How can I most effectively hire movers to move out and move in on the same day, but with a giant gap in between?
May 16, 2008 6:22 AM   Subscribe

How do the logistics of hiring a mover work when I need to close my sale and my purchase in the same day (from Chicago to the suburbs, if that matters)?

We sold our house (with a credit for floors), so that we can be closer to my new job. The sale of our house is scheduled for a Friday in June, and the closing on our new place is set for later that same day. I can't figure out how movers work. I need them early in the morning and late in the afternoon. I think that people must do the two-closing sell-then-buy thing every single day in cities all over the place. How does it work?

I called a couple of places, and it seems the options provided either won't work or are unnecessarily complicated or expensive:

(1) Have them come the morning of the closings and move us out, then immediately go and move us into the new place. This doesn't work because we won't have possession of the new place until our afternoon closing.
(2) Have them come the morning of the closings and move us out, then go back to their home base and put our stuff into "storage" for 5 or 6 hours, then have them take our stuff out of storage and back onto the truck, then have them come out and move us into our new place. This doubles the number of moves to and from the truck (and the subsequent time involved) and requires me to pay a minimum 10-day storage fee.
(3) Move all of our stuff out several days in advance and do the storage option. Again, this is extra cost and coordination that I would prefer to avoid.
(4) Have them come the morning of the closings and move us out, then go to our new place and chill out for 5 hours or so while we wait to close on our purchase. That would cost us $650 of demurrage time.
(5) Have them come right as the sale is going down, so that they finish up when the closing is complete. Then they can go out to the new place and only sit for a couple of hours. This would still cost us $300 of demurrage and it wouldn't work because our house is supposed to be broom clean at final walkthough time (probably no later than 9:00).

We can't sandwich the closings together because we need money from one to buy the other, and because one closing is set for the city and the other for the burbs. I am told each closing would take about an hour and a half to two hours. The sale is set for 10:00; that means the purchase could realistically be no earlier than 1:00, with possession at 2:30.

Can anyone offer insight into how they pulled this off?
posted by AgentRocket to Home & Garden (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: If you don't have a ton of stuff, you could rent your own Uhaul truck for a local move, cost you about $59 a day plus mileage. Hire movers to simply load the truck for you. then you drive it to the new house park it out front go to your closings and then have same or different movers come back that evening or next morning to unload from truck to new house
posted by Mr_Chips at 6:49 AM on May 16, 2008

See if you can lease back your current place from your buyers. That's what my sellers did. They paid me $200 per day for their lease back and they moved out two days later. They had the exact situation you did. It just means that your buyer can't move in immediately.
posted by MeetMegan at 7:59 AM on May 16, 2008

I think that people must do the two-closing sell-then-buy thing every single day in cities all over the place. How does it work?

I don't typically see sellers giving immediate possesion if they are still in the residence. If you had given yourselves even just the weekend things would have come together a little easier. Mr. Chips' idea seems reasonable. Get a handful of buddies to help with the moving part.
posted by curlyelk at 8:00 AM on May 16, 2008

Best answer: Having been in the moving industry for 20 years now this sort of precise planning is prime for disaster. Any glitch in either of the closings and your paying big time. Rent a truck and hire a professional moving crew to load it, they should come with blankets-dollies-ties-tools etc. Do this the day prior to closing, hire the same crew to meet you for the unload when the second closing is finished. Moving is hectic and stressful give yourself some wiggle room. Avoid U-Haul, Budget, Ryder, all have better rates and vehicles. Ask about a weekly rate, and get the insurance. Finally if you cannot lock the truck within a yard buy good locks.
posted by pianomover at 8:23 AM on May 16, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks, Mr_Chips and pianomover. That was an easy answer, and in my hours of obsession one I hadn't considered. I called my mover of choice, who said that they always come with a truck but we don't have to use it. So we can hire our own truck, and pay the movers hourly to move stuff onto it. Then we lock up the truck and drive it out to our new place when we have possession, and pay them hourly to move stuff off of it.

I feel a bit embarrassed that it took me an AskMe post to solve this, but I'm glad to have figured it out.
posted by AgentRocket at 9:08 AM on May 16, 2008

It looks like it's a bit too late for you now, but in the future I'd suggest a bridge loan. We were able to close on our new house a week before we closed on our old house for not too much extra money. This not only made things less stressful, but we were able to get a 25% discount by moving on a Tuesday (our movers had a discount for mon-wed (or tue-thur; I can't remember).

Considering that even with the bridge loan, our first house was supposed to close at 11am and didn't clost until 4:55pm, if we were paying the movers by the hour that would have been quite a bit to have them sit on the lawn (and we were moving city to city, so a 60 minute drive from the lawyers with the key to the new house), and was inches away from not having a house until the next Monday.

If we'd had to pay the movers for an unanticipated 6 hour break, 50% extra per hour past 5pm, and didn't get the 25% discount, we'd have likely paid more than we did for the bridge loan. Not to mention the psychological effects of a low stress move.

However, if for some reason the old house doesn't close, you'll suddenly have a whole new kind of stress, so bridge loans aren't perfect.
posted by nobeagle at 9:27 AM on May 16, 2008

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