Preparing to move to a new home is about more than just finding boxes and tape.  The time-consuming process means figuring out logistics, such as the packing and moving of your belongings. Finding the top-rated local movers to assist you on the journey can make all the difference in your moving experience.

A reputable local moving company will be there on the day you move, not just to do the heavy lifting. Local movers are also there to help the day go smoother and efficiently. Though friends and family are a good choice when you need bodies to help you move, they won’t save you as much time as a moving company. Plus, there is only a certain limit on how many times someone is willing to help you move, especially if you move frequently.

To take some of the worries off your hands, search for short distance moving companies near you. As you go through your search for the perfect company to work with you, keep some of these things in mind.

Recommendation and Reviews

As you begin your search for a local moving company you would like to work with for the duration of your move, it’s important to gather recommendations. Whether you search through the Internet and read through some of the reviews or get first-hand accounts from people you know, receiving a recommendation can make all the difference.

When asking for recommendations, make sure you stop to listen to the big picture of the entire day. Take into consideration the good and the bad, which is where three stars come in handy. Those who left three stars tend to have good and bad things to say about the company.

Company Track Record

Aside from the recommendations and reviews you find, take a look through the track record the company holds. Some online research could provide valuable insight into the company’s record. If they are a part of the Better Business Bureau, take a look and see what they have to say as well as any other accrediting body.

Essentially, you’re looking to see if the company is known for being on time with belongings arriving undamaged. Also, check to see how they treat a client where something may have happened, whether within or without their control. Moving accidents happen, but it’s how you’re treated that makes all the difference.

License and Insurance

The rule of thumb is never to use a company that has not been licensed or insured to conduct their business. This is an unwritten rule you should never break since it is in place to protect you and your belongings. Most anyone can purchase a truck and say they’ve started a moving company. Still, only those companies that went through the appropriate licensing and purchased insurance can deem themselves legitimate and are legally required to protect your belongings.

Though each state may have different regulations, larger moving companies that also offer interstate moves will be accredited through the U.S. Department of Transportation and possess a valid DOT number. A reputable mover will have no issue providing you with the number so you can conduct your independent research. Insurance information is usually filed with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, which allows you a search through their database to confirm the information.

Transparency

Top-rated local movers will provide transparent and easy to understand quotes. There won’t be any hidden fees or misunderstandings when it comes to the price you’ll be paying in the end.

Over the phone quote will be rough estimates, but any representative you speak with will make sure you understand the potential price should circumstances change. Additional services are always an additional cost, and a reputable company will make sure you know potential prices upfront.

Deposit

It’s no surprise a local moving company would want a deposit in order to hold the date of your move on their calendar but within reason. A company asking for a high deposit may not have faith in the services they provide or in you.

If you end up paying too high of an amount, you lose control over when you will see your belongings, depending on your move’s distance. Do not hesitate to move on to another company should any ask for a high deposit along the way.

Quotes and Contracts

Never get pulled into a guaranteed quote or sign a blank contract. Most companies will offer three types of contracts:

  • A non-binding estimate where they don’t require payments of more than 10% of all possible charges
  • A non-binding exceed estimate is where the estimate is the highest you’ll ever pay, and any charge is due within 30 days.
  • A guaranteed estimate is the contract for all items, including any additional charges, and anything over is due within 30 days.

The problem with the guaranteed quote is that in the end, you may be overpaying if some of the charges were overestimated. It’s best to go with a contract where the charges are estimated and could potentially go up or down.

Of course, as you sign, make sure you cross your t’s and dot your i’s. Never sign a contract that has blank spots since anything could be filled in.

Report Problems

Don’t hesitate to report any problems you experience before or after you sign a contract. You have nine months to file any types of claims if you’ve run into monetary loss during your move as a result of the company. The company then has 120 days to respond to your claim or to pay the damages.

Conclusion

Finding the right local moving company should be approached with careful consideration. Remember to always read the terms of any quote or contract before you sign. You’ll prevent yourself from getting sticker shock if you’re upfront and honest with the movers while obtaining your quote. The local movers you’ll hire will be on your side to make your moving date go as best as possible.

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