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9 Things to Consider When Renting a Truck for Your Move

Published by Chris Townsend

9 Things to Consider When Renting a Truck for Your Move

Hiring movers can be costly to some individuals. Thus, if you're ready to do the heavy lifting yourself, renting a truck for your move could save you a few bucks.

Renting a truck and moving your possessions yourself is a cost-effective approach to save money while maintaining control over your relocation. You will be able to tailor your move to meet your needs and preferences, take adequate care of your belongings, pack at your own pace, move when you want, and do things your way in general.

However, to get the most out of your move, you'll need to rent a good truck at the best available price. To do so, you must be well-informed of the things to look for when hiring a truck for your move. We've put together a comprehensive checklist of 9 things to look for when renting a moving truck for your next relocation. This would help you find out how you can have a stress-free moving day by renting a truck. Let's begin!

1. Know the Exact Moving Truck Size

You must rent a truck that can fit all of your belongings so that you can save time throughout the relocation. This is because if you hire a small truck, you may find yourself making multiple trips back and forth throughout the moving process. And renting a truck that's more than your household items simply means you've wasted money. Sometimes it could be that the truck's size confuses you. You either overestimate or underestimate the amount of room you require.

Check the Better Business Bureau page of a rental truck company (especially a local one) for positive reviews before making a decision. It's also a good idea to ask your friends and neighbors for recommendations, as word-of-mouth is one of the most effective ways to identify respectable companies. Here's a quick reference guide:

  • A 10-foot mini mover is appropriate for a tiny flat.
  • A 12-foot vehicle can transport the content of 1-2 rooms.
  • A 16-foot truck can contain the contents of 2-3 rooms.
  • A 22-foot truck can fit the items of 3-5 rooms.
  • A 26-foot truck will comfortably contain the items of a 5-7 bedroom apartment.

2. Pick a Convenient Date and Time

The majority of folks rent trucks at the beginning or end of the month. Hence, you may find it easier to make bookings in the middle of the month. However, you may not get the truck you want. Furthermore, during the week, renting a moving truck is usually less expensive than doing so on weekends, when DIY moving is at its peak.

To avoid all this, you should rent a moving truck earlier than the moving day. Renting a truck ahead of time allows you to avoid the last-minute rush. You get to experience more convenience when you reserve your truck at least two weeks in advance.

3. Research the Cost of Renting a Truck

When providing you with a quote, moving truck companies will consider the size of the truck you rent, as well as the distance and duration of the move. Insurance charges, additional fuel, moving materials, and add-on accessories, on the other hand, may not be rolled into the quote automatically.

Furthermore, if you are moving a long distance, you may find yourself delving deeper into your wallet. However, if you are just moving a few miles, you may not have to spend a lot of money on a moving truck rental.

You can also compare the pricing of other moving rental truck providers to find the best offer. Make sure you have the time and energy to go to the store and fill out all the paperwork once you've picked which company to rent your truck from.

4. Consider Insurance Coverage

It's a good idea to get additional moving truck insurance if you're planning on driving the truck a long distance. Damage to the truck and/or its contents may be covered under your house and auto insurance plans, but it may not be enough. A 10-foot truck, for example, might be covered by your auto insurance coverage, but a 26-foot truck is unlikely to be.

The majority of truck rental companies offer insurance, which includes the following options:

  • Damage waivers: This is an insurance option that absolves you of financial obligations in the event of item loss, theft, or truck damage.
  • Supplemental liability insurance: A sort of insurance that safeguards you against claims for property damage and personal injury.
  • Personal accident and cargo policies: This insurance coverage covers you and your belongings while inside the rental truck if you are hurt or your belongings are destroyed as a result of certain listed reasons. However, damage caused by moving or theft is not covered by this insurance plan.

5. Do Some Inspection

Before hiring a truck, you should inspect it. In the past, some people have rented malfunctioning trucks that affected their move negatively. So, before you leave the rental company, inspect the entire truck. Check the lights, signals, and tires to make sure they're all in functioning order. Watch out for little scrapes or dents that could end up costing you a lot of money. Double-check the interior for damage and report any to the representative so you don't get blamed for any damages. Most truck rental firms will make a note of this in your rental documents before you sign, so be sure you inspect the truck before signing.

6. Can You Drive a Truck?

Driving a moving truck can be challenging, particularly if you have never driven a big vehicle before.

  • Take a moment to acquaint yourself with the truck before hitting the road. Adjust the mirrors, turn on and off the lights, and figure out how to use the windshield wipers. Before you get on the highway, double-check that everything is in functioning order.
  • Since most moving trucks lack a backseat, it's preferable to limit the number of passengers to two. However, a big moving truck can contain three people.
  • Make sure you're prepared to make MUCH bigger turns in the truck than you would in a regular car when driving it.
  • It's not a good idea to drive along narrow, curving roads with a moving truck because of its size. While driving a moving truck, do your best to stay on major roadways.
  • When driving your truck, keep clearance in mind by keeping an eye out for any bridges, drive-thrus, or underpasses. Believe me – you don't want to get stranded beneath a bridge or damage the truck.
  • Maintain a safe distance from other vehicles. There's no reason to tailgate other automobiles when you're driving a huge moving truck.
  • Stick to the speed limit and follow the rules of the road. This bit of advice doesn't really need to be explained.

7. Have the Right Paperwork

Showing up at the truck rental facilities, ready to tackle your tight relocation schedule... only to realize you've forgotten your driver's license at home is a moving nightmare.

To avoid this headache, make sure you have all of the necessary paperwork. It's also a good idea to contact and confirm with the rental company what documentation you'll need to bring.

8. Decide the Extra Equipment You Might Need

Moving your belongings into your new home may require more than just a moving truck. During the moving process, furniture pads, for example, can protect your furniture and flooring. Hand trucks are also two-wheel carts that make transporting heavy furniture and moving boxes easier. However, moving equipment is usually not offered for free; you must pay to utilize it. The correct equipment, on the other hand, will make your DIY relocation a success.

9. Consider the Return Options and Requirements

Before you rent a truck for relocating, think about how you'll return it:

  1. If you're relocating across the country, hire a moving truck one way so you can pick it up near your former home and return it to a lot near your new home. You'll need to locate rental companies with offices in both your current and new cities in order to do so. However, most rental companies have locations in a number of big cities, so this should not be an issue.
  • Inquire about the type of fuel the truck requires, and make sure you return it with the same amount of gas it had when you picked it up, otherwise you'll be charged a fee.
  • Before returning the truck, make sure it is clean and in good working order, as the rental company will impose a cleaning fee if it is not.

Wrap Up

Renting a moving truck, loading it properly, and driving it securely across various places is never easy, especially when there are so many self-moving risks and dangers. And hiring one of the country's top-rated full-service movers may be the more cost-effective alternative for you, especially if you're moving long distances. However, if you consider and follow these tips, you'll surely face no issues when renting a truck for your move.

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Chris Townsend is a moving professional and relocation expert that has more than 10 years of experience in the moving industry. With a background that includes working in virtually every aspect of the company, he has distinguished himself as an integral part of our operations with expertise in all things related to moving. Chris has a keen eye for detail and brings intelligence and passion to every project he’s involved with.

While getting his degree in communications from Santa Clara University, Chris started out with the company working in the field as part of our team of professional moving associates. Following graduation, he was promoted to our main office, where he has thrived in a role that involves increasing responsibility and requires him to wear many different hats. Some days, you may find him answering the phone and providing moving estimates, others he may be writing for our moving blog, and another day he may be coordinating a large corporate moving job or helping us with our marketing efforts. Chris has authored many of our in-depth moving guides, as well as provided our clients with information and advice to handle the complexities of their upcoming moving plans. Simply put, there’s nothing he can’t do and we wouldn’t be where we are today without him.

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