Choosing A Moving Company – Part 2

Published on 3/7/2024

Summer will be here before you know it, which means if you’re planning a change of residence this year — whether it’s across town or across the country — this would be a great time to start planning your move. One of the biggest decisions you’ll need to make is which moving company to sign on with, assuming you’re not planning to do all that loading and hauling yourself.

 Closed green storage units at Volunteer Mini Storage

If you missed our last blog post, we recommend that you go back and read it first. It lays out several important factors to consider when researching and narrowing down your selection. But that’s just the start. Which is why we’re back this time around with even more tips and strategies for choosing the mover that will do the best job of getting your possessions from point A to point B reliably and safely.


Before we get to those remaining steps, however, we’d like to start by laying out a few caveats, signs to keep an eye out for that could signal that you’re getting mixed up with an unreliable company.


• Bids that seem too low. The old adage about things being too good to be true exists for a reason. A super-low bid could be sign that the movers either don’t understand the scope of your project or that they’re willing to cut corners. Or it could flat-out be a scam to lure you into surprise costs later in the move.


• Large deposits. A reliable mover should charge no more than 20 percent of the total estimated cost up front. It’s even better when the company doesn’t require the full payment until after the move. However, if you must make a large deposit, put it on a credit card; never pay with cash.


• Unprofessionalism. Watch out on the front end for signs of unprofessional behavior, such as showing up late to provide an estimate or a surly or condescending demeanor on the part of employees. Finally, check the company address to see if it’s listed under a residential or commercial address. Be suspicious of a moving company based out of a residence.


Now, let’s continue with more recommendations for choosing a mover, picking up with where we left off in the last post:


7. Trust your gut


Once you’ve done your research, you’ll wind up considering things like price, online reviews, years of experience, etc. But in the end, you’ll need to trust your gut. No two people will evaluate a set of candidates the same, so pick the mover that you reasonably think will be best for the job.


8. Get everything in writing


Once you’ve chosen your mover, get all their pricing and terms in writing. Different companies use different types of contracts, so make sure you understand all the terms. Is the pricing firm? Are there overage contingencies? When is the payment due? Also make sure to review the company’s insurance policy. What does it cover or not cover? If necessary, pay for extra coverage if you’re transporting particularly valuable items. 


9. If something goes wrong


Options include filing a complaint with the Better Business Bureau, the American Moving & Storage Association and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. If that doesn’t give you satisfaction, you may, unfortunately, need to retain the services of an attorney.


But hopefully, if you follow the steps we’ve outlined in choosing a mover, your relocation will be as smooth as silk.