Choosing a mover can be stressful, but you can eliminate some of this stress by taking your take in making the decision and doing some research. Moving companies provide a variety of services for a range of fees, so it is always a good idea to talk with different movers and compare their services.
A good way to find a mover is through personal recommendations. Ask friends, neighbors or co-workers about their experiences with movers they have used in the past. You can also check with the Better Business Bureau or other consumer organizations in your local area.
Remember, the moving industry has a "peak" and an "off-peak" season. "Peak" season for movers is during the summer. Also, the beginning and the end of each month are extra busy for movers. During that period of time the demand for moving equipment, vans, and personnel is heavy. If you are moving during this time, remember to plan ahead and book your move early.
Your move should occur at a time that is convenient for you. However, you should consider if you want to transfer your children during the school term, as well as other factors involving your family.
Call or email the moving company that you have selected and be sure to request a written estimate from a relocation consultant. The relocation consultant will prepare an estimate in writing and submit it to you.
Decide what items you want to ship and what will be discarded. Inspect your home. Check from your attic to your basement, before the relocation consultant arrives. Show the consultant everything that you will be moving.
If you decide to do your own packing, get packing supplies and start collecting strong boxes suitable for moving. Complete all of your packing by moving day.
If your company is relocating you, find out what portion of your moving expenses will be paid for by your company.
Obtain a written appraisal of antiques to verify their value. Do not retouch, wax or oil wood furniture before moving. Some products may soften the wood, making it vulnerable to imprinting from furniture pads.
Notify the post office that you will be moving. Provide them with a new address (permanent or temporary).
Review your Rights and Responsibilities. Ask friends and family for recommendations regarding movers, and learn from their experiences. Also, you should check with the Better Business Bureau regarding the moving company and find out what the moving company's responsibilities are regarding damages to your belongings. Make sure you obtain estimates from at least three movers before you make a final decision, so you can compare costs and services provided. Check to see if the interstate mover is registered with the FMCSA and has a US DOT number and also find out how and when pickup and delivery of your household goods will occur. Ask the mover how they can be contacted before, during, and after the move.
Make sure you will be present to answer any questions and give directions to the movers. Always stay until they are finished, and make sure you are present when the movers are doing an inventory of your household goods so that you can resolve any questions regarding the condition of the materials being moved. Carefully read all information on the estimate, order for service, bill of lading, and all other completed documents before you sign them -- never sign an empty document. Keep the bill of lading until your goods are delivered, the charges are paid and all claims are settled. Before the movers leave, take a look around the house and make sure nothing has been forgotten. Give the driver directions to your new home and let the driver and the moving company knows where you can be reached during the move.
Be present to answer any questions and give directions, and always remember to pay the driver before your goods are unloaded. Also, you should be present to supervise the unloading and unpacking of your goods. Note on the inventory list all boxes or other items that are damaged before you sign any documents.