Several of my friends and family members are planning to move in the next few weeks, so it’s no surprise to me that summer is considered the busiest moving season. If you or someone you know is also planning a move, check out my 5 steps for making your move as smooth as possible…
(1) Plan Ahead and Take Inventory – 6-8 weeks in advance is ideal, to give you enough time to find a mover you like and be able to book them in time. To begin, take inventory of your belongings. You’ll need to tell the moving company the number of pieces of furniture and the number of boxes you need them to move so they can accurately estimate what size of truck and how many movers you’ll need at a time.
(2) Research At Least 3 Companies – It’s really important to compare at least three different moving companies. Great questions to ask when researching these 3 companies are:
-How many movers will they send to help me? How long do they expect it will take and does this fit with my schedule?
-Do they charge per hour or per item moved or both?
-How long have they been in business? Do they have a history of keeping customers happy? Check out their BBB Business Review to view their complaint history.
-Are they BBB Accredited, ensuring they are a business I can definitely trust?
-Do they have insurance options for me or a plan to resolve things if there is any damage to my items?
(3) Get At Least 3 Price Quotes – This is definitely the most confusing part about hiring movers. Most moving companies will offer you a rate per hour, and also a rate per item. Which is better??
-On one hand, the hourly rate can be ideal if you are only moving a short distance with a small amount of items. If you go this route, be sure to find out how many people the company plans to send for your move. You can imagine that 5-6 people could probably finish your move in 2-3 hours, but it may take 2 people the entire day!
-On the other hand, the rate per item may be attractive if you’re living or moving to a home or apartment complex that has a lot of stairs or if you’re making a long distance move.
Either way, talk about these options with each company and compare at least 3 different offers to be sure you get the price and the rate that is best for you. My advice? Check out BBB’s Request a Quote – where you can directly email BBB Accredited moving companies and instantly ask them to get in touch with you to provide a price quote. It makes this price comparing process a LOT faster!
(4) Verify You Have Insurance – BBB gets a lot of complaints from consumers who had damage done to their items during a move and they want the moving company to pay for the repair or replacements. Take note that the company isn’t likely going to accept the responsibility for these items, but they will usually have some type of insurance set up to protect them from this situation. Find out in advance what their insurance covers to determine if you’d like to purchase more insurance on any specific items you highly value.
(5) Get Your Agreement in Writing – When you decide which moving company you want to hire, make sure you have a written contract that outlines the timeline, all applicable deposits and fees, cancellation, refund and damage policies as well as any other agreements decided upon by you and your mover.
What’s been your experience with hiring movers?