Choosing a Mover – Part of your Pre-move Planning
Moving doesn’t have to be overly complicated
Nearly everyone dreads the expected problems that come with moving. Moving can be complicated but taking a few simple steps as you start your move planning can help you avoid moving scams and actually remove many of the “stress factors” later in your local- or long-distance move. Here are some suggestions to avoid a stressful move:
- Use referrals
A good moving company is going to have happy customers eager to share an opinion. Many will leave reviews in various locations online. Read the reviews. You can obviously use your own judgement knowing that sometimes not every review will be good, but you can see how the company replies or handles difficult situations. Reviewing social media and asking friends if they have had positive experiences with a moving company is a great option.
- Trust the professionals
There are many professional businesspersons that deal with movers and moving companies on a regular basis. Consider speaking with local real estate agents and even home improvement contractors in your area, or destination location. They can offer a professional perspective on these moving companies which may impact your decision.
- Use a directory
Not all moving company websites will represent a legitimate moving company. It is very easy these days to put up a nice looking website and not all companies will provide the quality service they represent. Consider local, brick and mortar businesses with locations found locally or in chamber of commerce and online directories. These resources can help you find established moving companies that have been in business for some time; those have actual physical addresses and offices.
- Check Business Licenses and Credentials
Once you have selected a couple of prospective movers, take the time to contact each company. Ask questions! For example, get their full legal name and ‘doing business as’ (DBA) names, how long they have been in business, DOT and MC license numbers. Let them know some of the basic information on your move and inquire if they are experienced with that type of a move. You may even request their references from them. With the information you’ve collected from each moving company, you can reference FMCSA resources like protectyourmove or SaferSys to see if a mover is federally licensed.
Gathering and Comparing Price Estimates
All reputable moving companies willing to comply with federal regulations will be your best bet in considering for selection to service your local or long distance move. To properly estimate or prepare your moving quote, a company representative will usually visit your home or facility for a visual survey of the items that will be relocating. This way, a mover can provide a more predictable estimate of cost. It is wise to schedule multiple estimates for comparison.
When meeting with the moving company representative, take the time to show them each item you wish to have relocated. Be sure not to overlook items in storage areas such as garage, basement or in the attic. The move estimator should take notes and request additional information as needed so they can price the job accurately and adequately prepare for the move. Take this time to also ask questions to assure your confidence in the company.
Insuring your goods in case of a mishap along the way is an additional step you should take in the pre- move planning stage. The “valuation option” you choose will determine the moving company’s maximum “liability for loss or damage” that may be caused by their company staff handling and transportation. Federal laws and regulations regulate the limits of liability of a mover for loss or as well as the mover’s tariffs. These regulations do have limitations and exclusions.
Protect Yourself From Moving Fraud!
“More than 35 million Americans move each year for personal reasons and career opportunities. It’s a significant event in anyone’s life. Your money and your life’s memories are at stake. It can be stressful, even under the best of circumstances”, FMCSA.
Unsavory individuals that will present themselves as legitimate business can be running rogue operations. Typically, these operations are easy to spot as they come to the table with very low initial estimates. In many cases, once they have all your possessions loaded they will then hold a victim’s possessions hostage until they receive additional payments. By watching for the red flags below, you can prevent yourself from becoming a victim to these types of scams:
- Verify The Moving Company’s Physical Address
Check the moving companies’ website(s) and other directories such as BBB, Chamber of Commerce sites, and phone directories to ensure they have a physical BUSINESS address in your area and that they match. A business that is just listed as having a P.O. Box could be an indicator the business is not legitimate.
- Verify Active Licenses
Take the time to check for a U.S. DOT number on the moving companies’ website. All moving companies should have active operating authority and adequate insurance. In addition compare this number to listing on FMCSA website to see if current.
- Check Moving Company Service Records
Verify a moving company’s reputation and qualifications with organizations like Commercial Relocation Network (CRN) and the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
We Take Your Needs Seriously
At The Liberty Group we view ourselves as partners in your success. Your business is important to you, and you’ve worked hard to make it a success—when you look to us for help with challenges such as relocating employees globally or controlling document security risks, we take that seriously.
When you’re looking for comprehensive solutions to household moves, commercial moves, and much more, contact The Liberty Group. Our local and regional expertise for moving and logistics in New Jersey and the surrounding areas is unsurpassed. Routine training sessions help our moving staff and team managers to remain at the ready to assist you with all of your moving and storage needs.