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Questions to ask movers

By Relocation.com | Published: Feb 03, 2010 | 22 Comments

When choosing movers, it's important to have them come to your home to give you visual estimates so they can see exactly what you need moved. When they're in your home, it's also important to ask them questions about themselves and the moving company. Here are some to ask them - and the answers you should expect.

  1. How long has the company been around?

    A bad moving company won't stay in business very long, so if it's been around for a decade or more, that's a good sign. Also ask how many moves they do a year - the more they do of something, the better the odds that they're pretty good at it.

  2. How do they price their moves?

    This is a good test of their knowledge of the moving industry, and of their customer service skills. You want someone who explains the often confusing terminology in the moving industry, and not someone who rushes through their explanations or seems to be using insider language in an effort to confuse you. If you don't understand something, ask.

  3. How long have they been giving estimates?

    Experience counts for a lot - it's not easy tallying up the costs for moving quotes, so someone who's relatively new at it, or new to the moving industry, should be a bit of a concern, particularly if they have any problems answering your other questions.

  4. What is my delivery schedule?

    The worst trait in a mover is overpromising, either on price or when you can expect to get your things. You will receive your delivery within a particular time frame, so you should be wary of any moving company that tries to give you an exact date for your items to arrive - there are just too many things that could go wrong to foul those dates. Here's more information on moving company delivery windows.

  5. Does the mover do any repeat work for businesses in the area?

    Most movers have the usual canned references; avoid these. Ask instead if the moving company does repeat work for any area businesses - businesses won't put up with shoddy treatment, so if they use the same mover time and again, that's a great sign.

  6. Are there any extra charges I could face?

    In particular, ask about whether you'll pay for packing materials. A commonly heard complaint is that the moving company overcharged for packing materials that the customer didn't know about. And don't ask about 'hidden costs'. No moving company will admit to the costs being hidden. Instead, they'll say that they're in the contract. So ask to see all of the charges in the contract instead.

  7. How will they handle a challenging or expensive item?

    This is another test of the moving consultant's knowledge, as well as a test of how you can expect to be treated. A thoughtful and complete answer is a good sign that you will be treated thoughtfully during your move.

Comments

By Sandra J Steele,  Sun Oct 3 2010, 10:22
excellent remarks
By Sean Kimbrough,  Thu Jan 27 2011, 12:04
Another question idea: do they have insurance for your contents while in transit and if so, is there a deductible from you.
By Jennifer,  Tue Feb 1 2011, 15:19
When pricing Long Distance Movers always make sure to get a visual estimate. This way you can get a guaranteed quote (at least in does in Indiana...it may vary depending on where you live). It can keep you from having surprise charges on the day of your move. I know people that have paid up to double what they thought their move was going to cost.
By Frankkesselring,  Thu Apr 7 2011, 18:36
Great info!! I disagree with #4 however.. You had better be able to nail down an exact date of delivery!!!! Time, on the other hand is obviously variable. Who wants a mover to say " We'll probably deliver all your worldly possessions sometime next week!!!" That's just unacceptable and leave the mover too much freedom with your money and belongings.
By Shawn Rosa,  Tue Dec 13 2011, 13:32
Make sure the mover is insured!
By Adrian Provost,  Mon Feb 27 2012, 16:32
Excellent post!
By Matie,  Mon Jun 25 2012, 03:40
They ought to be insured
By Bbess,  Tue Jul 3 2012, 11:18
Excellent Information!!! http://bessrentalproperties.com
By Voices Member,  Tue May 14 2013, 15:16
I have a family member who has moved recently. They went to http://www.christoffersonmoving.com/corporate.html and found all they help they needed! I was impressed with how well they were able to help them.
By Walker William,  Tue Jul 9 2013, 08:14
I must say again, I love the moving tips! This way just helps me understand what to do in a certain order. I am going to try it on a local moving company in Chicago, IL. Thanks!

William | http://www.aavailable.com
By averyschlacter32,  Mon Sep 16 2013, 10:32
Thanks for this I've been looking for Orlando Florida moving companies to help me out of my apartment and into a house I've never used an actual moving company before.
By stevenjtrevor,  Tue Oct 1 2013, 18:24
Great suggestions! I'll keep this in mind while I look for long distance movers in Vancouver.
By Voices Member,  Thu Oct 24 2013, 07:11
Thanks for sharing. I would really love to learn more about the local Hartford county movers. You are so right, its important to have them come look at everything to make sure you get the correct pricing information. You tips have helped a lot. http://moveall.com/
By removalsfurniture99,  Fri Nov 22 2013, 22:51
I want to give one suggestion to you that it is also very important to know that the mover is insured or not.
http://www.readymovers.com.au
By Carmen Brodeur- Top 1% Realtor,  Tue Dec 3 2013, 08:29
Great blog post. Thanks!

http://www.TroonRealEstate.com
By thiagodaluz7,  Mon May 12 2014, 14:35
Great questions, I've emailed this to my brother. His family is moving in a month and a half, so they're looking for their movers now. This will be a huge help for them. I think the most important will be getting customer reviews. Thiago | http://www.monarchmessenger1975.com/en/moving_and_5_ton.html
By Julia Carlson,  Fri May 16 2014, 16:43
I have used moving companies many times, but I haven't found a list this great. Finding out how they price their moves is an essential step. You never want to be surprised. http://www.executivemovingsystems.com/long-distance-moving/
By garypuntman,  Tue Jun 17 2014, 13:24
I think these are some great things to keep in mind when choosing a moving company. I will have to keep these in mind while I am making the move to my new house. I really want to hire someone to help me move.
Gary Puntman | http://www.federalmovingandstorage.com
By Tim Johnson,  Fri Jul 11 2014, 09:37
I especially like your point in number 6 about any extra charges. It's great to deal with a company that is honest and open but those are much better specific questions to ask. I'll be sure to add those to my list of things when looking for a company. http://www.firstchoicerelocation.com
By Emily Merrell,  Mon Jul 21 2014, 08:41
I agree that you should always ask if there are any extra charges that you may face. You never know what kinds of things aren't in your contract, and what extra money you could be paying. Also find out how they'll handle challenging and expensive items. We have a grand piano in our home, and I always find out how they're going to get that safely to my new home. http://www.economymoversri.net/Office-Movers-Cranston-RI.html
By garypuntman,  Mon Jul 21 2014, 12:20
I am going to be moving houses soon. I know that I want to find someone to help me with the move. I want to make sure I find a good company. I think that asking questions is a great idea.
Gary Puntman | http://www.allpromoversnh.com/index.php/moving
By Amber Johnson,  Mon Jul 21 2014, 15:03
These are so helpful! Thanks for posting these tips! I've never had to move long distance and my husband and I are moving to a new state. I had no idea where to start or who to hire, but these tips helped me so much! Hopefully we can find a service to help us soon!

Amber Johnson | http://www.midwaymoving.com

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