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Moving Matters

Major Issues You'll Encounter In A Move

Relocating or moving into office space in Manhattan can be a difficult process. Planning is critical, but be prepared for any number of inconveniences. A classic example is you carefully pre-plan your move date at both your existing location and your new location. But at one end of the process, another company is moving at the same time ... and there is only one freight elevator. (Many landlords do not allow this, but it happens.) Your entire timetable is thrown off as the employees from the moving company you retained share the elevator with the other's company's mover. And, it's all on overtime for the freight elevator operator and your moving company.

Detailed below are some of the major issues you will encounter in a move. The timing of many of these issues can be compressed, but we suggest more comfortable ranges in which to complete pre-planning, ordering and scheduling. Issues regarding telecommunications wiring, etc., will be included in your overall construction process if you are building out space. This summary covers specifically move-related issues.

Two Months to As Long As You Have Prior to Moving

One to Two Months Prior to the Move

Last Month Before the Move

Day Prior to the Move

Day of the Move

Two Months To As Long As You Have Prior To Moving

  • Moving notifications. Ensure that you have all of the names and addresses of companies and individuals you want to notify of your move in digital format. You may want to send a notification on new letterhead. (See below). Or, if you want to have a special piece prepared by a printer, allow at least two weeks to develop the concept and at least a week to have them printed. Whether you choose to mail or e-mail notifications, they should be sent to arrive at least a week before you move with the appropriate effective date highlighted. (Magazine and newspaper subscriptions should also be notified.)

  • Stationery, mailing labels, envelopes, etc. If you are retaining the same logo and design for your company, the lead times depend on your printer. Depending on the size of the printing, printing alone can take one to two weeks.

    If you plan to change the branding or look of your company to coincide with your move, plan at least four weeks if you will retain an outside firm to develop a new logo or brand. Many firms providing this service require even longer. Add another two weeks to interview firms. When you add in the printing time, this process will take a minimum of five to eight weeks.

    Standard items include: (1) stationery; (2) envelopes of various sizes; (3) mailing labels; (4) presentation paper; (5) business cards; (6) company brochures and literature; (7) bank checks and deposits slips.

  • Telecommunications service. Particularly if you plan to upgrade to a DSL, T-1 or T-3 line, you should call and order it as soon as you decide on the type of service. Further, it may take you a week or two to obtain quotes on services and costs and evaluate your desired provider before choosing. Companies that provide this service still have to coordinate with Verizon and scheduling installation often requires 60 to 90 days advance notice. Regular POTS (plain old telephone service) will take less time, often two to three weeks, but it is better to give Verizon  as much notice as possible for scheduling purposes.

    An important consideration is the telecommunications closet in your new location. Is the closet in your space, on the floor, in a common area closet, or in some other location? Knowing exactly how the building is wired is crucial. It is not uncommon for a tenant to call Verizon to install phone lines and arrive on the appointed date to find that the phone line capacity on the floor is inadequate for your company's needs. If Verizon has to run another trunk to accommodate your needs, the delivery of your telephone service could be significantly delayed.

    Many buildings have partnered with telecommunications companies that have pre-wired the building and planning and coordination of this effort is greatly simplified. You will have learned about this during the TenantWise site tour process.

  • Telephone systems. Similar to telecommunications service, the decision process and pre-ordering process, depending on the size of the system you are considering, can easily take two weeks. Installation of the system also needs to be scheduled well in advance and coordinated with the installation of the telephone lines.

  • Telephone number ordering/forwarding. Notify both your local and long distance carriers of your move. If you move to another area of the City, the telephone company may not allow you to keep the same phone numbers. A monthly amount is usually charged to have a message recorded by you or one of your employees to direct callers to your new number. Also, your company may want a "vanity" phone number such as one that ends in 1000. You should plan ahead for this as sometimes it takes a few days to ensure a number is available. Also, even after you have reserved a phone number, the phone company will typically not give you 100% assurance that you will have the number until the date you actually have service installed. (This provides some uncertainty with regard to the printing of stationery.)

  • Telephone and CAT 5 wiring for telephone service and computer networks. Depending on the existing infrastructure of the building and particular space you will occupy, you may need to arrange for the installation of cabling. Oftentimes, the company that you are buying the telephone system from will agree to install the cabling for both the telephone and CAT 5. It is a good idea to have more wiring installed than your initial needs. For example, if your company grows more quickly than anticipated, one office may need to be occupied by more than one person. If the network and telephone wiring is in place, offices can more easily be turned into work areas for more than one person.

    Security systems. Review companies that provide security systems that you need during this period. Depending on the complexity of your security needs, you need to pre-order equipment at least a month or two ahead. Further, a representative of the security company will likely need to schedule a site visit to complete the quote.

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One To Two Months Prior To The Move

  • Reserve the freight elevator at both your existing and future location. Note that moves are typically allowed only after-hours, at overtime rates for building personnel. You will have to coordinate the times of departure from your existing location and move-in at your future location.
  • Interview and negotiate with moving companies. Buildings may require their approval of the moving company you choose and the company will have to provide an insurance certificate. State this requirement up-front when interviewing moving companies. Also, determine if your company's employees will designate a day to pack files, etc. or if you will retain the moving company to pack.
  • Plan the schedule for packing and moving and order appropriate packing supplies. If your employees will be packing, a memorandum should go out regarding the date to ensure employees schedule to be in the office on that date.
  • Reconfirm dates for all telecommunications installations. Make contact with your account representatives to ensure that all scheduled dates will be met.
  • Ensure that your insurance agent is aware of your move. As we mention in the lease review, your insurance agent should have reviewed the insurance clause. But, in any case, ensure that you have the appropriate landlord names and addresses.

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Last Month Before The Move

  • Reconfirm move-in and move-out dates.
  • Obtain a moving certificate from the chosen moving company. This must be provided to the building management prior to move-out at your old location and move-in at your new location.
  • Oversee installation of telecommunications and security systems. If your lease has already commenced, then there will not be an issue about having technicians in your space. However, landlords generally do not want tenants to do any significant work in the space prior to move-in for many reasons, including liability/insurance issues. Accordingly, you may have to push the move back to accommodate installation schedules. Coordinate all visits to the space through building management, most of whom require 24 hours notice.
  • Coordinate packing and moving schedule. Notify appropriate personnel and employees of their roles in the move process.
  • Notify your insurance agent of the move date. Make sure your company has insurance for the move and coverage beginning on the day you move-in.
  • Depending on the building, you may be required to provide employee names for security purposes.

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Day Prior To The Move

  • Make sure your insurance coverage is in effect for both locations.
  • Walk through the new location. Have someone from your company walk through the space to make sure it is in the condition you expect. Any number of things can happen, such as a heavy rain causing a leak and damaging the carpet. It is a good idea to ensure the space is move-in ready.
  • Make final confirmation calls. Reconfirm with everybody within and without your company.
  • Make sure you have the keys to your new space.

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Day Of The Move

  • Meet with the moving company personnel and review the plan. A common schedule is for the moving company, if not already completed, to pack a company's possessions during the day of the move and then begin the move-out at 5pm (depending on the building's rules and regulations.)
  • Complete a walk-through of your former location. You may be held responsible for the cost of clean-up and will likely be responsible for any damage that occurred during the move. Taking digital time stamped pictures can help to establish space conditions.

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