We all have certain goods to move that are valuable to us in some way. Most of us own large electrical goods such as TVs and stereos and some of us may own valuable antiques, jewelry and even items of sentimental value that need extra care and throughout the moving process.
Although we often forget this we all also own paperwork and important documents that are of value to us. These can include birth certificates, share certificates, banking information, insurance documents, check books and credit cards and so on – we may not use them every day but we don’t want to lose them. These documents will come to light as you go through your home packing up. Pack them up in a single container – preferably one that can be locked. Your mover may offer to rent/sell you secure crates for this type of purpose.
Most moving companies are more than capable of transporting standard large and high-value items such as PCs, TVs and stereos but you still need to take care yourself to pack them up properly to avoid damage. Moving your computer is covered in a separate section on the site. For TVs and stereos etc., you should always try to pack these types of items in their original boxes or in similar sized ones with plenty of packing to stabilize them.
If you own antiques then you may need to employ a moving company with specific expertise in this field or to take specialist advice when packing/moving. By their very nature, antiques can be more fragile than modern furniture and you should pay particular attention to protecting them before they are placed in a moving van. If in doubt, ask your movers for advice before you start your move. If you own a lot of antiques then your best bet will be to bring in specialists – for the packing process as well as the move.
It’s essential to talk to your movers about items of value before you agree a moving contract with them. This way you’ll be covered if problems arise. If you don’t notify them and a high-value item is damaged then they will blame you for not telling them about it. Your chances of compensation will be minimized. You basically need to know how much insurance cover they have and how comprehensive it is. They will probably ask for a list of high-value items such as electrical goods, antiques, jewelry etc., and may even refuse to carry certain items if their insurance coverage is insufficient. They may offer higher cover for an extra premium. You should also talk to your home insurers to check whether your contents insurance will cover damage/loss during a move. Again, they may offer cover at a premium. In both cases you will be expected to provide estimates of value etc., and you may need to have them independently appraised. You may also find that your movers insist on packing up valuable items themselves to cover their own insurance regulations – some may charge you extra for this. It is worthwhile doing – many movers won’t take responsibility for damage in transit if they didn’t pack goods themselves.
Many people believe that the best way to protect valuable items – especially jewelry, documents and items of sentimental value is to move them yourself. This way you take responsibility for their transport and, at the very least, it’s one less thing to worry about. You can also alternatively talk to your bank about having small valuable items stored for you while you get the move out of the way. Many of us will drive from our old home to our new on the day of our move and the easiest thing to do is to keep these valuable items to one side to be packed into the car. If you do opt to do this, do take care not to advertise the fact that you are moving valuable items. Keep as much stuff as possible locked in the trunk and cover or disguise anything you have to put in view. Don’t leave the car unattended wherever possible – car thieves would just love to get into your car on this particular day! You might also want to double-check again with your insurers to check you are covered for damage outside the home during the transport of these items. If you’re not, get some cover!
No matter how careful you and your movers may be, accidents can still occur. To minimize problems if something does go wrong, take photos or videos of all your valuable items before you pack them up. This can save you considerable time and problems if you do have to make a claim for something that happens during the move.