deVivre Behind The Scenes: White Glove Moving Services
Moving in New York City? It’s enough to make the bravest among us shudder. Even if everything goes exactly as you planned on moving day (when has that ever happened!?), there’s still the packing, the unpacking, the planning, the calls, the movers, the boxes, the inventory, the logistics, insurance (ha! you did get insurance, didn’t you!?), the walkthrough, the cleaning, the setup, the breakdown, the parking… the list goes on and on and on and on. Moving in NYC is never simple.
What if you could magically walk out of your fully furnished current apartment and *poof* walk into your new apartment with everything already set up exactly how you left it? That’s what happens with a deVivre Concierge Services White Glove Managed Move. It’s not technically magic, but it definitely feels like it.
A deVivre Concierge Services White Glove Managed Move goes way beyond simply packing things up and getting them from point A to point B effortlessly (though that’s definitely part of it!). Moving, especially moving in NYC, is highly personal. Everyone’s set-ups, preferences, logistics, and requirements are all slightly different and every individual move presents its own set of challenges and solutions. When it comes to Moving Services in New York City, there’s no “one size fits all”, and that’s why our high-touch, custom-tailored, concierge moving services really shine.
To give you some insight into what goes into a deVivre Concierge Services White Glove Managed Move, we went behind the scenes with Carrie, our deVivre Moving Services expert, to see what one deVivre White Glove Managed Move looks like in practice.
deVivre Concierge Services: Tell us where you are right now?
Carrie: I am at a client’s new apartment on the Upper West Side. I just finished meeting with the cable and internet providers to get those services transferred and up and running in the new spot, so that’s done. The cleaners are here, getting the new apartment move-in-ready, the professional organizer is measuring the new spaces under the sink and closet to make sure that the storage solutions from the previous apartment will convey to this one, and we are waiting on the last batch of boxes to arrive from the secondary storage unit. It’s a rare moment of down time.
deVivre Concierge Services: Secondary storage unit?
Carrie: Yeah! This particular client has two separate storage units that we arranged for this move. She is a full time student and an entrepreneur starting a business that is based in SF and Manhattan. She was living in Brooklyn and had a month of lag time before the end of her old lease and the beginning of her new one, so we managed the entire move out of the old apartment, complete with repairs, painting, and cleaning. We then packed and parceled everything that she wanted to be moved into her new apartment and arranged for remote storage out of the city and also secured secondary long-term storage for items she would need to access in the interim and that she would want to continue storing after the move.
deVivre Concierge Services: Sounds complicated!
Carrie: Ha! Well, it’s not difficult, but there are a fair amount of of moving parts. There always are, it’s part of the puzzle! This client also wanted to have some construction work done at her new apartment before she moved in so we were able to leverage her lease timing to make that scheduling work seamlessly.
deVivre Concierge Services: What kind of “work” are we talking about?
Carrie: She wanted some electrical changes, outlets installed, lighting fixtures swapped, some wires run, that kind of thing. Also some small architectural/functionality updates, and she wanted the space painted in specific colors. I have been project managing that renovation with the on-site staff at the new apartment. We are in the final stretches of that but, typical to New York City renovations, it will not be finished today. That’s why I had the cleaners only do a move-in clean today.
deVivre Concierge Services: What’s a “move-in clean”?
Carrie: Well, it’s a general clean, with a focus on cleaning the interiors of closets, cabinets, and even the interiors furniture that was moved to be sure that when we unpack the apartment contents and put it all where it belongs, we are putting everything away into clean spaces.
The renovations will be complete by tomorrow and the cleaners will do a final deep clean before the client gets back from the West Coast. She’ll walk into a sparkling apartment with all of her changes executed and all of her systems in place. We’ll have our final walkthrough after that so I won’t be there when she walks in, but I’d love to see her face!
deVivre Concierge Services: What do you mean “all of her systems in place”?
Carrie: Well that’s a big part of our deVivre White Glove Moving Services offering. We try and replicate the exact way the apartment was set up before if that’s what the client desires. If the silverware went here, we put the silverware here. If the bookshelf was set up this way, we set the bookshelf up this way. Obviously, there are some things that are different between spaces, so we try and back into those changes and pivot accordingly. Like this client’s silverware drawer was bigger in her old apartment and her old silverware holder wouldn’t fit in the kitchen drawer here, so our organizing staff sourced a new silverware organizer that would fit. It’s small stuff like that. It can be as simple as getting a new broom that will fit in a smaller closet or as complex as running extension cords and hiding speaker wire to replicate an entertainment center.
deVivre Concierge Services: How do you decide how the apartment gets set up?
Carrie: It all gets decided at the initial client walk-through at their current apartment. We have a comprehensive checklist of questions that we go through. Whether they want us to transfer utilities or set up new utilities, whether they want us to manage the post-move-out cleaning/patching etc, to recoup the security deposit at the current spot, whether they want us to help process anything—like, selling or donating anything that won’t make the trip to the new apartment—before it’s ready to pack up…all of the nitty gritty based on the client’s preferences. Then we go room by room, taking pictures and making notes on exactly what the client wants to keep and what they want to change. If possible we’ll visit the new space or get floor plans or dimensions to confirm what’s possible. The client can (obviously) change their minds about what goes where, but it’s super straightforward to say “we aren’t bringing this TV with us, we want this new TV for that space. We’d like you to order that new TV, the appropriate mounting hardware, and we want the new TV mounted HERE”. That all goes into the notes and then executed day-of.
deVivre Concierge Services: So what happens day-of?
Carrie: We have a network of trusted vendors and support staff and that’s truly essential. You really rely on the personnel when you’re dealing with this many moving parts and my teams are top notch. I’m proud of them. This move is slightly different because of the two storage locations and the lag time between accessing the old apartment vs. the new, but there’s often some sort of rigamarole surrounding lease dates and access. The “load everything from the old apartment in the morning and move it in to the new apartment in the afternoon” is rarer than you might think. Depending on the timing and the location, the earliest the movers can get to the new apartment is in the early afternoon, so I time the arrival of my support staff of dedicated concierges to coincide with move-in-assist.
deVivre Concierge Services: What is “move-in-assist”?
Carrie: Well, the movers literally do the heavy lifting. The big furniture comes in first. This particular apartment is the parlor floor of an old brownstone so there’s no elevator or freight elevator in this case, but we obviously have a ton of experience with the proper protocols for authorized load in and load out in those situations. I assign move-in-assist concierges to each “zone” of the apartment and then we use our documentation from our client meetings to direct the movers what goes where. The rugs roll out, the beds and sofas go down, we oversee the re-assembly of anything that was disassembled. Then come the boxes! We have a pretty draconian box numbering and inventory system to make sure that everything is present and accounted for AND that it goes to the right location in the space. When the boxes start coming in I feel like an auctioneer. Box 11, linens and throws! To the bedroom! Box 48, stemware… to the kitchen! Box 32, every file, in order, from the interior of the filing cabinet… GET IN THAT OFFICE! For this apartment, since it’s a brownstone floor-through, we only have 2 additional support staff concierges, but I’ve done moves in TriBeCa lofts with tons of rooms and lots of space where we’ve had 7 or 8 concierges on hand to unpack in addition to the full moving services team.
deVivre Concierge Services: That’s a lot of people!
Carrie: Well, that client was an art collector and a gallerist who had previously lived in the same apartment for 40 years. He had a lot of things he needed carefully archived and all of these beautiful objects to be put in the right spot. It was an amazing move! This one is simpler in that sense. It’s like: kitchen stuff goes in the kitchen. Wait, hold on…
At this point, Carrie gets interrupted and starts giving instructions to multiple different people:
Carrie (to people in the room): No he can’t double park there but I’ve secured a safe space up the block, Kim can show you. Yes, Andrew, those towels go there but on the bottom shelf, and the extra bed linens should live in the laundry room instead. Ok. Well, tell Michael that we are ready for that phase. We just need an end-time estimation to give the cleaners a start-time for the morning… ok. ok. Yes. Fresh flowers, but not hydrangeas.
Carrie (back into the phone): Ahh! The movers just arrived with the last batch of boxes and the electrician just arrived to cap off the dining room fixture so I’ve got to run!
deVivre Concierge Services: A concierge’s work is never done! Go do your thing, Carrie!
Want a stress free moving day where all of the details are handled with the utmost care and consideration? A deVivre Concierge Services White Glove Move can make it happen. Schedule your free consultation today!