Taking the right steps to preparing your move makes all the difference between an easy transition into your new home and a moving nightmare. We at Moving On Up, Inc. put together a list of the top 9 things one should do when preparing to relocate with a moving company.
1. Research Your Local Moving Companies.
Rather than submit your contact information to a moving directory and be assaulted by hungry salesmen competing for your business, try to locate movers in your area. We all know how confusing it can be to differentiate from dozens of similarly named moving companies all with similar emails and phone calls. Choosing your own local mover will save plenty of room in your voice mailbox. Familiarize yourself by browsing through company websites and FAQ pages. If you find a few that seem reputable and fair, simply submit a quote and they'll be contacting you. No muss, no fuss.
2. Be as Accurate as Possible with the Items on Your Inventory Checklist.
A fixed estimate is based on what is listed in your inventory. Be very thorough, and if need be, overestimate, so that upon physical inspection you can expect a lower price instead of higher. Any additional items left unnoted will affect the price of your quote.
3. Schedule an In-Home Estimate.
After you have provided your preliminary inventory checklist to a potential mover, arrange for an in-home evaluation of your items for the most accurate quote possible. Be specific and make sure that your inventory list matches that of the movers. If for any reason you decide after the home evaluation to add or remove items, please contact your movers immediately.
4. Try to Schedule Your Move 60 to 90 Days Prior to the Actual Move Date.
Securing a moving truck is first come, first serve. Booking early avoids scheduling conflicts and delays. Moving dates around the end of the month and especially the end of the year book very quickly because many consumers are looking to move days before their lease ends. If this is your situation, try to schedule your move no less than three weeks before you need to move out.
5. Avoid Moving with a Broker.
Brokers habitually outsource your move to other moving companies - without notifying you, the customer. Chances are that you will not be able to contact directly, making customer service frustratingly difficult.
Read more about brokers at the American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA)'s website, www.Moving.org. It discusses all your options prior to your move to prepare yourself for any unforseen mishaps that could happen with your move.
6. Familiarize Yourself with Your Moving Company's Valuation Policy
Check out this very useful article from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), Understanding Valuation and Insurance Options.
7. Invest in Moving Insurance to Protect Your Belongings.
As stated in the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)'s Understanding Valuation and Insurance Options, moving companies offer a basic coverage of no more than 60 cents per pound per article. For example, if your mover lost or damaged a 10-pound stereo component valued at $1,000, you would only receive $6.00 in compensation (60 cents x 10 pounds). For this reason it is very important for you, the customer, to ask for moving insurance for your more expensive or irreplaceable items.
Moving On Up, Inc. uses MovingInsurance.com to cover our customer's valuable items. Please ask about our insurance options when receiving your quote.
8. Discuss Special Accommodations Prior to Pick-Up.
If your delivery address does not have access for a large semi-truck, be sure to discuss this with your movers prior to your move. Moving On Up does not charge additional fees for stairs or elevators, but some companies do, so be sure to mention if there are any.
Additional special circumstances include company packing on pick-up, multiple pick-up locations, and assembling and disassembling furniture, among others. For an in-depth description of unexpected moving situations, please read About.com's article, Extra Charges On Your Moving Bill - What Do They Mean?
9. Thoroughly Read All the Paperwork Given to You By Your Movers.
Don't just Christmas tree through your contract, bill of lading and inventory lists. Be sure to read every document you sign carefully so that what you know about your move matches up with what your moving company knows about your move. Doing so will avoid any confusion or disappointments later. Also be sure to ask about the company's policies, such as how they handle Ready to Assemble (Particle Board) Furniture or boxes Packed by Owner with unknown contents packed in undetermined conditions.
The best prepared customer is the most informed customer. Any reputable company will be more than happy to answer all of your moving questions, so be sure to ask. If you currently are moving with us and have any questions or concerns, please call us at your earliest convenience at (877) MOV-ONUP.