Image Credit: Shutterstock

Home to millions of expatriates, the UAE sees a huge number of relocations every year, not only to various countries but also within the emirates.

Moving to a new home is arguably a tedious and hectic job, which you can advisedly outsource to a professional company that specialises in relocations but your agony tends to not end until the moving process is completed smoothly and without any damage to your valuables.

However, you can expect to have a stress-free home moving experience if you follow a few dos and don’ts coupled with smart planning.

“The topmost concern of people is to move their belongings without any damage,” says Chirantan Joshi, Director, E-movers, one of the leading moving companies in the region for domestic and international relocation. “The second concern is to ensure a superior customer experience during the move.”

He says a superior customer experience encompasses clear communication, meeting expectations, cleanliness, courtesy, packing quality and adhering to timelines.

But the problem arises when the moving company you have hired fails to meet those concerns and expectations.

Joshi suggests that customers can mitigate the risks of a bad experience by doing due diligence on the company they plan to engage for the move.

The best way to find good packers is to visit the website of Federation of International Movers and look for certified partners and call them up for a survey and quote.

Managing discrepancies

“Ensure that you are present during the survey and have made full disclosure of your assets to be moved,” suggests Joshi. “Decide on the insurance you need for the move and confirm their availability on the day of the move.”

Generally, people in the UAE move their homes for a variety of reasons. While some move up to a better apartment as rents have fallen, others move to a villa to accommodate pets they plan to have.

New house checklist

It is essential to make sure the home and the area you plan to move to fit your lifestyle, the rent is in line with the market, the monthly utilities are within your budget, the property is registered and there is a title deed in place allowing to register the lease with Ejari, suggests Sebastien Besson, CEO and Partner, Intouch Relocations, which has 20 years of experience in providing relocation services in the Middle East and Africa.

To address these issues, his company is launching a new line of service called mooveme in Dubai, Johannesburg and Cape Town.

“It is a new way of delivering relocation services, making it more flexible and accessible to everyone. We use technology and apps to provide key touchpoints, which are necessary during the relocation process, from guidance about the rental market and connecting your utilities to reviewing your lease and advising on which school would bethe best for your children,” he says.

International relocation essentials

For any international move, suggest experts, it is important to decide what is to be left behind and what is to be sent out, and the earlier you decide on this, the easier it’s to finalise the moving contract, insurances, and customs requirements.

“Second is to deal with a company that is financially stable and has reputed agents in the destination country to complete the move. A FIDI-certified international relocation company is the best bet,” says Joshi.

Wondering how to ship a car to another country? Moving a car is a simple affair, says Joshi, if all paperwork is as per regulation.

Given that it’s an export-import transaction governed by the laws in the origin as well as the destination country, Joshi says hiring a FIDI-FAIM certified company would be the best option.

“They are experienced in international relocation and will have the most updated and relevant information to guide you properly.”

From start to finish

When it comes to deciding on a packing and moving company, select a FAIM-certified packer, suggests Sebastien Besson, CEO and Partner, Intouch Relocations. However, you should contact at least three companies and obtain various quotations to select the best one.

“It’s also very important to ensure that the service is door to door, meaning that the company packs and then unpacks at the new home, especially when moving to a new country,” he says.

“When doing an international move, insurance should definitely be taken out whether it is with an itemised cover or a lump sum cover.”

- Sebastien Besson, CEO and Partner, Intouch Relocations

Even if you are moving within the country, opt for a company that offers door-to-door service. “This ensures that your family settles into their new home quickly and without the huge amounts of stress.”

He feels that one should not hesitate to take out insurance as accidents can happen anytime. “When doing an international move, insurance should definitely be taken out whether it is with an itemised cover or a lump sum cover.”

It is also good to have an updated contents spreadsheet of what is in your home, listing the current value of replacement costs.

“You must have it this way for any local or international move. And you can easily add on any new items that you purchase along the way,” says Besson.