In 2019, Better Business Bureau had over 10,000 negative reviews and complaints regarding movers in the US and Canada. If you don’t want to become one of them, it is essential to know how to choose a moving company before starting the relocation process. Do you want your move to end without any severe problems? If so, read on.
Learning how to find a good moving company must be one of the first items on you relocating to a new state checklist. It is imperative, especially if you are relocating for the first time and have no experience moving cross-country. Choosing a bad team can harm your wallet, belongings, and, most importantly, your psyche. Luckily, to avoid dealing with relocation stress, you only have to follow the relocation tips we prepared for you. They will allow you to move efficiently and safely and ultimately let you enjoy all the good that will come after the move.
Read About the Company’s COVID-19 Policy
Learning how to find a moving company that suits you best is slightly different now than it was two years ago, primarily because of one added step. Nowadays, the first thing you should be concerned about is your health. This is why you should read about everything that relocation teams are doing to make relocations during coronavirus safer.
Many companies have made their COVID-19 policies transparent on their websites. That way, you can inform yourself on whether their staff wears protective gear, respects social distancing and other measures, and so on. If you need more information, don’t hesitate to call customer service and inform yourself further. And if you realize that the company’s doing nothing to prevent the spreading of the virus, avoid doing business with them.
Get to Know the Service Offer
One of the most crucial things when preparing for a move is determining the necessary services. After that, you should make sure that the teams you are considering offer everything you are searching for. Will basic cross-country moving services be enough, or will the help of a professional packer be necessary? And if you opt for packing services, it doesn’t mean everything about that task is taken care of – you also have to decide between partial and full service. And what about storage units? If your new home isn’t move-in ready after the relocation day, you’ll need to get storage services to ensure your stuff is safe until you have a place for it. Make sure your cross-country movers group can provide you with every service you’ll need.
Need to Move Cars? Pick a Team That Can Provide You With Auto Transport and Save Money
Accessibility to storage units is not the only additional service from which you can benefit. If you want to transport the car from state to state, you can choose to contact a separate car shipping company just for that purpose. However, the more convenient option would be to pick one of the relocation companies that can offer you auto transport services on top of relocation. In some cases, that can be a way of saving money on relocation costs. Some relocation teams provide a significant discount if you hire them to ship your car, too. Try to find those during your search.
Ensure Your Relocation Team Has the Equipment to Move Large Items and Appliances
If you are not making a college packing list and want to relocate all of the items in your home, including big and bulky ones, you must get a professional with all the knowledge necessary for the task. The relocation experts will have all the equipment and tools for relocating a piano, and they will know how to move a fish tank without any difficulties and damage. When contacting different companies, inform the representatives if you have any item that demands special attention. Ensure that they have all the gear necessary for relocating them. If not – search for a new relocation team.
Ask Multiple Companies for an Estimate
No matter your reasons to move, every relocation is a highly complex process that needs to be handled by experts. That is why you must put in an effort in finding them. Don’t just accept the first estimate that seems reasonable to you. Instead, ensure to get more than one in-home (or virtual) estimate and compare quotes.
Some people want to save money, and they accept the lowest quote offered, thinking it is all they will be obliged to pay. Then, when relocation day comes, they get informed about all the additional charges. So, don’t chase the lower quotes at all costs. Find the balance between relocation expenses and the quality of service.
Assess the Professionalism of the Company’s Representatives
You can tell much about the team based on the behavior of their representatives. In order to find the best movers, check:
- Punctuality – on the scheduled day for an in-home estimate, pay attention to whether the representative comes at the agreed time or are they late.
- Inventory assessment – if the representative glances over the belongings in your home, it’s a red flag. The best teams will want a detailed evaluation of each room, including storage spaces, and they will want to know what you will or won’t move. You should also be informed about additional charges on time if there will be some. That can be the case if there are some difficulties (plenty of stairs, narrow streets that won’t fit a truck, and so on).
- Provided answers – every reputable team will send a representative who knows all the ins and outs of the business. Don’t bother organizing a move with a team whose representatives answer your questions partially or vaguely.
Have No Doubts That the Team Is Licensed and Insured
When hiring movers, you need to make sure that you won’t fall for any relocation scams. But how to select a moving company that is legitimate? Your safest bet is using the USDOT number. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, an institution that provides relocation teams with this number, is a government body responsible for supervising all actions related to the trucking industry on the territory of the US. Ask the company’s representatives about their USDOT number and look it up on FMCSA’s website to search the mover database. This way, you can get a wide range of information about the team you are interested in, such as:
- The company’s headquarters,
- Their complaint history,
- Registration status (alongside information about license and insurance),
What About Your Relocation Insurance?
If you want to have a completely stress-free move, know that each mover must provide you with Mandatory Liability Coverage. In the case of a damaged item, your loss will be compensated with 60 cents per pound of damaged goods. However, Full Value Protection is a much better option if you want to remain worry-free during the transportation of your belongings. With this policy, you’ll get a physical replacement for an item or the money that equals the total value of an object. When choosing among various companies, search for ones that offer this option.
Avoid Movers With Bad Reviews
Don’t make one of the most common relocation mistakes of not going any further than the company’s website. Remember – wise men learn by other men’s mistakes; fools by their own. When relocating to a new state, try to find other people’s experiences with different relocation teams. Start with word of mouth – ask your friends, family, or even real estate agents for a recommendation.
Then, you can post questions on various forums and social media and get tips from others. It may help you separate fraudsters from honest teams. Aso, ensure to visit independent sites, such as Yelp, for more reviews. If a team has more bad reviews than good ones, don’t hire them. Many people realize only on their relocation day that they are dealing with a dishonest team – try not to be one of them. Look for clues before it’s too late!
The Better the Reviews on BBB, the Safer the Move to the New Home
BBB is a nonprofit organization that helps people all around the US (and Canada and Mexico) search for businesses they can trust. BBB receives information on various companies (both recommendations and complaints) and posts ratings based on it. Don’t forget to check ratings before you start planning a move to a new city.
Are you curious to find out more about BBB? If so, check out the video below:
A Few More Useful Tips on How to Avoid Scammers
A relocation team can have seemingly stellar reviews but end up being a fraudulent one. That is why you have to look for some other red flags. So you don’t fall victim to a relocation con, here are things you must pay attention to:
- Never pay with cash – this type of payment is untraceable. Also, never agree to large cash deposits when moving across the country. It’s not unusual for alleged movers to disappear after you give them a large untraceable payment.
- Search for the company’s physical location – a team with their building and office is probably not a scamming one. When visiting their office, take a look at relocation trucks. If they have the company’s logo on them, it’s a sign of a trustworthy team.
- Don’t accept quotes based on anything else but inventory weight – your belongings can be loaded so that they occupy much more space than necessary. Scammy relocation teams that charge by cubic foot often use this fact to their advantage.
- Get everything in writing – this way, you will protect yourself from hidden costs.
The Last Step on How to Choose a Moving Company – Trust Yourself (Within Reason)
So you’ve done your due diligence when hiring a cross-country moving company, and it seems excellent on paper, but something just doesn’t feel right? Trust your instincts. After all, this is one more reason to schedule more than one estimate and compare different relocation teams. However, before making a decision based on what your gut is telling you, ensure that your chosen company has the best qualities. Remember, it should possess all the positive attributes we described above. And what happens after you choose? All you are left to do is prepare for movers and enjoy all the benefits of relocation without any worries. We wish you the best of luck!