Thursday, December 5, 2019

Most Important Aspects When Hiring a Moving Company

If you are going to use a moving company you are going to want to do a little research for a few weeks instead of just choosing a company. You can find moving companies by looking in the yellow pages in your telephone book, the Internet, your local newspaper, flyers, and recommendations from people you know. There are a few things you should do before making a decision on a moving company. You should get at least three written statements to compare, and you should get the statements in person. You should check your local Better Business Bureau and the state’s attorney general’s office to make sure the company does not have any complaints filed against them. You should ask to see the company’s certificate of insurance and make sure it is valid. Check to see if the moving company has a good record for being on time, doing what they are hired to do, and check their references.

When you are working out the contract with the moving company there are few things you should keep in mind. Make sure you get a guarantee on how many hours the job is going to take and document that in the contract. Ask what kind of gratuities you should be expected to pay and commit that in writing in the contract. Make sure that the contract contains all the charges in the move including important dates (packing, pick-up, and delivery).

If you decide to choose a moving company to help you with your move they should come to your home and take a household goods survey and then give you an estimate. The final cost however will depend on the actual weight of all your household items after they are loaded. You should personally inspect all your property and decide what to move and what to discard of because it may be cheaper to replace an item than to move it. You should also decide if you will do the packing or if you want the moving company to help or do it all.

On the moving day you need to make sure that you are at home incase you have to sign any documents that require you to pay certain charges. You should go through your home with the movers and inspect and tag all furniture along with a brief description of your household items and their condition at the time of loading. This list is for the moving company’s inventory list and for insurance purposes incase there is any damage to any items being moved. It is solely your responsibility to make sure all your items are loaded, and that boxes are loaded in the correct order. You should watch as your belongings are being loaded into the truck, as well as watching them being unloaded to insure everything makes it to your new home and that there are no damages.

The Importance of Allowing Enough Time

One hour of “sign here”, “initial there” and handing over a check containing half our savings later and we’re ready to move on and literally, move. This isn’t moving out of those college roommate lifestyles that fit in twenty boxes packed on a Sunday afternoon – this is the move that proves beyond a doubt, the importance of allowing enough time.

“From experience my advice is, once you know you’re moving, immediately collect those moving boxes, bubble wrap, tape and Sharpies and designate an area for packed boxes.” – says Adam, moving manager at eaglestatetostatemoving.com. “Don’t wait until the last minute, start packing all those seasonal items that are yet to be in season. Fill up those boxes with your books, photos and trinkets. Then take some time for the real time consumer – throwing out junk.”

Movers charge a lot – don’t pay them to move your garbage when the sanitation department will do it for free. Set aside a couple of hours a week to sort, shred and discard old paperwork. Go through your old clothes, shoes and accessories to weed out the items you haven’t worn in a year then bag them and donate them. Inspect the expiration dates on the stuff in your medicine cabinet and if there’s just one or two doses left – let it go. Chances are there is a drug store in your new neighborhood, too.

The most important thing to remember is to pack your cutlery in a convenient, easy to find box. There’s nothing worse than sitting in your new home with freshly delivered Chinese food, a bottle of wine and no forks or a bottle opener.

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How long does it take my shipment to arrive?

Depends on where you’re going. Most companies offer a good faith delivery estimate based on average drive times, distances and seasonal volume.  In general, companies collect the final balance of your contract upon delivery, so they are anxious to get your shipment to you as quickly as their schedule will allow, but there are many factors that will affect the shipping schedule.

Keep in mind that the truck with your shipment may have other pick-ups or deliveries on the way to you, or it could encounter unexpected driving conditions along the way, such as construction or bad weather amongst other things.  Also, the large tractor trailers that will be carrying your shipment will be bearing a great deal of weight and not breaking any land-speed records on their way. Finally, and perhaps most importantly, consider that commercial carriers are bound by DOT regulations limiting the number of hours that they can be on the roads each day in order to ensure the safety of our highways, and these regulations are strictly enforced.  That means, while you may be able to drive through the night to get to your new destination, the trailer can take several days longer even without stops in order for the driver to be compliant with DOT regulations. If you receive shipping time frames from one carrier that seem to good to be true, there is a good chance that carrier will either not make those deadlines anyhow, or is simply not compliant with DOT regulations for driver’s logs.

In Empire City Moving we do our best to keep you in the loop about our shipping schedule.  You’ll get a call from Dispatch when your shipment is being loaded and the estimated arrival time of your shipment.  Frequently we arrive earlier than planned but occasionally road or weather conditions the delivery timeframe. Also, a delivery ahead of yours on the schedule may take longer that expected and that could cause delays as well.  Your driver will do his best to be in touch with you to keep you up-to-date on changes he has encountered.

To get the estimated delivery timeframe for your move, please contact our Relocation Specialists.  If you have specific requirements for delivery timeframes these should be discussed with the Relocation Specialist to determine if an expedited or a priority delivery is required, as well as to get pricing and availability on the schedule for your shipping needs.

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Best Moving Guidelines

Understand your insurance options

It is easy to be lazy about checking the details of coverage. This is a mistake. As described in the “Moving Insurance” section of this web site, you have many options. To avoid many potential problems and additional costs be sure you have the right coverage.

Make sure you explain all the details of your specific move to the moving company

All the details of your home/apartment complex, a complete description of your goods, and any other relevant issues related to your move should be discussed in advance. Not doing so can trigger additional costs and cause you grief between you and your movers..The best way to handle a move is to have the moving company come to your home and give a personal on site estimate.

Get a binding estimate

It is good moving policy to get a signed and written estimate listing all the relevant details of your move. Failing to do so leaves you open to additional charges and unscrupulous moving companies. 

Make sure that your moving company is licensed and insured

Moving companies have to be licensed and insured. This is governed by the state for an in state move. If you are moving out of state then the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration of the Department of Transportation has jurisdiction.

Get an in home estimate whenever possible

Getting a quote over the phone is not always the best idea. Whenever possible it is best to request that your moving company come to your location to deliver a written estimate for your individual move.

Get multiple quotes

As with any other service, there are inexpensive and more expensive providers. It is best to contact at least three movers to discuss the details of your move and the associated costs. This is best done with personal in home estimates.

Ask about all charges

Many moving companies add extra charges along the way. It is best to understand these in advance to avoid disputes. Packing material, boxes, blankets, fuel, wait time, shrink wrap, and any other moving related services or supplies should be included in the written estimate.

Don’t choose a dramatically lower quote

Moving companies all have similar costs. When a company delivers a quote 40% lower than the others, this is a red flag. Unscrupulous moving companies sometimes pile on hidden charges or hold your goods hostage after quoting a move at half price. To god to be true is definitely true when reviewing moving quotes.

Check references before choosing a moving company

Most movers can provide references. It is good practice to check these references before finalizing which mover you will hire.

Check with the Better Business Bureau while reviewing your mover

If a mover consistently engages in unscrupulous practices then a record will often exist with the Better Business Bureau. Contacting them while reviewing your mover will often save you from potential problems. The can be found at www.bbb.org

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Things You Should Know About Moving Insurance

Many moving companies provide some kind of moving insurance. Unfortunately, it is usually grossly insufficient. The Limited Liability insurance that they provide is not enough to cover very much at all, but a higher level of coverage is available if you are willing to pay for it. This coverage is called “full value replacement protection”. The option of third party insurance is also available and highly suggested, but one should check if their existing homeowner’s policy also offers any coverage that may already be in effect.

Moving companies offer valuation protection which is governed by federal guidelines as opposed to insurance companies which provide insurance which is state governed. Before making a move one should assess their personal need for the different kinds of protection and balance that against what one already has in place and then see what is readily available at a reasonable price.

As can be seen from the brief description, Limited Liability or also known as “basic carrier liability-release value” is of little value and usually amounts to $.25-$.60 per pound of coverage. This is offered by local and long distance moving companies as well as piano movers and specialty movers.

Full value replacement protection is a more comprehensive insurance while your gods are in transit and a more intelligent choice over Limited Liability. Make sure your most valuable items are listed in the shipping document’s Extra Ordinary Value Items” section to be sure they are covered.

Third party insurance is often offered by the mover themselves, but you are best checking with other insurance carriers for the best deals. the premium often amounts to 1% of the value of the goods being shipped.

The last option is to simply see if you have existing coverage on your existing homeowner’s policy. As is often true, the devil is in the details, so check the fine print and make sure that there are no exceptions or disclaimers concerning when and how much is covered.

Other details should be checked and verified such as: coverage of within vs. between state moves, exceptional value item coverage, in transit vs. loading and unloading, and do it yourself moving. If one spends the time verifying that they are properly covered in all eventualities, then your goods will be protected and you will rest easy when your goods are shipped by the moving company.

In the event that you do have a claim, you generally have nine months to register the claim on interstate moves. Intrastate claims may have a different time period. Either way, it is suggested that you check this information for your individual case, in your individual state, with your individual insurance company. There are guidelines for the claim itself as well as for the resolution of the claim. If these guidelines do not satisfy you then you can request arbitration. If this still does not satisfy your claim you always have the option of legal action and contacting the Better Business Bureau.

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Cost Effective Moving

Moving can be a costly undertaking. There are certain things that can be done to reduce costs. The first thing to consider is how much you intend to ship, as the less you move, the less it will cost. Getting rid of things that you don’t need before a move, can go a long way in reducing the costs of a move. Local moves often charge based on the hours needed for the move, so if you are moving locally, then it might be possible for you to transport some items yourself beforehand. Interstate moves consider the weight of goods being moved when pricing, so if there are heavy items that can be driven in your SUV, then this can help reduce costs.

Another area of concern is packing. This can be a time consuming and laborious process. If you have the time to pack, this can go a long way in reducing the costs associated with a team of movers spending hours in your home wrapping glasses. Many moving companies will give you moving materials so that you can pack yourself at a minimal or no charge. In addition, the moving company will often provide information in order to pack your belongings for safe transport; verify this info to insure that your items arrive safely.

A final area that should be considered for cost control is the disassembling and reassembling of items or the disconnecting and reconnecting of appliances. This can be very time consuming. Moving companies may also hire third parties to accomplish these tasks with the cost being transferred onto you. If you manage these details and make sure that your moving company does not need to spend costly hours focusing on these details.

When speaking with your moving company, ask them if there are other ways to reduce the cost of your move. They are trained professionals and will often make suggestions that may help you keep costs down.

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