Best Moving Checklist and Tips »
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.
5260 36th St SEGrand Rapids, MI 49512
From Business: Founded in the 1860's, Star Truck Rentals is a Grand Rapids MI based, family owned rental, Leasing and service business. From 16 full service locations in Michiga…
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.
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.
We've put together a small list to get you started on your journey -- and the first step starts with a single box.
This is our 3rd cross country move and this was textbook perfect. We moved from Michigan to Arizona in June.The estimator professional, answered all our questions, gave suggestions and was able to estimate what we were taking from all in the house being given to Salvation Army. The packers and loaders, very professional... protected our floors etc and got all loaded in record time even having to use a shuttle vehicle in between. The driver and unloading to a storage unit in AZ, was very fast and they loaded that 10x25x8 unit like a well made jigsaw puzzle with 1 1/2 foot to spare. Fantastic. Can only say good things about the company and the employees. First Class all the way. We are very pleased. You will be also.
Nothing but 5 Stars for Brad and his crew. Everything was professional, timely and efficient.It was a pleasure working with Brad and his crew.Highly recommended.
I was moving only two rooms of furniture from W. Michigan to Chicago and hesitated using a company the size of University Moving and North American because it's been my experience that with small moves the larger trucks wait until they are full, and I've had to be flexible on delivery. Not so with University. Kevin gave me a quote, which was comparable to the others I had received. The two men who came to load the things in my truck were kind and very careful with my belongings. They had a knowledge of moving into Chicago, and when the truck arrived two days later they backed the truck into the alley behind my apartment and unloaded. My apartment was 3 flights up with no elevator and they treated my belongings so well. And were so cheerful and friendly! I would use them again, for sure!
Kevin come to make a reasonable quote. Then Brad was in constant communication with us before, during and after the move. The guys picking up our things were very professional, they emptied our house (3 bedrooms) in a couple of hours and they were out. Arrival en Florida was on schedule. Again the movers were very professional, fast and clean.I would recommend this company to anybody who requires a reasonable price, fast, courteous Professional in just one word
Update - I used the company for the next phase of my move in W Michigan based on my great previous experience. I wanted to write another strong positive review, but YP won't allow - 2nd time was just as great!I had a truly seamless experience working with Paul Sowa and Brad Hayoz in the office. I had a fairly complicated move in the sense that I would not be at either the pick-up or drop-off location and I was moving (among other things) 2 extremely valuable and sentimental items: a family heirloom dining room table and a 6ft b 3ft original painting. Both of these gentlemen walked me through the whole process step by step and how each of these items would be handled with extreme care.On top of working with great guys in the office, the drivers/movers were also fantastic. Mark Takus and Jimmy couldn't have been better. It was clear they were professionals and handled everything with true care.I could not recommend University Moving & Storage any higher. They were truly great!
Everyone was very friendly and knowledgable. The 2 guys that moved us were very efficient and extremely helpful. I felt they treated our things as there own while Ioading and unloading. I would definitely use this service again.
I had a really great experience with University Movers. I was moving out of state and on a tight timeline. I first requested an estimate and Kevin got me a quote within four days. Once I accepted their price (the lowest quote out of 3 estimates) we had the pickup date and time scheduled within a week. From estimate to drop off the whole process took less than 3 weeks! Mark and Jimmy loaded my belongings very quickly and carefully and I was amazed how fast they got things into my new place (in a 3rd floor walk up)! My furniture was in perfect condition and they were very careful of the walls and floors in my new apartment. Best of all, they were friendly, polite, and professional. Brad, (the move coordinator), was always in touch and kept me abreast of the progress every step of the way. I only have good things to say about the Team at University Movers! Highly recommend them!
Fantastic customer service! Their communication was second to none. We moved two households from Michigan to one home in Missouri, and the process couldn't have gone smoother. Kevin explained everything to us in detail, Brad was extremely helpful in letting us know exactly what was going on, and Dave and his crew were very careful with all our belongings. They arrived at the time they said they would, and Dave kept us apprised of his progress along the route. I highly recommend this company.
Moved in November, crew did a great job and were very helpful and friendly. I would definitely recommend!
I moved from Michigan to the greater NYC metro area. University Moving & Storage made the process easy and hassle-free. Special thanks to Kevin (Sales), Brad (Relocation Coordinator), Courtney and team for the superb guidance and efficiency throughout the entire process. I give University Moving & Storage Five stars without question and highly recommend the company to anyone contemplating a move, whether local or long distance.
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.