Finding the Right Moving Company - Stress Free!
The "art" of choosing a reliable moving company...period.
Choosing a good moving company is difficult. Everyone has heard horror stories from friends or family members about disreputable companies. The hardest task is choosing the moving company that's right for you - taking into account your own personal preferences. Most moving companies offer a wide range of additional benefits beyond their basic services. These can include packing, the sale or hire of packing materials, as well as unpacking and storage facilities. Some companies will even pack your possessions, transport them, clean your new home, unpack your possessions and arrange them at the other end according to your instructions.
Major Moving Companies
- U-haul is the choice among do-it-yourself movers, with more than 14000 locations in all 50 United States and Canadian provinces
- Allied is an industry leader with more than 400 agent locations throughout North America.
- Nationwide specializes in household moves, international moves and office relocations as well as storage.
- Ryder offers moving truck rentals, truck leasing, supply chain management,logistics management, load management and more.
- Budget provides great value, nationwide dealer locations and superior service to all do-it-yourself movers, including students, companies and more.
Online search agencies can help you with the task of finding the right moving company for your moving job. Start with sites like TopMovingCompanies.com, MoversDirectory.com, Movers.com, 123Movers.com, Door-to-Door.com and Epinions.com to assist you in price and service comparisons.
As a guideline, choose your moving company at least 4-8 weeks before your moving day. Leave it too long and you'll find that the good companies are fully booked and you'll have less choice in the matter. It's far better to choose and book your company as far in advance as possible. Remember that movers are often busy at the end of the month, on Fridays and on weekends, and may charge more for these premium times. Many will tell you that they have certain quiet days - such as Mondays - they may even be prepared to offer you a discount to move during their less busy periods. It's always worth asking!
To make the best choice, you need to think about what you want from a move - and the first thing you should do before contacting moving companies is to make a quick checklist of what you need them to do. This list will help you get the best quotes, as you'll be able to be very exact about your needs. Another good way to find a reliable moving company is by recommendation or reputation. If someone you know has had a good experience then follow their lead! Many people simply pick a moving company from a Yellow Pages type directory. Others may simply choose a known name - i.e. a national company - and others may opt for a smaller local company. In all cases, it's especially wise to choose companies that have taken the time and trouble to become accredited members of a moving association or trade body. You can assume from this that they take themselves seriously and you can probably do the same too. They will probably have to adhere to certain standards and you'll have recourse to action if you do have problems.
You do still need to be careful, however. If a local moving company successfully moved your mother-in-law across town, they won't necessarily have the skills, resources and experience to move you internationally, for example. Talk to neighborhood realtors or estate agents - they should be able to give experienced and knowledgeable recommendations. If you're looking to move relatively close to home then a quick and easy way to spot local companies is to notice moving vans in your area. You'll see the vehicles of certain movers time and time again, and you can take some comfort from the fact that they are busy and reliable.
When it comes to costs, you should be looking to get at least 2-3 quotes before you make a decision. Don't just look at price but look at what will be offered for the cost. It may be more cost effective to pay a little more to get more services. Don't be afraid to ask about how long the moving company has been in business, their experience or for customer referrals. Talk to them about how long it will take to move you. Be sure to ask them about their insurance coverage and claims protection, as well as how far it extends (and doesn't!). You should NEVER choose a moving company that doesn't have adequate insurance.
It's also important to get a quote in writing and to make sure that you completely understand how the quotation works. This is one of the times in your life when it really does pay to read the small print. For example, some moving companies won't cover you for damage if you pack goods yourself unless they play an obvious role in damaging them. You must make sure that they not only explain your quote to you but that you get a full copy that includes any relevant terms and conditions. Once you have read through the quotes, you'll be ready to make your choice. You may simply choose on cost or may prefer to go with the company with which you feel most comfortable.
Once you've made a decision you'll probably be asked to sign some kind of confirmation that outlines your agreement. This is always a good idea, as all parties then know where they stand. All you need to do now is get ready for your moving day - just don't forget to give your movers a call a few days ahead of time to confirm your arrangements!
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