Finding Your Dream Home in the Piedmont Triad

House at dusk

If you are searching for a new home, you have probably envisioned your dream home in your mind over and over. Now is the time to make those dreams a reality! Chances are you will find exactly the home you and your family are looking for in the Piedmont Triad area. This area is a thriving region that features tons of fun things to do including arts, shopping, botanical gardens, breweries.

To follow are a few things to keep in mind when you are looking for your dream home:

Prioritize

Make sure that you have a solid list of priorities in order of what is most important to you. The key is knowing which items on your dream home checklist are negotiable and which are non-negotiable. Coming up with a list of “must haves” will help narrow down the search.

Do your Research

You may already know what part of the region you want to live in, but neighborhoods can be very different across the landscape. To find the perfect community for your family, take some time to investigate the area online and then take a drive or walk through the different neighborhoods. Do you like the schools, restaurants, athletic facilities, emergency services, etc.?

Set a Budget

Before you start looking for homes, it helps to get pre-approved. You want to buy a dream home that fits into your financial situation now and in the future. In addition to the price of your home, you should leave room in your budget for moving expenses, closing costs, and possible renovations to the home.

Be Flexible

Go into the process with the expectation that you probably won’t find a home with every single item on your wish list. You can always add your own style to turn your new home into your dream home. The key is looking past the exterior cosmetic blemishes to the home’s bones. Look for a well-built home that has the space you need, some features you love, a layout that serves your lifestyle and a price point that allows you to make some changes. Stay flexible, be willing to compromise, and you’ll be sure to find your dream home.

Welcome to the area! The Piedmont Triad Zippy Shell is here to make sure your treasured belongings arrive at your dream home safely and securely. 

5 Ways to Make a New Space Feel Like Home

Congratulations on your new space! Whether you’ve moved into a new apartment, a dorm or a house, making this new space feel more like home means relaxing more quickly, especially after a move.

Start with the closet: Designers and home organization specialists agree that it’s important to handle your personal spaces first, not necessarily the common areas. Making sure that you can put your hands on sleeping clothes, play clothes, or a favorite shirt and pair of jeans means feeling more comfortable. This also includes prioritizing the kids’ rooms, too. The quicker they feel at home, the easier it will be on you.

Unpack a “self-care” box: Pack a self-care box that includes special candles, clean linens, fluffy towels or essential oils. These items can quickly make an unfamiliar space feel and smell more like home.

Keep to your routine: Packing, moving and unpacking really throws your routine for a loop. Try to mimic a familiar routine, at least for the first few days, whether it be when you eat, when you rest, or when you walk the dog. Animals, kids and seniors, in particular, appreciate a routine that makes sense.

Get your Wi-Fi working:  Nothing says home like snuggling up and watching your favorite streaming channel with a bowl of popcorn.

Do a little grocery shopping: Some food in the fridge makes everything feel a little homier. Yes, we know there are a million things left to do but make some time to go pick up something for lunch, dinner or breakfast. Put some snacks in the cupboard.

New spaces can feel overwhelming or foreign, but with a few quick touches, you’ll be on your way to feeling right at home.
Visit www.zippyshell.com today to learn more about the services we offer. 

Budget-Friendly Seasonal Decor Ideas for Fall

Fall Trees

Fall is in the air! Pumpkin Spice Lattes, cozy sweaters, colorful foliage, bonfires, and college football are sure signs that fall is here. Another favorite of the season is decorating our homes with festive, seasonal décor. Here are a few ideas to display your love of fall décor without breaking the bank.

  • Pumpkins: The holy grail of the fall season! This time of year you can find pumpkins of all shapes in sizes at grocery stores, farmers’ markets, road-side pumpkin stands and even in your own garden! Display pumpkins in your home and on your porch. Carve or paint them to make your Halloween more spooky! Create great family memories by visiting a local pumpkin patch and baking pumpkin pies!
  • Colorful gourds, squash & corn: Again, easy to find at your local grocery store or farmers’ markets. Arrange them in a wide round straw basket for a great centerpiece for your table. Add a few miniature pumpkins for the full fall effect!
  • Fall flowers: For a quick and easy fall decoration, add flowers to your décor. Visit your local nursery or home décor store for ideas to include potted flowers such as mums, pansies and other fall offerings. Give your green thumb a try and plant an autumn garden.
  • Door wreaths: Pick up a fall wreath at your local décor store or get crafty and make your own. Make it a fun fall project by having your kids collect natural items to use such as wheat, leaves, branches, pinecones, acorns and berries.
  • Collect & display fall leaves: For a simple and fun, kid-friendly project, gather leaves of different colors and sizes. Laminate leaves and hang with clear fishing line around your home or doorframes. For a different touch, add a framing mat around the laminated leaves and make a display collection on the wall in your foyer or living room.

For more information regarding storage or moving solutions, please give us a call or visit our website www.ZippyShell.com.

Real Reasons to Ditch a Moving Truck

Couple celebrates move in their home

You’re moving! Congratulations… right?

It’s only natural to have some anxiety over the moving process. After all, it’s one of life’s more stressful events under the best of circumstances. Fortunately, though, there are ways to minimize the anxiety and maximize the efficiency of your upcoming move. One of those ways, believe it or not, is to ditch the moving truck and consider using a portable storage unit instead.

The pricing is rarely what it seems: Budgets are important, and you want to stay on yours during your move. Renting a truck may seem cheap and easy, but the pricing isn’t always it seems. When you see a “rate” on that truck, that’s usually just the beginning. Be sure to check any fine print to determine the mileage rates, the late return rate and more. It adds up fast.

Time is money: One of the most annoying parts of trying to rent a truck for your move is the time it wastes. It’s not like you don’t have a lot of other things going on already. You surely don’t need to waste time picking up the truck (assuming the last person dropped it off and it’s even there), getting the truck back to your home, loading, moving and then stopping to return the truck to a destination that may or may not be close to where you are.

Driving a moving truck isn’t fun: One of the best things about a portable storage unit, aside from its flexibility and convenience, is that you don’t have to drive it anywhere. We come and pick it up when you are ready and drop it off when you are ready. Those rickety moving trucks may have mechanical issues between here and there, are supremely uncomfortable and can be pretty big, too, making them unwieldy for a novice driver. Added tip: If you are moving to or from an area with intense traffic, you really don’t want to be weaving in traffic with a word-out truck full of your precious things.

There is value in everything when it comes to your move, including time and safety. Rather than investing in time, money and effort into a potentially unreliable vehicle, why not explore our portable storage solutions? It will be one less thing you have to stress about. Give Zippy Shell a call today at 888-947-7974 or go online to get a free quote and see how we can make moving and storage simple for you!

Safety Tips for School in the Piedmont Triad

Mother and her two children going to school

As your children are settled into the school routine once again for another year in the Piedmont Triad area, it is important to review transportation procedures to ensure safe travels. Whether your children will be walking, riding their bicycles, carpooling, or taking the bus to school, it is important to take proper safety precautions.

Walking

The Piedmont Triad area boasts several residential areas in close enough proximity to neighborhood schools to give students the option to walk, especially when the weather is nice! Children usually aren’t ready to start walking to school without an adult until about fifth grade, or around age 10. With your child, plan a safe route and walk on the sidewalk when one is available. Watch for cars at every driveway and intersection and make eye contact with drivers before crossing. 

Cycling

When cycling to school, all riders should follow the basic rules of the road. This means riding on the right side, in the same direction as traffic using bike lanes when available. Teach your children to respect traffic lights and stop signs when riding a bicycle. And always wear a bicycle helmet, no matter how short or long the ride. 

Carpooling

Schools often have very specific drop-off and pick-up procedures. Make sure everyone knows and practices these procedures for the safety of all kids. Also, never pass a bus that is actively loading or unloading children when driving to school.

Riding the Bus

Teach bus riders to maintain a safe distance from the bus at all times and to always remain visible to the bus driver. Encourage your children to see the school bus as an extension of the classroom. Following the same guidelines for behavior on the bus as they do while at school will increase safety for everyone.

When children are back at school, it means sharing the road with school busses, car riders, bicycles, and pedestrians. It’s never more important for drivers to slow down and pay attention than when kids are present – especially before and after school. If you are looking to move to the Piedmont Triad area with your kiddos soon and need a reliable moving and storage partner for the job, give us a call at 336-499-3386 or check us out online today!

How to Find a Reliable Moving Company

Couple at home on their laptop

How do you know which moving company will be a good fit for your situation? It can be overwhelming when wading through all the options. To make sure you hire a reliable mover, consider taking these steps.

  1. Get Referrals. Start by asking friends, family members, and coworkers if they can recommend a moving company. If you’re working with a real estate agent, you can ask the agent for a referral.
  2. Do your research. After narrowing down the field, check online reviews to see what other customers are saying about the company. Pay attention to comments about a moving company’s attitude throughout the entire moving process. You can also do a background check through the Better Business Bureau or the American Moving and Storage Association
  3. Ask for an estimate. You will want to have a detailed estimate in writing from any moving company you are considering. You also want to be sure you understand all the fees associated with the estimate. Be suspicious if an estimate is unusually low or lacks specifics.
  4. Look for red flags. If the company has no physical address, scratch it off the list. Be wary of companies that require a large deposit. Many don’t require any payment until your belongings are delivered. Make sure the moving company you hire plans on doing the move themselves, as opposed to contracting the job out to another mover.

If you would prefer to have a little more control over your moving process, consider Zippy Shell!  Your portable storage unit will arrive in your driveway or on your street ready to be loaded. You can conveniently pack up your storage unit right from your original destination. Then you get to leave the driving to us which means leaving the stress behind. Visit www.zippyshell.com today to learn more about the services we offer.

How to Avoid a #MovingFail

Couple unpacking their boxes with their dog

It’s that time of year! The time of year when many people are moving into new homes and apartments across the United States and even abroad. According to USA Today, every year roughly 40 million Americans move at least once. That’s a lot of folks packing, storing and transporting their precious memories from one place to another.

We’ve learned a few things about what to expect when preparing to move or store your stuff, and we’ve seen it all! Here are a few things you might run into, but they don’t have to turn into a #MovingFail:

  1. No trucks: Even the best planned DIY moves may be derailed when there is no truck available! Summer is peak time for moving and it’s hard to reserve a moving truck for the time you need it anyway, but what if someone turns it in late? We’ve seen a well-planned move turn into a #MovingFail when a truck isn’t ready. Fortunately, with Zippy Shell, we handle all of the logistics, so your unit is there when you need it.

  2. No help: Picture it…you are packed. You’ve ordered the pizza. Everything is ready…except only 1 friend shows up. If you have rented a truck, then you are under the gun to get that truck loaded and on the way! If you’ve rented a Zippy Shell unit, then you can share pizza with the loyal friend and regroup because we won’t pick up the unit until you are ready.

  3. Uncooperative weather: People often choose summer to move because kids are out of school, vacation time is used and, usually, the weather is more cooperative. Even if you’ve been keeping an eagle eye on the extended weather forecast, you may still find yourself packing your unit or moving in rain. Keep some plastic sheeting on hand to avoid a big #MovingFail. Sheets can cover furniture and keep floor clean in staging areas. Non-slip rugs and mats can be placed in the garage or other entrances/exits, preventing slips and falls.

You can’t avoid all of the potential moving fails, but you can reduce the variables in a move by leaving as much as you can to the moving and storage professionals. Give Zippy Shell a call today at 888-947-7974 or check out our moving and storage services online and see how we can help you!

5 Hacks for the Organizationally Challenged

Woman carrying box of stuff in home

If everyone in the world excelled in the same areas, the world would be a very boring place! Some people are naturally gifted at organizing, while for others it can be a struggle. These tips are for those that fall into the organizationally challenged group. So, check out these hacks, create a plan, and get organized.

  • Magazine holders are inexpensive and provide so many ways to organize your home. Use these multi-functional organizing wonders for a gift wrap station, toilet paper storage, stacking items in your freezer, lid storage, to hide your router, arrange flip flops or water bottles, and so much more.
  • Shoe organizers will become your best friend. Cut them to size and use them for all your organizing tasks. Toys, pantry items, cleaning items, beauty supplies, baby clothes, gardening tools, school supplies the possibilities truly are endless for what you can organize with these space savers.
  • Tension rods are next on the home organizing hack list. Stagger two rods to create a shoe holder, organize scarves, display artwork, hang cleaning products underneath the cabinet, and use them to divide drawer space.  
  • One of the secrets to getting organized is knowing that paper towel holders don’t have to be used just for paper towels! Use standing paper towel holders to stack rolls of tape, ribbon, cookie cutters, or bangles. A side hanging paper towel holder can organize necklaces, scarves, belts, and can make a roll of garbage bags easily accessible. 
  • It’s time to finally put those shoe boxes you have been holding onto to good use. Cut them in half and use them as draw dividers for your undergarments. Create a charging station out of decorated shoe boxes. Plastic shoe boxes are perfect for organizing single serve snacks and packets in your pantry.

To achieve a truly organized home, you might find that your best option is to store some of your lesser used items. Zippy Shell provides simple, climate-controlled storage solutions. Learn more by visiting www.zippyshell.com today!

Top Tips to Reduce Summer Energy Bills

Person changing the temperature on a thermostat

When the dog days of summer meander in, it can get sweltering in both the city and the country. According to the Old Farmer’s Almanac, the Dog Days of Summer run from July 3 through August 11, coinciding with the rising of the Dog Star, Sirius. Without question, those are some of the warmest days of the year, requiring your home’s a/c to run overtime to keep things cool and to keep the occupants comfortable.

You can help reduce summer energy bills during the hottest days of the year with a few simple tips.

  1. Choose a higher thermostat temp: A consistent 78 degrees is the suggested temp if you want to conserve energy during the summer. If you have others in your space who prefer it cooler, put additional fans in their area. If you are going to be gone for extended periods and are not leaving pets in the space, move the thermostat higher for the duration of your absence.
  2.  Cover your windows: Keep your blinds closed and your shades drawn during the hottest part of the day. You may even want to consider reflective or room-darkening curtains to keep the sun from baking your home.
  3. Cook outside:  It doesn’t take long for a stove or oven to heat up the home. Every chance you get, grill outside or make dinners ahead of time for microwaving. It’s also a great time of year for chilled soups and fresh salads.
  4. Change the filters: Increasing your a/c efficiency keeps things cooler and extends the life of your unit. Check it monthly and change it if in doubt.
  5. Close off rooms: If you have rooms in a house that are not occupied or don’t have items that require a consistent heated/cooled temp, then close the vents. The same goes for fans that may be in running in rooms with no occupants. Turn them off and save energy.

It sometime feels hard to stay cool during the hottest months of the year, but with a little planning you can cut the energy costs. Stay cool! And if you need help making a move during these hot Summer days, give Zippy Shell a call or go online for a free quote today!

7 Simple Steps to Protect Your Home When You Travel

A nice home exterior on a sunny day

According to a recent AAA travel survey, nearly 100 million of us are planning to take a family vacation this year, with 70 percent of those getaways happening during the summer months. And it is hard to imagine a worse ending to a summer vacation than returning to find that your home has been damaged or burglarized. To have peace of mind while you are on vacation, take time to protect your home with this checklist:

  • If you have a home security system, alert them of your travel plans and make sure the alarm is set properly when you leave. Display your security stickers prominently near your most obvious and accessible entry points like your front and back door.
  • Set timers on interior lights to give the illusion that someone is always home. Motion-sensor exterior lights can also prove to be useful for general home security when you are home and away.
  • Place a hold on mail, newspapers, and packages in your absence. Overflowing mailboxes and newspapers piled in the driveway are dead giveaways that you aren’t home.
  • Make a plan for lawn care maintenance. Have a friend or lawn care service mow the lawn at least once a week during your absence.
  • Alert a trusted friend or neighbor of your travel plans and have them check in every few days. They can take care of any unexpected deliveries and carry on with normal routines such as watering plants and bringing trash cans to the curb. 
  • Be prepared for a power surge while you are away. Unplug all electronics or make sure they are plugged safely into a surge protector.
  • Do not broadcast your travel plans on social media sites either before or during your vacation. Before your trip, inform only those who need to know. There will be plenty of time to share thoughts and photos of your vacation after you are safely home. 

If you are taking an extended leave from your home, we would love to talk to you about the storage solutions that Zippy Shell has to offer. Contact us today for a free quote and see how simple storing your belongings away while you travel can be!