Moves, from big to small, can be overwhelming. It’s not just your belongings, it’s your entire life, being transported from one home to another. That’s why it’s imperative to select a moving company that will work for you and pay attention to your specific needs.
When you’re in the process of choosing a moving company, make sure you’re asking the right questions. Think of the selection process like an interview. Make a list of your requests and specifications and use this guide to help you determine if the company you’re vetting is right for you and your family.
1. How many years have you been in business?
It’s always key to know how long they’ve been operating. While a long history of service is not a guarantee of high quality, it can help you gauge a moving company’s expertise.
2. Can you share your references for your service?
Reputable moving companies will be happy to provide you with references from past customers. Many will even have online testimonials and reviews on Google, their website or social media accounts. Reviews are quickly becoming the number one way customers choose a service provider. In fact, 84% of people trust reviews more than recommendations from friends.
3. Are you licensed, bonded and insured?
This question may be the most important. To ensure the moving company you select is in compliance with all laws and regulations, ask if they’re classified as Updater Certified. If they are, that means they are licensed and insured with a USDOT Number and be registered with the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration). If they’re not licensed, bonded and insured, we highly recommend looking for another company.
4. What kind of liability coverage do you provide?
Accidents happen. It’s part of life and sometimes, part of a move. Before you hire a moving company, check to see what type of liability coverage options they provide. Whether you’re moving across the street or across the country, a professional moving company should have multiple coverage options for you to choose from. The typical FMCSA options include:
Full Value Protection: “Your mover is liable for the replacement value of lost or damaged goods in your entire shipment…This is the more comprehensive plan available for the protection of your belongings.” The cost of Full Value Protection varies by mover.
Released Value Protection: “The most economical protection available is Released Value, since it is offered at no additional charge. However, the protection is minimal. Under this option, the mover assumes liability for no more than 60 cents per pound per article.”
5. Do you have experience with my specific type of move?
All moves are unique. Maybe you have a very expensive workout bike that needs special care. Maybe you’re moving into a high rise apartment in the middle of Manhattan. Make sure they have experience and will handle your situation with care and expertise. That includes parking restrictions, packaging, having enough crew members, etc.
6. What paperwork do you provide?
Federal law mandates that every mover provide customers with a copy of Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move. If the company you’re talking to does not mention this, it’s a red flag. You should also receive written copies of your Detailed Estimate, Order for Service, Bill of Lading and Inventory forms.
7. How do you charge for your moving services?
Always ask about minimum charges and additional fees before you choose a mover. Long-distance moving charges are usually calculated based on weight and miles. Be sure to ask for a full written description of potential charges and services covered by your moving contract.
8. What services does your estimate include?
And on that note, always verify the details of your estimate before you sign your moving contract. To get the most accurate estimate, you can invite the movers to visually survey your items and get a realistic scope of work before you accept their quote. Also, make sure they understand the distance and any special circumstances before you sign a contract.
9. Do you have questions for me?
Just like a job interview, if the interviewee doesn’t ask questions, then that may be an indication that they’re not fully invested. Your mover should be asking questions about your belongings and creating an inventory of what needs to be prepared prior to moving day. They’re the professionals and are trained to uncover details you haven’t even considered yet.
Ready for a move? We can help you get prepared. Give our team of experts a call today to find out how you can get started.