Dear PoPville – Moving with a Gap in Between Leases

Photo by PoPville flickr user Takka-San

“Dear PoPville,

Four of my roommates, two cats, and I are moving about five blocks east from our current row house in Logan Circle to a beautiful row house in Shaw with a great deal more space. However, we have to be out of our current house by 5pm on the the August 31st, and will not be allowed into the new house until the morning of September 1st. We all have other places that we can temporarily stay, but we don’t have other places to temporarily store our things. We don’t have a great deal of furniture as our current row house only has one small living area and kitchen and we don’t plan on taking the current couches with us to the new house, but there are still five bedrooms full of beds, desks, and dressers.

We figured our options would be to either rent a U-Haul for a day or two, use a portable storage service such as a PODS, or to hire professional movers who would be able to store our stuff temporarily.

We wanted to know if anyone had any other options or recommendations for dealing with a gap between leases and if there were any recommended moving companies who handled temporary storage issues.”

36 Comment

  • Its one night. Rents a truck, hold onto it for 2 days. Stay with a friend somewhere who has a secure parking space, or snort some Meth, drink some beer and stare at the truck all night to make sure it dosnt get broken in to.

    • Yeah, I’m not sure why a single night of homelessness is generating such handwringing. You’re gonna have to move your stuff….keep it locked in the moving van overnight until you can get into the new place.

        • Agreed. I’ve actually done this before. I actually just parked the UHaul in front of my new apt. the night before, and had a friend come pick me up and take me to her apt. for the night. Everything was fine.

    • Yeah, if there’s a uHaul available for 24 hours you can reserve it for the entire duration and be charged the same as you would be to have it for 8 hours. I’ve considered doing this before because it’s hellish having to do everything in one day.

  • For a professional mover, I would recommend Ramar Moving Systems out of Frederick, MD.

  • If you’re going with a pod, go with Door2Door. Their prices are much better.

  • I agree about grabbing a truck for two days. If it were longer, Public Storage will rent you any storage unit for a $1 for the first month. It comes out to $25 or so with all the fees/insurance, which is still a bargain. I once got a massive unit that you could park a winnebago if need be under this deal.

  • Call Mike @ Peach Moving:
    202 368 7492

    Really nice, honest guy who will give you good advice if he can’t help you out himself. Quick, safe mover who I believe rounds down to the quarter hour and has storage I think. Secret Service agent by day and extremely reliable.

  • The pods (uhaul does them as well as PODS and a few others) are the way to to go- You can get a parking permit for the pod for a few days near the new house, and just keep everything right in front of your new place.

  • Truck for 2 days, park at a cheap suburban motel for the nights, and all share a room.

  • Just tell your landlord you’re moving out on the 31st but really move out on the first. If he shows up on tyhe first and is pissed just claim you had a flat tire or something. Sht happens.

    • And then we can all read the Random R&R posting here from the poor people who were supposed to move in the vacated house on the first, only the thoughtless, selfish previous tenants hadn’t moved out in time!

  • Have a yard sale.

  • I once had to park a full UHaul and didn’t want to risk on-street. (The load was work-related – a large architectural model being delivered to a client, and was almost certainly worth more than everything I own in my apartment, so I was much more concerned than I would have been with my personal goods.) I found that unlike most garages, the garage behind Union Station has massively high ceilings so you can get a truck in and out of there. Obviously not 100% secure, but I am pretty sure it’s staffed 24 hrs – still no garantee, but it worked out fine for us. Relatively cheap too.

    • Yes, leaving a rented box-truck parked overnight in a garage next to a major transportation facility sounds like a great idea…

      Actually, I don’t know, it might be fine but it sounds like one of those things that might arouse suspicions and cause a security incident of some sort.

      • I actually saw a Ryder truck parked where the circulators normally are in Union Station’s garage one day. I mentioned it to a security guard near the Amtrak terminal, and based on the [non] response I got, I bet the OP would be just fine.

      • Maybe the Union Station security should have cared, but they didn’t and everything was fine. And, as it turned out, the client was on an military base and the security at their gate was pretty uninterested too.

  • Did you explain the problem to your new landlord? Are there people moving out of the new place on the 31st? The new landlord might just need the time to clean the place and you could offer to take it as is. Otherwise, yeah a truck overnight is not much of a problem. Though I suspect this is a big moving weekend and you’d better secure something today.

  • At risk of stating the obvious, but have you actually asked one landlord if you can stay an extra night or the other if you can move in a day early? I’ve moved many times in DC and have always had at least one landlord who was flexible, particularly if you are willing to pay for an extra day or two of rent. If people are moving in on the first, they might be facing the same problem and would probably appreciate a slight overlap as well.

  • Hmmm. Are you sure there is no way to either get in to the new place early or stay in the old place late? It’s a pain that is going to cost you money and headache. Have you tried offereing either landlord cash that is equivalent to what it is going to cost you to complicate your move by not being able to go directly from one place to the next? I would try to push one or the other of them on this, as the last thing you need when moving is additional headache. Good luck.

  • Depends on if you’re doing the moving or hiring movers. If it’s the latter, the company should have no problem holding it for you, if it’s a real moving company versus a coupla guys and truck.

  • Anyone else feel like the theme of so many of the letters this blog receives are not “How can I do ___ in Washington, DC?” but “How do I live and function on my own as an adult for the first time?”

    Sorry, I’m hungry and cranky. I agree the OP should just rent a moving van or pod overnight or negotiate with landlords.

    • agreed, most are not dc specific, which would be cool. many are simply seeking basic adult advice.
      lot’s of people like me, who were not raised by decent parents sometimes need this kind of shit though.

    • Prince Of Petworth

      It always boggles my mind that people are upset that a resource is provided. Personally I don’t know a lot. About anything really. I’m very up front about that. Navigating this city is not easy. It has nothing to do with being an adult. If people can give advice – then I think that is awesome.

      I truly (whether one is cranky or not) can not understand why people don’t get it. Advice is sought. That’s it.

    • Why do you read this blog if you don’t like the content?

      LOL go find another blog and complain on that site.

      Keep up the good work PoP!!!

  • Just keep your stuff in your current apartment for the extra day. While your landlord may want you out on the 31st there is really not much he can do but bill you for the extra day you stayed in the apartment.

  • I went through this a few weeks ago. We rented the UHaul on Saturday morning, bought a padlock and stored everything in the UHAUL overnight on Saturday, then moved in on Sunday evening, finally returning the UHAUL on Monday morning. We had minimal driving as well (our new apartment is two blocks from the old house) so between mileage and 2 nights we were charged a total of about $80

  • try to find a uhaul for those dates online anywhere in the northeast. guarantee they’re sold out already. COllege kids moving + everyone else changing apartments at the end of the summer = no more trucks.

  • People still RENT?

  • I agree with posters who recommend keeping stuff in a truck overnight, but I strongly disagree about renting from UHaul, which is always a miserable experience in price-gouging. Any of the other major rental companies (Ryder, Budget, etc.) is cheaper and infinitely more pleasant to deal with.

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