My Rights with a Moving Company »
Moving takes a lot of planning, and that includes knowing what your moving rights are. Read on to find more about your moving rights and what you can do to prepare.
Moving takes a lot of planning, and that includes knowing what your moving rights are. Read on to find more about your moving rights and what you can do to prepare.
Staying organized on moving day is key, and planning is a big part of it. Keep this checklist handy before and during your move to keep things stress-free.
We've put together a small list to get you started on your journey -- and the first step starts with a single box.
Y'know how it's really nice when you get married and your friends and family buy you everything that's on your wedding registry? It's super nice, until the time comes to move it all! I heard about Quality Move from a friend who used them a few weeks prior and she loved them. For this move, we were moving a 2-bedroom apartment, including tons and tons of books. It's just me and Hubby, and he was traveling away on business for 10 days (conveniently around the move...) so I was stuck organizing it all by myself, while also having a full time job. I knew I wouldn't have time to pack everything, so I hired Quality Move to help pack the kitchen as well. -- Before The Move From the start, I knew Quality Move were a good idea. I called them to get an estimate and they were very clear and straightforward and explained really well how they do estimates so they end up pretty accurate. I also needed to get a parking permit to park a moving truck in front of the apartment building I was moving out of - Quality Move organized this end-to-end so I didn't have to worry about this detail at all! During the estimate call, they told me they will call me a day or two before the move to confirm everything is still on, that I haven't changed the date, etc. etc. As promised, they called me on Wed (my move was on Friday) and gave me a heads up about when they'd be arriving, how many people, gave me phone numbers to contact, etc. -- Moving Day! On the day of the move, movers showed up on time, at 9:00am SHARP! They came up to the apartment to introduce themselves, ask me details about the building (elevator, stairs, etc.) and see what needs to be moved. They also brought all the move paperwork double-checked with me that everything was in order. The three movers were Luis, Marvin and Jose. Luis would stay up in the kitchen packing all the fragile items there while Marvin and Jose started moving things to the truck and disassembling some of the furniture that needed to be disassembled (namely bed and desks). These guys move FAST! Before I realized, Marvin and Jose had all the book boxes in the truck. One of my cats was hiding under the bed (sneaky cat!) so they were super careful about not letting the cat escape while at the same time moving items out of the room. It was like an elaborate moving dance! These guys are definitely experienced in moving and a household with two cats wasn't news to them. BTW, they bring their own wardrobe boxes, so you don't need to pack your closet - they will pack your stuff into wardrobe boxes and unpack as well! They also bring packing material to pack computer monitors and TV, in case you require that. This moving company is amazing, though, possibly the best moving company in Chicago! I swear they've all got A+ in classes on Great Social Skills and Advanced Small Talk! What could've been an extremely stressful day ended up being mainly an inconvenient but mostly alright day spent in good company with guys who were always professional and careful. There is no elevator at the place I was moving to. Instead: two flights of daunting stairs! This is no obstacle, however, to this great moving company! They started with doing a quick scan of the new place and some instructions from me regarding where stuff would go and started moving things in. It was going really quick! The couch slowed them down slightly as they had to stop to take off one of its legs to fit it thru a narrow door, but they had the proper tools, so it went pretty fast regardless. The entire move took just under 12 hours! They were driving away right about 9pm. Once again, they were very professional about payment and making sure that I understand completely what I'm paying for. These guys are for real! Because of their courteous and friendly attitude, this move turned out awesome! Best movers in town! Thanks, Luis, Marvin and Jose!
I used Quality Move for my move on October 1st after a friend referred me to them. She said they were "cheap and good" and since I received the lowest quote from them -- I figured I'd give them a shot. I lived in a garden-level apartment in Prospect Heights and asked for a quote for moving into a 4th floor walk-up in Lincoln Park. For a medium-sized load, John sent me an email quoting "$85/HR with a 2.50-hour minimum and 1 hour for a flat travel fee. This would include 3 men and a truck. While I was confirming my move date, I asked John if he'd honor the $85 rate any time of the month. Without any hesitation, he said yes and that using a credit card would be fine for moves over $500. I asked for a 9am move time and a few days later, it was on the books. On my moving day, the guys were 30 mins. late. I had told my landlord that I was gonna be out by noon, so I was nervous when they weren't on time... but I called John and he confirmed they'd be there soon. They showed and within 45 minutes, we had my entire apartment packed in the truck. The 3 young men were friendly and even wrapped a mirror for me free of charge. They did charge me for wrapping my box springs in plastic wrap -- $15 I think, (I'd already covered my bed) -- but I was prepared for that cost since I'd asked John about that in advance. I had some black garbage bags full of blankets/sweaters and duffel bags of clothes. The lead guy said that since I was on the 4th floor, it would be faster for them to pack them in two large wardrobe boxes so they could make less trips up/down. It made sense, so they let me use them for free. Considering we finished the move an hour early, I'm glad how everything went, but nevertheless -- the guy doing the paperwork was very upfront about the costs. One snafu: When I told the guy that I was using a credit card, he told me there'd be a minimum of $500/in order to process a credit card. I told him that John hadn't mentioned that and he invited me to call John to confirm. I did, and John said it was no problem and charged the Credit Card. Once the truck was loaded, the guys headed over to the apartment and I followed about 15 mins. later. The guys were waiting out front and we quickly got to work. (I say "we" because I helped. I needed the exercise and felt weird not helping. The guys were really funny about it and I could tell were a little bothered by my helping. Not bothered in a bad way -- but they said most people don't help, and they made sure I didn't overexert myself. Sounds silly writing it out... but it was sweet.) 1.5 hours later and multiple trips up and down to/from my 4th floor apartment, we were done. Although I had 3 hours scheduled (3 hours was the minimum) from start to finish -- it took us only 2.50 hours.) I gave the guys a $90 tip ($30/each) and they seemed grateful. Off they went and all was well. I spent the next few days unpacking and am happy to report that not a single thing was broken or damaged. TOTAL COSTS: 85/hr (2.50 hr min) 85 flat transport fee (1 hour) 90 tip ---------------------- $387.50 Not bad for my first Local move. I'll definitely use Quality Move for my next move and will recommend them to my friends. Quality Move I give you guys A++++++
Igor and his team at Quality Move is AMAZING. Finding a reputable mover to take my 3 room and kitchen place from Chicago to Springfield was a pain in the ***. Seriously. Every single person that I reached out to that said they were overbooked don't actually and don't have slots for the end of the month, or that they don't go out of the Chicago land area. Luckily for me, BP Movers suggested that I call Nick at Quality Move. I'm so happy that I did! Nick scheduled a time to give me a free quote around my busy schedule. He was on time and super friendly. He made sure to go through every room with me, every closet, every under the bed, every cabinet - everything! I was so grateful that he took the time to make sure that he saw everything that was coming with me to ensure that I got an accurate quote. I have a TON of stuff - a full bedroom set, a full dining room table + chairs, a full living room - several couches, a bunch of artwork, two 50+ inch flat screen TVs, a full kitchen worth of stuff. Seriously, a lot of big items. I had Quality Move pack the TVs and the artwork, but nothing else included in my estimate. Nick got my estimate to me the next day via email. Just under $1000.00 for the movers. That might sound like a lot of money, but of the few other less reputable places that I contacted on Yp, it was actually the cheapest out of all of the bids. (Some were well over $2500!) Day before move: Nick personally called me to see how packing was going and to see if I needed anything. I told him that we were still packing, but would have everything boxed up by the time they got there in the morning. Day of move: Quality Move showed up on time! (I requested a 9 am start) We actually had an excellent 3 men crew moving our stuff! Of course, I never finished packing - holy crap I have a ton of stuff! These guys were great. After carefully loading the truck with everything that was ready to go, they took apart my bed, carefully repackaged both of my TVs (I kept the original boxes - such a good idea!), and then started helping me pack everything that I hadn't gotten into boxes. They weren't contracted to pack stuff for me, but they went above and beyond to make sure that everything got packed. Moving is so stressful and these guys were awesome. I cannot say enough great things about Quality Move. Quite possibly the coolest thing about my move: My stuff was at my new place within 4 hours. Most of the other companies that I talked to said that because of the end of the month they would have to hold it over night, its a process because my stuff stays on the truck while the truck is used for other people's stuff that's also going in the same direction. No thank you! I was so happy to see Quality the same day in the afternoon. Note: they had the same crew in at both ends. So if you are moving lo remember that for tipping. Three weeks later: Nick emailed me 3 weeks after the move to say "thank you" (who does that?! I should be thanking him!). Three weeks later and we are finally 100% unpacked, set up, and cleaned up. Absolutely nothing broke or got damaged while moving. Nothing got lost or misplaced. Quality Move seriously rocks! I would hire them again in a heart beat and have already recommended them to my friends!!
*****This is a 5-star review for Leo ***** *****Also a 5-star review for Quality Move Co.***** I moved to IL from NY last week. About a week in advance, I needed to find a mover to take our stuff from a tractor trailer in a warehouse at an ABF in Chicago, Il to our new place in Lincoln Park. I needed to find someone I felt I could really trust, since I wasn't going to be at the warehouse in person to meet them. I needed to find good advice fast, and turned to Yp.com. E-Z Movers were booked weeks in advance, I emailed On Time Moving for a quote, but it seemed weird I couldn't talk to anyone, and then I called Quality Move. Kevin answered the phone, said he could fit me in on Friday one week from the day I called, and was straight-forward, personable, and put me at ease. He explained the rates. No minimums, no deposit. He gave me his cell number in case I needed anything. I ended up calling him a couple of times after that (see below), and he always answered the phone. On Friday morning, I had to call him apologetically. My stuff had not yet arrived at the warehouse, so I had nothing for him to move until the following week. "No problem, kid," he answered. And rescheduled me for first thing the following Tuesday. It was frustrating and trying for plenty of other reasons to have my stuff delayed, but Kevin was nothing but incredibly easy. Tuesday morning came, I called early to make sure everything was OK. He said they were on their way to the warehouse and everything was on time. He called me at 9 to say he was at the warehouse and they were getting started, but he was confused because it looked like I only had 6 linear feet (correct), but that the truckers said the load was over 3000 lbs, which seemed heavy to him. I confirmed that we have LOTS of books, which was what made the load so heavy, but that 6 ft was correct. He named a few other items in my load to confirm that the had the right load. He called a little while later to tell me that one of my crappy Ikea bookcases had been damaged in transit, apparently because of the way it had been packed. (Totally expected -- my friends and I had done the packing, and not in the most professional way.) Then he called to tell me when he was on the road on the way to my house. I REALLY appreciated all the communication -- put my mind at ease. Once Mike and his two guys arrived at our house, they were lightning fast, and fastidiously careful. Didn't put anything down without confirming it was in the right place. Slow and gentle with our nicer things. Friendly. Very efficient. I gave a $70 tip, and wished I could have given more, considering the fact that I had canceled on them previously at the last minute. Long story short = Moving across country was a nerve-racking, anxiety-inducing experience for me overall. But Quality Move was the easiest, smoothest, least frustrating, most reassuring part of the whole thing. And I would never have found them without Yp.com.
Quality Move: Just Terrific! You know that awful, sinking feeling you get when you have to move quickly but no one is calling you back? You keep packing and try to stay positive, but in the back of your mind you're thinking, "What if we don't find movers?" And then you instantly qualify that with, "What if don't find (good) movers (we can afford)? Now there's a remedy for that: Quality Move! We called Quality in a bind. We had to move my sister's 1-bredroom apartment the next day but still hadn't locked down movers that we felt we could trust and afford. When Danielle answered, I immediately felt relieved. If you've moved before, then you know communication can sometimes be a problem. Quality COMMUNICATES WELL! Her attitude was calm but caring, and she said she would confirm with us within 20 minutes--and she did. In fact, every time we communicated with her, she got back to us within 20 minutes. Over the phone, she committed to "no hidden fees" and said that she just wanted to make sure it was a stress-free move for us. She did not disappoint us! Movers showed up ON TIME, which is a really important thing. When a mover shows up late, it sets a negative tone for the whole thing. When the three-man crew showed up, we instantly knew it was going to be okay. They all had very calm dispositions in contrast to the frenzied stress balls that we were. They made us feel at ease. But calm does not mean slow. Those guys BUSTED THEIR BUTTS for us! They didn't stand around and smoke or need a lunch break. THEY WORKED--THE WHOLE TIME! Boxes up, boxes down, etc. They were efficient while still careful, pausing to ask important questions about if there was anything fragile or if all the boxes had been reinforced, so the bottoms didn't fall through, etc. And all of it with a genuine smile and sense of humor. They estimated 2.50 hours--and that's exactly how long it took. I was amazed! From door to final box it was three hours, including travel time! And even though he only quoted us for two men but brought three--they did NOT jack up our price last minute but stuck to the estimate he'd given us. Of course, we tipped handsomely, but other movers have tried to nickel and dime us to death--not Quality Move. They are the REAL DEAL! In summary, Quality Move: COMMUNICATES WELL SHOWS UP ON TIME EFFICIENT & HARDWORKING CAREFUL WITH ALL ITEMS NO HIDDEN FEES I'm tired of moving and hope I don't need to for a while, but if/when I do, I will give Quality a call. Thank you, Quality Move; you are all the things you said you were: a fair human being who truly wants to help others have a stress-free move!
With all the hassles of my move from Lombard to Chicago, I am very glad to have had Quality Move to help do the job. After sending in my online estimate form, I got a long, confusing e-mail from Quality Move telling me how to calculate the quote myself. I didn't bother pursuing with them since it's impossible for me to come up with any tangible number. But when the mover I hired dropped the ball two days before the scheduled move, I called up Quality. Nick took up the task on the spot, patiently came up with his quote (which was almost right on the target), and then gave me a detailed scenario. He also scheduled the packing and moving right away. To save money, which was also suggested by Nick, I did a lot of packing ahead of time, knowing that the boxes provided by the movers would cost me a lot more--Quality boxes were brand new, but I did fine collecting free boxes from Dominick's and Jewel. The packing was done well, the movers also happily used the boxes I had collected, and they mindfully marked them which helped a lot for my unpacking. On the next day, they came forty-five minutes late, but the move was done efficiently and methodically, given I had got to move everything out of the apartment as well as two storage units in another location, all in full capacity after almost fifteen years living in Lombard. The foreman Juan deserves the most credit; he was easy-going, focused, and diligent. And everyone participating, Ismael, Alan and Angel, also worked hard and did the strenuous, long-hour work in good faith. In the end, I tipped the team willingly and happily as it was such a tremendous job. Tabitha in the office was very gracious, ensuring me that everything I was concerned about would be taken care of. Claims office contacted me soon after regarding the damages caused by the move. I love it how helpful everyone was, and willing to please me in every way. The management might have been a bit lax in the beginning, but was attentive and thoughtful throughout the two-day task. I believe that staying in touch with their management is key to ensure a smooth and efficient operation. It is also important to give detailed inventory information when getting an estimate online. For a moving company, the Quality people are accommodating and considerate. And regardless of the situations which regularly occur when it comes to moving, the customer-friendly service, willingness to do the tough job, and decent work ethics of the people, make the whole experience so pleasant that I will definitely use Quality Move again and refer them to friends and colleagues whenever opportunity arises.
Absolutely spectacular. I moved May 15th from a 4th floor to a 3rd floor, and they weren't concerned about the number of flights, number of boxes, etc. I am in Real Estate, and have an extensive list of people in our database to call for moving services, but looked up "cheap movers Chicago" on Google and found these guys. The prices were scary because they were quoting me 50-70% off what I was hearing from Golan's Moving & Storage and a lot of other "cheap" movers. The low price made me nervous, but I went ahead with it because all of these reviews were so good. I packed everything up 100% on my own, and had it all ready to go for them. They took my bed frame apart, and had everything out of my apt in under 30 minutes. The speed they were going was nerve-wrecking because I was sure they would be breaking/scratching things. This was not true. They got to my new place, placed everything where I asked, put my bed back together (the wrench I had didn't work last-minute, so I was glad they brought one) and never complained or asked for anything. I offered water/soda twice and they didn't want it. Very gracious, very nice guys. --------They moved me in under the time I was quoted, and was HAPPY to pay the 2.5 hour minimum and have them be done early.---------------------------- Notes: -They make you nervous when they tell you you are liable for the payment of any parking ticket they may incur, but they were so fast I can't imagine them getting ticketed. They did not get ticketed during my move. -Pack everything yourself, and have it ready. They were on-time within 2 minutes of the "earliest time" in my move window. This is where people waste time and money. -TIP THEM WELL, and pay CASH. Remember, you are saving about 50-70% off the next cheapest movers, and these guys were fast - plus there is a minimum charge for paying with Credit Card, and you have to give them notice that you are paying credit. No scratches, no tickets, nothing broken. I have nothing but good things to say and I have already recommended them to 2 people I found apartments for that are moving.
5 STARS! *****/***** Thanks to previous yp reviewers, my experience was just as I had anticipated. Low key, efficient, and pleasant. Having moved a lot growing up (of various scales and distances), my recent move was cute. Minimal furtniture, bulky plastic bins, boxes, ... you know. And Quality Move was perfect for what I needed! Quality gave us the best rate out of the few movers we contacted (the $65/hr deal for 2 men + van) and was available on short notice, which was key. I mean, budget moving? I think this is it! Their website is pretty straightforward and funny with good tips. Check it out when it's back up (most of it's down right now for some reason). They tell you upfront that they provide basic liability protection, so it gave me pause, but my current situation allows me to bite the bullet. Besides the fact that I wasn't completely done packing, I moved some things of sentimental value on my own. ** Note: It's not about this company, but my general philosophy is that you have to anticipate loss/breakage when you ask someone to transport your belongings, just like with your checked-in luggage.** I wasn't worried at all about this company, having read the reviews, and especially once I met the movers (Jose and Marvin are super nice!). I was more worried about passersby grabbing my printer off the sidewalk... but the movers go directly from your house to the van so there was no worry :) And to give a shout-out, Jose is great! He's friendly, easy-going, and hardworking. Despite having to climb a lot of stairs, carrying three times a normal person's load, every drop-off came with a smile. His partner Marvin is pretty funny too. I loved their attitude and appreciated their work! Re: mattress bags, I bought them from a hardware store (they're like $5.99 or $6.99), and they rip pretty easily, unlike the initial bed packaging that requires actual scissors. As much as I hate plastic waste, I'd double bag or tape over the bag if I were to do this again. The reviews here are pretty accurate, so if your moving needs fit this bill, I'd recommend Quality!
STOP LOOKING FOR MOVERS. THESE GUYS ARE THE BEST. Too bad I only got to use five stars... Sorry, YP, your rating system wasn't good enough for these guys. Here's mine: ********************* (that might not be enough, but you get the idea...) Five stars? As movers go, they're super stars. We can't give enough good feedback about Quality Move. We moved from Westmont, IL to Hanover Park, il. We don't have the best furniture, but they even got the Ikea entertainment center over with no damage. I spoke to Derrick five days before our move. The move was organized in a day via phone and email. We communicated by email and every time I wrote him, he responded within 15-30 minutes. I gave him a list of our furniture, and he gave me a fair quote within minutes. That's some serious FOLLOW THROUGH. (Ignore NickandMoira they must be mixing up movers.) The price was a bargain. They showed up RIGHT ON TIME to the minute they said they'd be here. Very impressive and professional. We knew this would be the easiest possible move as soon as they got to the apartment. Luke, Carlos, and Victor were fast, friendly, efficient, and are just the type of movers you need to make you feel relaxed during a move. I didn't even feel stressed. These guys are FAST and take great care of all the items they move. Even the steep stairs in our new apartment, which were not easy to navigate with our big furniture didn't phase them. They made the move absolutely easy... and actually fun. We packed most of our own boxes, but there's always little bits and pieces that turn up. The guys even helped with that. Luke was kind enough to install a closet rod: he even remembered our cat's name and tried to console him. Four paws for him. Quality Move Co. go way above and beyond they typical mover. If we ever need to move again, we wouldn't use anyone else. Many thanks to YP.com.
I moved about a week ago with Quality Move and still amazed. I chose the company for three reasons: 1.) They're well-rated, 2.) They're Professional (Go, team!), and 3.) I have a weakness for the word Quality and the red color. I didn't schedule a move out with the landlord, I thought it would be an amusing *kiss off* to the landlord that I was leaving behind without notice, who forbid me on moving out from the front. Ha haha hahaha haha ha. Anyway! I planned ahead and got an estimate, i.e.-flat rate, and paid in cash . All as promised, all fine. I did all the packing myself and was pretty much ready when the truck arrived- a little late, but through no fault of their own. And they called ahead to inform me that there would be a slight delay. Aside from meeting basic expectations, the thing that stood out about the team I had (three movers- Erick, Luke, and Wes) was their incredible efficiency YET, dare I say, *perfectionism* in wrapping and taping and wrapping again every single piece of furniture I owned. They protected my stuff the way I would have done it myself- except MUCH faster and with a seemingly unending supply of packing tape and blankets. I have a couple glass front pieces (a steel barrister bookcase and a mid-century glass top cabinet) and a digital piano and guitars... All arrived safely. And now, as I'm nearing the end of unpacking, I'm discovering that nothing inside the boxes was damaged or broken in transit. Awesome! If you want to move in the least expensive fashion possible, then Quality probably not for you. But if you want to save yourself the physical and psychological stress of trying to get "friends" (ha!) to move you, or dealing with the fall-out of a crappy and/or shady moving job, I highly highly recommend. Otherwise, I've heard Bernard Movers is really thorough- it just takes them awhile to get everything transported.
Every move is different, so it's vital to choose a moving company that's right for you. The first consideration you should make when hiring these professionals is how far you're moving.
Depending on the moving company, local moves are typically anywhere between one and 100 miles within the same state. Local moves are less complicated to plan, both for you and the movers you decide to hire. They're typically priced based on how much you need to move, how many movers the company plans to provide and how long the job is estimated to take.
Long-Distance and Interstate Moves
Even if you're staying in the same state, you may still technically be planning a long-distance move - though the exact mileage varies by moving company, these are typically moves that are more than 50 to 100 miles long or across state or country lines. In fact, even if you're moving within the same state but you have to go through another state or country first, it's likely considered an interstate move, rather than a local one. That's because the movers are technically transferring items between state lines, which means they'll be responsible for having the correct licensing and insurance in place.
Long-distance moves are much more complicated to plan, typically requiring you to pay numerous extra expenses for everything from shipping items to renting storage space.
Are you making a big move and trying to figure out exactly how much you should plan to spend? Or are you on a tight budget and looking to hire a mover who can keep costs low? Either way, it's important to understand how exactly moving companies charge their customers.
As mentioned above, for local moves, companies will charge based on the number of movers they provide and the amount of time they'll need to spend on the project. Generally, the more rooms in your apartment or house, the more movers and time you can expect to be charged for. The price of long-distance or interstate moves, on the other hand, will be based on the amount of belongings you have - and more specifically the weight of those belongings. The heavier the boxes or items you're shipping across state or country lines, the more expensive your move will be.
Moving costs will vary greatly, depending on where you are. Local moves in a small town in the Midwest will be much less expensive than comparable moves in New York City. For that reason, it's best to do some research about the going rates in your area.
No matter what type of move you're making, you can reach out to prospective moving companies for estimates - this is the best way to determine how expensive your move will be based on where you live and what services you're looking for. Typically, the moving company will send someone to your home who will do a walk through of each room, making note of the furniture, valuables and other belongings in each one. Then, he or she will provide an estimate. The exact amount you pay may, however, be different from the amount declared in the estimate. That's where the type of contract comes in.
Nonbinding vs. Binding Contracts
For any move, a company will ask you to sign a contract. It's crucial to know exactly what type of contract you're signing, though, to understand how much you can expect to pay. In basic terms, there are two types of moving contracts: binding and nonbinding. Binding, as well as binding not-to-exceed, contracts are the most preferable for people hiring movers. These list an estimated price the moving company cannot charge more than. So, even if your local move takes an hour longer or your belongings are heavier than expected for an interstate move, you're still only responsible for paying a fixed amount.
Nonbinding contracts, on the other hand, have no fixed final number. Instead, they list a rate - by the hour or by the pound/kilo - and you're responsible for paying exactly how much your move costs in those terms.
Keep in mind that movers provide a variety of services, many of which you may not require. These can affect how expensive your move will be. For example, a full-service move that includes packing and unpacking will be pricier than a local move that only includes loading the truck, driving it to the new home and unloading it.
For any move, there may be extra costs beyond the typical services offered. If you're asking your movers to transport large, hard-to-move items, like pianos, for instance, you'll likely pay an extra fee. Likewise, if your apartment building doesn't have an elevator or the truck has to be parked far from your home, you may be charged extra. Ask about these potential expenses when signing your contract.
Don't rush through the process of hiring a moving company. Make sure the movers you hire are dependable, reputable and the right fit for your needs.
Look for Reviews and Recommendations
When hiring movers, it's a good idea to both look at reviews online and ask your friends and family members for recommendations. Personal endorsements will go a long way toward helping you determine whether you can expect the company to do a quick and professional job.
Choose Top Candidates
As you're vetting candidates through reviews and recommendations, narrow your selection to three or four top options. Make sure the companies offer the type of move you're looking for, whether it's interstate or local. These three or four companies are who you'll contact for estimates.
Don't Be Afraid to Ask Questions
After receiving estimates, you'll have a better idea which companies are within your budget. However, this isn't the only factor you should use when choosing movers, especially for more complicated jobs. In fact, you may be willing to pay a little more to hire quality movers who can ensure the safety of your belongings. Don't be afraid to call these companies and ask questions.
During the hiring process, you want to make sure of three things: First, that the moving company is reputable and has the proper licensing and insurance. Second, that the movers are dependable, professional and committed to doing the job correctly. Finally, that the estimate provided is binding and that you're aware of any potential excess costs. With these factors in mind, here are some of the most important questions to ask a moving company:
As with any service profession, there are certain moving companies - though they are few and far between - that aren't reputable or that will try to take advantage of you. It's important to be able to recognize a scam if you come across one.
Call the FMCSA
For long-distance or interstate moves, you can easily check that companies have the proper licensing and insurance, which is a clear indication that they're legitimate. All interstate moving companies must be registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, so call 888-368-7238 to confirm the licenses, insurance and credentials of the movers you're considering. The FMCSA can also tell you if any complaints have been filed against a particular moving company.
Check with the American Moving and Storage Association
For both local and long-distance moving companies, AMSA is another good place to check out a company's legitimacy. Moving companies aren't required to be an AMSA member, but the ones that are have committed to the association's rules and regulations, which protect both the companies and the consumers hiring them. If a company isn't an AMSA member, that doesn't mean it isn't reputable, but an AMSA membership is a clear indication of legitimacy.
One of the most common fears people face when moving to a new home is that something they own will be lost or damaged in the process. While no company will be able to guarantee everything arrives safely, there are steps you can take to make damage less likely.
Pack and Transport Your Valuables
If you have items that are emotionally or financially valuable to you, do your best to pack and move them yourself. Keep jewelry, expensive artwork, inherited valuables and even costly electronics in your own car - that way you'll have complete control over their safety at all times.
Choose a Moving Company That Plans Ahead
Moving companies can better keep your belongings safe when the movers plan ahead. What does this mean? Many companies take extra time to measure doorways, halls and stairways to find the safest route in and out of your home. They should also provide furniture blankets, covers and moving pads to keep both your home and your belongings free of scratches or other damage.
Keep the Moving Area Safe
There are some things you can control on moving day and some things you simply can't, such as the weather. If you're moving on a snowy, icy or rainy day, keeping all of your paths, stairways and walkways clear and dry is crucial. This can help protect both the movers and the large items they're carrying to and from the truck.
The subject of tipping is relatively unclear when it comes to movers. However, there is a general rule of thumb that most people in the industry agree on: Tip your movers if they've done a good job and you think a tip is warranted.
Generally, a 5 percent tip is considered appropriate, though some people recommend paying $20 per day, per mover for basic, local moves. However, almost everyone agrees you should first do a quick walk-through of your home to check for any damage to your furniture or belongings and to make sure everything is where you'd like it to be.
If you do decide to give a tip, divide it evenly and give money to each individual, rather than giving the entire sum to the head mover and expecting it to be doled out equally. One type of tip to avoid: alcohol. It's usually illegal for movers to have bottles of alcohol in the truck or van, so tipping a bottle of wine or liquor could get them into trouble.