Moving to a new area can be an exciting adventure, but it's a lot of work getting there: Packing, loading, transporting, unpacking - plus other tasks like getting utilities turned off and on, registering the kids for school, and so much more.

Whether you are moving across town or across the country, you have two choices: Do it yourself, or hire a professional mover. If you elect to do it yourself, you must purchase moving supplies, take time to pack, rent a moving van, and get yourself and your vehicles to the new location. If you hire a professional moving company, whether you choose a big national organization or a smaller local mover, make sure they are licensed and insured. Check with the Better Business Bureau, and confirm the contract specifies times for pickup and delivery of your household goods, payment terms, and what is covered by insurance. Carefully inventory everything being shipped, and verify its arrival upon delivery.

Obviously, a cross-town move in a rented truck is less expensive than a cross-country move with a professional mover, which could run well into four figures. Get several bids, and choose the one that best suits your needs and budget.

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