Every year approximately 10% of the US population decides to make a new start in a new home or career. Have you found your dream job or dream home and are you ready to move on?
Don’t let the thought of uprooting yourself and your family hold you back. It’s easy to get on with your life when you’ve got a reliable mover by your side.
Here’s how to find a quality mover to help streamline the process and eliminate the upheaval.
The Search for a Quality Mover Begins with References
Word of mouth’s still the best way to find what you’re looking for these days. Ask your friends, family, and neighbors for recommendations regarding movers they’ve used before.
Then, back up their claims with a little research. Look for reviews about moving companies on internet review sites, or the Better Business Bureau website.
When you’ve narrowed down your options, you can ask a few local companies for references from previous clients too. Call those customers and find out how it went.
Check Licenses and Affiliations
Every moving company in the USA must have a license to operate in the state they do business in. There are different licenses for local movers and long-distance movers too.
Look up their credentials with your state licensing body and look for other affiliations that indicate their legitimacy.
Steer clear of movers who make excuses for their lack of licenses. One of the other important tips for moving is to avoid businesses that change their name often. Often, companies do this to avoid the stigma of negative reviews online.
Quality movers are honest and upfront with their customers from the word go.
One of the steps that most homeowners miss when they’re trying to find a moving company, is the interview stage. Whether you do this telephonically or in person, it’s vital to hold an in-depth Q&A with your prospective movers before you hire them.
At this stage, you should ask them about everything that on your mind regarding your move. Find out about their experience with similar moves, ask some general questions about pricing, and get a feel for their customer service ethic.
This step helps you determine if you feel comfortable working with them. Carry out this process with the top three moving companies you’ve identified during your research phase.
When you’ve narrowed down your list, ask for a moving quote from each company.
The best movers don’t estimate. They’ll send a representative over to your home to get a better idea of what’s involved in your move so they can quote you accordingly.
They’ll also provide a price list of additional services and recommend any of these that may help ensure your relocation runs more smoothly.
Don’t hire movers that give you a random figure over the telephone. Insist on a detailed written estimate for the task at hand.
When you receive this, go through the fine print and ask questions about any uncertainties you have. Hiring movers can become an expensive undertaking if you end up with a lot of hidden costs you weren’t expecting.
Remember to compare apples to apples when you’re looking at quotes. Some movers may charge a little extra upfront, but include extra services that you’ll pay extra for with another mover.
The Next Step
After this exercise, you should be able to make your choice. Don’t let your guard down yet though, you’ve still got a few stumbling blocks to negotiate.
Never sign a blank contract with any moving company. Get everything in writing first.
This includes an inventory of the items they’re moving, any extra fees, and your pick-up and delivery dates. You can’t claim damages on anything that isn’t listed on their inventory, so pay particular attention to this aspect.
There are three different types of moving contracts:
A contract that’s linked to a non-binding estimate means the moving company can’t charge you over 10% more than their original estimate. You need to pay these extra charges within 30 days of delivery.
A non-binding to exceed estimate ensures you don’t have to pay for any extra charges at all. The moving company must stick to their original estimate.
A binding contract’s meant to be a guaranteed all-inclusive price. If you request extra services after you receive the quote, you must pay for them within 30 days of delivery.
Get Clarity on Insurances
By law, moving companies must assume liability for any goods they transport. Yet, there are also several types of liability coverage offered by moving companies.
Full Replacement Liability means the moving company must repair or replace any damaged goods according to their valuation. There’s usually an upper limit attached to this type of insurance. Be sure to check the fine print in this policy carefully before assuming you’re covered in full.
Alternative Level of Liability is a no-cost option providing only minimal protection. In this case, the mover’s responsible for reimbursing you at a rate not exceeding 60 cents a pound per item. You must sign to agree with this type of insurance.
If you don’t you’ll pay the full rate for FPL insurance.
When you deal with a reputable moving company, they’ll explain all of this to you and advise you on the best option for your circumstances.
Know that you know what to look for in a moving company, it’s a good idea to start searching for the ideal one right away. As soon as you’ve crossed this hurdle, you’ll have clarity on your budget as well as your planning in the weeks preceding your move.
Hiring a quality mover is the best way to manage your stress levels during a relocation.
If your interested in more ways to do things the right way and benefit, keep reading our blog. We cover a wide range of topics to help you get through most of life’s obstacles.