Buying a House when Moving to Florida

Moving to Florida

Buying a home and moving from your old place can be exciting, but it’s also very stressful. You will suddenly be responsible for a very large mortgage payment every month. At the same time, though, you will have a place of your own. If you are planning on a move to Florida, then there are several things you need to do before you sign any paperwork.

Get Your Finances in Order

You need to have your finances all sorted out well before you start looking for a new house. If you have been previously renting, then the cost could be dramatically different. Additionally, if you are moving from out of state, you have to factor in a change for the cost of living. Take the time to consider every expense that will be involved in your new home purchase to determine how much you can afford to spend. Keep in mind that there is much more to it than just the mortgage payment itself. The new expenses include:

  • The mortgage (there are calculators online that will help you determine the payment you can afford).
  • Homeowners’ insurance
  • Home upkeep and maintenance
  • PMI (private mortgage insurance may be required depending on the lender and the loan).
  • Utilities (they will be more expensive than in an apartment)
  • Homeowners’ association fees

Remember that when you close on the loan, you will be committed to paying for that house. Before you even begin packing boxes and preparing for a move, you need to be absolutely sure you are financially prepared to buy a house.

Finding the Right Neighborhood

Whether you have children or not, you will want to choose the right neighborhood to move into. By narrowing down your options, you will find it easier to shop for the different houses for sale. You can do so much research online, but if you have a particular area in mind, then you can write to the chamber of commerce and ask for welcome packets. Keep in mind that even if you need to do business in the city, you could choose to live in smaller outlying areas. For example, if you wish to move to Gainesville, you could live in the metro area or choose from many of the small towns nearby depending on the convenience and way of life you prefer.

Find a Realtor

If you are moving to Florida from out of state, then you won’t be able to spend time touring houses and hunting down options you like. You need someone working for you who is familiar with the area. A realtor will be able to find properties that fit your parameters so that you don’t have to sift through the hundreds that are available.

Moving to Florida can be a fun; exciting experience and you will definitely want to find the right property to call your new home. Make sure you spend some time determining what type of house you could afford to buy and then research your different options to choose a property you will love.

Before Moving to Gainesville

Moving to Gainesville


When you decide to move to Gainesville, FL, make sure your apartment or house is up and running as soon as you arrive. As soon as you know where you will be moving and have the new address, it is time to start looking into hooking up your utilities. The sooner you make arrangements, the sooner they can hook up your service. If you do not get in touch with the utility companies until a week before you move, you could face delays. Call the companies, or arrange services online, at least a month before your Gainesville relocation.


Setting Up Service with Gainesville Regional Utilities

Gainesville Regional Utilities, known as GRU to most of the area locals, offers many different services you will need for your home or apartment. They provide electric, natural gas, water, wastewater, garbage, and Internet services to homes and businesses. When you call to start any services with GRU, make sure you have the address of the new location, your SSN, and driver’s license number on hand. They need to know the date you want to start service too. Start your services at least a day or two before moving into the new property. Instead of calling, consider setting up the service over the web. It’s faster and easier.

In some cases, you may need to provide a security deposit to start service. This may happen if you’re new to the area and if you do not have any history with GRU. The amount of the deposit varies. Visit their website to set up the service. Use the same site to pay the bill, check usage, and more.

 Getting Cable or Satellite

Cox Cable provides service to the area and is one of the primary choices for those looking for cable, phone, and web service. Satellite companies such as Dish Network are available too. The best way to get service with these companies when moving to the area is with bundles. Bundled service offers a nice discount, and they have many different options that change with some frequency. Since they offer Internet service, they rent and sell modems if you need them. Visit their site to see what bundles are available in Gainesville.

Before choosing cable, make sure the home or apartment has wiring for cable. If choosing a satellite service, make sure you can have a satellite dish in your home. Some apartments and condo units prohibit them.

 The Lay of the Land

Check out some online maps of your new neighborhood to get a better feel for it. Using Google Street View is one good option to explore your neighborhood virtually. Find places to shop and dine in the area before you even move there. Having some knowledge of the area’s layout will make getting around quite a bit easier. If you will drive a rental truck to the new place, knowing the look of the streets and the easiest way to get to your new place will be quite a relief.

Be Safe. Consider Your New Home’s Locks

Be Safe. Consider Your New Home’s Locks

When you move into a new home, you have so much to think about, like where the living room furniture will be placed, who will get what bedroom, and how you will decorate your brand new spaces.

However, there is something important you most likely haven’t thought about: moving means making your new home in a residence that once belonged to someone else.

You have no real idea of who has keys to it and how many have been handed out, lost, or misplaced. While this may not have even occurred to you as a safety risk, it could be. You have to consider the locks on your home and think about either getting them rekeyed or replaced.

The Evaluation

After the movers have left, take the time to go through the house and take inventory of the different locks used in the home. Keep places like these in mind:

  • The front door
  • The back door
  • Doors leading into the garage
  • Decorative doors (French or sliding)
  • Doors on utility buildings or sheds

This evaluation period is a good chance to determine whether you feel comfortable with the locks already used in the home or you want to make some replacements. If you don’t feel like you need to actually change out anything, then you can make a quick call to a locksmith and ask them to rekey the locks already in place. This service will cost different amounts based on where you live and how many locks you need altered.

Changing Locks

If you would like to change locks altogether or you want different types of safety systems, then you have some research to do. Before you even start unpacking after you have finished moving, try to determine what types of locks you would like to add to your new home. Some of your options include the following:

  • Spring Latch. Also called slip bolt locks, these work with the doorknob and lock it into place. They are considered to be the most minimal of security but are usually included on front and back doors.
  • Deadbolt. This lock bolts the door to the frame and has to be manually opened either by a key on the outside or a knob on the inside. They can be placed horizontally along the doorframe or vertically at the top.
  • Double Cylinder Deadbolt. This type of deadbolt works in the same way as the one above, but requires a key to unlock from the inside or out. This is ideal if your door has glass panes since it will deter thieves from simply breaking the glass and reaching inside to turn the bolt.

As far as outdoor buildings, you should consider replacing locks only if you have to store expensive equipment in them. Most people don’t even think of locking their tool shed or utility building, and if you don’t plan to, then there is certainly no reason to change the locks.

When you are moving into a new home, there is certainly a lot to think about, including safety. Think about any changes you want to make to the locks throughout your home for security purposes.

An Easy Moving Timeline

An Easy Moving Timeline

If you know you will be moving in Gainesville months in advance, you may be tempted to put things off. After all, you have plenty of time, right?

You may be surprised at how quickly things can sneak up on you, and if they do, then you could become overwhelmed and stressed out very quickly. Instead of waiting until the last minute, follow this quick and simple timeline. It is guaranteed to make your life much easier. Remember that it is never too early to start planning for the move.

Eight to Six Weeks in Advance

If you can, then get started at least two months in advance of when you will be moving. This will give you enough time to do plenty of research and then make the right decisions. Start by learning about where you will be relocating. If you are relocating a long distance away, you will need to learn more about the community. Many towns and cities offer a relocation package that will tell you about utilities, schools, and much more. Other things to do during this time period include:

  • Put together a file on your computer to keep track of your moving information and receipts.
  • Start determining how much money it is going to cost to relocate and then start saving.
  • Begin gathering tips and information for choosing movers, packing your belongings, and finding a new place to live.
  • Make sure your children’s school records will be transferred.
  • Contact any clubs or groups you are members of and find out if you will have to pay to end or transfer your memberships.
  • Start planning how you will use each room in your new home. Get a floor plan if you can.
  • Start making a list of everyone that needs to be notified that you are moving.
  • Inventory each room and determine anything you don’t want to take with you.

Five to Four Weeks in Advance

About a month before your move, you can really start making progress so that you don’t find yourself doing everything a week before the movers will arrive.

  • Find boxes, whether you purchase them or ask local businesses for them.
  • Pack up anything you don’t need to use between now and your move. Donate or sell anything you don’t want to keep.
  • Determine if you need a storage unit in your new location and start looking for one.
  • Contact the post office to file a change or address. You can do this online or in person.
  • Get your pets’ veterinary records.
  • Arrange to have the utilities disconnected at your old home and connected at the new one on moving day.
  • Cancel your local newspaper subscription.

Three Weeks to A Few Days in Advance

In the last three weeks, you will have a lot to do before the movers arrive.

  • Get your car serviced.
  • Dispose of poisons or flammable materials.
  • Make arrangements to close your bank account or transfer funds.
  • Notify creditors and subscriptions of your move.
  • Finish packing.
  • Prepare a box or suitcase of essentials you will need before unpacking.
  • Empty your refrigerator.
  • Give friends and family your new address.

If you stay on track for your move, then you will find everything much less stressful. Remember that the more you can get done in advance of moving day, the better.


Moving Companies vs. Moving Brokers

Knowing the difference between a Gainesville moving company, and a moving broker in Gainesville can make a big difference when choosing the right fit for your next move. When looking on the internet it can often be hard to distinguish between the two, and sometimes for a customer it is hard to tell the difference all the way up to move day. While both offer free online moving quotes, the difference ends there.

The main difference between a moving company in Gainesville and a Gainesville moving broker, is the fact that only one of them actually moves furniture, while the other is essentially a lead generator for the other. Moving brokers will normally offer to give you quotes from multiple different companies. [message type=”warning”]Note: They will also be selling your information to multiple companies. [/message] Not all of those companies are going to be a good fit for you. A licensed and insured moving company will offer you a free quote and never sell your information to another company. So to compare the two please look at our user friendly table we have set up for you to make sure you know which one will be the best fit. Maybe a moving broker is someone you could use, often times, they are more of a hassle.


Moving Company Moving Brokers Better?
Uses your information and will never sell to another company Will sell your information to as many as 10 companies Moving Company
Licensed and Insured to move household furniture Licensed and insured to contract a mover for your job. Moving Company
Often more expensive. Often Less Expensive Moving Broker
Liable for anything that goes wrong with your move. Not liable for anything that happens during your move Moving Company

As you can see with the above chart, unless the cheapest move possible is what you want, it’s advised to use a moving company, and not a broker


To expand on what we have discussed above.  With a moving broker they are not actually liable for anything that may go wrong with your move.  Sometimes the moving broker may even act as a moving company, and take your payment, only to sub-contract out the work to the lowest bidder.  Think government work gone wrong here.  What normally will happen though, is they sell your information to multiple companies, often ones that are willing to give any lowball price just to get the job, only to raise the price at the last minute.  If you are unsure if the company you are using is reputable or not, look for Moving Scams, an online resource for scammers in the moving industry.

By choosing a moving company you have the assurance that you can research into their license with the state regulatory body, and see if there are any complaints against the company.  It is advisable to not go with the lowest price when preparing for your move.  Often what you initially thought you were saving, will come back to haunt you in the form of damaged items, late delivery, and just an all around bad experience.  Most legitimate moving companies will do what it takes to make you happy from beginning to end.

Long Distance Moving Tips to Save You Money

Long distance moving, also known as cross country relocation can often be an expensive, time consuming ordeal that is very frustrating for many individuals and families alike. Knowing when and how to properly execute a move across long distances can save you money and time. There are some cost saving tips that will save you money and time when relocating over long distances.


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  • Picking the Right Time for Moving
  • In Gainesville, Florida and the United States there is a peak season for moving. This is always between the summer months of May and September. Moving companies will charge a premium for moving between these times, and if at all possible it is best to avoid this time of the year. Not only will this save you money, but it also lessens the possibility of something happening that may delay your move. The reason for this peak season is because school is out during those months, college students and family alike use this break in school to relocate both locally and long distance.

  • Get More than a Few Moving Quotes
  • It is recommended by the State of Florida to get at least three moving quotes, preferably in writing from licensed and insured moving companies. Most companies offer over the phone, or internet quotes as well. In home estimates are the preferred method, so the movers can ask any additional questions they may come up with after surveying your home, and the layout. When moving long distance it is best to know for up front what you’re going to be dealing with and how best to prepare. Get a minimum of three competitive quotes, and make sure to ask as many questions as possible.

  • a Moving Sale to Get Rid of Unwanted Items
  • Having a moving sale will help you raise money for your upcomming move by getting rid of unwanted items. Often when going through a full home of items, you will be surprised at the things that you no longer use, need, or want. Waiting until the last minute to get rid of these items can be a time waster, and cost you money if you have to have the moving company discard them for you. Items that do not sell during the moving sale can often be donated to one of many different charities. Often times, the charity will pick the items up for free. Call around and see what charities may offer this service, and have your sale at least three weeks prior to your scheduled move day.

  • Purchase High Quality Boxes and Supplies Well in Advance.
  • When moving long distance, it is not a good idea to use second hand boxes. It is recommended to only use high quality corrugated cardboard boxes designed for moving. Moving cross country will put a strain on the construction of the boxes, and spending the extra money in the beginning will save you from disappointment and replacement costs. Remember that if you hire the company to box your items, they will be liable, if you box them, you will be liable. The packing materials that you use will also play a huge factor in the level of protection that your items will receive while in the moving truck.

  • Talk to Your Friends and Read Online Moving Reviews
  • Talking to friends who have moved before is a great way to gauge a company and their expertise, as well as professionalism. If you don’t know anyone to talk to there are a lot of great review sites out there. Google places has reviews on each business with a listing, and they are user generated and moderated by Google. Another great resource for checking into companies is through This site has a forum where users can post bad experiences. If a company is on there a lot then it is suggested to stay away from them. Just one of two postings, could mean someone had a bad experience.

  • Verify License and Insurance
  • Always ask the moving company for their licensing and insurance information and verify that they are in good standing. This will provide you with some protection should anything go wrong on moving day.

  • Have Your Employer To Cover Corporate Relocation
  • If You’re moving long distance because of a new job, ask your employer to cover the costs associated, or at least cover some. Most employers will help out with moving costs, and you can always deduct the cost of moving from your taxes.


Students in Gainesville prepare for the annual “Turn”.

Students in Gainesville Florida and across the state are faced with the daunting apartment turn season every year. If you are not familiar with this concept, it is where all student focused communities turn over their apartments, homes, and other rental properties to prepare for the new influx of renters. This may not sound like much, but when you take into account that it happens over a two day period at the end of July every year, the scope is magnified. Gainesville alone has nearly 100,000 college students between the University of Florida and Santa Fe College. The shear number of students at the two schools creates a huge strain on communities desperate to get properties cleaned and ready for the new renters.

Apartment communities in Gainesville are numbered in the hundreds to accommodate the thousands of students that attend school in the area. Over a two day period, at the end of July, students moving in Gainesville have the daunting task of moving while everyone else is. Moving companies, rental truck companies, and apartment communities alike are strained to the max to accommodate all the needs. Often, students are required to find storage in Gainesville for a period of no more than a week or so, while they wait for their apartments to be ready. Unfortunately every year this is a shocker to many students and their parents alike. Knowing about the impending turn season is imperative for a successful, efficient moving experience.

Although many of the local apartment communities put out information about this well in advance, the knowledge still seems to escape many of the residents. We have decided to put out this information to help ensure that this year, less students in Gainesville will face the unfortunate circumstance of no rental trucks, no storage and no where to go. Below you will find a list of moving tips for the apartment turn to help make the transition a lot smoother.


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  • Make Rental Truck arrangements at least one month in advance.
  • Make sure to begin packing your items at least one week prior to move, two is recommended.
  • Get at least three moving quotes from local moving companies in Gainesville at least a month in advance.
  • Purchase packing materials and supplies at least two weeks prior to your move date. They are scarce!
  • Verify your move in and move out time with the respective apartment managers well in advance.
  • Reserve storage in Gainesville at least one to two months in advance and ask about specials.


Following a seemingly easy list of things to do as mentioned above will save a lot of headaches and frustration come moving day. Be prepared to wait in a line at your apartment on the way in and the way out. Remember that thousands will be doing exactly the same thing as you this weekend. If you can move a week prior, or a week after, this is preferred and may save you some money. Rates are based on availability, and during peak season they are the highest for all things related to moving.

Gainesville Moving Quotes

Gainesville moving quotes can be obtained one of a number of ways.  The most common way to get a quote from a licensed and insured moving company in Gainesville is to call the phone of the company you are interested in and ask for an in home estimate.  Since moving companies in the State of Florida are regulated by the Department of Agriculture all moving companies are required to provide a written estimate and contract for services prior to conducting a transaction with a customer.  Having the moving quote provided in person ensures there will be no surprises for the customer or business on moving day.  Although this is the most preferred method of obtaining a quote, it is not always the most convenient.

One of the most often offered forms of a moving quote can be obtained over the phone.  If you know all of the details of the pickup and dropoff location and have a good idea of how many boxes will be moved, most companies will provide a quote for you over the phone.  Remember to always get your estimate for services in writing. This way you know exactly what you’re being charge for and what to expect on moving day.  Not all companies charge the same.  There are hourly rates, rates by volume and rates by weight.  Make sure to ask how the company decides what to charge, and if there are any additional fees associated with the service.  Although the phone is the most often used Gainesville moving quote, the easiest these days is through the use of an online web form.

Using an online web form allows a moving company to get all of the information that they use to produce their estimates.  This also allows the customer to provide any additional information and it can be done at the convenience of the home any hour of the day.  Reputable companies will respond to online moving quotes in Gainesville within 24 hours with a price, and any questions they may need answered for clarification.

Always remember when you speak with the movers that you ask any and all questions you can think of.  This will help them provide the most accurate quote and prevent any surprises.

Gainesville and The State of Florida Moving Rights and Laws

Gainesville Florida is a college town and with this comes a rash of unlicensed businesses that prey upon the lack of knowledge most students have about the rules and regulations across all industries.  The moving companies in Gainesville Florida and the rest of the state are regulated by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.  Most College age kids do not understand what this means.  UF Mover Guys, LLC is licensed and insured to operate throughout the entire state of Florida.  We thought it would be a good idea to put all of the information that is already out there in an easy to read and understand format.  Searching government website after government website can be cumbersome and not always an efficient use of time.

Most people in the area know how busy the moving companies in Gainesville Florida will be this time of year.  The national season is from May through September, and the fact there are close to 100,000 students between the University of Florida and Santa Fe College only magnifies the significance of this time of year.  Every year a bunch of unlicensed and uninsured movers will swoop in to move unsuspecting people.  The issue with using an unlicensed moving company is the fact that there usually is no recourse for someone, because often they disappear should anything happen.  If worst case scenario occurs, nothing is insured and a rogue company not willing to play by the rules.  The State of Florida regulates this industry specifically for this reason and has issued a set of guidelines.  We have them outlined below, but they can be found in their entirety at the following website.  Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

Who has to register?

Any person who intends to open or operate as an intrastate mover of household goods or moving broker shall, prior to engaging in such activity, register with the Department.

What documents are required to register?

  1. Proof of insurance such as your insurance certificate and certificate holder and/or original surety in the amount of $25,000 bond. A copy of your policy, declarations page or insurance card will not be accepted. Coverage must include:
  2. Cargo liability for loss or damage to household goods – not less than $10,000 per shipment.
  3. Motor vehicle coverage, including bodily injury and property damage liability in minimum amounts of (auto liability is required even if you don’t own your own truck(s)):

    • $50,000 per occurrence for commercial vehicle gross weight of less than 35,000 pounds.
    • $100,000 per occurrence for commercial vehicle gross weight of more than 35,000 pounds, but less than 44,000 pounds $300,000 per occurrence for commercial vehicle gross weight of 44,000 pounds or more.



The above are the guidlines required to operate as a moving company in Gainesville Florida and anywhere else in the State.  An intrastate mover number will be issued by the Department. Always ask the companies you are getting quotes from, the state recommends three, for their number to do a search for incidents HERE.  You can search with a business name, or IM number.  As you can see our company, UF Mover Guys, LLC IM:1847 has zero complaints.  The rest of the information for consumers is listed on this government website right HERE.


Click on the following link to get their brochure on household moving in Florida.


Some of the information is below:


When researching a potential company to handle your moving and storage needs, find out the following information:

  • Is the company registered with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services?
  • How long has the company been in business?
  • Does the company offer extra services, such as packing, unpacking and storage?
  • What type of protection does the company offer against loss or damage (full replacement cost, depreciated value, or the basic 60¢ per pound valuation carriers are required to provide)?

Your Rights:


Prior to providing you with any moving services, your mover must supply an estimate and contract, in writing.  The estimate and contract must be signed by both parties and include the following:

  • Name, telephone number, physical address and state registration number of the mover.
  • Date the contract or estimate was prepared and proposed date of the actual move.
  • Appropriate pick-up and delivery address, name and telephone numbers of the shipper.
  • Name, telephone number and physical address where the goods will be held, if necessary.
  • Itemized breakdown, description and total of all cost and services provided.
    Acceptable forms of payment available.

Estimate and Contract

Intrastate movers are required to provide an estimate and a contract or service order for each move. Before signing this document, determine that the dates for packing, loading and delivery are part of the contract and provided to you in writing. Understand what the price is based upon:

  • Appliance Servicing
  • Cubic Footage
  • Hourly Rates
  • Stair/Elevator Charge
  • Number of Items
  • Packing/Unpacking
  • Long Carry Charges

There are some minor exceptions to the rule.  This would be if all you are hiring someone to do is labor to help you move things around your home, or into your own rental truck.  Other than that the movers must be licensed.  This is designed to protect the consumer.  We hope you found some useful information about moving in Gainesville and the state of Florida.

What’s in a Name?

I often get asked what the name of my moving company is by friends or family. 6 years after starting it I still say the same thing. UF Mover Guys. It gets the point across right? You know what we do. You know a little about us. It is kinda catchy I hope. The name is no to serious even though we taking moving to the next level in terms of professionalism and expertise. Moving is a very important life changing event for most and needs to be treated seriously. Preparation and planning is key any move. Do you have the right company? The correct plan? The right materials ect. UF Mover Guys are proud to serve Gainesville and the entire state of Florida and make moving as simple as possible.


Jordan Speisman – Owner


Contact me personally anytime you need something.