For those that are going to do it themselves or at least partially there are some tips to help you through the adventure. A DITY move is a great way to actually make money, but that is only if you have what it takes to do so. You have to be very organized and shop around in order to make a little dough from it. The Military will typically pay you up to 95% of what they would have paid a private moving company. But don’t start seeing $$$ yet. You will have to earn it and follow proper procedure for a DITY move in order to see that money.
Tips for those doing a DITY move:
Have a Yard Sale. You should look at the square footage of your home now and look at the square footage of the house you are moving into. And then break it down from there. Compare the square footage of each room. Living Room vs. Living Room and so on. If the one you are moving into is smaller and your house is already packed with stuff, then now is a great time to have a yard sale. Be realistic there is no way all of your stuff is going to fit into a smaller home (or room) if your house or that specific room is already cramped. So it’s time to purge and get rid of some stuff (and even make a little money in the process). Don’t wait until a week before to do this, you will be busy enough as it is. Try for a month in advance or more. The stuff you don’t sale, either give to charity or post it on Freecycle.
Figure out how much stuff you will be moving. You need this estimate in order to figure out the size of truck you will need (or in my case truck and trailer)! Almost all of the major rental truck companies will show you how many rooms each of their trucks will hold. Remember that this is just a rough estimate. So count the rooms in your house that have something in them (living room, dining room, bedrooms, kitchens, bathrooms, garage (if you use it for storage of any kind), etc…). Once you have that number you will know the size of truck you will need. It’s possible that those with large families 5+ will need a Truck and Trailer. So keep that in mind.
Shop around rental truck companies. Don’t just use the internet either. Find your local store and call them. Make sure to ask if they have a Military discount. If you book online you won’t get that discount, which is why you should always speak to a live person. Don’t wait to do this either. If you do, you may find yourself without a truck.
Make sure all your paperwork is properly filled out. Make sure that all of your paperwork is filled out ahead of time. The Military will also front you up to 65% of the costs for a DITY and partial DITY move.
Weigh the truck / trailer before and after. You MUST weigh the truck / trailer before you fill it (empty) and after you have filled it with your belongings. This will need to be turned into the Military in order to get your reimbursement. To do this find an official scale (usually you can find these at truck stops), run it across the scale and get your weigh slip from the clerk. Remember also that you are only allotted a certain amount of weight, anything over and you will be responsible for it. To estimate just figure 1,000 pounds per room.
Save all receipts and make copies. Buy an expanding file jacket (looks like a file jacket but has a flap and closure to make sure things don’t fall out) and put all your receipts and anything else to do with the move, such as rental agreement, weigh slips, etc… in this folder. Make sure you have also made a copy of everything before turning anything in. Save all hotel, food, and gas receipts. Some may not be needed, but it’s always best to get them, just in case.
Remember that you may have to pay some money back. If you estimate that you have 9,000 pounds and the Military fronts you 65% for that amount and once weighed, you really only have 3,000 pounds, you will have to pay back any over-payment. So keep that in mind.
Check with your TMO / PPO. Always check with your TMO / PPO for all the latest rules, regulations, and information. This should be done as soon as you decide your want to do a DITY move.
Do you have any other tips to share? Comment below and lets hear them!