Moving can be quite a lot to manage on your own, as you could be dealing with tight spaces, tall buildings, limited parking, and more. Having to organize your belongings, change your address and adjust to your new space can be enough on its own, which is why many people choose to hire professional movers so they can focus on all of the other aspects of their move. When choosing a moving company, there are several factors to evaluate. Your initial phone conversations should be enough for you to check if this moving company will be able to meet your needs, especially if you are moving to a different state.
- How do they provide rates and estimates?
When asked for a quote, many companies will guide you to their online moving calculator. Here, quotes are provided on the basis of rate per pound and rate per mile. It is not recommend to hire a company that gives an estimate based on cubic feet. The estimate should be on the basis of weight, especially if you intend to move longer distances. Many moving companies also might provide online moving quotes on a per-hour rate for shorter distances.
- Do they subcontract their jobs?
Many of the larger movers choose to subcontract to smaller companies. In such cases, feel free to get the name of the subcontractor from the company with whom you are speaking, so you can verify who you are working with. If the company uses more than one, ask for the complete list. Any movers with a good track record will not choose to withhold such information and should make it readily available on request.
- Will there be any additional fees?
Find out if there are any additional fees and when do these apply. Some companies may choose to charge extra for fragile items, or if your destination is not easily accessible. To avoid surprises in the final invoice, make a note of any large or fragile items and also make arrangements in advance for parking the moving truck. Also, discuss any possible obstructions such as load or elevator-related restrictions at your new home with your movers. You can then negotiate with your vendor with regards to the charges ahead of time.
- What is their registration number?
Most interstate moving companies in the United States have a valid registration number given by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This number is known as the US Department of Transportation (USDOT) number. If the moving company travels only within the state, chances are that they will not have a registration number.
- Will there be any Additional Transfers?
If you are moving states, many companies transfer your belongings from one truck to another on state borders. This may result in additional risk of damage of your belongings as well as an elevated cost of dealing with two vendors. Before you select your moving company, remember to ask them in advance about how they execute interstate transfers.
Finally, it is important to ask detailed questions about insurance. Most moving companies will provide you relevant insurance policies at an added cost. This is usually based on weight and the value of the goods you intend to transfer. Also, before you purchase any additional insurance, remember to look with your home insurance provider if they offer coverage when making a move. There are also stand-alone moving insurance companies online.