Moving can be stressful! It doesn’t matter if you’re moving across the country or across town, hiring the right moving company is a critical part of making the transition happen smoothly. Moving companies are not cheap, so it’s worth taking the time to do your research and make an informed decision. It’s a big job and you will trust your valuables to the movers. After you sell your house fast and before you just choose someone off the Internet, consider these tips to help you chose the right one.
First the basics:
- Ask for recommendations from friends, family and your real estate agent.
- Be prepared ahead of time. When you meet with the movers, know your time frame and the services you’ll require. Will they need to pack for you? Will they need to store your goods for some period of time? This information will help you get the most accurate estimate from each moving company.
- Get more than one estimate. Find a few reputable companies and ask them to come out to view your household.
- Remember that cost is not the only factor. Ask about timing and extra fees.
- Check references. Ask for the names of past clients who will speak with you about their experiences.
- Keep a file of all your estimates, communications, paperwork, contracts etc. Make detailed notes of verbal conversations about anything that affects the move.
Once you set a date for the movers to come by and give you an estimate, write down your questions. Try to be as detailed as you can about your needs and expectations. Here are a few questions you may want to ask:
What dates are you available to pack, load and move us?
Depending on the size of your household and the timing, you might want to have movers pack on one day and then come back to load and move the next day. Ask the movers what their procedures are for packing so you have the same expectations.
Loading a truck can be time consuming. You need to consider the amount of boxes you’ll have and how many movers will be at the home to load. Most moving companies charge not only by the hour, but also by the person. Clarify how they charge and how many people they will send for your move.
When will you be able to deliver to the new location?
If you are only moving across town, you will most likely be able to schedule the load and delivery for the same day. If the move is a longer distance, then it could be a week or more for the delivery. Regardless of the distance, be sure and ask the movers when they plan to deliver. If you need a wider timeframe, make sure you address any possible storage fees and the manner in which your goods will be stored.
Understand if the delivery date is guaranteed or just an estimate, so you don’t have any surprises.
What is the charge for packing and unpacking?
If you are having the mover pack and/or unpack your belongings, understand how this price is calculated, and again, clarify if the amount in the proposal is an estimate or guaranteed. The price will reflect the amount of time and materials it takes. Make sure you are clear about if or how this charge might change once they are on site.
If you would prefer to do some of the packing yourself, ask how this affects their liability. For instance, if you pack your dishes and they break, will the mover still cover the damage?
Do you offer boxes for my use and what do you charge for them?
You will need boxes for the move. If the moving company does not provide them at a reasonable cost, you can buy boxes at home improvement stores, storage facilities and even online on Craigslist. You may also be able to obtain boxes by posting a request on your local Freecycle Network.
What insurance is provided and what is the cost?
All reputable moving companies offer insurance for your personal goods in the event of damage or loss. Insurance coverage is one of the most important aspects to fully understand as you evaluate moving companies. Ask them to explain the coverage, limitations and exclusions fully and in writing.
You might also find that your home owner’s insurance provides some additional coverage. You’ll need to extend insurance coverage to include any storage time as well.
If you are transporting unusually valuable items, such as artwork, ask about supplemental insurance and what it covers. Ask how to provide proof of value ahead of time so that in the event of a loss, you will have the evidence of value prepared.
Is there anything that cannot be shipped?
Can you ship my car?
Most large moving companies can handle the transportation of your family car. Ask about the cost, as well as the method of shipping. Will the car be enclosed or towed? Address the insurance and value needs for the vehicles at this time as well.
Finding the right movers is a matter of doing your research and asking the right questions. Prepare in advance and then interview a few movers. Don’t forget to check online reviews, such as Yelp, and ask for references. You’re trusting the moving company with your family’s treasures and memories; hire a professional company that will take this move seriously.
Before you call movers though, you may need to sell your house fast first. No matter what the reason for selling your house, call Express Homebuyers first, at (877) 804-5252, for a fair cash offer.