Moving can be one of the most exciting but frustrating times in a person’s life. While most women are worried about breaking their china in a move, men are worried about their toys… speakers, TVs, and AV components. The average man on moving day has to disconnect all the wires and wrap them up, only to worry about having to reconnect them properly in his new home.
This is where we, as custom integrators, can help out. We can make a client’s life easier, so he can worry more about monitoring his wife’s china than protecting all of his precious toys.
Here are my three P’s for a Successful Move:
Planning. Because you, the custom integrator, will be the one doing the packing, the wiring, and the new installation, you will know exactly what their process should look like from beginning to end. I like to provide my clients with a “moving packet.” In this, I include an itemized, detailed invoice with what will be done each day and what the cost will be, so there will be no “surprise” costs for my client. I also like to include a floorplan of what the system will look like mapped out in the customer’s new home. It is important to find out as much information about the new home as possible, such as what kind of walls it has and any known obstacles that could affect your system set up. This way you can give your client the most accurate layout and cost estimate possible.
Packing. Having already planned how to install the system in your client’s new home, you can pack it up it accordingly. I like to disconnect and wrap each piece of equipment in protective packaging before the move so that my client is comfortable that his components will be transported safely. By packaging everything myself, I can also begin preparation for the new installation by including necessary wiring with each piece. Then, when I unpack it in the new home, everything I need is all together, allowing me to perform my installation quickly.
Pre-Wiring. You have already created a floor plan of how you are going to lay out your client’s system in his new home, so you should also how long each wire run is going to be and where it will be connected. Again, the biggest surprises will be what kind of walls the new home has and where the studs and beams fall. This all goes back to planning, so be prepared for anything to make sure the installation flows smoothly.
If you’ve ever experienced a major move, then you know how expensive and stressful it can be. By planning properly, packaging safely, and pre-wiring quickly and effectively, you can take a huge load off of your client’s mind. While you are caring for his prized possessions, he can relax and focus his energy on unpacking other things… like the china.
After a long day of moving, the first thing most people would love to do is lay back on their sofa and unwind with a little TV. Think about how good your client will that feel with his system already up and running, even though hundreds of boxes of other stuff are still sitting around, waiting to be unpacked. Thanks to your proper planning, he can unwind and escape the mess for just a little while longer.
Todd Anthony Puma is president of The Source Home Theater Installation in New York City.