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hiring a moving company - questions
Old 08-18-2019, 10:14 PM   #1
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hiring a moving company - questions

a relative of mine is making a big move from CA to TX. Lots of stuff, like 3 bedrooms worth plus things in storage. She got quotes from 6k to 9k. This is the first time I ever have to deal with a mover, what are the things to look out for? The ad provided their mover number, is there a way to verify that number, will it do any good? thanks.
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Old 08-18-2019, 10:34 PM   #2
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For a cross-country move, one of the things I’d be concerned about is going with a crazier that honors claims. When we moved from CA to PA Alamo’s this 20 years ago, our bedroom furniture was damaged beyond repair. It was only a year old and they had to replace it at a cost of $21K. A small company might not have been able to pay that claim.
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Old 08-19-2019, 04:44 AM   #3
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What most people don't realize is that the truck driver is self employed, and he just owns the truck. The trailers are owned by the moving companies. He'll usually have one employee that travels with him. They prefer to do all packing of boxes rather than hire locals (thru the moving company) which they pay dearly. The driver is also liable for any damages to furniture or broken items, and the moving company holds money on every job in reserve to give homeowners time to file for damages.

The cost of the jobs is based on how much packing there has to be, the weight of the move and how far it is to the new home. When homeowners get prices, it's just an estimate--and can go up or down depending on how heavy the load is. The trucker needs to go thru a certified scale before he arrives and after he leaves the home to establish the weight of the move.

The truckdriver and his helper usually make very good money--but they really earn it. The best thing any homeowner can do is purge their home of unneeded and unwanted items before the move. The movers will move anything in sight--including the garbage if it's there while packing.
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Old 08-19-2019, 05:32 AM   #4
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Buy the insurance and there are different coverages: replacement value or by weight. Get rid of as much “stuff” before hand.
$6000 sounds cheap. I just did an in state move for $4500.
Make the quote as a “not to exceed”. Extra time or slowness is then on the mover.
Check online reviews.
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Old 08-19-2019, 07:09 AM   #5
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It's probably better to sell what she can, and buy new when you get there.
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Old 08-19-2019, 07:38 AM   #6
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The ad provided their mover number, is there a way to verify that number, will it do any good? thanks.
I mean.. sure you can verify any number on google, but I'd be looking for much MUCH more before entrusting a company with all my stuff going multi-state. I want BBB ratings, reviews going back for years, insurance, liability, solid estimates, and high confidence.

Much more than "ok this number is good from the ad".
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Old 08-19-2019, 07:45 AM   #7
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Most cross country moves require you pay per pound for moving. I got like 10 quotes when we moved from IL to NC, they varied from $2500 to $7000. I went with one of the most well known carriers and requested they weigh it as else its based on an "estimate" and I can tell you that estimate as about 1000 pounds too high (though I had purged purged purged).

I think it was roughly $40/100 pounds... so now you have to think whats worth moving. We paid for the extra insurance to cover replacement value not by weight since when you figure that out a $3k table may only net $300 by weight. I think my end costs was roughly $3400 moving what ended up being a nicely furnished 2 bedroom.

If we were going to move cross country again, I'd move the mattresses (as they are new and expensive), may grandmas antique table, and only minimal clothing and toss the rest. Even the TVs at this point are old, why bother spending money to box them when I can go buy something state of the art for a fraction of the cost.

We did put some of the super heavy items in the car we drove. Like my honey's weights, a good size toolbox, etc things that were 100s of pounds for relatively tiny items.

I thought in the end $3400 was a good deal, it included the movers at both ends, the drive across country and insurance and it all showed up the same day I arrived. By the time I would have paid for a Uhaul, help at both ends, gas, insurance, and the pain of having to tow my car and driving all that way in the uhaul thru the mountains, money well spent.

btw, it really depends on where in Texas as miles count too.. and Texas really is ridiculously huge.. had a friend move up Texas to Chicago, only when she told me the mileage to I really comprehend as she was down in McAllen (500 miles from McAllen to Dallas) and you haven't even left the state yet.
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Old 08-19-2019, 09:42 AM   #8
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Verify who boxes the content
Some things (like bicycles) they will manipulate to fit into truck better- might be better to move some of this yourself.
Find out if truck will be moved from original location to final location or if goods will be put into storage (for a period of time) before going to new location.

Here are my tips
Tell the movers how to label boxes- they have their own system, but it was not how I wanted it done (they combined my boxes into single boxes and caused chaos when unpacking).
I would declutter before moving- why is stuff in storage- is it really needed?
I would sell stuff and buy new (in new location) if I wanted it set up correctly
Do you have packaging for electronics (TVs)?
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:03 AM   #9
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Some companies will do a "maximum cost" contract which in my opinion is worth it. This keeps them from estimating one weight and then coming in higher with the *actual* rate.

Also, I would do EVERYTHING IN YOUR POWER to be at the destination when the movers arrive. The guy (gal) who is delivering your stuff would LOVE to put it into storage since they can turn/burn to the next job without having to find a moving team. Also, there is a higher chance of damage with storage. Watch out for LIES from the driver. They may tell you that it will be there on "Wednesday" but lo and behold you get a call early Monday telling they are ready to deliver...well guess what? You aren't there, so off to storage it goes!

Last thing...you can save a lot of money if you pack yourself. We chose to pack all the stuff that wasn't breakable and had the "pros" pack the dishes, etc. Our moving coordinator provided all the boxes we could use for no additional charge. We probably saved at least $1,000 doing this.

Edit: We moved 12,156 pounds of stuff. We packed 79 boxes ourselves and the movers packed 95 at a cost of $1848. The total cost of the move (got about $200 back for weight being less than estimate) was just shy of $8000. Distance was about 1,000 miles.

One other thing...there are moving "seasons"...if you can move out of season, you will get better rates and a schedule that may be more conducive to direct delivery.
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:09 AM   #10
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The movers will move anything in sight--including the garbage if it's there while packing.
can confirm. in the 50's Pratt & Whitney moved us from Connecticut to Florida. Mom laughed for years about the bag of garbage that got moved
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:14 AM   #11
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can confirm. in the 50's Pratt & Whitney moved us from Connecticut to Florida. Mom laughed for years about the bag of garbage that got moved
That brings up another good point. They will NOT pack nor deliver many, MANY chemicals. So, expect to have a lot of them left behind or take them yourself.

Any gas powered items (lawn mowers, weed eaters, etc.) will have to be empty of fuel.
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:17 AM   #12
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a relative of mine is making a big move from CA to TX. Lots of stuff, like 3 bedrooms worth plus things in storage. She got quotes from 6k to 9k. This is the first time I ever have to deal with a mover, what are the things to look out for? The ad provided their mover number, is there a way to verify that number, will it do any good? thanks.
we thought everything was going to be great for our move, until we found out the day they were supposed to load the truck that they didn't have a driver aggined - took 3 weeks to get out stuff from Houston

If I had to do it again, I'd get some iron clad guarantee on the delivery window
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Old 08-19-2019, 10:39 AM   #13
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That brings up another good point. They will NOT pack nor deliver many, MANY chemicals. So, expect to have a lot of them left behind or take them yourself.

Any gas powered items (lawn mowers, weed eaters, etc.) will have to be empty of fuel.
Yep, no paint, no propane tanks.

We also moved all of our art, computers and TV's ourselves.
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