Some people think that hiring a moving company is complicated and not worth the effort and possibility that they could get scammed. While it’s true that some companies simply exist just to take your money, there are certain steps you can take to avoid becoming a victim and get your belongings to your new place damage-free and on time. Here is a list of the best tips to make the hiring process easier.
1. Get other people’s opinions. Everyone has moved at one point or another and many of them have probably hired professional mover to help them make their move. Ask your friends and family members to recommend companies as a way to begin your search.
2. Research companies before contacting them. Take the list of companies given to you by your friends and family members and do some basic research on them. Contact your local Better Business Bureau to see if there are any complaints against the companies that have not been satisfactorily resolved. Also call or email the American Moving and Storage Association to see whether or not the companies belong to the organization. If they do, this means they have agreed to certain rules as determined by the organization.
There are certain sites on the Internet that serve as watchdogs of the moving industry. They maintain a list of companies that have histories of complaints, particularly those that are unresolved. These sites include movingscam.com and ripoffreport.com.
3. After you have performed basic research on your initial list of companies, narrow your choices down to three companies you want to get estimates from. Contact each company and ask if you can get a binding estimate. If at all possible, avoid companies that refuse to give binding estimates because their final bills are often much higher than their estimates. Be prepared to pay for a binding estimate because it is legal to do so, but most companies give them for free.
4. Be sure to show the companies’ representatives everything you want moved when they come to give an estimate. Open your closets, show them your storage space, and take them into the attic if necessary. The reason for this is that the movers can challenge the original estimate on moving day if they think you have many more belongings to move than you presented when the representative cam to your house. If it comes down to this, you probably won’t have any choice but to allow them to charge you extra because, after all, you have to move. Be sure to also tell the representative about any special challenges at your new home, such as stairs or elevators that could make the move more complicated.
Always find out how long the company has been in business and whether or not they will contract out your job to a subcontracting mover. At a minimum, get the full name of the company; the company’s address, contact numbers, email address, and website address; references; USDOT and MC license numbers; and the booklet published by the United States Department of Transportation entitled “Your Rights and Responsibilities When you Move”.
These four steps will get you on the right path toward selecting a reliable and reasonably-priced moving company. While there are more steps you can take, the four presented here will go a long way in making your move more pleasant.