The Latest Tips That Make Choosing the Best Moving Company Simple
Are you moving for the first time? If so, you’re in for a hectic, unpleasant surprise. Even if you have moved before, you know that it’s always a difficult, stressful experience.
Beyond the actual process of relocating possessions, you have plenty of other things to worry about, too. Namely, you need to tie up loose ends at your current location and prepare/set up the new location.
Fortunately, professional movers can make this process so much easier. On the other hand, many so-called movers are actually looking to scam you.
But don’t worry. Choosing the best moving company in your area is easier than you think.
All you need to do is read and follow the steps in the guide below. Use this checklist when choosing commercial or residential movers.
1. Choose Only Local Movers
The moving industry is full of scammers who want to take advantage of your trust. And the most common moving scam to watch out for is a fraudulent moving company advertising their services online.
First, they draw in business by offering suspiciously low prices. Then, once you sign, they hand the gig over to anyone who will take it. That is, they post local help wanted ads in your area to hire inexperienced, unlicensed amateurs for the physical labor.
Often, these scammers will then triple the price they quoted you before they deliver your items. They may even withhold your possessions until you pay the inflated price.
Fortunately, avoiding this scam is easy. Before you hire, simply verify that the residential or commercial movers you’re considering have a physical address in your area.
2. Make Sure They Are Carriers, Not Just Brokers
Another thing to research before you hire is whether the movers are carriers or brokers. Brokers are companies that accept your money and then hand the work over to someone else, as described above. They’re actually middlemen, not movers.
Carriers take the job and do the work themselves. The only way to know who you’re really hiring is to choose movers who are carriers.
3. Ask Your Neighbors
The best way to find the best moving company in your area is to ask the locals. If you’re hiring residential movers, ask your neighbors who they would recommend.
For office relocations, think about any businesses that just moved to the area. Ask them which office movers they used and if they would use them again.
4. Check User Reviews
Next, research local moving companies online. Do a local search for movers on several search engines to see how they’re rated by previous customers.
Right away, you’ll notice that most companies come highly rated. And you can steer clear of those that aren’t.
Furthermore, check the user comments about the highly-rated services. This way, you’ll spot the consistently good/consistently bad traits of each business.
5. Make Sure the Moving Company Is Licenced
Narrow down your list of options by calling them to make sure they’re properly licensed. To do so, ask them for their government-issued MC number and/or U.S. DOT number.
Then, go to the FMCSA website. This is the official site of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
Plug in the numbers you obtained to view the company’s licensing status. If they’re adequately licensed, you’ll see the word “Authorized” under “Operating Status.”
6. Check Their Reputation on Official Sites
Besides the FMCSA, check the company out on the Better Business Bureau website. Any significant malfeasance perpetrated by the company will be reported here.
Also, see if the movers belong to the AMSA (American Moving and Storage Association). The AMSA holds its members to a high standard of professionalism.
7. Check Their References
It’s a good idea to ask the moving company for references. They will have no problem providing proof of jobs well done and customers satisfied.
However, if they are reluctant to provide references, watch out. This usually means that they have no satisfied customers to praise their work.
8. Check Their Liability Insurance
Make sure that your items are insured against any accidental damage that might occur during the move. Typically, movers will offer two types of liability insurance: Full Value or Released Value.
Released Value policies offer very minimal coverage on a per-item/per-pound basis. Full Value policies ensure that you’re reimbursed for the full value of any items that are damaged, lost, or destroyed.
9. Get 3 or More Quotes
Finally, it’s time to gather some quotes. Get 3 or more so that you can compare services.
In order to accurately evaluate the cost of the move, quotes must always be given in person. The movers need to view all the items they will be hauling. This also means you must make sure that all your rooms and items are accessible for viewing.
Also, the quote should be itemized and written down. This prevents movers from inventing sneaky, dishonest reasons to increase the price later.
10. Understand How the Quote Works
Along those same lines, you need to understand how price quotes for moving services work. There are 3 types: binding, non-binding, and not-to-exceed contracts.
A non-binding estimate may decrease or increase by a maximum of 10%. A not-to-exceed estimate may get lower but cannot get higher than the original quote.
A binding estimate cannot change at all, period. While this is a good safeguard against price hikes, it also negates the possibility of a price reduction.
Choose the Best Moving Company Near You With These Tips
Never get stuck with inexperienced/fraudulent movers ever again. Instead, use these tips to choose the best moving company in your local area.
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