27 Questions to Ask When Hiring a Moving Company
- Author:by The HOMEiA Team
Category: Home Maintenance
Hiring a moving company can be pretty daunting. You’re entrusting strangers with all your precious belongings, and you want to make sure they’re adequately insured, experienced, and licensed.
But how can you tell if a moving company is reliable? What should you be looking for, and what questions should you ask to ensure you’re getting the best possible service?
Whether you’re looking for Boston moving companies, San Francisco moving companies, or moving companies right smack dab in the middle of nowhere, it’s important to do your due diligence as part of the research.
In this blog post, we’ll cover some essential questions to ask when hiring a moving company and help you avoid moving mishaps.
Table of Contents:
- 1. What’s Your Experience?
- 2. How Long Have You Been in Business?
- 3. How Much Will the Move Cost?
- 4. Do You Offer Written Estimates?
- 5. How Do You Determine the Cost of a Move?
- 6. Do You Offer Any Discounts?
- 7. What Payment Methods Do You Accept?
- 8. What Documentation Will I Receive?
- 9. What’s Included in the Overall Cost?
- 10. What Insurance Coverage is Available?
- 11. Are the Movers Licensed?
- 12. Does Your Company Belong to a Movers’ Association?
- 13. Do You Employ Full-Time Movers Who Are Professionally Trained, or Temporary Workers During Busy Seasons?
- 14. Do You Have Any Requirements on How I Pack and What Materials I Should Use?
- 15. Is There Anything You Won’t Move?
- 16. What Can I Do to Make Things Safer and Easier on Moving Day?
- 17. What is Your Plan if it Rains or Snows on Moving Day?
- 18. Do You Offer Shipment Tracking?
- 19. What Will Happen if My Items Arrive Before Me?
- 20. What’s Your Packing Strategy?
- 21. How Will You Protect My Home During the Move?
- 22. What Type of Equipment Will Be Used?
- 23. What’s the Estimated Time of Delivery?
- 24. What’s Your Cancellation and Refund Policy?
- 25. How Do You Handle Complaints?
- 26. Can You Provide References?
- 27. What Makes Your Moving Company Different from Others?
1. What’s Your Experience?
Experience is key when it comes to moving companies. You want to work with a company that has been in business for a while and has plenty of experience in the industry. After all, you’re entrusting them with your most valuable belongings and allowing them to work within your home – you need to find a company that offers a high level of trust.
Not only that, but you need to be confident that they know what they are doing and will not make any costly mistakes.
2. How Long Have You Been in Business?
Again, experience matters in the moving industry – so don’t be afraid to dig a little deeper to make sure your moving company knows what they’re doing.
While a newer company may offer lower rates, it may not have the same level of expertise as a more established company. Ask about their track record and experience in the industry to get a better sense of their capabilities.
3. How Much Will the Move Cost?
Hiring a moving company can be expensive, so it’s important to have a clear understanding of the costs associated with your move.
Ask the company for a written estimate of all the costs that will be involved, including the hourly rate, any additional fees, and the total cost. Also, check if the company has any hidden charges like “fuel surcharge” or “stair fees” that could be added to the final bill.
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4. Do You Offer Written Estimates?
A reputable moving company will always offer a written estimate that outlines the cost of the move and any additional fees or charges.
Ask the company for a written estimate before hiring them, and make sure to read it carefully and ask any questions you may have. Be wary of companies that only offer verbal estimates or refuse to give an estimate at all.
5. How Do You Determine the Cost of a Move?
One of the most important factors when hiring a moving company is cost. It’s essential to understand how a company comes up with its moving quotes and what factors may impact the final cost.
For example, some companies may charge more for moves across state lines or for bulky or fragile items. Understanding the cost breakdown can help you make an informed decision and avoid any unexpected expenses.
6. Do You Offer Any Discounts?
Moving can be expensive, and every penny counts. One essential question to ask when hiring a moving company is whether they offer any discounts. Some companies offer discounts for military personnel, seniors, or early booking. Be sure to ask the company about any discounts during your consultation or when obtaining a quote. It’s always better to have a clear understanding of the costs upfront before you commit.
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7. What Payment Methods Do You Accept?
When it comes to payment methods, not all moving companies are created equal. Some may only accept cash or checks, while others also accept credit cards.
Be sure to find out what payment methods the company accepts and whether you will need to pay a deposit before your move. If you’re paying with a credit card, make sure that the company is PCI-compliant to protect your personal information.
8. What Documentation Will I Receive?
Documentation is crucial when hiring a moving company. It ensures that both parties are on the same page and that there will be no surprises on moving day.
Some essential documents to request include a written estimate, the company’s license and insurance information, and a bill of lading. These documents will help protect you if anything goes wrong during your move.
9. What’s Included in the Overall Cost?
Moving companies have different pricing structures, and it’s essential to understand what’s included and what’s not. You might think something is included, and really, there’s an extra surcharge to move it.
Again, ask the company to provide you with a detailed quote outlining everything that’s included in the cost. This will help you avoid any surprises after the move has been completed.
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10. What Insurance Coverage is Available?
Sometimes accidents happen, and it’s essential to know the extent of your movers’ insurance coverage.
Make sure to ask about the types of insurance policies they have, what they cover, and how to file a claim. Ensure that the insurance policies cover the full value of your belongings and not just a fraction of the value.
11. Are the Movers Licensed?
It’s crucial to hire a licensed and experienced moving company to avoid getting ripped off. The company you choose should hold a valid license and have experienced movers who have been in the business for a long time.
They should have a valid DOT license number, which will prove their legitimacy. In addition, ensure that they have comprehensive insurance to cover any damages that may occur during the move.
Also, ask if they have experience handling your kind of move and if they specialize in moving specific items, such as pianos or antiques.
12. Does Your Company Belong to a Movers’ Association?
Membership in a reputable movers’ association is an essential criterion when hiring a moving company.
Reputable associations, such as The American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA), require members to abide by a strict code of ethics and professional standards. This provides you with a higher level of transparency and accountability in the moving process.
Not only that, but a company that belongs to these associations is usually properly licensed and insured.
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13. Do You Employ Full-Time Movers Who Are Professionally Trained, or Temporary Workers During Busy Seasons?
It’s important to know who will be handling your belongings. Ideally, you want a company that has experienced, professional movers who are well-trained to handle all kinds of items.
They should know how to properly pack and load your belongings to ensure that they make it to your new home in one piece. If a company uses temporary workers during busy seasons, ask about their training and experience to ensure that they’re still qualified to handle your belongings.
14. Do You Have Any Requirements on How I Pack and What Materials I Should Use?
Before starting the packing process, make sure to ask the moving company about their packing requirements. Some companies will provide you with packing materials, while others may require you to purchase them separately.
Some may also have specific packing instructions to ensure your belongings are secure during the move. Knowing the company’s packing requirements ahead of time can help you avoid any unnecessary delays or issues on moving day.
15. Is There Anything You Won’t Move?
Most moving companies have restrictions on items they won’t move for safety or legal reasons. This may include flammable items, hazardous materials, and certain household cleaners.
Ask about these restrictions so that you can make alternative arrangements for any items they are unable to move.
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16. What Can I Do to Make Things Safer and Easier on Moving Day?
You can do several things to make things easier and safer on your moving day. Labeling your boxes properly, securing doors and gates, and clearing walkways can all prevent any accidents and make the movers’ job easier.
Also, let the movers know if there are any fragile or valuable items that require extra attention. Knowing the rules and regulations of the moving company can make things smoother on moving day, both for you and for your movers.
17. What is Your Plan if it Rains or Snows on Moving Day?
Weather can be unpredictable, and you don’t want to be caught off guard on moving day.
Asking a prospective moving company about its contingency plans can help you prepare for the worst. A reliable moving company will have a plan in place to deal with inclement weather, whether that involves covering your belongings with tarps or rescheduling the move for a more favorable time.
18. Do You Offer Shipment Tracking?
When it comes to moving, peace of mind is crucial. Knowing where your belongings are and when they’ll arrive at your new home can help alleviate some of the stress that comes with moving.
By asking a potential moving company about its shipment tracking capabilities, you can ensure that you’re aware of every step of the moving process and can plan accordingly.
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19. What Will Happen if My Items Arrive Before Me?
Sometimes life doesn’t go as planned, and you may arrive at your new home after your belongings are delivered. In this scenario, it’s important to know what a moving company’s policy is on holding your belongings.
Some companies may charge storage fees, while others may offer a grace period. By asking this question upfront, you can avoid any unpleasant surprise charges down the line.
20. What’s Your Packing Strategy?
Ask about the company’s packing strategy.
A professional moving company should have a strategy for packing items, especially fragile ones, and should use high-quality packing materials to ensure everything arrives at your new home safely.
21. How Will You Protect My Home During the Move?
Ask about the measures the company will take to protect your home during the move. This ensures that your floors, walls, and doors are protected against scratches and damages that may arise during the moving process.
22. What Type of Equipment Will Be Used?
Ask about the equipment the company will be using during the move. A company with modern and well-maintained equipment will make the moving process more efficient. Outdated trucks and equipment can cause delays and increase the risk of accidents.
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23. What’s the Estimated Time of Delivery?
Ask about the estimated time of delivery. A reputable moving company should give you a reasonable delivery time frame based on the distance of the move.
Make sure that the delivery date meets your requirements and that the company guarantees to deliver on time – and what will happen if they don’t.
24. What’s Your Cancellation and Refund Policy?
Before signing a contract, ensure that you understand the cancellation and refund policy of the company.
This way, you can protect yourself in case of any unforeseen circumstances like having to postpone or cancel the move.
25. How Do You Handle Complaints?
No company is perfect, and sometimes you may have complaints about the services offered. As such, it’s essential to know how the moving company handles complaints.
Ask how to complain and escalate, who will handle the complaint, and the expected duration before resolving the matter. If the company has a good reputation for handling complaints well, it’s a good sign that they’re a reliable and trustworthy moving company.
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26. Can You Provide References?
Any reputable moving company will be willing to provide references from past clients. Speaking to previous clients will give you an idea of the company’s level of service and professionalism.
27. What Makes Your Moving Company Different from Others?
Ask the company to explain what makes their moving company stand out from others. This question will help you understand their strengths and weaknesses and make it easier for you to decide whether they are the right fit for you.
Hiring a moving company can be a stressful process, but asking the right questions can help ease your mind and ensure that you’re getting the best service possible.
By asking the above questions, you can be confident that you’re hiring a reliable and trustworthy company that will take care of your belongings. In addition to these questions, do some research online, read reviews, and ask friends and family for recommendations to further increase your confidence in the company you choose.
Don’t be afraid to take your time and ask as many questions as necessary to feel comfortable with your choice.
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