Single mothers may have to move across town or across the country in order to find suitable housing accommodation. It is suggested that time be taken to plan and prepare for this eventuality to make the process a little easier and smoother. Bank of America suggests that single mothers –
4 Simple Moving Tips
Step 1: Make a master plan
This involves all the things which need to be done, such as –
- Writing a budget
- Pre-qualifying for a mortgage
- Buying boxes for packing
Step 2: Have a list of notifiers
This is a list of persons who will be notified of the new address.
Step 3: Clear the basics early
This involves –
- Paying bills ahead of time to reduce worry
- Getting gift cards for older children so they can buy supplies of run errands quickly
- Ensuring that insurance is in place to cover belongings during and after the move.
Step 4: Find supplies
This involves getting boxes, tape, markers, bubble wrap, and old newspapers ahead of time, along with using spare times to pack clothes not being presently worn.
Christopher Solomon, of MSN Real Estate (2011), offers some tips on how single mothers can realize savings even in the moving experience. http://realestate.msn.com/article.aspx?cp-documentid=13108479. He suggests, among other things, that they –
- Don’t pay for boxes – since boxes can be obtained from hospitals, laboratories, and restaurants.
- Purge efficiently – by giving items to charity, as tax deductions can be realized, instead of holding garage sales.
- Reduce bubbles – by padding items with towels and bed linens, as well as newspapers.
- Be their own suppliers – by seeking out recent movers and obtaining packing materials for free or cheaply.
- Box sculptures – by placing odd-sized items in boxes so that they are easier to be moved.
Avoid Moving Scams
These can involve movers packing owners’ belongings onto their moving vehicles then holding them hostage, demanding more payment and threatening to dump them for lack of compliance. Moving can also turn out to be more costly than anticipated. Bankrate.com (http://realestate.msn.com/article.aspx?cp-documentid=13108492) suggests a few tips that single mothers could employ in the interest of avoiding such headaches:
- Ask the real estate agent – since they have good information about moving companies and are therefore reliable sources, and they also have a vested interest in ensuring that their clients are happy.
- Investigate the companies – through reliable and trustworthy agencies, to ascertain whether there are complaints against particular moving companies.
- Ensure that the moving company visits her home – so that they will have an idea of the items to be packed and moved, as well as be able to answer questions and offer suggestions for packing items.
- Obtain three estimates – so that she may have a better idea of the true cost of moving, and also be more wary of too-low bidders.
- Demand a contract that covers everything – everything should be included in the contract to avoid hidden fees, such as a ‘driver’s fee’, for her protection.
- Enquire about the claims process – in the event that belongings are broken or damaged. Good moving companies have internal control departments which can assist with any claims processing.
- Pay little up front – this relates to deposits or down payments on jobs, and payments should be refundable in the event the contract is not fulfilled.
Christopher Solomon also has tips for how single moms can get their landlords to charge cheaper rent rates. http://realestate.msn.com/article.aspx?cp-documentid=16701397. This is based on the premise that hard times cause many rent dwellings to be vacant, and since landlords are business people they are likely to be more accommodating with cheaper rentals. Solomon suggests that, among other things, single mothers should –
- Have good credit – since credit histories are likely to be checked prior to contracts being signed.
- Barter – by exchanging services or goods a landlord needs for lower rental charges.
- Create competition for their tenancy – by showing the landlord that they are ready to move elsewhere if conditions are not right.
In the event that a single mom is desirous of selling her home, Solomon has a few tips for that scenario as well. ttp://www.epconcommunities.com/documents/10%20tips%20on%20staging%20your%20home%20to%20sell.PDF
Based on the premise that prospective buyers form early opinions about a house for sale, he suggests, among other things, that single mothers should –
- Declutter – by getting rid of accumulated junk, reducing books on shelves, removing some of the furniture, etc.
- Be neat freaks – by cleaning carpets, painting walls, giving outdoor decks a pressure wash, etc.
- Search for and eradicate unpleasant odors – by getting rid of things like litter boxes which carry an unpleasant odor, and opening the windows prior to a viewing to allow fresh air to do its work.
- Spend the money on the front of the house – especially the front porch, since would-be purchasers spend a lot of time there while they wait for the door to be opened.
- Use fresh flowers – these should be used throughout the house.
- Make the house current – by getting stagers to bring in rented furniture and borrowed paintings from museums during the viewing by prospective buyers.