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GBE Packaging - How to find a reputable moving company
   Finding a Mover, How to find a reputable moving company
 
                Courtesy of GBE Packaging, Milwaukee - Boxes and Bags

Is there such a thing, a safe mover  Well yes there are honest hardworking movers you just may need to do some homework to find one. Allow us to make some suggestions.

   Plan an Off-Peak Season Move (when possible)

June to September is the high season. If you can avoid moving during those months, you will likely receive better service. If you must move during the high season, move mid-month, mid-week, and avoid the end of the month.

You want a moving company or van lines you can trust to move everything you own so take your time and start your movers search early. You do not want to be rushed and take the first lowest price you come across. Contact your mover at least 4 to 6 weeks before the move date. Have your written estimates created no more than 30 days before your move. 
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   Start collecting moving boxes and packaging

While you are searching for a mover start collecting boxes and any packing material you find. You will most likely need it unless you intend to pay the mover to pack everything for you. In that case start saving up. Packing services add up quickly. Movers charge top dollar for packing materials and boxes.

You can buy your boxes by the bundle from a wholesale shipping supply distributer like
GBE Packaging, and that's going to get you your packing supplies for the lowest cost if you don't have time to travel around asking for boxes or collecting used bubble wrap from friends. We recommend you do not use old food boxes for moving since they may come with critters or bugs.  Back to Top
  

   Searching for a reputable mover


You want to search for several movers, at least three reputable moving companies and you will narrow it down later.

mover experiences
Use the internet, it's a great resource for information. Almost every moving company has helpful links and information. You can use the many sites by the Department of Transportation, and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, all can be found on our Moving Tips / Suggestions Link

you can search here for many Moving companies and Moving resources.

Never use a mover who's main source of advertising are signs posted on trees and telephone poles. Ask for recommendations from neighbors, friends, and relatives regarding any mover experiences, good or bad? Perhaps they can recommend a mover for you to check out. Don't stop there.
You always want to check out anyone you intend to use.
Every mover has done both good and bad moves, so check further. Your local 'Better Business Bureau should be a must. Make sure you deal with a reputable firm.  Back to Top
 

   Most van lines don't have the authority to do local moves

If you want to use one of the national familiar firms, you must understand, most of these companies use 'agents' in most areas that are not really the company you may think you are calling. There is nothing wrong with this, it's how the industry works. The major van lines work with smaller local movers who sell the van lines services, and do local work for the van lines (packing, local pickups and deliveries, etc.) often they do limited hauling. It is common for a major van line to have more than one agent in a given location, so it is important you check out both the van lines and the agent.

Also note, if you call a van lines agent for a local move thinking the van lines will do the move, you are mistaken. The agent will do the move on his own authority. Most van lines don't have the authority to do local moves. If you are moving internationally, you may not get the van lines you think you are getting either as most agents have no obligation to use their primary interstate van lines for international moves.  Back to Top
 

   Use the moving resources on the internet

It's homework time. Investigate all the movers on your list and try to narrow Search Google for Moversit down to no more than 3 movers. Do a Google search on the names and see what you find. Search for any complaints or warnings about the movers and go 20 pages deep, if someone complained on a moving forum somewhere it most likely will not be in the top 20 or the top 1000. Moving forums? or Moving Blogs? Sure people love to share their good and bad experiences so use that to your advantage. Be creative in your search.  Back to Top

Obtain the brochure
Ready to Move? and the booklet Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move from the mover.

Check with the
Better Business Bureau regarding the mover. Always a smart move before you buy anything.

Find out what the mover's responsibilities are for damages or losses that mayLarge Moving Companies occur to your belongings.

Ask if the mover has a Dispute Settlement Program.

   Dispute Settlement Program
Before moving your household goods, interstate movers are required to provide you with information regarding their dispute settlement program. Movers must offer a neutral dispute settlement program as a means of settling disputes that may arise concerning loss or damage of your household goods.
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   Ask Questions, If you do not understand something, ask

This is your chance to ask questions, when the estimator shows up and you do want them to show up because it's your best chance to ask all those questions you have. If you do not understand something, ask now. The moving business is complex and has its own language. If you aren’t satisfied with the answers to your questions or if the carrier hesitates when you ask for clarification, talk to another carrier.  Back to Top
 

   Get three written in-home estimates

When you have your three movers that have good ratings on the BBB website you will want to obtain written estimates from each one so you can
compare cost and all other services to be provided by the movers.
It's important to take the time to have the movers send a representative or company estimator to personally conduct an inspection before generating the written estimate. Show the mover everything that will be moved, including items in attics, basements, garages, storage areas, sheds, etc.

Remember the internet is a great place to find movers, it should not be used as a means to contract with any mover or packing company.  A fair and reasonable estimate can only be given if the movers estimator actually views the goods being moved.

This is the biggest mistake most people make! Not having a personal inventory performed.   See our warning before contracting with a mover.

If you have a written estimate done by a representative who came to your house, you have certain legal protections against the price being jacked up. So long as you do not make any material changes in the move, the mover can only collect within a certain percentage of his estimate on delivery. ManyMoving quote in writting movers know if they give you a written estimate, they will be legally bound within limits to their estimate, so they may try to actually talk you out of sending an estimator. This is a BIG WARNING SIGN that this is a company you do NOT want to work with, no matter how nice or sincere the fellow sounds on the phone, or how cheap they may seem.

You also do not want to schedule your estimate too far in advance before the move. If you do, it is possible the prices will change. Also, you may change your mind about moving certain items or other services you may need. No more than 60 days before the move is recommended. 
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  Next

Check all three to determine whether the
interstate mover is registered with FMCSA, and has a USDOT number.
 

   Obtain and read the three “pre-move” required documents
                                                                                  from your carrier.

These documents include: Your Rights and Responsibilities and Ready to Move brochures, and information on the arbitration program that the carrier participates in. These documents are all required for every interstate shipment.  Back to Top
 

   Once you narrow it down to one carrier or moving company

Once you narrow it down to one mover its time to set up the pickup and delivery dates of your household belongings. Ask the mover how they can be contacted at anytime, That includes before, during, and after the move.
moving day
Remember to arrange any packing services you may need (Normally this work is sub contracted by the mover to a packing service)
Now is the time to get any details about who will be packing your household goods and the prices of supplied packing material.  Back to Top
 

   Insure your Property

Also remember to insure your belongings. Do not get cheap here. What if the truck caught fire on the way. Adequately insure all your belongings and try to get a plan that pays full replacement costs. If you are not satisfied with the cost/coverage of the insurance offered by the insurance company then you may want to shop around for a third party insurance. Back to Top
 

   Set the date with the movers and document everything in writting

Now you have a dead line, moving day and you must be ready when they show up with everything packed.

Remember you want to be available to assist in the inventory on moving day and not last minute packing.    

  Dont forget to check our Packing Tips, Moving Tips and Moving Links
Found a reputable mover

                           Good Luck on Moving Day!

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Check Back for more tips - Last Update : 7-28-2009 

The tips on this page are suggestions. We do not accept any liability or give any guarantees that if you follow these tips it will change the quality of your move. We are just trying to help.

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