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Practical Steps for Lowering Your Homeowners Insurance Premium

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According to the Insurance Information Institute, the average homeowner pays roughly $1,100 annually for regular home insurance. Although that’s money well spent on coverage to help you rebuild your home and replace belongings in the case of a disaster, it’s still a lot of money. Below, are a few ways you can save on homeowners insurance for the budget-conscious shopper.

1. Shop Around

Since rates are different at every company, it pays to shop around and get a few estimates from some different insurance providers. Plus, you’ll be happily surprised how much you can save by considering a few quotes, rather than just going with the most popular provider. Many insurance brokers will run quotes from competing insurers to help you find the best deal on your insurance coverage. Try looking for locally-owned, independent insurance agents to get the least-biased insurance quotes.

2. Boost Your Credit Scores

In most states, insurance providers use your credit scores to determine your risk factor, which may include raising your premiums if you have lower or unfavorable credit scores. However, you can take some steps to help boost your credit scores, such as paying your bills off on time, not reaching your credit card limit, and reporting any errors on your credit reports.

3. Bundle your Policies

An incredibly easy way to save on homeowners insurance is to bundle both your home and auto policies with one company. More often, providers will offer you discounts for bundling them, such as American Family, Allstate, and Progressive. Typically, bundling both home and auto can save you upwards of 20 percent on your premiums, but this usually depends on the provider.

4. Increase Your Deductible

In case you didn’t know already, your deductible is the amount insurance providers take away from your claim settlement. Usually, deductible amounts range from $500 to $1,000, however, increasing this number can decrease your rate. However, this often causes people to deter from filing minor damage claims because the overall repair bill will be less than your deductible amount. However, if insurers notice that you make fewer claims, they will be less likely to increase your rates when you renew your insurance.

5. Secure Your Home

Simply put, an easy way to lower your rate is to make your home more secure. Insurance providers will see this as a less threat to storms, burglary, and fires. You can increase your risk even more and be a candidate for cheaper rates by upgrading your pumping and wiring throughout your home. Adding deadbolts, windows locks, and impact-resistance roofing are all excellent examples of upgrades you can do to lower your premiums.

6. Redetermine Your Personal Property Coverage

It’s smart to regularly review your belongings and see how much it’s worth to determine how much personal property coverage you need. For example, if you recently sold expensive valuables, you can lower your high-limit insurance, which can help you save money.

7. Check to See Which Random Discounts You Can Get in On

Although home insurance providers don’t offer a whole lot of discounts, there are a lot of obscure ones that you may able to save money with. For example:

  • Allstate and Amica Mutual offer discounts for customers that pay their premiums with their checking/saving account or debit/credit card.
  • Farmers and Esurance offer rewards to their customers that live in non-smoking homes.
  • Liberty Mutual and Travelers offer discounts for couples that recently bought their home.

Charlotte Moving Company Shares What You Need to Know Before Moving to the Queen City

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The city of Charlotte has become a mecca for all walks of life, including families, young professionals, and singles. And with friendly neighborhoods, plenty of outdoor fun, and great entertainment options, it’s easy to see why. The area boasts something for everyone from bike trails to whitewater rafting to wineries to museums. The city has even become a magnet for large corporations that continue to provide a growing job market for residents. If you’re planning to move to Charlotte and are curious about the area, here are a few things this local Charlotte moving company thinks you should know about this North Carolina town:


Charlotte has several distinct neighborhoods that are excellent for east coast living. Downtown Charlotte is considered "Uptown" by locals and is a hub for young singles with athletic arenas, bars, restaurants, and exciting nightlife. The North Davidson neighborhood (also known as “NoDa") is a gentrified area that appeals to the 20-30-year-old hipster crowd. Beer lovers will appreciate the many breweries in this neighborhood and can enjoy a snack at Amelie's, an eclectic French bakery that’s open 24 hours a day. Families can find their perfect home in the quiet areas of Huntersville, Cornelius, and Davidson, which are a 30-minute drive from the busy city center. And with a beautiful lake that surrounds the region with boating and fishing activities, it’s the ideal place for raising a family.


Parents with little ones can enroll their children in one of Charlotte’s many charter schools, which offers quality education with an affordable private school experience. The city also offers excellent programs for kids in middle and high school within the Charlotte-Mecklenhurg school system, which outperforms almost every school in the state of North Carolina. And for toddlers and infants who need daycare, parents will be happy to find that the state uses a star-system screening to find the best pre-K and nursery schools for your family.

Work Commute

With a large amount of people moving into the city, the average commute time in Charlotte can run over 30-minutes long (without including rush hour traffic), especially I-77 north of I-485 and south of downtown towards South Carolina. And with the amount of growth that the town has sustained in recent years, its traffic conditions are still suffering a few growing pains. When deciding where to live within the city, be sure to scope out where your workplace is in relation to your home. And if you have the opportunity, try making the drive between your prospective office and home in various traffic conditions.

City Life

While Charlotte has grown in size and population, it can be easy to make new friends within the booming landscape. There many several MOPS groups around the area for young moms and children to meet and support each other. And with large churches, running clubs, pottery classes, yoga memberships, and other social opportunities, there are plenty of people who find common ground within the city.

Moving into Your New Charlotte Home

When you're ready to pack up and move to Charlotte, be sure to give our friends at Cheap Movers Charlotte a call. They can help you locate local or long distance moving services from Charlotte-area moving companies for less. To reach them, here is their contact info:

Cheap Movers Charlotte
9911 Rose Commons Drive Suite E-609
Huntersville, NC 28078
(704) 885-5453

Best Family-Friendly Neighborhoods in the Phoenix-Scottsdale Metro Area

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Almost always warm and sunny, the city of Phoenix, AZ, is located in the Salt River Valley, surrounded by the McDowell, White Tank, and Superstition Mountain ranges. Recently, this desert oasis has started attracting more families because of the economy, affordable cost of living, and successful school districts. If you are thinking about relocating your family to this sun-drenched haven, we’ve done a little research for you with the help of local moving company Cheap Movers Phoenix, the #1 source for finding affordable Phoenix moving companies.

Looking at real estate in the Phoenix-Scottsdale metropolitan area can get confusing when you’re trying to balance proximity to city centers and workplaces with finding a neighborhood that’s also family-friendly and suburban. The list below highlights some of the best family-friendly neighborhoods.

Queen Creek

Located in the far southeast corner of the metroplex, beyond Gilbert and Chandler, the community of Queen Creek is about a 45-minute commute to downtown Phoenix, but only about 30 minutes from Mesa. Thanks to its location on the outskirts of the Phoenix metropolitan area, the cost of living in Queen Creek is reasonable. The average home value in the area is $253,000, which is more affordable than other parts of Phoenix. Most children go to one of the schools in the Queen Creek Unified School District, though private school options are available. Some of the neighborhood highlights include the Barney Family Sports Complex offering athletic activities; the Performing Arts Center, which hosts both local and national shows; and Schnepf Farms, a local gem that hosts numerous festivals throughout the year.


A little closer to central Phoenix, Chandler also sits in the Southeastern part of the Phoenix metropolitan area. This prominent suburb with a population of almost a quarter million is known for its entrepreneurial spirit and age-old traditions. Average home prices range between the low-200s to mid-300s, depending on the zip code. The range of prices and variety of housing options in this area make it easy for families to find what they’re looking for. Chandler has a great public school district and a bustling downtown. Families can enjoy various holiday festivals, like the Tumbleweed Tree Lights Ceremony and the Cinco de Mayo Chihuahua Races, or fun events like the annual Ostrich Festival. Chandler is a growing area that could be perfect for your family!


Anthem, Arizona also made the list due to its ability to present as a suburb, but entertain like a city. Located north of the city, along the I-17 corridor, Anthem is ideal for those who might work in Deer Valley, North Mountain Village, or another area in North Phoenix. Just 30,000 people call this suburb home, which has also been named one of the best places to raise a family by Parenting magazine. The local community center offers a variety of youth sports, while family-friendly festivals like the city’s annual Java and Jamming event, offer fun for the whole family. Anthem is served by the Deer Valley Unified School District and boasts a number of charter and private schools as well.


Finally, the suburb of Gilbert also makes our list. Situated close to Chandler, Gilbert is known for its wide variety of outdoor activities, such as hiking at the Riparian at Water Ranch. The historical downtown area boasts many boutique shops, cafes, and art galleries. To cool off from the oppressive Phoenix heat, adults can enjoy brews at the nearby Arizona Wilderness Brewing Company or take their kids to enjoy splashing in the Mesquite or Greenfield swimming pools. If your family is into healthy living, then Gilbert is the place to be!

The Phoenix-Scottsdale metropolitan area offers families affordability, great schools, a multitude of outdoor activities, and easy commuting. With the neighborhoods listed, your family can have the all the perks of living in the suburbs, with proximity to the amenities of the city.



National Moving Company on the Best Neighborhoods for Millennials Moving to DC

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A diverse, melting pot of opportunity, careers and educational opportunities, Washington DC is becoming increasingly attractive to Millennials looking to further their education and develop as young professionals. With so much to offer Millennials students and professionals, just what thriving neighborhoods will meet your educational and career needs? Look at the top neighborhoods in the DC metro where Millennials are flocking to settle.

1. Ballston, VA

Although Ballston, VA hasn’t always been a hot spot among young people, this up-and-coming region is now known for its affordable new construction. While the availability of reasonably-priced housing may be one vital piece of the puzzle for you as you consider a DC move, Ballston also boasts a central location, just a few Metro train stops from the nation's capital. In addition, with the boom in housing and the influx of a younger generation, better schools, restaurants, shopping, and bars have been popping up all over this fun neighborhood. As a bonus, the Ballston Common Mall is being completely redone with a completion date of 2017 holidays.

2. Del Ray, VA

Despite older housing, this neighborhood in the heart of Alexandria offers residents a funky and unique vibe with convenient proximity to the hot job market of DC. The shopping, coffee shops, yoga studios and delicious bites in this sweet neighborhood are reminiscent of what you might find in cities like Portland, Oregon or Austin, Texas. Imagine Saturdays spent strolling main street, buying fresh produce at the farmer’s market, and dining al fresco on flower-lined sidewalk patios.

3. Georgetown

Another local business hot spot, Georgetown has a plethora of art, food and outdoorsy fun to cater to Millennial tastes. In addition to all the neighborhood’s delicious restaurants and unique boutiques, there are lots of nearby trails for the avid runner, as well as educational opportunities at nearby colleges and universities. While housing here is a bit steeper, the convenient location might just be worth it. The area offers fast access to downtown, the metro, and the thousands of job opportunities in the District.

4. Foggy Bottom

Like Georgetown, Foggy Bottom offers easy access to education so you can earn that Master’s degree you've been thinking about getting, with George Washington University just blocks away. While you're taking a study break or off from work for the weekend, explore the multitude of art galleries and museums in this popular neighborhood or play a little "beach" volleyball near the Potomac River.

5. U Street

You work hard to climb that corporate ladder. U Street will give you the immediate access to play hard, right in your own neighborhood. Despite the booming nightlife, you'll enjoy the rich, diverse history of U Street, which was once home to movie stars, Jazz musicians and more. Feast at restaurants, bars, and clubs that were once filled with historic musicians who changed the course of the music industry. The best part: with U Street near the center of it all, your commute to work and entertainment will probably be short (if not non-existent).

Looking for DC Area Movers?

With so many up and coming neighborhoods and a transportation system that makes getting around a breeze, navigating the nation's capital will extend bountiful career options, schools, great food and drinks, a rich history, and weekends filled with sites and shopping. While you focus on finding the right neighborhood for you, why not leave the logistics of your move up to the professionals? Here are some of the area’s best moving companies:

Cheap Movers DC
3509 Connecticut Avenue NW #10028
Washington, DC 20008
(202) 774-9296

Matthew’s Nationwide Moving
6110 Redwood Ln
Alexandria, VA 22310
(571) 276-7024

A Few Good College Men Movers
8616 Dakota Drive
Gaithersburg MD 20877
(202) 557-4000


Tips for Moving to an NYC Apartment that is Short on Storage

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New York City apartments are known for having little to no storage options, and when it comes to finding an apartment with a spacious layout, any extra room can cost you a lot of money. If you’re struggling with getting the most out of your cramped living situation without breaking the bank, you’ll need to get creative and think outside of the box. To help you out, here are a few ideas from Imperial Moving Company, experienced NYC movers, for getting the most out of a small apartment.

Make Use of Platforms

Have a custom wood platform placed in your living room so that a couch, coffee table, or an area rug can sit on top. Under the platform, you can build a roll out bed, extra drawers, or even storage dividers to help eliminate clutter around your apartment. Just be sure to leave enough floor space under and beside the platform for roll out beds or drawers to open. You can also do this with an existing bed by placing the mattress on top of a platform and storing items underneath it.

Bike Racks

Bicycles can take up precious floor space and cause unneeded clutter in an apartment. To solve this, attach bike hooks or specialty shelves to a wall to vertically store your bike. If you aren’t allowed to put holes in your walls, you can purchase or build a free standing bike rack.

Hanging Shoe Bags

Hanging shoe bags are perfect for getting the dozens of shoes you own off of the floor, but can also be used for sundries, socks, office supplies, and many other things. You can hang a bag on the back of your front door, closet, or even bathroom, and watch the clutter around your apartment disappear.

Shower Caddies

Shower caddies come in various styles, such as wire shelves that can hang from a tub pipe or shower head and floor-to-ceiling tension poles with shelves that are perfect for showers. Both types are ideal for storing your shampoos, soaps, razors, and lotions, keeping space clear for other essentials in your bathroom cabinets.

Furnishings with Built-in Storage

When looking for furniture, try to find pieces that have built-in storage. Ottomans and high bar seats can be purchased with hinged tops and hollowed centers that can store blankets, shoes, books, and many other things inside of them. Trunks can easily double as coffee tables, and benches with storage are great for seating options.


While this might seem obvious, shelving is one of the easiest ways to maximize storage in a small apartment. Utilize an entire wall or hallway by building open shelving for books, spices, glassware, and more. Closets are usually designed with extra room at floor level and are perfect for installing a shelf or two.


Decorative hooks on entryway walls can be used for coats, scarves, hats, and bags, and can be made out of fun materials such as vintage door knobs or metal cleats. Attaching hooks to a painted pegboard or using s-hooks is a great way to store things in your kitchen, including pots, pans, ladles, and any utensil with holes or loops on the ends of handles.

Get the Help of Professionals

If the thought of moving or unpacking is too overwhelming, then call in some professional moving help. Imperial Moving & Storage is Manhattan's premier mover, offering everything from furniture moving to VIP packing and unpacking services. They've helped thousands of customers with NYC relocations, and can help you move quickly and even organize your new apartment.

Imperial Moving & Storage
83 Washington Place
New York, NY 10011
(212) 879-6683

Ways to Make Your Out of State Move Cheaper and Easier

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Moving out of state can be expensive and stressful, especially if you have a large family to bring with you. Without a good working plan, organizing and packing all of your household's belongings can quickly become chaotic, adding more aggravation to an already hectic moving process. If you need help with planning a move, here are a few tips to plan ahead, get creative, and make moving across state lines cheaper and easier.

Start Early

The most important part of a moving process is to plan as far in advance as you can. The sooner you start, the sooner you’ll be able to make an inventory of all of your belongings, ensuring that nothing will get lost or left behind. You’ll have more time to gather your belongings, pack and to think through the best options for moving supplies, such as boxes, labels, and wrap. You’ll also have more options for interstate movers and can pick out the best dates for your moving day. Although it can be tempting to leave packing until the last minute, packing ahead of time will help you to be prepared on the day of your move.

Get Rid of Stuff

When packing your belongings, you’ll probably find things that you haven’t used in years or forgot that you had, including old clothes, canned goods, sports equipment, or furniture. Instead of wasting time and money packing these unused items, it’s best to get rid of them. Whether you donate to charity or sell items on eBay or Craigslist, you’ll have fewer boxes to pack and unpack, saving space and energy.

Use Recycled Packing Materials

While moving out of state can be expensive, you can save a lot of money by using recycled packing supplies. Check with your local grocery store or recycling center for cardboard boxes or plastic crates that can be utilized for your move. Ask local cafe owners for any newspapers that tend to be thrown away after the end of a week to use as wrapping. Talk to your family and friends and ask them to save any shipping boxes they get in the mail. When it comes to your home, keep any old paperwork that needs to be shredded before the move to use as packing material and make use of any containers that you already own, such as suitcases and plastic storage bins. You can also pack clothing in garbage bags and use old linens to wrap your breakables.

Shop Around for Interstate Movers

If you plan to hire a long distance moving company, make sure to ask a lot of questions before signing the paperwork. Per, most nationwide moving companies will offer free in-home moving consultations. During this consultation, the mover will send someone to your home to give you a breakdown of how much they’ll charge and what kind of services they offer. Some companies will charge for wardrobe boxes that you could buy online at a much lower price. Others might offer to pack your things at a discount, but only if you purchase their overpriced boxes. In any case, don’t merely settle for the first company that you talk to. Be sure to compare and contrast many different companies to get the best price for you and your family.