Fall Maintenance Projects

Maintenance Before the Leaves Fly

Fall maintenance projects are a great way to tackle some routine home repair items. The seasons are beginning to change, and many maintenance items are much more difficult once the snow begins to fly! Not to mention, some repairs are essential before the weather changes. Check out our top 10 list of projects to tackle this beautiful season!

fall maintenance

10 Fall Maintenance Projects

ūüćĀFinish any Paint or Staining Repairs While the Weather is Warm

As the temperatures begin to drop, painting and staining gets much more difficult! Many paints and stains cannot be applied below a certain temperature, and many fall days are rainy and cool. Tackle any painting or staining projects this month!

ūüćĀRepair Window and Door Seals and Exterior Window/Door Caulk and Trim

Window and door seals and trim can keep the cool air out and the warm air in. Broken or damaged seals and trim can also allow pests to sneak in. Repair everything while it is easy to access in nicer weather.

ūüćĀClean Windows and Screens

Windows and screens with built up junk from the summer months are not pretty to look at, and may not function properly.  Debris caught in spider webs and the likes can keep your windows from shutting and sealing properly as well!

ūüćĀRepair any Exterior Entry Points / Holes

As the seasons change and temperatures begin to fall, critters and pests will try to find their way into your cozy home. Repair any access points to keep pests out.

ūüćĀHave your Furnace and Duct Work Inspected / Repaired

This is not only about energy efficiency, but also safety as well! Have your furnace serviced as part of fall maintenance to ensure safe operation and ventilation. Have duct work inspected to make sure kicking that furnace on isn’t going to cause a dust storm in your house, and to make sure the warm air is moving as intended.

ūüćĀHave your Chimney, Roof and Gutters Inspected

Chimney, roof and gutter issues can wreak havoc during the winter season. Take care of it now! Make sure your chimney is in tip top shape for ventilation, and ensure your roof and gutters are up for the winter weather.

ūüćĀTrim Trees and Landscaping Prep

Take care of any fall clean up to avoid a stressful spring. Make sure any dead branches or trees are trimmed so that high winds or heavy snow do not send them flying.  Plan your landscaping changes, and move anything recommended during the fall season.

ūüćĀService your Garage Door

Do not get stuck this winter! Having a routine garage door fall maintenance call before anything serious is wrong, can save you big in the long run.

ūüćĀClean and Service Appliances

This is just a great way to stay on top of annual tasks – but we are more likely to be indoors and using our appliances in the winter time! From washing bigger, bulkier clothing to running the oven more – Make sure your appliances are in good working order.

ūüćĀAttic Ventilation / Insulation

A big one, but of great benefit РHaving a peek around your attic is a great idea in the fall.  Temperatures are cooler so attics are not as miserable, and you want to be sure your ventilation and insulation are ready for another winter season.

Enjoy the beautiful weather we have in the week ahead, and get going on that fall maintenance project list!

If you are planning to move this fall, call our award winning movers for a free estimate today!

Cleveland: 440-256-2224

Columbus: 614-352-6444

Cincinnati: 513-284-3031

Support Houston and RAKE NOW

Join us in Supporting Houston

***DROP OFF CHANGE: Please bring donations to IX center!

 

RAKE  (Random Acts of Kindness Everywhere) is supporting Houston and we are proud to lend a hand! Join us in collecting donations, for transport to those impacted by the mass flooding in Houston and surrounding areas. Every little bit helps!

After collection on Saturday, we will be packing up 2 26′ trucks and sending them down to Houston. Penske generously donated the trucks to support RAKE.

Please take your donations to Cleveland IX Center!

Houston

Suggested Donations Include:

  • Diapers
  • Socks
  • Formula
  • Wipes
  • Adult Clothing
  • Kids Clothing
  • Shoes
  • Toiletries
  • Feminine Products
  • Flashlights

The devastating flooding in Houston has brought our Nation’s fourth largest city to a standstill, with many having lost everything they own, including their homes. ¬†The water may be starting to recede, but the recovery is just beginning.

 

 

 

Moving Company vs. Moving Lead Broker

How to Find a Mover and Not a Lead Broker

Lead broker sites are gaining more and more traction, often confusing individuals looking for movers online! The times have changed and navigating the internet and websites is more confusing that ever before. We have seen a serious influx of lead aggregators competing in advertising space – And there is a serious difference in the process and the way things work!

What are Lead Brokers

lead brokerIt is common to go to Google to search for a moving company. ¬†For many searches, you will receive a combination of results that include actual moving companies, and then lead broker websites. ¬†Broker sites appear to be a moving company, but disclose in the fine print that the company does not provide service. They may even advertise that you can ‘shop for the perfect company’ or compare rates. The broker site typically collects your information using a form process, and then proceeds to sell the leads to individual moving companies in the local area. Often, many broker sites have multiple websites and are sharing information across their network of leads collected.

The minute you push the send button on a form on a lead broker site, it is common to receive an influx of calls and/or email responses from all of the local companies that are ‘buying’ your lead. ¬†They receive an instant notification and then immediately follow up.

When Could a Lead Broker be Beneficial?

A lead broker makes money by selling the leads it collects.  Just like a company may pay for an Adwords ad, the broker site pays for that click and then turns around and can sell it 10+ times to various moving companies in the area. For some individuals, this can be an easy way to select a moving company with very little effort.

If you choose to use a lead broker site, it is important to be prepared! Callers will provide information on next steps to book your move. This can be a cost efficient way to compare rates, but it can be time consuming if you have to compare multiple companies.

What’s the Downside?

Lead broker sites may or may not screen the companies they are selling the leads to. ¬†Sites like Home Advisor or Angie’s List do a pretty great job at screening companies that participate in their lead programs. ¬†Unfortunately, there are also many websites out there that sell leads blindly to participants. It is very critical to still compare companies, read reviews and do your due diligence. Verify licensing, insurance and all other credentials.

If you are planning a move locally in Ohio, or across the US РContact us today! 

 

Temporarily Moving In With Family

How to Survive (And Even Thrive) Moving in with Family

moving in with familyMoving in with family, or having family move in during a transition period, can be a tough pill to swallow.  While we may joke and poke fun, when push comes to shove and your moving plans get complicated Рfamily is often a common fall back plan. The problem is combining two households, with often two very different expectations. This can lead to chaos!

Even if only for a short period, it is important to consider all aspects of becoming or having a house guest. Nerves and stress levels are already through the roof given the complications and/or details with moving – So this is really the time to slow down and think about things before doing something regrettable. This goes for ALL members of the family!

Tips for Temporarily Moving in with Family

1. Set ground rules. What are the expectations? What are the non-negotiables? What are schedules?

Having a clear plan is the first step to avoiding any animosity. Not discussing who will be responsible for what chores and household duties can be an awkward conversation later! Set clear expectations for who will help out where, and in what capacity. Similarly with schedules, talk about your weekly routine and who needs to be where, when. Lining up to use a single bathroom or two can be a huge pain point.

Don’t wait until frustrations boil over and one person or another feels taken advantage of. Make sure the lines of communication stay open if someone does start to feel frustrated.

2. Do NOT, I repeat, DO NOT, take advantage!

Moving in with your parents? Your in laws? Your siblings? That doesn’t mean they are now an extension of your team! Don’t take advantage of errands, babysitting or other help. Be sure to make this a two way street – You can help each other out while you stay, but don’t make it a habit to take advantage of the situation. This goes for the host as well, do not set unrealistic expectations for your guests. Communicate and figure out a mutually beneficial solution where necessary, if you are going to help one another.

3. Be respectful

Remember, you are a guest! Bite your tongue and pick your battles. This is someone else’s’ home, and for the short time you will be staying there, you may need to put up with some not-so-great habits that do not jive with your normal everyday life. Embrace it! Learn from each other, talk about things and maybe even take away some great life strategies. ¬†For hosts, the same rules apply. The key is communication, if something is truly intolerable for the stay.

4. Be inclusive

While you are a guest or have a guest(s) staying with you, be inclusive with one another! Invite them to plans, and communicate if it is strictly a family matter. This is a great time to strengthen your relationships and show gratitude, but failing to look at everyones’ POV can cause animosity later.

5. Have a clear plan and communicate it

If and when possible, make sure that you are communicating the details of your stay. If things are yet to be determined, share that simple fact! Don’t make your host continue guessing. Plan to store your items off site unless previously discussed, and make sure your closing/construction/general delay is managed appropriately.

Unless their is a psychic in the family, it is important to share the information up front, and as things transpire. Be considerate of their generosity (and don’t overstay your welcome!).

For a free estimate for moving and storage solutions, contact Moving Ahead Services. 

Smart Home Technology

How Smart is your Home?

Smart Home TechnologySmart home technology has seriously catapulted us into another dimension of convenience, intelligence and even cost savings.  The latest gadgets and tech trends can make a huge difference in your home!

Check out top picks for smart home technology.

Smart Item #1: Heating and Cooling

  • My home is to hot / cold when I am gone
  • I forget to change my thermostat at night / morning
  • My heating / cooling system is efficient, but my home is not

Introduce smart thermostats to your home and it can solve problems you didn’t even know you had! Honeywell, the Nest and many other manufacturers now have WiFi enabled thermostats. Control temperature, set timers, set zones and more – All from any device!

Smart Item #2: Voice Command

From changing the song to asking a question, looking for a recipe or getting weather updates – Echo/Alexa and similar devices are a great hands free way to get answers instantly. This is easily the most popular smart home technology on the market today!

Smart Item #3: Security / Locks / Cameras

Lost your keys? No problem. Forget to shut the garage door? Done! Looking for a security system upgrade? Easy.

From smart locks controlled by your phone to garage door sensors to open or shut your garage from anywhere, these automated beauties can be seriously convenient and seriously safe. Investing in smart technology to keep your home safe and secure is a great choice!

Smart Item #4: Lighting / Shades

Let there be light!  Smart bulbs and automated lighting can be a great way to save energy, and provide lighting when you need it most. Similarly, automated lighting and shades on timers can be a great solution for travel!

Smart Item #5: Automatic Vacuums

Models like the Roomba can be a great solution to cleaning – Hands free! Be on the lookout for deals on Amazon, Target and HSN – Bundles can be a great way to get the accessories you need for a fraction of the cost! The Roomba and other similar automatic vacuums can save you time and keep your house tidy!

Smart Item #6: Lawn Items

Similar to the technology of the Roomba, there are automatic mowers that you can set loose and your yard is done in no time! Automated irrigation systems can also be a great solution to saving time and money while keeping your lawn pristine.

Smart Item #7: Appliances

Forget energy efficiency, think bigger! Dual load washers and dryers can be a lifesaver for those that seem to always be doing laundry! Similar technology in dishwashers, ovens and refrigerators can also be great investments to get even more for your money.

Smart Item #8 Fire / CO2 Safety

Smart safety products are pretty much a necessity.  WiFi enabled smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors talk to each other, and to your devices. Verbal alerts eliminate any questions РAnd alert  you of issues quickly.

Smart Item #9 – Pet Products

Don’t forget your pets! From pet cameras to food distributors and invisible fences, technology has seriously upgraded your pets wish list. Products are great for convenience and safety!

 

Moving After 55

Moving After 55: What’s Your Next Move?

Moving after 55Moving after 55 can be an exciting, stressful and liberating time for many! Different periods of our lives are often accompanied by a variety of life changes. ¬†Focusing on the positive aspects is absolutely essential, but maintaining a big picture view is critical. This begs the question, What’s Your Next Move?¬†

Your health, relationships, family, financials and work will play a vital role in the decisions you make in the coming years.  To make the transition easier, we have put together a list of the top 5 things to consider for planning for the future at or around the age of 55.

What’s Love Got To Do With It?

Yes, we just went there ‚Äď and with good reason! Your relationships will likely have a large influence on your life at any point, and particularly in the latter years.¬† Whether you are happily single or happily married, divorced, widowed, dating or any combination of the above ‚Äď Your life plans and goals are absolutely influenced.¬† Deciding a priority and having your significant other on board is essential. Where will you live? When will you retire? What other major life changes are on the horizon? Whether you are making these decisions alone or as part of a couple, the conversation should be started early and had often!

All Work And No Play

If the cards have played out in a positive fashion, retirement should hopefully be in view! Retirement may look different for each of us. Perhaps you want to retire, live off investments and relax! Maybe traveling the country is your dream. Part time work or volunteering may be another great option.¬† Either way, you have worked hard and it‚Äôs time to really make it a goal to start enjoying life.¬† Put together a priority list of things you have always wanted to experience ‚Äď not a bucket list, but a LIFE LIST!¬†

Family First or Family by Flight

Living near to family certainly has its’ perks.  This is especially common if you have younger grandchildren or any dependent that may need your assistance.  However for many, this is also very commonly a great time to decide to relocate. This may mean moving south or west, or just simply moving somewhere you’ve always wanted to live!

Conversely, this could mean you finally get to retire and move to be near loved ones! Location is absolutely a consideration for those moving after 55 or similar.

Downsize and Simplify or Upsize and Enjoy

Decluttering your life can have many meanings to many individuals.  Most commonly, now is the time to downsize and simplify your life.  However, on the contrary, for some now is the time to upsize, organize and enjoy that beautiful home or condo you have always desired!

Chances are either way you have come to realize that it is the moments we collect and hold dear, and not necessarily the material things.  Whatever this means for you, having professional aid can certainly be an asset!

Health and Wellness

Last but certainly not least, your health and medical needs are absolutely important to take into consideration. Unfortunately, as we age, our bodies may not exactly reflect how we feel in our minds.¬† Eat well and take care of yourself ‚Äď And decide how large a role your health will play in deciding your future goals.

If you or a family member is planning a move, call our experts for a free moving quote and consult today! 440-256-2224.

Easy Everyday Apps for Moving

Putting Technology to Work on Your Move

apps for moving

Using apps for moving {and using your phone in general} can make things much easier – and more organized! Technology is definitely a blessing and a curse, but helpful throughout the moving process. ¬†Using easy, everyday apps can be a serious lifesaver before, during and after your move! You couldn’t pay us to rewind the clock to the pre-smart phone days, where everything from a phone call to directions was just not simple. Here is our short list!

Tools and Apps for Moving – Smart Phone, Smart Move!

Planning  Your Move:

Moving is a serious stressor, no matter how you slice it. ¬†There is so much to do, tasks to remember, bills to pay and planning to plan. Your phone was made for this! ¬†Calendar apps, Evernote, and apps to help you organize or clear out clutter can be super helpful. ¬†In addition, your camera can also help you stay organized! Take pictures of what’s in boxes or snap your friends for some comedic relief.

  • Calendar
  • Lists¬†(Notepad, Evernote, etc)
  • Zillow & Real Estate Apps
  • Thred Up – Buy / Sell Apps
  • Camera

During the Big Move:

  • Maps
  • WAZE

This has literally revolutionized the way we can do business in a day!  No more atlas books and endless traffic РDirections and information is literally at your fingertips!  Use it!  Traffic can be a serious headache on moving day.  Keep in mind you may need to accommodate a moving truck and take a new route РWhich could have issues to battle.

After Your Move:

  • Uber/Lyft
  • Yelp/ Google Local
  • Tinder / Match / Meetup
  • Angie’s List / Home Advisor
  • Groupon

From exploring your new town to getting a date, meeting new friends or getting something repaired – Your phone can literally do it ALL! Apps can also be a great way to save money on food, drinks, groceries, gifts and more. Take a few minutes before you run errands or schedule a contractor and check out Angie’s List, Groupon, Home Advisor and the likes. You’ll be glad you did!

Rent Vs. Buy Costs

What Makes the Most Sense for You?

Rent vs. buy is a common conundrum.  From buying your first home to relocation for a relatively short or temporary period for work РRenting or buying is often weighed heavily before a decision is made! Many expenses and factors go into making the final choice.

Rent Vs. Buy

Rent Vs. Buy Considerations

  1. Length of time
  2. Neighborhood
  3. Credit / Finances
  4. Interest Rates
  5. Availability

LendingTree has recently released an updated version of their Rent vs. Buy Calculator and it is a great way to help calculate and decide! Factoring in everything from interest rates to rental insurance, the Lending Tree calculator is a good way to look at time vs. costs vs. market information to help guide your decision!

How to Decide – The Questions to Ask Yourself

Length of time

How long do you plan to stay?

What happens if you have to stay longer or want to leave sooner?

Are you relocating for work or buying your first home?

Neighborhood

Not just for now, but for the future – If kids or marriage are on the horizon, is this the right neighborhood?

Are you close to work? Do you LIKE your job to plan around it?

Is this neighborhood up and coming, safe and nice – Or on the rocks with a questionable future?

Credit / Finances

This may be one of the bigger factors unfortunately.. Do you have credit for a loan?

Do you have savings for a downpayment?

What about savings to repair or remodel, etc?

What about opportunity costs? Are you giving things up to purchase instead of rent?

Interest Rates

Are interest rates high? ¬†You may be able to justify holding off a bit…

Are rates low and predicted to raise?  You may want to get yourself a REALTOR stat!

Availability

Is the area of town you want better for renting and not buying?

Perhaps there are a ton of houses for sale!  Availability in your budget is incredibly important.

Get an ACCURATE Moving Estimate

Accurate Moving EstimateAn accurate moving estimate should not resemble pulling teeth! Nobody likes surprises, not the customer and not the business!  The best way to get an accurate moving quote is to learn the biggest factors and plan accordingly. Let us help!

How to Get an Accurate Moving Estimate {In 3 easy steps}

  1. Report Appliances
  2. Report Large / Unusual Items (Hot tubs, safes, pianos, exercise equipment)
  3. Do a Video Tour

The rest of the information can be easily estimated by evaluating the number of individuals in your household and the size of your home.  Bonus points if you have moved at all recently (and had a good experience) and can report the time, weight or other details!

Why an Accurate Estimate Matters

Having a precise moving estimate is critical for a variety of reasons

  1. The number of crew members on your job
  2. The length of time
  3. The size of the truck
  4. Supplies

Unfortunately, inventory changes, differences in distance and other factors can have a huge (re:awful) impact on a move.  Delays, lack of space and supplies and general unpreparedness can be catastrophic.  Hiding or forgetting items will cost you in the long run!  It is best to be transparent.

The Beauty of Video Tours

In the past, tours were largely reserved for long distance relocations. ¬†Today, we have the beauty of technology and can tour any home, any time, anywhere! ¬†Walking through your home on Facetime, Skype or Google chat – We are able to see every detail with our expert eye. ¬†It’s an amazing tool!

Call us today for your free moving estimate, or fill out our helpful moving quote here.

Today’s Real Estate Market

Buying or Selling in Today’s Real Estate Market

Real Estate MarketThe real estate market is booming in Ohio, and it has certainly made for some interesting challenges for our customers, family and friends!

Whether you are trying to buy or sell РIt seems we are at a time of extremes on both sides of the fence!

Being prepared will be critical to getting the winning bid – Or selling your home and being ready to move fast!

Buying Right Now

If you are in the market to purchase a home, you need to be ready BEFORE you even start to look! It may sound like a cheer РBut seriously, homes are selling fast, fast, fast in the current real estate market!!

In some areas, homes are selling before they ever even officially ‘hit the market’. The power of word of mouth, Zillow and social media have had a profound impact!

Many homes in desirable areas and prices are experiencing multiple offers – Some receiving far more over asking price.

Figure out what you want in a home, what area, and hit the ground prepared!

Selling Your Home

On the other side of the fence, home may sell very quickly! Especially if you are in a desirable area, in that great price point, your home may literally sell overnight!

Be prepared with a plan incase you need a ‘layover’ spot. This can include temporary storage, temporary housing, school changes, etc.

Be prepared for multiple offers – and have a trusted realtor to help guide you through the process! Now is a great time to sell, but it seems the general consensus is to just be ready for the whirlwind!

Real Estate and Relocation Solutions

If you are planning a move, bundle your services and save!  Our customers enjoy great savings on their moves, ask us how to list your home and save!