that needs a good place to sit. Whatever the reason, here’s how you tackle it like a pro:


In Preparation:

You will need two people to make this work. You could put your furniture, your walls and your own body at risk if you try to muscle it up on your own. Don’t go it alone. 

If you’re buying new furniture, don’t just measure the room the couch will be placed – measure any bottlenecks on the route to get there so you won’t get stuck.

Scout out the route ahead of time and move any small tables or items out of the way. If you’re in an apartment building, consider telling any neighbors along the way what you’re doing. If needed, you can ask them to open their door to let you have a little more space to turn the furniture around. 

Couches often have wooden legs that are held in place with screws. Remove them before you get started and your couch will be significantly easier to move. Anything that can come off, including cushions, needs to come off before you lift it up

If you have blankets to wrap around the couch, secure them in place with a spool of stretch film. This will help keep your grip tight. Make sure to cover up and wooden armrests with the blankets to avoid gouging the walls.

Talk it over with your helper which part of the couch is the left and which part is the right. The top, bottom, front, and back are universal. Decide what it means to rotate it clockwise and counterclockwise. That way if you get in a jam and need to advise each other which way to move it, you’ll have a clear, common vocabulary.


Time to move: 

Do not carry the couch parallel to the ground, as this is unstable and wobbly. Instead, have the person in front carry their end high and the person in the back carry their end low. This will help both partners keep the furniture under control.

Take it slow when you get to the actual stairs and remember to think in terms of 3-D. In some spaces you will need to wedge the couch in diagonally or standing on its end. Softer couches can also be squeezed to make them a little slimmer when space is tight.

Be careful when pressing the couch against a wall, as a tight fit can leave impressions on some types of walls.

When you get to a doorframe, try standing the couch on one end and “hooking” it around the frame. This will require less space to maneuver.

Of course, if all of this seems like more bother than you want to deal with, you could hire an experienced, insured moving company based out of Massachusetts to place your couch upstairs for you, along with any tables, bed frames, mattresses, or other large pieces of furniture you have on hand. We also sell moving supplies and can be reached at 1 (800) 233-6683.

Picking a Moving Date That’s Right For Your Needs

Picking a Moving Date That’s Right For Your Needs

Deciding when you’re going to move is stressful. There are so many factors to consider to come up with the perfect date and you want to make your move as easy as you can on everyone involved. With a move already putting a strain on your everyday life, it is important to pick the perfect moving day that suits all of your needs.

Here’s what you need to consider:

If You Have Kids

If you have kids you’ll want to consider when is best for them. Most kids find it more difficult to move in the middle of the school year because curriculums are unlikely to line up at both schools. The stress of starting school in the middle of the year with no friends can often be overwhelming and result in a lot of stress and low grades. Because of this, it is a good idea to move during the summer.

You may be eager to get going right after your child completes a grade but it is likely they don’t feel the same way. Give them a week or two to say goodbye to all their friends, in and out of the neighborhood, and to allow them to adapt to the idea of moving. If you want to move at the end of the summer, be sure that it is a few weeks before school starts back up for your kid. Give them some time to get acquainted with the new house and the people in the neighborhood before throwing them back into school.

Unfortunately, the almost universal desire to avoid breaking up a school year leads most families to prefer to pick a moving date during summer break, and this means…


If You’re Worried About Cost

The summer is the most costly time of the year to move because it’s the busiest. With most people moving in late May to early October, and the absolute busiest days at the end of June and July, the rush of people hiring moving trucks in the summer results in higher rates. There’s only so many moving companies and vehicles to hire and the demand pushes up prices.

The weekends are also an expensive time to move with most people trying to make the switch when they aren’t working. It is best to avoid the holidays when it comes to moving because any time off will result in an influx of people trying to hire companies. The most cost effective time of the year is likely to be late fall before Christmas and Hannukah and winter.

Don’t wait until the last minute to hire your moving company. If you really need a specific day, you are going to want to hire them weeks ahead of time to ensure that you get the day and the company you want.


If You’re Renting

Most people try to rent during spring and summer. This is when people get off of work and out of school so you have many college students leaving their apartments. This means that there will be a lot on the market during these busy months so you will have the most options.

However, with so many people looking for a place, it gives you less time to decide if you really want to rent. You will likely not have the time to negotiate a lower price so renting in the spring and summer will be the most expensive.

The winter can be a very good time to rent because fewer people have a desire to move in the cold. Renters will be eager to get their places under contract and therefore will be much more likely to negotiate a lower cost.


If You’re Worried About The Weather

The weather is a very big factor when considering when you want to move. If you don’t want to get caught in the rain or snow or are incredibly opposed to moving in the cold, then you will want to schedule your move for summer. If you have wooden or even some plastic items that are very important to you, special preparations may be needed to protect them from the elements.

Moving somewhere cold to somewhere warm and vice versa can damage some of your belongings if the temperature changes are very extreme, so consider a summer moving date when temperatures are more forgiving might be a good idea. However, you’ll want to take into account that, in addition to moving companies costing more because of the number of people hiring them in the summer, they will also charge more due to the extreme heat.


If You’re Worried About Traffic

While during the day on the weekends there are fewer people out and about, moving between Monday and Thursday will be your best bet. Not only will it save you money because it is during the week but, if you go at the right times, you can also avoid rush hour. The best time of day to move is early to late morning.

Although you may run into some morning traffic with people rushing to work if you leave early, it will also give you ample time to get where you’re going. Leaving mid to late morning will allow you to avoid morning traffic and rush hour so you’ll arrive at your destination faster and not have to deal with the frustration of traffic.


The one trick you need to know when packing dishes

The one trick you need to know when packing dishes

Dishes are notoriously fragile. That’s true if they’re heirloom China or if you picked them up cheaply at a department store. They’re also heavy and hard and a stack of them packed poorly will crash into one another and break into shards while being shipped for moving day. Fortunately, there is one dead-simple approach when shipping them that will make sure they arrive safe, sound and whole.

The trick is to load them in the box on their sides, like you’re loading a dishwasher, instead of stacking them in a pile. This will prevent too much weight from accumulating on the bottom dishes and puts any pressure on where the dishes are the strongest, their sides, instead of the fragile middle.

Now, the dishes are still going to need padding to keep them from bumping each other and chipping. If you have access to bubble wrap, place a layer on the bottom of the box and then wrap each dish and bowl with bubble wrap or crumpled shipping paper. Make sure you fill any gaps in the box with balled up paper to prevent the plates, bowls, and cups from shifting during transport. You will also need to label the box with an arrow to make sure everyone know how fragile it is and which end needs to be up.

Consider using a special dish packing box, which has twice the thickness in cardboard to protect the vulnerable contents. With a little planning and know-how, your dishes will look just as good at your new home once your move is completed.


How to tip a mover like a pro

How to tip a mover like a pro

For most people, moving to a new home is an irregular experience. The average American moves about 11 times in their entire life, and because of that irregularity, it can be difficult to pick up all of the social customs and routine practices associate with moving. Compare that to more common activities like going to a restaurant or getting a haircut that people do over and over again. They have plenty of chances to learn how and when to tip at a coffee shop, but little when moving.

As a result, most people don’t know what to tip their movers, or even if they should tip at all.

Tipping is common in the moving world, but it is never mandatory. If you don’t like the service you received, don’t leave a tip and contact the company to make sure your message gets through. If the service was acceptable but not above and beyond, it’s entirely your call if you should tip or not.

Remember, it’s your gift as a sign of satisfaction. It is not a requirement.

If you decide you do want to tip, you should do so at the tail-end of the job when all the work has been completed. The standard for a local move is around 15% to 20% for the entire crew. Try to give it when they are all together as a group and if you don’t have small bills to divide up on the spot, don’t worry, they’ll be happy to break them up on their own.

If you are moving a few states away or even cross country, consider upping the tip. Remember that when the movers are tied up with your move, they can’t be working on another one. A long enough move could keep them from doing several small jobs in the local area, so try looking at it from their perspective.

Also consider punching up your tip a little if you threw some difficult tasks at them, such as moving a grand piano. If your hot tub arrived at your new home without a dent or scuff, dig a little deeper.

It’s also common to buy the crew food around lunchtime. Pizza is a common choice, so if you decide to go this route ask them if there’s any specific takeout food they’re hankering for, like Indian cuisine or Italian sandwiches.