Moving can sometimes give you a hard time. It is an expensive and long project, especially if you are having a long-distance move. If you do not plan everything ahead it can be pretty stressful as well. And no one needs additional stress during the move. So, making a good, water-tight plan is essential for a successful relocation. But, there is more to worry about. If you are relocating to another State or moving abroad, you will need to find good professionals. What you need to know is that hiring long distance movers is not an easy thing to do. Even though there are many moving companies out there, not all of them will suit your needs. Therefore, you need to focus your attention on finding the best. In order to do that, you will need to know which criteria to use for such a pursuit. And this article will help you with that.
But before we start with tips and tricks for hiring the best long distance movers, you need to think about how to move without problems. That means you will need to put a lot of effort into actual planning and research. What is important to realize is that extensive research will take some time, and it is highly recommendable to do it the right way. That is why you need to start on time. If you think that you’ll do it fast or want to do it along the way – you could make yourself a big problem. And that is the last thing you need during this big undertaking. So clean up your schedule, arm yourself with patience, and do not let anything or anyone disturb you. If you do this properly, you can be sure that you will cover every aspect of moving.
Where to start in order to find the best long distance movers?
The best way to start is with detailed planning, of course. But, this means you need to know what you are actually planning. So before you start your pursuit, you need to get familiar with the characteristics of good and reliable long distance movers. Once you start looking for a decent moving agency, you will see that offer is quite big. And not all those companies are suitable for long-distance moves. Some movers are eligible only for local moves, or some other moving-related service. And some of them are actually not qualified for any kind of relocation.
Unfortunately, there are many fraudulent moving companies out there with only one goal – to steal your money. We will give you some good inputs on how to recognize and avoid them later on. Now, let’s focus on explaining different types of moving services in order to get a clear picture of what you actually need.
Speaking about types of moving services, there are three general distributions:
- Moving types based on the distance of relocation
- Relocation types based on the category of the items
- Other moving-related services
We will go roughly through all these distributions so you can be able to define your requirements. Once you define your needs, you will be able to find what you need without any confusion. Let’s start.
Moving types based on the distance of relocation
When it comes to the distance there are two types of relocation. Local moves and Long-distance moves. While the first one is a very common type of move and implies moving within the same city or two close towns, long-distance moves are not that usual. That is because the cost of moving to another State is higher and this kind of move is much more complex. Additionally, long-distance moves should be handled by trained professionals and experienced truck drivers.
What is important to realize is that a moving company which has long-distance moving service in its offer must have a local moving service as well. If movers did not master local moving, they can’t upgrade their portfolio to long-distance moves. This should be one of the things you need to check when hiring long distance movers.
Relocation types based on the category of the items
Speaking about the type of items being relocated, moving can be commercial or residential. Residential move implies relocation of personal goods, usually home or apartment relocation. On the other hand, commercial or business move is a type of relocation that implies moving of office items. It is usually used for establishing a new office in a different city, or relocation of current business equipment to a new working space. While residential moving doesn’t require any special equipment, commercial moving should be performed with specialized equipment as some of the items can be really big or delicate.
And there is no place for mistakes in commercial moving. Any kind of damage to a business equipment can mean delaying business which can have a huge profit loss as a consequence. That is one of the main reasons why there are not as many commercial movers compared to residential ones.
Other moving-related services
You will see that movers’ offer can sometimes include moving-related services such as:
- Cleaning and Waste removal
- Storage services
These are services that clients are using for their pre-move or post-relocation activities. For example, you can ask movers to help you with a calculation of the cost of international relocation. Or you can hire them to clean your old place, remove any waste and prepare it for selling. Sometimes, people need extra storage for their seasonal belongings or extra items. Moving companies often recognize this kind of needs and they expand their offer. So, do not be surprised if you see one of these at movers’ website. Not only can it imply that those movers are really good, but it can be of big help during your relocation.
How to recognize high-quality long distance movers?
Moving industry is getting bigger with every day. Many are trying their luck in this business, so it is not strange to see new movers on the market every day. Even though it can make other movers become better as the competition is getting bigger, there is a negative side as well. And that is low quality of certain moving agencies. That is why you need to be able to recognize movers that have a lot of experience, many satisfied clients and know what they are doing. If you are about to spend a lot of money on the move, then you need to hire only top-notch long distance movers.
Luckily, there are some features that every good and reliable moving company has. If movers you are investigating have all of those, you know that you are on a right path. But these characteristics are not the only indicators of good movers. You always need to try to find out whatever you can before you make the final decision. Here are some things that movers you hire must have.
License and Insurance
These two things are essential. First, every moving agency must be licensed for the job. This means they are registered within the national database of licensed movers in the USA. Good news is that you can easily check this on the website od US Department of Transport. Once a moving company registers, they get a unique DOT number. If you ask for this number and check it on the USDOT website, you can continue to consider hiring that company.
The second thing is insurance. Pay close attention to this, as it is really important. In case of any unfortunate case of events, an insurance policy will cover any damage that occurred during transport. As long-distance moves can last a couple of days, you will not be able to oversee the whole transportation process. In order to sleep tight during relocation, make sure long distance movers you hire have insurance. Even if you need to pay extra for this, do it. That expense is nothing compared to the damage that can happen. Better safe than sorry, don`t you think?
Proof of experience
You only want to hire long distance movers that did this type of job many times in the past. To make sure they did, ask for some proof of experience in the business. This can be a list of previous clients or portfolio document. It is very important to get some sort of contact in order to double-check these facts. Do not get lazy – make sure you call a few persons from that list. If they were satisfied, they will most certainly answer any question you might have.
After you make those calls, go to the website of that moving company. More precisely, find Testimonials section where you will be able to see stories from their previous clients. After you read those testimonials, proceed to moving-related internet forums. These are unbiased places where people are sharing their experience with moving companies they hired in the past. If you can find the name of the company you want to hire – perfect. This will give you an insight into their quality and business ethics.
The best thing you can do in order to check movers you are considering to hire is to find someone who hired them before you. Ask your friends, neighbors or colleagues to help you with this. The more people you engage, the better are your chances that you will find someone to help you. This is probably the best way to get to know your long distance movers.
How to choose the perfect long distance movers after you narrow down your options?
Once you narrow your search, you will have a few options to choose from. You can’t make a final decision based on the knowledge you got so far. You need to organize some kind of a test to see which long distance movers are the best ones for you. The first thing to do – call them. This is to see whether they are polite and attentive. Good movers will appreciate every business opportunity and will do everything in their power to get new clients.
Ask for an in-house estimate
Even though every moving company will try to give you an estimation over the phone, you need to ask for an in-house estimation. This means that they need to send their representative to make a detailed list of all the belongings you want to relocate. Not only is it the best way to get a precise offer, but you will get an opportunity to meet your movers in person. If they try to avoid this kind of estimation, you need to insist and be persistent. If by any chance they refuse to make an in-house estimate, you need to re-think your options.
Never accept the first offer you get from long distance movers
Ok, this is really important. Your task is to get at least three different quotes for your move. If you hire the first movers that give you an offer, you can overpay for the service. Once you collect at least three offers, sit down and carefully compare them to the last detail. Once you do that, you will see where the differences in prices are and you should use that to make a leverage for your negotiations. Good long distance movers will always try to beat their competition. You will most likely manage to lower the final price and cut your moving expenses.
Avoid fraudulent moving companies
Just like in any other business, moving scams are not an unusual thing nowadays. There are reports of frauds and scams every day, and you need to be careful not become a part of that statistic. Even though these fraudulent companies are using different tricks in order to steal your money, it is actually not that hard to recognize them. Most usual tricks are to ask for a huge deposit in advance or promising unreasonably low fares and relocation time for your belongings. Additionally, these scammers can usually be found on the internet forums mentioned earlier. Just be extra careful, use your common sense, and ask around. You know what usual prices and timeframe for long-distance moves are, and if you stick to those, you will have no problem avoiding fraudulent long distance movers.