Tag Archives: DIY

Cut Your Moving Costs

Cut Your Moving CostsIf your lease has expired or you are moving to a new home, you might have thought about hiring professional moving services. This is a good option, but availing these services can sometimes turn out to be expensive. The best option would be carry out the entire task of relocation as a DIY project. That would definitely be cheaper, but more time-consuming and tiring. Hence, hiring a moving service provider or company is a smarter albeit pricier option. However, employing certain ways to pack and hire can cut down on your moving costs significantly. If you intend to hire a moving company or service, it is imperative that you hire a reliable one.

It is highly recommended that you check AMSA’s list of certified ‘ProMovers’. You can also check reviews of the service provider on various websites, and visit their social media pages to gain more knowledge. Apart from this, you can compare price quotes of various companies or professionals to get a fair idea about costs and services. After having done the hard part, here is the easy part in the form of a few guidelines that will tell you how to cut costs when moving.

De-clutter
There are many things which we hoard in our houses when we could do away with them any day. For example, if your son has out grown his crib, you might as well sell it or donate it. There is no point in packing and moving things that will hardly be of any use to you.

Compare the Options
Don’t just hire the first moving company you see on the internet. Compare costs and benefits of various moving companies. As an extension to what I mentioned above about finding the right moving professional, you can even consider recommendations from friends and family about moving companies. The point to emphasize here, is to choose a reliable company or professional who will help you move your stuff at an affordable price.

Dismantle and Reassemble on Your Own
Many times furniture items like shelves, beds, sofa, etc., need to be dismantled before moving. Also, if you have heavier gym equipment, you will have to disassemble it. Instead of asking your moving company to do it, disassemble and re-assemble it yourself and save money.

Pack on Your Own
You can further curtail packing expenses by undertaking the entire packing and moving task as a DIY. Unless the stuff is fragile, like an LCD screen or a crystal lampshade which requires special packing, pack on your own. This will help save a significant amount on packing costs. Keep all the things packed, ready, labeled and coded for the moving day. You can avail help of companies like PODS and 1-800-PACKRAT which will send a storage unit at your doorstep for loading all your stuff.

Move During the Off-season
Most people plan to move during summer (mid-June through mid-September) after their children begin their summer break. However, summer is peak season and the moving rates are sky-high. Plan your move during the winter when the rates are low. Also, try to move during the middle of the month as the beginning and end of the month have higher rates.

Rent Reusable Boxes
Instead of spending a large amount on environmentally hazardous cardboard boxes, rent reusable ones. You will be surprised to know how much are able to save by using these boxes.

Moving Discounts and Coupons
Keep an eye on advertisements in the local newspapers, direct mail, magazines, etc., for discount coupons and offers. Many moving companies offer such discounts, especially during the off-season.

Rent/Share a Truck
If you don’t have a lot of stuff to move, you can share the moving truck with another person. This way, you will also collectively bear the cost of the truck. However, beware that there can be a mix-up of boxes, and this can lead to further expenses, not to mention the hassle of returning and picking up stuff. If you plan to carry out all the moving on your own, then you can rent a truck, and ask for help from friends and family to load and unload your stuff. However, it is essential that you know about the mileage and fuel charges before you rent a truck to avoid last-minute surprises.

Get Insurance
You must insist on getting a moving insurance. Remember that your goods can get lost, stolen, or damaged during the journey. Hence, if you are covered, you can avail compensation for lost or damaged property. Check if your items are covered under the homeowner’s or renter’s policy.

Inform Any Change
Any last-minute change to move certain goods should be immediately informed to the moving company. If you dropped the old bicycles from your list of moving, let your moving company know about it. Make a list of all the items to be moved so that an accurate estimate can be made. This will reduce the cost. Confirm with the relocation company about the total cost of moving and packaging, overhauling up the stairs, lifting heavy stuff, etc. The last thing you would want is to be charged for stuff that you were unaware about.

Pack Light for Long-distance Moves
If you are planning to move to a long-distance location, the moving company will weigh all your items to determine the moving cost. This is exactly why you should get rid of the heavy treadmill which you no longer use.

Avail Tax Deductions
If you have decided to relocate for a new job, you can deduct expenses incurred during moving, like storage, transportation, and packing, from your annual tax returns.

As mentioned above, moving or relocating can be expensive, whether it is within the state or across the country. But you can surely cut down on your expenses by a little planning, preparation, and information. What’s more, the money that you save on moving costs can be used to decorate your new home.

Ideas to Design Open Kitchen Shelves

Kitchen interiors have undergone massive design changes in the past decade. Neutral colors, isometric structures, and minimalism and sophistication are the order of the day. Architects have come up with creative ideas to design open-wall shelves instead of closed cabinets. Modern kitchen interiors may include single shelves mounted on green walls with triangular stands, diagonally opposite to wooden shelves between 2 parts of the same wall.
Go Antique
Go for an antique kitchen look, but only if you can maintain it. Mount dark wood shelves high up the wall, and place rustic pots and pans to lend an old-fashioned feel.
Dark wood shelves
Open wooden shelving is rather common. Experimentation arises when the wood used is different. In this case, for instance, there is rectangular, dark wood shelving throughout. When you design such shelves, make sure the wood is strong enough for you to place heavy utensils. Another designing strategy is to mount wooden planks opposite each other on the walls and place wooden strips between them for the dishes.
Light wood shelves
Decorating ideas for open kitchen shelves include light wood to lend a softer look. Mount light wood planks on the walls to place jars and bottles. Or, take a wooden plank, mount wooden stands at its ends, and place wooden shelves between them. This is a very homely storage style.
Square and stainless steel shelves
Open square shelves look structured and well-placed. 6-shelved or 9-shelved designs are pretty common. They can be mounted on the wall or placed over the kitchen counter. White shelves lend an aura of spaciousness. To complement white, place colorful dishes and wine glasses in the shelves.
Metal shelves
There are plenty of open kitchen shelves designs using metal. Metal is used for sturdiness and stability. You can use heavy black metal, with a staircase-design, placed over the counter top or kitchen table. Or, use an alloy to mount shelves with screws on the wall. The shelves should have criss-cross patterns for the convenience of hanging casseroles.
Pantry-style shelves
This could be a DIY project for open kitchen shelves. Use pantry-shelving where you need to store a lot of items, and when you need to understand how to organize open kitchen shelves. The one mounted on the wall is almost a cabinet design, minus the doors. The other design is a huge open shelf, placed on a table. Place items carefully, since the shelf is open on both sides.
Mounted shelves
Use different screws, pegs, planks, and stands to mount shelves over the wall.
Textured individual shelves. These are examples of modern kitchen décor. The square shelves have enough space for a stack of dishes or bowls. The rack below can be used for teacups and the like. The color combination, the butterfly design, and the striped patterns add to the overall appeal.
Abstract designs behind shelves
Mount single shelves right above the counter top, and grace the background with monochromatic and patched designs. This gives plenty of storage space as well.