Monthly Archives: April 2016

CHUCK AND TRUCK

Anyone can start a moving company. ??Put an ad on Craig???s List, grab a buddy, and rent a truck.

The government requires moving companies to be licensed with the State???s Department of Transportation (DOT). ??Without a valid DOT number the moving company is breaking the law. ??It is easy to go online and check out a moving company???s DOT number; make sure it is current, view the insurance, view bond filings, and see if there are any complaints.

Do not do business with an illegal moving company. ??Illegal movers is where most of the horror stories come from. ??Criminals posing as movers ready to steal your personal property, hold your belongings hostage, and extort you..

There are a multitude of advantages to dealing with a moving company that is licensed, bonded, and insured.

While there is nothing wrong with a startup that runs their company on the road with a cell phone, lots of one crew operations are run above board. ??Just make sure they have met state requirements and are legal.

When you select your mover, do your research. ??Reputations are gold in the moving industry. ??Reputations take time to earn. ??It takes time and experience to become a good furniture mover.

People are sometimes blinded by a low price. ??If the movers don???t show up, show up late, items get damaged or they increase your move price, what are you doing to tell your friends? ?????When I called the ad on Craig???s List, Chuck said it was going to be $39 per hour.??? ??Your friends will ask how your move went, people are always on the lookout for a good movers.

At the very least hire a legal moving company. ??It is preferred to avoid on the, ???fly by nights??? and hire a company with a reputation to protect.

The illegal small time mover is rarely prosecuted with the laws already on the books. ??They come and go. ??Being a mover one day, picking up side jobs the next. ??Often these companies have no history and are impossible to research. ??You may as well rent a truck, hire some day labors and be your own ???moving company for a day.???

MOVING COMPANIES

There are thousands of moving companies to choose from. ??Some advertize the lowest price, while others emphasize quality of service. ??Some moving companies have been around for over a hundred years, while others just bought their first truck yesterday.

 

You cannot compare moving quotes without comparing moving companies.

 

The reputation of the moving company is the first thing to consider when hiring a furniture mover. ??That is why referrals from friends and family members are so powerful. ??When someone you trust recommends a company, you generally know what to expect. ??Most folks are happy when their expectations are met.

 

People like to do business with people they like and feel they can trust. ??The nice sales woman on the phone that got you such a great ???deal??? is not going to be moving you. ??Don???t let the likeability of a professional salesperson that you will never meet again cloud your judgement. ??You are hiring movers to come into your house and move your family; is the man that did your in-home estimate is probably not going to be on the moving crew?

 

The quality of the moving company and the moving crew is what is important. ??Sales people do not stand behind service guarantees, companies do.

 

Many people have purchased a car because they liked the salesman. ??Many people have gotten stuck with a bad moving company because a charismatic sales associate made them feel at ease.

 

There are lots of questions to ask when considering potential moving companies. ??The top five concerns most families have are:

  1. Is the price competitive?
  2. Will the movers show up on time?
  3. Will my price change once all my stuff is in the truck?
  4. What if something gets damaged?
  5. What is the quality of the moving crew that is working in my home, around my family?

 

Do your research and know what to expect. ??Even though business practices are wide and varied as the company owners; most moving companies fall into seven classes..

PACKING QUOTES

Some moving companies make packing quotes more complex than they need to be. ??There are two sides of the same coin when it comes to packing quotes. ??Packing supplies and the labor used to actually pack the boxes. ??Almost all packing quotes are estimates. ??It is almost impossible to guess just how many boxes will be packed when all is said and done. ??Understanding the quote is essential.

 

Some companies charge hourly rates for the packing crew, and itemize the boxes, tape, bubble wrap, and packing paper used. ??They then charge you full retail for all the packing supplies. ??You wind up paying about the same as if you bought your boxes at U-Haul. ??It is easy to run up a $500 plus bill just for the packing supplies. ??As with all hourly quotes, the quality and speed of the packing crew will affect how long it takes to pack your house, as well as, how much you pay.

 

Some companies charge a flat rate per box packed and still charge you retail for the boxes and packing paper. ??The better moving companies charge a flat rate per box, and include the box, packing paper, tape, and bubble wrap. ??Free packing supplies means you won???t be nickel and dimed over every roll of tape. ??The movers buy the boxes wholesale anyway. ??Free boxes with packing supplies lets you know they are not profiting on the cardboard and the packers are earning their money by providing you with quality service.

 

An itemized packing quote is based on the estimated number of boxes that you will need packed. ??Ask how much any additional boxes would be to pack and if less boxes are packed then quoted, how would that affect the price.

 

Ask about insurance and company guarantees on boxes packed by the movers. ??Boxes packed by the customer normally do not carry the same protection, ???contents unknown???.

 

It is common for people to request a partial pack job, only using the professionals to pack the kitchen and other breakable items. ??Some folks use the packers as a backup plan to pack whatever their friends and family were not able to finish. ??Make sure your packing quote is flexible and you only pay for the work that is actually performed.

 

A by the box flat rate is the best packing quote to get. ??A typical by the box flat rate includes all the supplies: packing paper, tape, bubble wrap, and the box. ??Typical pricing is $7 for 1.5 cubic ft. box, $8 for a 3.1 cu ft. box, $12 for dish packs, $15 for wardrobes, and $10 for picture/mirror boxes. ??Of Course each company sets their own pricing.

 

You can save a lot of money by packing yourself, but if you want to save yourself the stress and hire a professional packing crew, know what your quote includes. ??Never be afraid to ask questions. ??You are the customer, and the moving business is a service industry.

UNDERSTANDING INSURANCE

Liability insurance, cargo insurance, valuation, bonded, in-house guarantee, and 60 cents per pound. ??Trying to understand moving insurance can drive you nearly crazy. ??It is complicated. ??People think that they are covered only to find out that the movers insurance does not cover this or that; or worse yet, that they only have protection at 60 cents per pound. ??There is much to consider before the first box is loaded onto the moving truck.

 

60 cents per pound is the industry standard that is mandated by government. ??Every licensed moving company has this basic coverage.

 

Cargo insurance covers your household goods while in transit, meaning, while your furniture is in the truck and on the road. ??Cargo insurance includes theft, accidents, fire, et cetera.

 

Liability insurance covers damage to your home and/or if someone got hurt by the actions of the movers. ??Example: ??the moving truck backed into your house. ??This does not cover flooding by faulty plumbing in your laundry room. ??That would be your homeowners insurance. ??The condition of a house???s plumbing is always the responsibility of the home owner.

 

???Bonded??? covers any property that was stolen by the crew. ??Most service companies are bonded. ??This is the same kind of bonded that cable guys, maids, and movers have. ??The bond will only pay if there is an actual conviction. ??It is much better to use a mover that has quality crews in the first place. ??Ask if the company does a thorough background check and drug screenings.

 

Valuation is like insurance, but without the underwriter. ??You pay the mover a premium, and if there is a damaged item, you pay a deductible before the movers repair or replace the damaged item. ??This is a common additional service with the national van lines. ??Valuations can be a good deal under the right circumstance.

 

Actual furniture insurance is rare in the moving business, but it is available; normally through a third party. ??You buy a policy, pay a premium, and if something gets damaged, you make a claim and pay the deductible. ??The adjuster is sent to your house to handle the repairs or offer you a settlement.

 

If you own anything of extraordinary value, you should buy supplemental insurance on a per item basis. ??People with art or antiques valued over $10,000 normally buy or already have this type of per appraised item insurance.

 

The in-house policy or guarantee is a company policy not backed by an insurance company. ??Some reputable moving companies offer to repair or replace anything that their movers happen to damage. ??Moving companies with poor or inexperienced crews simply cannot offer this kind of guarantee, and hide behind the 60 cents per pound industry standard. ??The movers that repair or replace anything that their movers damage typically do itemized moves. ??Crews with the skill that comes from experience, and have a record of minimal or no damages, prefer to work for a moving company that charges for what is actually done. ??Not how long the move takes. ??In the moving industry, hourly movers and 60 cents per pound insurance go hand-in-hand.

 

In review, make sure that the moving company that you hire is licensed, bonded, and has both cargo and liability insurance. ??For small damages that are typical of a household move, get a moving company that has an in-house guarantee to repair or replace anything that their crew happens to damage. ??Not only will it be easier to settle a claim, the crew will be of much better quality, so you probably won???t have any damages to worry about.