Do you know anyone that has had a terrible moving experience? More often than we’d like, a move can go wrong. Sometimes its the movers’ fault, but most of the time its due to the lack of communication or something that you forgot to ask and clarify before booking the move. Finding the right moving company may seem easy until you’ve heard a horrific moving story or experienced one. Fortunately there are ways to avoid such situations.
One of the easiest ways to find moving experts is to ask the right questions before you hire. The responses you get when you ask the right questions will help you determine who to hire or not.
The following questions will help you learn more about any mover you intend to hire so you can opt for the best:
Is the Moving Company you are speaking to a Mover or a Broker?
Brokers often depict themselves as movers, but they are absolutely different from movers. Brokers may easily match you up with movers close to you. But brokers are not often involved in the moving process.
Brokers are hardly involved in damages, lost, or any other hiccups you may experience before, during or after a move. Contact the movers directly, and speak with them. Use this tool to find moving companies in your area.
Does the moving company have proper licenses to operate?
When you have the chance to speak directly with a mover, ask the mover about their registration number. All authentic movers must be registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), called a USDOT number (US Department of Transportation Number).
However, if the movers only operate within one state, they may not be FMCSA registered. You may check to confirm the status of the movers on the FMCSA website.
How much will it cost to carry out your move?
Find out about the estimates and rates of the movers. Different types of moves are priced differently. Local moves or Short-distance move might be based on hours it takes to complete the move. However, in case of a cross-country move or Interstate Move, Movers’ estimates must be based on weight for long-distance move. If a mover tries to give you rates based on cubic feet, don’t accept that rate. Its always better to get a price based on the weight of your items.
Ask the movers for an estimate in writing, and request for a personal copy. The estimate must reflect all charges involved in the move. You and the movers must sign for it to be a deal. The estimate must reflect the payment method and indicate a date. Always try to get a Binding Estimate, Non-Binding estimates leave a lot of room for price hikes and changes. Secure yourself by getting a fixed binding estimate.
If you find anything you don’t understand in the estimate, ask for clarifications. If you still don’t understand after clarifications don’t sign. Only sign when you understand every aspect of the estimate.
Will there be any additional fees or charges?
Some moving companies ask for additional fees, while some others have hidden fees. Movers ask for additional fees for different reasons, mostly based on the mover’s mode of operations.
Some movers may ask for additional fees for long-distance move across places that are difficult to access. Movers may request for additional fees for moving delicate items that involved a third party. Or if the truck is parked far from your residence, and it takes longer distance and time to load.
Some movers have hidden charges which you may not be aware of. Ask the movers you intend to hire about their hidden charges and additional fees if they have any. Know exactly what you’re in for before you sign any deal.
Will your items stay and be delivered on the same truck?
If you intend to make a long distance move, some movers may transfer your belongings to another truck to complete the move. Such transfers increase the risk of loss and damage to household goods.
Ask the movers you intend to hire about their mode of operations for long distance moves. If you’re not interested in extra transfer of your stuff, you may avoid movers with such policy.
Does the moving company offer Moving Insurance?
The safety of your belongings during the move is important. Find out about insurance from the movers you intend to hire. Most movers offer insurance at extra costs. Most insurance are often based on the weight of your items.
It’s important for you to evaluate the value of your belongings, and what the insurance policy will provide if your items are damaged or loss during the move. Before you opt for a moving insurance, see your home insurance if it offers extra coverage for moving.
Before you hire any movers, find out about the insurance they offer, and what it cost to buy one.
What kind of payment options does the company take?
Before hiring movers, find out about their payment options. Don’t hire moving companies that only accept cash. You may end up with a rogue mover.
In all, observe the response you get when you ask these questions. Compare responses of different movers and make your choice after careful analysis.