6 Tips On Choosing a Mover
Buying a new home is stressful enough. But once you’re offer is accepted, and you’ve set the closing date, it’s time to choose someone to move all your stuff. Borrowing neighbor Bob’s pickup truck to move everything yourself is one thing. But, trusting relative strangers, i.e. a moving company, to treat your personal treasures with the respect and kindness you would exercise yourself is another.
Here are a few tips on choosing a moving company:
- Get Recommendations. Surely you have friends who have moved in the last year, or so. Pick their brains. Find out whom they used and what their experiences were like. Did they drop the piano? Were there scratches in the dining room table? Did they follow your directions? Was the final cost what you expected? Did they hold to their original time frame? Was their cost competitive?
- Do a background check. These days it’s easy to check the track record of just about any business or person. But it’s also a good idea to check with your local Better Business Bureau to see if any complaints have been filed, that is if they’re a member. You can also check with the American Moving and Storage Association to see if they’ve been following their guidelines.
- Get estimates. Seems like simple advice, but you’d be surprised at how many homeowners hire the first mover with whom they talk. Do your research and ID the top three movers on your list. Invite them to your house so they can prepare an estimate and make sure that it’s in writing, that it’s binding and that it’s signed and dated by the prospective mover. Also make sure they provide a list of what they will be moving, the distance to your new home, a schedule for packing and delivering and any additional services they will provide as well as any additional costs for which they might charge. And make sure the moving company is bonded.
- Get details. You want to be sure you’re not talking with a fly-by-night operation. And, if you’ve gotten recommendations from friends, they’re probably not. Be sure to get the full name of the mover, their address, contact information, DOT and Motor Carrier license numbers.
- Compare apples to apples. Make sure all your estimates cover the same services. If they don’t, have them revise their estimates so you’re able to compare the exact same services. If you receive an extremely low estimate, remember the old adage, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” And if you receive an estimate that seems really high, find out from where the extra costs are coming.
- Check the terms. Most movers require payment upon delivery. If they ask for a large deposit or full payment in advance, be skeptical and dig deeper as to why. If they require full payment in advance, run as fast as you can.
It’s extremely important to choose a mover you can trust, and whom you know will perform as they say they will. Take the time to do your homework.
At Chris Hounchell & Associates, our clients have worked with most of the reputable movers in the Tampa-St. Petersburg area. We’ll be pleased to provide you with a list of trusted movers you can call for a free estimate. Call, 727-642-9107 or contact us for our recommendations.
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