A Step by Step Guide To Moving Across the Country with a Baby + 2 Cats: Part 3

September 2016: Unpacking one of the storage Cubes

September 2016: Unpacking one of the storage Cubes

First, a recap! I covered steps 1 - 5 in my initial post about moving across the country with a baby and two cats, which you can check out here.

  1. Wait!

  2. Create folders (paper and electronic) to store all of your moving documents

  3. Outline what needs to happen

  4. Come up with a preliminary timeline

  5. Set your moving budget

My second post covered step 6, figuring out where you’ll live in your new city.

In this post I’ll cover our decision making around how to do the move.

Step 7: Figure out how you’re going to do the move

With housing squared away, one of our next steps was to figure out how we would move (ourselves and our stuff) from Ohio to Oregon. Mike and I had conversations about our various moving options, weighing the pros and cons of each.

For our stuff, we considered...

  • Hiring movers

  • Renting a truck and driving it ourselves

  • Shipping our car

  • Getting a storage cube

For ourselves and the cats, we considered...

  • Flying (all of us, including the cats)

  • Driving (all of us, including the cats)

  • Flying/driving (Mike or I fly with Ellie, the other person drives with the cats)

  • Hiring someone to drive the cats while we flew (yes, people do this for a job)

  • Teleportation (we can dream, right?!)

Once we had a list of our potential options, I went through and priced everything out (estimating how much of our stuff I thought we’d take with us).

  • Hiring movers was out of the question, too expensive.

  • Renting a truck was doable, if one of us drove the truck and the other person drove our car (it turns out you can’t put a car seat in a moving truck). Given the fact that we had an infant and sleep was hard to come by, we didn’t want to be in a situation where both of us had to drive, we wanted to be able to take shifts if needed... we crossed renting a truck off our list.

  • Shipping our car would mean we’d have to fly, flying would mean we’d have to fly with the cats or have someone else drive them across the country. We weren’t really interested in lugging the cats onto a plane and hiring someone to drive them across the country while we flew was really expensive. Plus, shipping your car is also expensive... so we crossed that off the list. Since we weren’t going to ship our car and we didn’t want to sell it and buy a new car once we got to Oregon (we did sell Mike’s car in Ohio), that meant we’d have to drive.

  • We considered having Mike drive the car, while Ellie and I flew, but we wanted to do the trip together (because moving across the country to a place you know no one is a pretty massive life transition, we all needed the moral support), so we crossed that option off the list too.

  • We looked into storage cubes. They were significantly cheaper than hiring movers, especially if you loaded/unloaded your stuff into/out of the cube at the facility (as opposed to having it brought to your residence). This is what we ended up doing. We rented 2 storage cubes from U-Pack for just under $2,600 (you can find the exact price in my first post about moving). This was more than enough space to move all of our things. We filled up one cube and the second one had a ton of room leftover. In Ohio, we rented a small U-Haul truck to transport our stuff to the cubes at the rental facility. In Oregon, we also rented a small U-Haul truck to move our things from the cubes into our apartment.

  • And yes, we lamented over the fact that teleportation had not yet been invented and that someone should really get on that, because that would have made this whole process a lot easier.

In summary, we ended up driving our car, with ourselves, Ellie, the 2 cats, and any small items we didn’t want to put into the cubes. We then put everything we wanted to move to Oregon into 2 storage cubes.

Next up... I’ll share details on how we pared down our stuff, since we were moving from a ~1,500 square foot townhouse to a ~600 square foot apartment.