Gentle Giant Moving Company is the premier moving and storage company in the US. We pledge to deliver the highest quality service in the moving industry, guaranteed. This is a blog about all things related to moving and what is going on at the Gentle Giant Moving Company
Editor’s Note:The following is a guest post by freelance writer Brooke Faulkner about how to have a smooth transition when moving into a small apartment.
There are many benefits to living in a small apartment, including affordability, minimalist aesthetic options and being near your belongings all the time. However, moving into a small apartment does require a few organizational changes from larger spaces, like getting rid of bulky furniture and emphasizing the importance of tidiness. Here are a few things to consider as you transition into a small apartment to make your move more efficient.
Choosing the Right Small Apartment
Before getting into the organizational advice, it’s important to recognize whether a small apartment is the right decision for you. While they can be very practical, small apartments are best suited for a certain demographic — typically people who live alone without any large pets. It’s also important to know that you’re okay with small spaces, because they really aren’t for everybody. If you enjoy accumulating lots of possessions, you may want to reconsider your decision to move into a small apartment, as you will be forced to downsize.
Small spaces are ideal for people with a minimalist approach to life, as organization is the key to living in a small apartment. Small living spaces do not do well with clutter; they can be organized to contain a reasonable amount of decor, but you can’t really leave anything lying around without a proper home for it without the apartment quickly seeming messy and cluttered. Therefore, if you have hoarding habits, it’s a good idea to work on creating new habits and taking steps to declutter that will help you keep a tidy space.
You don’t have to be completely detached from your belongings to live in a small apartment though. There are many instances in which a small apartment is the best decision for an individual, even if you have clunky furniture and lots of belongings. If you’re moving to a new city that you’re hoping to settle into, but aren’t ready for a large home space quite yet, bring all your belongings with you and store them until you are ready for a larger space. It can be refreshing to change up your environment for a short time, even if you want to hang on to your furniture.
Organizing Your Small Apartment to Maximize Space
Once you’ve narrowed down the possessions you’ll keep in your new small apartment to the essentials, it’s time to figure out where to put them. Luckily, many people have figured out how to maximize space in a small apartment, so we can learn from them and adjust to meet our own needs.
Before bringing your things inside your new place, take a moment to look around each room and mentally plan how you’ll organize the space:
Tall bookcases or furniture that take up vertical space rather than horizontal space can help utilize your space more efficiently than furniture that takes up a lot of floor space. Think Tetris!
Another key element to small spaces is to have some proper storage space where it’s needed. This is especially important in areas like the front door, where people often remove their shoes and jackets. A few simple hooks and a small shoe rack are enough to accommodate and organize this area and will keep your front entrance from being covered in shoes and jackets.
The bedroom is another important area to have some storage space; a simple ottoman that doubles as a bench is perfect for storing clothes or other items you don’t want to leave lying around.
One of the best (but most difficult) parts of moving in general is getting rid of belongings you haven’t had the time to analyze whether or not you need. It can be time intensive and mentally consuming to think about how much you want and need all your possessions, but the process opens the door for a clean start wherever you go. Take some time to make those decisions and clear your space for a fresh new beginning.
With these tips, the process of moving into a small apartment can feel much more manageable and less stressful.
Special thanks to Brooke Faulkner for contributing this piece to our blog. You can view more of her work here.
Summer is here again, which means things are heating up at Gentle Giant. The busy season means endless staircases, gallons of water, and some good tan lines. It also means welcoming roughly 200 new and returning seasonal employees who will be donning our maroon and black and hitting the road. This group of new hires is largely composed of college athletes looking to stay fit during their summer break. They all undergo a thorough interview process with a full training session to prepare them for the many aspects of a successful move day.
Gentle Giant Applicant Questions of Summer 2018
Our recruiting team gets many questions during the interview process: What is a typical day like? What is your favorite part about working here? How far would we travel? What is the starting pay? At this point, our recruiters often think they’ve heard them all, but every so often an applicant comes up with a new question to noodle over.
The question of the summer thus far has been: “Does Gentle Giant prioritize the ‘Gentle’ or the ‘Giant’ part more?”
In the company’s 35+ years, the two words have been linked in a way in which our success is equal parts Gentle and Giant. Our reputation as the top moving company in New England comes from both our focus on athleticism and our honest, trustworthy approach to a difficult day. It seems you cannot have one without the other.
Our Giants Make Moving Less Stressful
Moving is stressful; for many of our customers, it is the most stressful day of their year (See our stress-free moving timeline recommendations). It is also very personal. When you hire movers, within thirty minutes of meeting them, these strangers are going through every nook and cranny of your house. They are in bedrooms, bathrooms, kids rooms; it can be unsettling. We’re not just looking for people who can pick things up and put them down, we look for good people – people who will make our customers feel comfortable in their own home. We look for the people who put the “gentle” in Gentle Giant.
Without the “Giant” part of Gentle Giant, we would be just a bunch of nice people struggling to carry heavy furniture. Without the “Gentle” part of Gentle Giant, we would just be any other moving company. Many applicants walk through our doors who are physically capable of the work, but lack the less tangible, soft skills we value so much here at Gentle Giant.
It is this focus on kindness, compassion, and patience that sets Gentle Giant apart as the company it is today. It doesn’t matter how purple our trucks are or how sturdy our boxes, if the people carrying them are not good people. Our employees are gentle in heart and giant in spirit, and will get the job done effectively, efficiently, and with a friendly face.
Editor’s Note: The following is a guest post by Sam Radbil from Abodo regarding five topics to consider when planning for an interstate move.
Whether you’re moving from a small Denver apartment or a new condo in one of the fanciest neighborhoods in New York, your interstate move will surely feel like a daunting project.
There’s a good chance you’re moving because of an exciting life change, but the initial excitement might wear off once you realize the volume of your belongings. You might have 30 years of accumulated possessions and junk, or maybe only a few years’ worth; either way, someone is going to have to box up your stuff and deliver it to your new location.
To get the process started, here are a few ways to make interstate moving easier:
Hire Professional Movers to Assist with Packing
There are many companies, including Gentle Giant, available to visit your home and securely pack your items to minimize damage during travel. These types of moving services are useful to everyone, but especially for those who struggle with organization, as the movers will carefully box, protect, and label everything. When you get to your new home and your boxes arrive, you can get an unpacking service to help you set up your new place.
Consider a Storage Cube
In this scenario, a company will drop off an empty storage container at your home. You will pack it, and then they will drop it off anywhere you want. Most of these companies can also store your cube and deliver it at a later date if your new residence isn’t quite ready. Remember to follow all packing instructions so your items don’t shift during the move!
Do It Yourself
If you’re strong, fit, enjoy a serious workout and like to drive, consider renting a truck and doing a self-move. You’ll never worry about where your stuff is, and it will obviously be where it need to be when you get there. You will have a lot more respect for truckers as you realize driving a large vehicle is quite an experience.
Let Gentle Giant Handle the Move
Our movers are award-winning for a reason – let us do the heavy lifting. Choosing this option means our movers will visit your home in a Gentle Giant truck, load it carefully and drive it to your new location. When they arrive at your new location, they will unload the truck and place your items where you want them to go.
One final note to consider is the price of your interstate move compared to the cost of a local residential move. The cost of your interstate move will vary depending on the day and time you move, as well as your inventory and the amount of services you have decided to use. To make the most of your time and budget, try and book a move on a weekday or during the middle of the month, when demand is lower and prices are more flexible.
No matter how far you’re moving, it’s always a good idea to get a little assistance from the pros. At Gentle Giant, we offer an array of services to help make your interstate move as seamless as possible. Contact us for an estimate today!
Sam Radbil is the lead writer for ABODO Apartments, an online real estate and apartments marketplace. Their research and writing has been featured nationally in Curbed, Forbes, Realtor.com, HousingWire and more.
This summer, Gentle Giant will proudly participate in five LGBT Pride events across the country in continued support of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT+) community.
At Gentle Giant, Pride events are valued and acknowledged as part of our commitment to being an inclusive workplace. We have been proudly marching in parades across our regions for years, and our Giants love getting involved and showing their support.
“Gentle Giant is invested in its commitment to diversity, and we value the events and initiatives that matter to our employees and customers. In addition to being a sponsor of Pride nationally, we aim to be a full community partner and supporter of the LGBT community,” said Larry O’Toole, Gentle Giant’s Founder and President.
Giants Will March in Boston, NYC, DC, San Francisco and Seattle Pride
Our company will be involved in the following events this summer: the 48th Annual Boston Parade; the 21st Annual Brooklyn Parade; the 43rd Annual Capital Parade; the 46th Annual San Francisco Parade and the 44th Annual Seattle Parade.
Our employees, family and friends of employees and volunteers will all be participating in these Pride events. We will be marching in the parade next to the iconic purple Gentle Giant trucks, engaging the crowds and distributing candy and smiles!
Editor’s Note: The following is a guest post by Sara Buckwalter from Organizing Boston about ways to organize your home and belongings prior to your move to minimize stress and optimize success.
Moving is rated as one of the most stressful events in life, but it is possible to have a stress-free move! With careful planning and time to organize, the moving process can be smooth and easy.
Over the past 18 years, Organizing Boston has helped with hundreds of moves. We often get last-minute calls from overwhelmed clients who need help managing the process from start to finish. The one thing they always tell us is that they wish they had called us sooner! It is never too early to plan for a move – the time to start is now.
Here are five simple ways you can organize and plan for a smooth move:
1. Plan Ahead
Create a timeline for your move, including closing dates and other important events. Get the major logistics in place right away, including hiring and scheduling a moving company like Gentle Giant. Don’t forget to make arrangements for your pet(s) or children if necessary. When possible, try to plan your move for the middle of the month or the middle of the week when it’s less busy to save money.
2. Declutter Don’t pack the clutter – purge the clutter! Moving is a great incentive to “clean house” and downsize. Narrow down your belongings first as a separate process from packing boxes. Make your move lighter by removing items you don’t love, need or use anymore. Separate your clutter into piles of donations, free-cycle, recycle, and junk items, and make plans to get those items out! Once the extraneous stuff has been identified, the packing will be much faster and easier.
3. Sell and Donate Moving items you don’t want costs money. Sell unwanted furniture, household items and clothing either online or through consignment. Make regular donation drop-offs, or schedule a charity pick-up before your move.
4. Use It or Lose It For consumables you don’t use regularly, institute a “use it or lose it” policy. This might include pantry items, toiletries, desk/office supplies and reading materials. If they do not get consumed or used before the move, then it’s not worth keeping them or moving them to your new home.
5. Pack Smart If you are doing some or all of your own packing, be sure to label your boxes on all sides and be specific. Identify the room and contents for each box. Use different colored labels for each room. Pack “open first” boxes with the essentials you will need right away: linens, towels, toothbrush and more.
While preparing for a move may not be fun, use it as an opportunity to review and purge what you own, so you’re only left with the items you really want and will enjoy in your new home. Happy organizing!
Sarah Buckwalter is a Certified Professional Organizer® with over 18 years of experience in home, move and office organization. She is the founder of Organizing Boston, the largest professional organizing firm in New England and the 2014 winner of Best of Boston Home and Best Professional Organizer.
Editor’s Note: The following is a guest post by Sam Radbil from Abodo about ways to make your upcoming move less expensive and more efficient.
Heavy boxes. Days of packing. Lugging furniture up and down the stairs. Long drives and late nights. Sounds like fun, right? The average American moves 11.4 times per lifetime, according to fivethirtyeight. Organizing a move can be a long and daunting process for many.
Whether you’re making a short move across town, or a move from a small Chicago apartment to a Los Angeles beachfront property, packing up your entire life can be stressful, super expensive, and will take up a ton of your time. That said, there are some things you can do to make it easier on you and your family. Here are some strategies you can implement to make your move as quick, painless, and financially-friendly as possible.
Fill Those Empty Spaces & Forget Packing Peanuts
You will have tons of gaps to fill when you’re moving and you know that you’ll be using a lot of boxes. Think about the things you already own that can be used to help fill those empty spaces in your boxes – t-shirts, towels, and bedding can go a long way and will be much cheaper options than purchasing packing peanuts. This will save you money and it’ll be much easier to clean up. You might even be able to find another use for those old packing peanuts.
Don’t Skimp on Boxes
Boxes are necessary for making the big move, and they are more important than you think when it comes to packing for your relocation. Although you could check to see if your local liquor and grocery store had free boxes, these are often not your best bet when it comes to durability. Often, the boxes break or collapse because they are so thin.
For the highest quality boxes, seek out materials from the professionals. The Top Box department at Gentle Giant offers free box delivery and sells the highest quality boxes, so you can buy less and save more. The materials you purchase from Top Box are of great value, so you will never have to worry about them collapsing or breaking; they can handle whatever comes their way. This will offer you peace of mind and extra security for your belongings.
Hire the Pros to Handle Your Move
Hiring great movers can really take so much stress off your shoulders, but it’s important to put those professionals in the best place possible to succeed and do a great job in helping you move. Don’t wait until the last minute before your movers arrive to start organizing your materials. Take a few days to organize your belongings and pack them into color-coordinated, clearly labeled boxes. This will help your movers in a huge way!
To organize a successful relocation, you should start preparations early. Create your inventory, get insurance, measure the doors and prep the furniture, create a plan for your pets and your children, and check the weather to make sure you have the right materials to protect your home. You don’t need any additional damage caused to your home during the move. When you hire the right moving company, you’ll have nothing to worry about!
Treat the Breakables with Respect
As you pack your glassware, wine bottles and other expensive and breakable items, be sure to use paper and bubble wrap for padding. These packing materials are extremely inexpensive and will protect your fragile items. You can pack your cups and bowls inside of one another to save some space and add extra protection as well.
Besides your kitchen items, remember electronics like your TV and computers will need some additional protection as well. If you can keep these items safe and sound during your move, your bank account will be left unaffected!
Consider Hosting a Garage Sale
While you’re fully focused on packing and moving from one place to another, you might come across a fair number of belongings you no longer use. If this is the case, plan a garage sale a few weeks prior to your move and you’ll be able to earn some extra cash by selling things to your neighbors. You never know when your trash will become someone else’s treasure.
We all want to save a few bucks when we can, and we all want to make a move less stressful if the option is available. Use the tips mentioned above and get prepared for your easiest move yet!
Sam Radbil is the lead writer for ABODO Apartments, an online real estate and apartments marketplace. Their research and writing has been featured nationally in Curbed, Forbes, Realtor.com, HousingWire and more.
Editor’s Note: The following is a guest post by Raj Jana from JavaPresse about the top cities in the United States with a strong coffee culture.
The United States is rapidly becoming one of the largest coffee consuming countries in the world. The average U.S. resident drinks about two cups of java every day, yet not all cups of coffee are the same. Depending on where you are in the country, you’ll have more options for a cup of Joe.
Here are five of the best U.S. cities for coffee lovers:
#1: Portland, Oregon
Portland makes it to the top of the list because of their attention to quality. There are over 20 different roasters who source coffee from within the city itself. There are several companies dedicated to bringing in the freshest brews from all over the world. Plus, a vibrant arts scene and Portland’s “hipster” community makes for some interesting places to sit down over a fresh roast.
#2: Seattle, Washington
Seattle owes some of its caffeinated fame to being the home of Starbucks…but Starbucks actually owes some of its success to the popularity of java in Seattle. The city has the most amount of coffee shops per capita in the country. You’ll find all sorts of roasts, brews and concoctions in unique cafes all around the city. A perfect way to escape from their often rainy weather.
#3: The Bay Area, California
Fresh, local roasts and truly unique cafes with beautiful views have helped make the Bay Area one of the top spots for a coffee in America. The scene in San Francisco is trendy, whereas across the Bay in Oakland, things are a bit grittier, scrappier, and hipster – just like Oakland likes it. This part of the country really is a premier destination for coffee lovers.
#4: New York, New York
How could the city that never sleeps not make this list? The capital of all things cool, New York has one of the most vibrant and unique coffee cultures in the world. With so much activity running through New York every day – from its exciting arts scene to the world of corporate finance – and people drinking more and more cups of Joe, it’s no wonder New York has developed a quirky java scene that caters to the city’s diversity. From Manhattan to Brooklyn, finding a great cup of coffee will be no trouble at all.
#5: Albuquerque, New Mexico
Albuquerque finds its way onto this list largely because of the exciting things happening in the production sector. Because of its climate, Albuquerque can support coffee plants. When coffee is roasted with other local ingredients, such as pine nuts, you can get some really exciting new flavors unique to this part of the country. Go visit the home of Walter White and enjoy some delicious New Mexican brews.
Time for a coffee road trip!
There is so much coffee to try and so little time. A few honorable mentions include Los Angeles, New Orleans and smaller cities such as Portland, Maine and Providence, Rhode Island with budding caffeine scenes as well. Start planning your next coffee adventure now!
This article was provided by Raj Jana. He is the founder of JavaPresse. He has always loved coffee and likes the fact it brings people together and helps them be themselves.
Editor’s Note: The following post was written by one of our employees, Liz Martin, who ran her first Boston Marathon this year on behalf of Gentle Giant and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. We are so proud of her and the four other Gentle Giant employees who completed the race! This is Liz’s personal account of her journey to the finish line.
It isn’t every day that your employer can make a 30-year-old dream come true. That is just the type of company that Gentle Giant is for its employees. Having grown up on the Boston Marathon course, participating in the famed race has topped my bucket list for three decades. Thanks to Gentle Giant, I have finally done it.
For the last 22 years, Gentle Giant Moving Company has served as the official moving and storage partner of the Boston Marathon. Every year the company donates storage space, provides delivery and distribution resources, and fills the ranks of race day volunteers. It is an event Gentle Giant is proud to support, with a long-shared tradition in both athletic excellence and community engagement. Every year, Gentle Giant selects five lucky employees to represent the company and team up with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital to raise funds in support of their efforts to combat childhood cancer.
Having run several marathons, I know the physical and mental demands of preparing for race day. With a core focus on health and wellness, Gentle Giant goes above and beyond to offer benefits and flexibility that allow employees to put in the necessary work to get fit and stay healthy. I’ve never trained in a work environment that provided such a tremendous level of support to help me reach my goals.
With a company gym on-site and free membership to a local gym, all the runners’ workout needs were met. Long, snowy winter with treacherous running paths? Need to do a little low impact cardio to avoid injury? Time to lift a few weights to target troubled areas? Gentle Giant offers plenty of opportunity for runners to work through their every training need. The company chiropractor, who is also a CrossFit coach, was on call for any bumps in the process and helped keep the athletes healthy and happy. Gentle Giant offers an important work-life balance that allows employees to tackle outside obligations, including daily training runs, while managing their work load in a positive environment.
Race day arrived with some of the worst Boston Marathon weather in history; runners battled the elements from start to finish. At times, the rain came down so hard that spectators were hardly visible, and the aid stations appeared suddenly out of nowhere like a mirage. The wind threatened to fill runner’s raincoats like sails and carry them the wrong way down the course. The bone-chilling cold filled medical tents with shivering athletes at every turn. It was one for the ages and I cannot adequately express my gratitude for the opportunity to run this race with the aid of Gentle Giant.
The support leading up to the Boston Marathon was topped off by an unparalleled race day experience. The day started with a friendly send off from the fleet of Gentle Giant trucks at the finish line area. Before boarding the buses to the start line, I exchanged high fives and hugs with coworkers waiting for their volunteer tasks to begin. They sent me to the start with a boost of encouragement and promised to have more high fives ready several hours later when I crossed the finish line.
After a long, cold bus ride full of anticipation, we arrived at the start line and gingerly tip-toed through the mud pit of the Athletes Village to the warm, dry home of another Gentle Giant employee. Shoes were changed, last minute food was consumed, and the tension was broken by friendly laughter. It was the perfect pre-race environment, rain or shine – but especially rain. From there, all that stood between us and the Gentle Giant finish area trucks were 26.2 miles.
Many hours later, I crossed the finish line overcome with emotion at an experience that will likely never be topped. In a daze, I was quickly funneled into the warm welcome from many coworkers who helped lift me into the shelter of a truck. Dry clothes, water, snacks, and huge smiles topped off a day full of enormous gratitude for the support of Gentle Giant.
In all my daydreaming about someday running the Boston Marathon, I never imagined it would be my employer who helped me finally traverse those 26.2 miles. From Hopkinton, Ashland, Framingham, Natick, Wellesley, Newton, Brookline, and into the heart of my fair city, Gentle Giant was with me every step of the way. Hats off to my favorite company for finally making this dream come true.
When preparing for an upcoming move, sticking to a budget may help to relieve stress and make the process feel less intimidating. Choosing a date and time with less popularity might not make the move as convenient, but it can save you some money.
Here are some of our top recommendations for the best days and times to move.1. Best Day of the Week to Move – Any weekday (ideally Monday through Thursday)
Due to the standard work schedule of many customers, the demand for weekday moving services is low. Take advantage of this cost-saving benefit if you can afford to miss one day in the office. Especially during peak moving season (May-September), weekend availability will be limited. Another weekday move benefit is having the whole upcoming weekend to settle and start unpacking.
2. Best Week of the Month to Move – Mid-month
At the beginning or end of each month, many people are relocating to accommodate the beginning and ending of leases. Just like weekdays, demand during the middle of the month is at its lowest, so a mid-week, mid-month move will be your most affordable option. Whenever possible, avoid the first of the month, as most leases begin on the first of the month and demand is extremely high.
3. Best Month of the Year to Move – Late Fall through Early Spring
The overall demand for movers during the colder months is low compared to the months of the year when the weather is nicer, so try and plan your move during an off-season time to save money. This is easier if you don’t have children, as many families with children move during summer to avoid stressful mid-year school changes. We would suggest moving during the beginning and end of this range so you can still get a discount compared to the summer months, but without the worry of moving in the snow.
4. Best Time of the Day to Move – Early morning
The early bird does get the worm when it comes to moving day! It’s simple – the sooner you get started with your move, the sooner you can finish and have time to unpack and unwind. You’ll have more energy and motivation after waking up compared to post-lunch fatigue. This tip is especially helpful if you are hiring a professional moving company like Gentle Giant, as your movers will likely be able to work faster when the weather conditions are ideal (i.e. not too hot or cold, which can sometimes happen during a mid-day move).
No matter which date and time you choose to move, we have plenty of resources available to make sure the transition is as easy as possible!
As a business professional, you want to make sure your office move is as seamless and productive as possible. With the proper preparation and planning, your office move can be executed with ease.
Here is a handy checklist to keep you on track for your upcoming office move:
6 Months Prior to Your Move
In your introductory planning phase of the move, the most important step to take would be assigning roles for those assisting with the transition. One staff member can even take the initiative of creating a “move planning team” for those interested in participating.
Other factors to consider at this stage:
1.) Plan the design of phone and computer systems – You will need these up and running at your new space as soon as possible.
2.) Start researching moving companies and estimates – A reputable company who will take care of all your company’s valuable items should be a top priority.
3.) Coordinate plans with an interior designer – The layout of your office makes an important impression on customers and potential new hires. Consider collaborating with an interior designer, who can match your existing furniture to your new office layout.
3-4 Months Prior to Your Office Move
At this stage, you will want to:
1.) Finalize computer and phone system plans.
2.) Finalize interior design plans and new office layout.
3.) Schedule elevator service in old and new locations – This step is very important but is often overlooked. You will need uninterrupted elevator access when moving out of your old location and when moving into your new location.
4.) Keep communication with employees open – Your staff will want to feel as prepared as possible for the new changes. Consider creating welcome packets for the new space, hosting weekly or bi-weekly move update meetings and/or hosting a move orientation.
1-2 Months Prior to Your Office Move
Two months prior to the big day, you will want to:
1.) Schedule all utilities.
2.) Change your office address – Make sure you update your company stationary, business cards and other collateral items to match your new address.
3.) Select your moving company – Especially during the summer busy season, you’ll want to book your movers with as much notice as possible.
1-3 Weeks Prior to Your Office Move
Getting closer! By now, you will want to:
1.) Finalize plans with your current and new building managers.
2.) Confirm IT installation plans in your new space.
3.) Receive a packing training by your movers, if you will be packing yourselves.
4.) Order new keys and reserve parking spaces.
The Day Before Your Office Move
Tomorrow is the day! Here are some final steps to prepare:
1.) Finish organizing, packing and labeling.
2.) Update your company’s online presence (website and social media) with your new contact information.
All your hard work and preparation has come together, congratulations! Here are your final steps to a successful move:
1.) Unpack your items according to your existing office layout plans.
2.) Return any equipment and boxes used during the move.
3.) Carefully review and sign the Bill of Lading given by your moving company.
4.) Finalize installation of phones and computers.
We wish you the best of luck during your office move! Learn more about our commercial moving services here and view our additional office moving tips here.