Most people are excited about the prospect of moving to a new city or another part of the country. But having to choose the right van lines moving companies strikes fear in many hearts, thanks to countless horror stories about unscrupulous moving companies, missed deadlines and missing or damaged furniture.
Here's how to choose the best van lines moving company for your particular move.
- First, get recommendations from business colleagues, family members and friends for names of reliable companies, and then check their profile with the Better Business Bureau. Determine what kind of moving services you need. Will you be moving interstate? Or within your own state? Is your move within your local community? Do you need the movers to stack and pack all your belongings or will you be doing your own packing and having the moving company pick up boxes and furniture? Will you need to purchase boxes and packing materials from the moving company?
- It's a good idea to get price estimates from at least three companies in order to finalize your decision at least 6 to 8 weeks prior to your desired moving date. Don't wait until the last minute when you will feel pressured to choose a company that might wind up disappointing you. Find out from each if they are licensed and a member of any trade organizations within the moving industry.
- Find out from the moving company if they charge by weight or by the hour. Find out if they charge you extra for storage. Ask how many movers will be assigned to your job. This is important if they charge by the hour and only send one person. Find out if they include insurance in their bid or if you need to purchase a separate insurance policy for your belongings. Find out the company's policy regarding overdue deliveries or damage to property. Be honest when dealing with the company about the amount of material you need moved so that you are not unpleasantly surprised on moving day with too few boxes or a too small moving truck.
- Get the price quote for the move in writing and read over everything on the proposed contract, including the fine print. Ask questions if you don't understand something or aren't sure about something.
Make your choice and be sure to sign a written agreement that spells out all details about the move, the price you expect to pay, the method of payment and when it is due and any other contingencies that could develop. Get started packing, and call the movers for a final confirmation several days before your agreed-upon moving date. If you run into problems once the move is underway, contact your state's Department of Transportation or Public Utility Commission for further guidance.