If you are planning a long distance move, there
are various important questions to ask any company before enlisting their
services. Traveling hundreds of miles with your most prized possessions in tow
will require a lot of trust, so you want to make sure the movers are efficient,
professional, reputable, and skilled. When considering long distance movers for
your relocation, remember to always ask these essential questions before booking
How is pricing determined?
Probably the main question on your
mind, cost is often a major deciding factor when booking a move. While you
certainly want to find a good price and stay within your budget, automatically
hiring the cheapest movers
can often spell disaster. You want
to ensure your moving company is not only affordable, but reliable.
long distance move, moving companies will charge you based on the volume of your
goods and the distance you are traveling. However, there are various other fees
you may incur, depending on the services
you require and the company's policy. When you are receiving your in-home estimate
, it is imperative to inquire about the
extra fees you may have to pay. Be sure to divulge any and all information about
your move, your belongings and the layout of your home for the most accurate
quote (for instance, don't neglect to inform your move about the old bedroom set
in the attic you need disassembled).
Services movers may charge you extra
- Stair carries. You may charged extra based on the amount of stairs in
your home that the movers will have to lug boxes and furniture up and down.
- Long carries. If the distance from your front door to the moving
truck exceeds a certain distance, you may be charged for a long carry.
- Packing services and/or materials. If you would like the movers to
tackle the packing tasks for some or all of your goods, you will be charged
extra. You also be charged additional fees for any packing supplies used in your
move, including blankets and shrink wrap used to protect furniture.
- Furniture assembly/disassembly. Need help taking apart your
entertainment center or setting up your kids' bunk beds in your new home? These
services are often not included in a general moving quote.
- Storage. Will your goods arrive at your destination before you? You
may need temporary storage to keep your shipment safe. Many moving companies
have storage facilities available for an extra monthly charge.
Is your company licensed?
All interstate moving companies are
required to be registered with a US DOT number
so they can be regulated by the FMCSA
. Before booking your move, ask the company for their
number so that you can verify it on the FMCSA website. You can also check their
profile to see if they have any outstanding complaints from dissatisfied
customers and read their reviews. Any company that does not have a US DOT number
could be a rogue mover
and should not be trusted to avoid falling victim
to a moving scam
What is your experience?
Before choosing any company for hire, you want
to ensure they are trustworthy and reputable. Asking the company representative
about their experience handling moves can give you a better idea of their
ability and reputation. How long have they been operating? Are they accredited
by the Better Business
? What is their rating? Can they provide you with references from
satisfied customers? You should always back up any information you receive about
the company's history with your own research--verify their BBB rating and
profile, read online reviews, and verify their US DOT number on the FMCSA
If you require any special services, such as
packing/wrapping/disassembly of specialty items such as pianos, pool tables,
grandfather clocks, artwork or antiques, be sure to ask about the company's
experience with their handling and transport.
What kind of estimates do you provide?
There are three different
types of estimates provided by moving companies--binding
, and binding not-to-exceed
. A binding estimate is just that--cannot
be changed even if your goods exceed the weight guessed by your movers. On the
other hand, a non-binding estimate can be changed to reflect a higher or lower
final price--but it cannot be raised more than 10 percent of the original quote.
The most favorable estimate for the customer is a binding-not-to-exceed
estimate. This type of estimate cannot be raised even if your shipment turns out
to heavier than expected, but the movers can lower your final bill if your load
winds up being lighter.
How will my goods and home be protected?
Everything you own will
be traveling a long way to your new home. You are entrusting the safety of your
most fragile and valuable belongings to your moving company, so it is important
to ask what measures they will take to protect them. Ask about packing
procedures, materials, and preventative methods taken to ensure the safe arrival
of your goods.
You should also ask about how the movers intend to protect
your home. They will be in and out, lugging heavy furniture and boxes up and
down stairs, through doorways, and across expensive carpeting and hardwood
floors. Most moving companies lay down protective covering to shield your home
from dirt and damage. Ask about these policies (and any possible associate
What type of insurance coverage is offered?
unfortunate does occur, it is a good idea to have your shipment insured
. The standard liability coverage
moving companies are legally required to offer is known as Replacement Value
Protection. Under this minimal coverage, your movers are only responsible to
reimburse you for lost or damaged goods at a rate of $0.60 per pound per
article. This insurance is obviously inefficient for anything of even moderate
value, and you should certainly ask about your additional options. Many moving
companies will offer you what is known as Full Value Protection, which covers
the full amount of replacing or repairing a broken or misplaced item. You may
also have to purchase separate coverage for items considered to be of "extreme
value". Be sure to inquire about all additional insurance options, the extent of
the coverage, and the added cost before choosing any mover.
What is your cancellation policy?
In case of a personal
emergency, you may have to cancel or postpone your move. Many moving companies
will not charge you a fee to reschedule or cancel, but you should always ask
before booking. It is also appropriate to give as much notice as possible,
especially if you plan on arranging your move on a different date--the sooner
you reschedule, the more easily the company can accommodate you.
case of inclement weather, ask the movers about their weather policy. Even if
you feel the weather is suitable for moving day, the movers may cancel if they
believe safety will be compromised. Ask about what conditions will constitute a
canceled move and the process for rescheduling.
When will my shipment arrive?
When traveling cross-country, the movers will
not be driving your shipment nonstop to your destination. Yours good may make a
number of stops, placed temporarily in a warehouse, or switched to different
trucks. Additional delays can be caused by traffic jams, inclement weather, or
mechanical trouble. Delivery can take weeks, and you may have to plan to be
without your belongings for a while.
However, movers can usually provide
you with an expected delivery date so you can make any necessary arrangements.
This date may fall within a two-week window, so specific guarantees should not
Do you require a deposit?
Most reliable moving companies do not
ask for a deposit when booking your move. This could be a red flag for a common
moving scam--you are asked for a deposit and the movers never arrive. If you are
using a broker to receive moving quotes, you should also be wary if a deposit is
requested. At Movers.com, we will connect you up to seven moving from companies
in your area, who will then provide you with FREE, no-obligation quotes! Simply fill out our fast and easy quote form