Simple Tips for Hiring a Reputable Moving Company
By Keith Loria
Moving into a new home is the beginning of an exciting adventure. If you recently completed a home purchase—and have a move on the horizon—ensuring a smooth transition begins with doing your homework and choosing a reputable moving company to safely transport your belongings.
While it’s easy enough to use Google and find dozens of moving companies within your area, you shouldn’t take the hiring decision lightly. After all, we’re talking about all your possessions and you certainly don’t want to entrust them to a company that doesn’t have experience.
A great way to get recommendations? Talk to friends, co-workers and even your real estate agent. You should also look for reviews online and be sure to ask any moving company you may be considering for references.
Once you’ve narrowed it down to your top few choices, have a representative from each company visit your home and give you an estimate. This meeting provides a great opportunity to discuss your expectations and clarify what the moving company is ultimately responsible for transporting. The representative can also explain if there are any materials they’ll need to provide.
If you’re looking for a moving company to help transport items across state lines, the company should have a USDOT number, a unique license number issued by the United States Department of Transportation. This information can easily be found online.
You should also verify that the company is licensed and insured—again, information that can be easily accessed via the Internet. The ProtectYourMove.gov website also provides links to every state’s moving regulations, so be sure to check that out as well.
Another thing you’ll want to pay attention to is the cost. Be sure to keep in mind that the initial rate you were quoted may not reflect the final amount. Do your homework ahead of time by checking to see if gas is included, or if it’s an extra expense calculated once the move is complete. Also pay attention to when you’re planning to move, as weekends and holidays are often more expensive. You’ll also want to establish whether you’ll be paying by the pound or square footage and whether or not there are extra fees if the mover doesn’t arrive on time. When it comes to fees, everything should be worked out in the contract beforehand.
If you have fragile or valuable items that need to be transported to your new home, ask about insurance and replacement policies. And make sure the company you end up choosing is aware of any heavy or unwieldy items, as these ultimately affect the price. If you wait until the day of the move, it’ll be too late to do anything regarding any extra fees that may creep into the equation.
When it comes to hiring a moving company, it’s crucial that you don’t wait until the last minute to begin looking as many movers are often booked months in advance.
Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2013. All rights reserved.