The average person moves 11 times in their life, but that doesn’t make it any less stressful. You still have to pack up boxes, make sure fragile items are protected, and find a moving truck to transport your belongings.
While you could hire a professional moving team to drive the truck for you, it’s not always the best option. In most cases, it’s far easier and cheaper to rent a truck and drive it yourself.
Wondering if renting a truck is the best way for you to handle your move?
We want you to be prepared. In this guide, we’ll go over some of the most important things to consider when renting a truck for your upcoming move.
1. Pick the Right Size Truck
Rental moving trucks are available in different sizes ranging from 10-foot box trucks to 26-foot trucks designed to move large homes in a single trip.
The size that’s right for you will depend on several factors.
Number of Rooms
If you’re moving out of a studio apartment or a one bedroom home, a small truck will be fine. If you’re leaving a 5-7 room house, you’ll want to choose a larger truck.
Proximity to the New Home
If you’re just moving across town, making multiple trips with a smaller truck is always an option.
However, if you’re moving to a new city or have to drive more than 40 miles, a larger truck will be better. This way, you’ll only have to make a single trip.
You’re used to driving a commuter car. Driving a big truck is a bit different.
If you’re not comfortable driving a large truck, don’t. Renting a truck under 15 feet in length will be manageable for most drivers.
2. Talk to Your Insurance Company
When you rent a truck, the rental agent will likely ask if you want to purchase supplemental insurance.
This may not be necessary. Some auto insurance policies extend to cover rental trucks and paying for the supplemental coverage just means you’re making the move more expensive.
Before renting a truck, contact your insurance agent to see if your policy will cover you on the road. If your auto insurance doesn’t cover it, your homeowners’ insurance might.
If neither policy covers your rental truck, you’ll want to buy the rental company’s supplemental coverage.
3. Make Sure You Understand How You’ll Be Charged
Before you decide on a place to rent from, you’ll want to compare pricing options. Starting with the company’s website is always a good idea, but you might find it helpful to speak with the rental agents in person.
Ask for details on how you’ll be charged. Most companies will base their fee on the miles you drive, the equipment you rent, and the type of truck you choose.
Larger trucks often have a higher base price than smaller ones, but these will differ from company to company.
Once you get estimates from different companies, you can make a decision based on price and availability.
Keep in mind that some rental companies may not have the truck you reserved when you arrive. If this is the case, make sure they honor the rate on your reservation. Otherwise, you may end up being overcharged.
4. Consider What Equipment You’ll Need
Moving on your own can be tough, but with the right tools on-hand, it’s much easier than you think.
Think about how much you’ll be moving on your own. If you’re going to do heavy lifting or are packing heavy boxes, consider renting a dolly with the truck.
If you’re moving large and easily damaged items like furniture and appliances, consider renting moving blankets. These items can be added to the price of the truck rental.
If you’re planning on hiring a packing and loading service, they’ll likely be able to provide these items as part of their service.
5. Make Time to Inspect the Truck
It’s tempting to drive off the lot as soon as you get the keys for your rental. You want to get to packing, right?
But doing so can leave you facing unexpected charges for damage that was already there. Before leaving the rental facility, take the time to inspect the truck thoroughly with the rental agent.
If there’s any damage, make sure they note it on the contract. Take pictures of the truck before you leave and if any damage does happen while you have the truck, report it immediately.
6. Renting a Truck Requires Advanced Planning
Whenever possible, try to reserve the truck as soon as you find out you’re moving. This way, you’ll have the widest choice in vehicles and reservation windows. Waiting until the last minute often limits the number of trucks available, especially during busy moving seasons.
Start comparing quotes with different companies as soon as possible and make the reservation with the company that best fits your needs.
To help you save money on the cost of the truck, try to start decluttering and downsizing your belongings ahead of time. The fewer items you need to move, the better.
Moving fewer items also means you can rent a smaller and easier to drive truck!
7. You Don’t Have to Do It Alone
Just because you’re renting a truck to drive on your own rather than working with a formal moving company doesn’t mean you have to do everything on your own.
Consider hiring an experienced packing and unloading team to help you with the heavy lifting. This can help you avoid common moving-related injuries like back strain.
You’ll even spare yourself the stress of finding friends that have time to help you with those large pieces of furniture. Remember, some things you just can’t move on your own!
Get Your Quote for Moving Help Now
Moving is stressful enough when you’re renting a truck and driving it yourself. Save yourself some stress and let our experienced local movers help you with the packing, unpacking, loading, and assembly.
Our team wants to help you make your move as simple and painless as possible. Contact us today or get your free instant quote now.