The countdown to moving day has already begun and the idea of hiring movers seems like the next logical step for you. And then nagging doubts and troubling questions start to creep in: Is hiring movers expensive? Is hiring movers worth it? How does hiring movers work?
Hiring professional movers can be a bit confusing, especially if you’re planning on using a moving company for the first time. The thing is that you’re just not sure what to expect, that’s all. Or maybe you’re just unsure where to start looking for a good moving company in the first place?
In such a case, pay attention to our advice on hiring movers: learn what to know when hiring movers for your upcoming move.
1. Hiring movers vs. doing it yourself? You’ve got it!
One of the things you have to know before hiring movers is whether the decision to use the services of relocation experts is the right one under your specific house moving circumstances. Which is the better option for you: to pay movers to pack up and move your household items to the new address or to rent a truck and move your stuff with the help of several loyal friends?
From a financial point of view, moving by yourself is not recommended when you’re moving long distance across the country. Why? The distance factor becomes too important to ignore, and with hundreds or thousands miles to cover, the risk factor comes quickly into play as well. Why would you pay more and risk damage to your stuff while driving a big rental truck through unknown territories? You’d also have to ask your friends for a favor, remember?
On the other hand, moving across the street, across town, or to a neighboring city or town is a moving scenario where organizing and executing a self-move could actually work out well for you.
Get familiar with the benefits of hiring professional movers so that you can have a safe, smooth and affordable move.
2. Getting estimates matters more than you think
You’ve decided to go with the pros. So far, so good. Now what? Have you started searching online for tips for hiring the best moving company? Here’s a good tip: start your hunt for reputable movers by first getting price estimates and then comparing those movers quotes.
What you need to know about hiring movers is that the estimates you will receive will give you all or almost all the required info to make the right choice? Why? Moving cost estimates are not just about quoting prices because they should come after a physical inspection of the things you intend to relocate. And such in-home surveys, performed by experienced moves under your request, will also include additional services, extra fees and charges, including first-hand risk assessment to make moving day as safe as possible.
Request on-site surveys from several reputable moving companies to increase your chances of finding the right mover for you. Use the opportunity to ask the moving company representatives any relevant questions that you find especially important. After the inspection, you will receive written cost estimates that should include any additional services required for the completion of the job.
IMPORTANT: DO NOT agree on getting moving estimates over the phone or via e-mail because they will not be accurate.
3. Researching your movers cannot be stressed enough
Finding reputable movers for your own home move is the key to your relocation success. Sure, trustworthy moving companies do exist but they are not that easy to find… unless you’re willing to spare some time and put some effort into researching the movers you got in touch with. In most of the cases, it comes down to doing your homework in advance to avoid potential troubles and headaches.
Follow these 5 steps to select the best-rated national moving companies:
- Compare the received cost estimates. Disregard any quotes that are too good to be true. Pay special attention to the extra services included.
- Check the movers’ online reputation by reading customer reviews on trustworthy moving reviews websites. See how former customers rated the services of the companies you’re reviewing.
- All interstate moving companies must be licensed by the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT). Properly licensed movers receive USDOT numbers as proof of their legitimate business.
- All reputable moving companies appear to be members of the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA) – the national trade association for the professional moving industry. Also, trustworthy movers are proud members of the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
- Finally, you may choose to ask your circle of friends if they are familiar with any of the movers and can recommend one over the other.
Read also: What mistakes to avoid when hiring movers?
4. There will always be good ways to save money when hiring movers
Now that you know how to find a good moving company, it’s time to take advantage of several proven cost-saving tricks to save money when hiring movers. After all, the moving home is an expensive affair and every money-saving tip will matter in the end.
- Your effective comparison of moving companies and their price offers will enable you to select the most reasonably-priced offer – the one that fits your budget. A cost estimate that is way too low may be a sign of moving fraud – see below for more information.
- Know exactly what you will be moving by creating a detailed home inventory. What to consider when hiring movers is that the more items you plan to take with you, the more money you will pay in the end due to the increased transportation costs. That inventory of yours will help you get rid of unwanted or useless stuff prior to the packing task.
- When you’re hiring a moving company, one excellent way to reduce the moving cost is to pack by yourself all the items that you think you can protect for the journey ahead. Usually, clothes, shoes, bed linen, books and small furniture pieces can be self-packed safely enough. Why pay for professional packing services for stuff you can pack yourself, right?
You’re welcome: How to save money when moving /surefire cost-saving tips/
5. Not all movers have your best interest in mind
It’s important to know what to expect when hiring movers because an unpleasant surprise would be the last thing you need during one of life’s most stressful events. And this is why you must be aware that there are also unscrupulous movers out there – dishonest movers who are only trying to scam people like you.
If you do the homework described above, then you shouldn’t worry about becoming a victim of moving fraud – you should be safe the minute you check the moving companies with the Department of Transportation, the AMSA, and the BBB. Still, to be even safer, here are a few major red flags when hiring movers:
- You get a low-ball estimate – a price quote that is deliberately much lower than a standard one in order to bait unwary customers.
- A mover won’t do an in-home survey – why wouldn’t they? The truth is that both parties will benefit from an accurate moving estimate issued after a physical inspection of a client’s home.
- You are asked for a large advance payment – a deposit is supposed to book your move date during the height of the moving season but it should be no more than 10-15% of the estimated price.
- You are asked to sign blank or incomplete documents – NEVER DO IT.
Must-read: What are the red flags of moving fraud?