~Friday, February 10, 2023~
A very yucky day at Santa Rosa Beach…..dreary, gray skies, with intermittent downpours. At least we managed to get out of the trailer on a few occasions when there was a break in the rain. And wouldn’t you know it…..the sun won’t be out again until the day we leave (Monday ☹️). At least we get to enjoy the sunny skies somewhere else in Florida as we’ll be in the “Sunshine State” for 2 whole months.
So why not do some things that warrant being INSIDE…..things that we should get a move on like researching healthcare and more details pertaining to our future move. After staring at a computer most of the day, we’re officially ready to rest our eyes AND our brains. The time devoted to phone calls and online research definitely paid off. Here’s what we learned:
Virginia, North Carolina and Tennessee all have healthcare through the Federal Healthcare Marketplace, not their own individual marketplaces like California. We currently have Kaiser and even though we like Kaiser, it’s not a deal breaker in terms of us moving to Virginia (the only state of the three that it’s offered). What we don’t know yet is if the ONLY way to get Kaiser is directly through the carrier which limits you on tax credits (or so I would think). Through the Federal Marketplace as aforementioned, North Carolina gives the most Federal assistance which was surprising as we thought Tennessee would take that spot. In terms of how many healthcare providers that are offered through the Federal program, the numbers are as follows:
However, there are a multitude of plans that each provider offers at varying levels, i.e. Bronze, Silver and Gold. Having many choices usually is a good thing. But in this case, it equates to TMI (too much information) and hours of research. I mean, how do you make a decision?
Next was exploring our options in hauling our stuff clear across the country, though I didn’t get very far on that one today. But what I did learn is that moving approximately 2,500 miles could run anywhere from $10,000 to $15,000 which is about what we estimated. We’ve received one quote so far based on the size of our storage unit in Sacramento where it hovers around the $11,000 mark. At least through my Moving.com app, I am able to get a list of the top moving companies (and it’s not always the big boys like Mayflower, Allied, etc). Our key concerns are binding contracts vs. non-binding ones, full value protection and that the movers are properly licensed state to state. There are a number of additional questions of course, but we wouldn't want to bore you with those details unless I’ve made you bored already. Of course the initial things we have to consider is:
Self-Load Containing (we load, they haul) that also offers storage once it arrives.
DIY which would mean we both have to fly out. We’d likely need 2 moving truck rentals to fit everything with one towing the Miata. Then there are the additional costs of gas, hotels, and meals out. And with the price of gas and food right now, DIY’ing it doesn’t seem like too much of a money saver. We’d also need the services of a moving labor company to help unload the big stuff once we got there (about $300/2 hours).
We’re definitely leaning towards a full-service option which is hard to imagine for us since we really are DIY’ers for most things. But this is a BIG move and we want to make sure we do it right. I think of all the precious cargo, my grandmother’s baby grand is my biggest worry. So I think having a moving company dedicated to only piano moving is in order for that one.