Sometimes people "shop our rates" and compare our prices to that of traditional moving companies. But, this is simply not a fair or accurate comparison.
We offer so much more than just packing and unpacking. We offer the complete coordination of every aspect of your move, including: measuring furniture, planning room layout, packing delicate items, reducing clutter, and organizing small spaces. We handle even the smallest details, like allowing room for outlets, hanging family pictures and artwork, making of beds, and setting of clocks. Our goal is to minimize the feelings of chaos and stress associated with moving by proactively addressing all aspects of the move process and by recreating the look and feel of our current home.
If your intended move isn't causing any anxiety and you have the time and the patience to get yourself unpacked, there's no question the option of a traditional mover “unpack” is a good way for you to save money.
But it is important to consider that moving is one of the top 5 stressors along with death and divorce and that this added stress can cause depression and anxiety for months after your move. If you are overwhelmed by the idea of moving, aren't sure how you're going to decide what to take and not take and if the task paralyzes you with fear, hiring a move manager (and one affiliated with a regulating organization like NASMM) is a sure way to relieve your stress.
Perhaps the best way to illustrate the difference between Silver Linings Transitions and a traditional mover is through a recent experience with a client who was moving with her mother from out of state and had been packed by the mover. While the truck was in transit, her mother passed away and she had to meet the truck at the storage unit the day after her mother died to go through her mother's belongings. She planned to have us unpack and get her mother settled into her new home but obviously the project changed due to the circumstances. Instead we were there as the truck was being unloaded into storage and again to her new home. The first difference we noticed was in the way items were packed and labeled haphazardly, without common sense. But more than that, the movers, while polite, were hurried and did not address the emotional needs of the client in her great time of sorrow.
We aren't just a moving company. We're more than filling boxes and lifting furniture. How we sort, compassionately with understanding of client’s values, how we pack, carefully with like items together, and how we unpack, organizing according to the client’s needs and wishes, as we go, is very different. Movers literally pack what they see right in front of them, which can include trash and broken items. Then they "unpack" to first available surfaces.
Companies like ours, who specialize in senior moves, work with the client to get an understanding of their lifestyle and create a floor plan for the new space. Once we identify what items can safely fit and are "must keep" we help sort through and determine a plan for the remaining belongings. Parting with a lifetime of mementos can be a very emotional and draining process, but is made easier with a compassionate third party dedicated to the individual client and experienced in doing this work. We will then arrange for donation, plan for shipment to relatives, and list items for sale any of the items not moving with you.
Our unpack involves organizing the home, putting things away in a way that makes sense and with physical needs in mind. For example, most seniors cannot reach their arms up high, so we put everyday items into lower cabinets. We also consider whether a wheelchair or walker will fit between pieces of furniture. We clean items and furniture that may have been neglected over the years - making them look new. We decorate, hang pictures and consider little details like freshly made beds and filled ice trays. We even bring refrigerated and frozen food from one home to the next so that by the end of move-in day, our clients can have dinner in their new homes. These extra details leave our clients feeling settled and ready for their new life rather than looking for or organizing their belongings.
It should be clear that the depth of our services eclipses those of a traditional moving company. As is the case for most everything, you truly get what you pay for.
And while we specialize in seniors and divorcing clients, our services can greatly benefit and reduce stress of anyone move.
Jami Shapiro is President of Silver Linings Transitions. As a cancer survivor, she embraces aging and the challenges it presents.