If You’re Planning a Move, Call Movers Early

MovingCompanyReviews.com, which provides consumers with information about moving companies, recently predicted how housing trends will impact the moving industry in the year ahead.

Among MCR’s predictions:

1. Mover availability is likely to be tight in the spring and summer months. Consumers are urged to book a moving company as soon as they know their moving date. A shortage of nationwide truck drivers is expected in the spring and summer months, according to MCR. The average consumer books the mover only two weeks in advance. But the busiest times of year are between Memorial Day and Labor Day, with moves peaking in August, according to MCR.

MovingTrends2. Major metros will be popular moving destinations. MCR reported the highest number of moves in the nation’s largest cities in 2014, including Chicago, Atlanta, Houston, Denver and Dallas. MCR expects continued urban population growth and the return of post-recession new construction will continue to make these major moving destinations in 2015. Also, MCR anticipates growth in some midsize cities, such as Charlotte, Raleigh-Durham and Nashville. MCR advises consumers moving in or to such areas to book a mover at least one month ahead of their move.

3. Square footage will flatten. In 2014, MCR reported that more movers upgraded their home sizes by a median of 628 square feet. But MCR is projecting that trend won’t continue in 2015 with significant upgrades to square footage from movers. Also, MCR’s forecast projects that the rental market will remain strong with many moves being into rentals.

4. Mover scams remain a threat but will moderate some. The past two years has seen the rise of illegitimate moving companies that offer consumers low prices and then scam them by drastically increasing the rate at the point of delivery or even holding their items hostage. The American Moving and Storage Association and state moving associations issued warnings to consumers in 2014 to watch for such scams and urged consumers to more carefully vet their movers and look for a licensed one.

In 2014, MCR reports the top five states that most consumers moved to were:
1. Florida
2. Texas
3. California
4. New York
5. North Carolina

BlackBeltMirrorAt Dino’s we unhesitatingly recommend Black Belt Movers to our Des Moines and Omaha area customers. The Omaha-based company also serves Lincoln, Denver, Phoenix, Kansas City, Sioux City and San Diego. They do an outstanding job and are top-ranked by the Better Business Bureau. You can call them in Omaha at 402-709-0970 or in Des Moines at 515-393-4253.

Read more at: MovingCompanyReviews.com

Study Suggests Winter Is Best Time to Sell a Home

Forget conventional wisdom. The housing market doesn’t hibernate in the winter.

A study by real estate brokerage Redfin finds that sellers who list and buyers who buy often find the winter season the most advantageous time to make a move in real estate, The winter season officially takes place between Dec. 21 and March 20, and it is a season that brings out more focused and active sellers and buyers and fewer tire-kickers looking for home design ideas.

Redfin researchers studied nationwide home listings, sales prices and time-on-market data from 2010 through October 2014. The study found that February is “historically the best month to list, with an average of 66 percent of homes listed then selling within 90 days,” according to Redfin’s research.

WinterSoldWhat’s more, the study found that winter tends to net sellers’ more than their asking price during the months of December, January, February and March than listings from June through November.

Researchers say the winter market is less competitive for sellers since many people tend to wait until the spring to list. The smaller inventory of active listings help sellers get more attention from buyers on their properties. And the research showed that many corporations transfer employees or hire new ones early in the year, creating opportunities for winter sellers from very motivated purchasers.

Sellers shouldn’t worry about the holidays hampering their chances either. A 2011 study conducted by realtor.com® found that 60 percent of real estate professionals advise their sellers to list a home during the holidays because they believe it’s an opportune time to sell.

Here are a few tips for selling a home in the winter:

Stage it. Stagers can arrange furniture so that selling-points in a home don’t get overlooked, paint rooms inviting colors and have the know-how to give a home a cozy winter feel. Display photos of the home that also show it in warmer summer months. And don’t forget to turn up the thermostat in the home so buyers are comfortable from the moment they step through the door.

Price it right. “If it’s priced properly, it will sell any day of the year,” Katie Severance, a broker for RE/MAX in Upper Montclair, N.J., told The Associated Press.

Show the way. Keep sidewalks and driveways clear of snow, ice and leaves – giving potential buyers a clear path to your front door.

Light it up. There’s less daylight in the winter months so it’s even more important to keep all the lights on as well as open blinds and drapes for natural light. Keep the home well-lit even when you’re not there so the home still looks inviting to passersby who drive by in the evenings after work.

Clear the Clutter. Open up the space and enhance the home’s appearance by removing excess belongings. That’s where Dino’s Storage comes in. We have great storage facilities and reasonable rates for you to store those out-of-season and overwhelming belongings.

Hoarder Nation: America’s Self-storage Industry Is Booming

BulgingHouseIt’s the time of year when American households are filling up with stuff. Your living room is piled with boxes from your Black Friday haul, or your porch is creaking under the weight of UPS deliveries. While retail analysts are obsessively tracking buyer behavior to gauge the impact of Cyber Monday on store earnings, Business Week reports one industry that will surely benefit from the binge – eventually – is the storage business.

The country’s accumulation of things is outpacing our capacity to keep them in our homes, as the growth of mini-warehouses attests. The number of self-storage establishments more than doubled, to 15,000, from 1998 to 2012, according to Census data, dotting the landscape with buildings full of objects we don’t want to see but can’t bear to toss.

Enough Space for Every Man, Woman and Child

The Census data may actually underestimate the industry. According to the Self-Storage Association, the U.S. had 48,500 mini-warehouse facilities last year. Combined, they amount to 2.3 billion square feet of space for lease – enough, in the trade group’s unnerving formulation, to warehouse every man, woman and child in the country.

Self-storage companies generated $24 billion in revenue last year, according to the SSA, an amount that gets divvied up among a handful of large companies – such as CubeSmart and Sovran Self Storage, which operates a chain called Uncle Bob’s, and 30,000 smaller entrepreneurs.

It’s unlikely that Americans are spending the weeks before Christmas loading up their cars or trucks with their old stuff to clear room for the new. New houses keep getting bigger. Storage sales generally fall off at the end of the calendar year and pick up in the summer, which is also the busiest time for U.S. moving companies.

Four Ds Drive Storage Business

FourHorsemenDemand for storage units is driven by what Ronald Havner, chief executive of self-storage giant Public Storage, calls the four Ds: death, divorce, disaster and dislocation. “People moving, people changing their lives in terms of death or divorce. Hurricanes, tornadoes upset people’s lives and require storage facilities,” he said.

Put that way, the storage business is a darker reflection of the retail economy. Shopping and exchanging holiday gifts is, ostensibly, joyous, but those objects are often deposited in storage units in sadder times. For our stuff, though, the journey may be a homecoming of sorts. Products that enter the consumer world from, say, an Amazon.com warehouse, leave it for a temperature-controlled chamber at Uncle Bob’s.

Dino’s Ready for You

DinosWarehouseAt Dino’s, we’re ready for your stuff any time of year. Just give us a call at any of our locations and come on out to any of our locations in Omaha, Des Moines or Winnipeg.

Dino’s Helping with Toy Drive




No child should go without during the holidays.

That’s why Dino’s Storage has teamed up with the Salvation Army and KMTV 3 News to collect toys for needy children.

Drop off new unwrapped toy donations at the KMTV Studio or any Omaha-area Dino’s Storage location through Dec. 12.



Your donation will help provide needy children toys this Christmas.

And, it will bring some huge smiles as well!

Winter Prep Saves Money

We have had an early taste of frigid wintry weather, including substantial snow in some areas. It’s a taste of the season to come when we spend more time indoors and a reminder that there are things we can do to winter-proof our homes.

thermostatAt www.wisebread.com writer Mikey Rox offers his tips to get through the winter happier and healthier. First on his list: Acclimate to the temperature by setting thermostats down, not up. Gradually lowering the thermostat, by a degree a week to a point where you still feel comfortable, can save bundles of money. Sealing or wrapping windows can add to the effect.

Uninvite the Pests

Pests hate winter, so seal areas of the home where pests can enter. Closing up cracks on the outside can prevent rodents from entering, and storing firewood at least 20 feet from the house will help keep mice and ants away.

Before snow sets in, clearing vents and chimneys can avoid carbon monoxide backups. Leaves, vines, shrubs, and plants can all create blockages that can cause carbon monoxide to enter the home.

Rox also suggests winterizing pipes to keep them from freezing and possibly bursting. This includes sprinkler systems, exterior pipes, and air conditioners.

Be Prepared for the Storm

snowshovelDon’t forget about the supplies needed to take care of the outside of your home either. Make sure you have rakes, shovels, snow blowers, sidewalk salt and other winter cleanup items that you’ll need to keep everybody safe who will step on to your property before, during and after a winter-weather event.

Check or install smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors. Both fire and carbon monoxide can be deadly and silent. Manufacturers recommend replacing detectors every five years.

Act Now to Stay Well

flushotGive your body the best chance of avoiding, or at least fighting, the flu by getting a flu shot.

It also makes sense to keep a first-aid kit in your car at all times, and in winter add hand warmers, flares, heavy blankets, an emergency phone and a few days’ non-perishable food and water in the event that you’re ever stranded. These items literally could be the difference between life and death.