Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Moving Company

Moving to a new house or relocating your business is a stressful process. You can ease those tensions by hiring a reputable moving company. You’ll find several options on the internet but which one is right for you? First figure out what you want the moving company to do. Do you want them to pack for you? Handle large furniture or expensive artwork? How far are you moving? When do you need to move? These are questions any moving company will ask you so it’s best to be ready with answers. You should have several questions ready for the moving company as well. If they can’t answer your questions or their answers don’t please you then it’s time to call another company. Here are some of the most important questions to ask a moving company before hiring them.

  1. Can you provide a written and binding estimate?
  2. Can you provide reviews and recommendations?
  3. Are there any Additional Fees I should know about?
  4. Do you hire subcontractors?
  5. Do you have a storage facility?
  6. Is there a cancellation fee?
Image of moving company trucks parked in front of a residential client

Moving Company Trucks Parked In Front Of A Residential Home

1. Can you provide a written and binding estimate?

Image of a moving company providing a on-site estimate

Ask For A Written Estimate

A good moving company will provide an on-site estimate after meeting with the potential client in their home. They’ll inspect the location and take note of any obstacles or hazards that can make the move difficult such as stairs or tight squeezes. They’ll take note of how much furniture needs to be moved and their size. This helps them figure out how many movers and how many trucks are needed. It will help them if you can describe or show them pictures of where you’re moving to so they won’t be surprised when they get there in case there’s any issues at the new location. After they ask you the questions we discussed earlier they should be able to offer you an estimate on the spot. A binding estimate will guarantee that there will not be any outrageous additional charges added to your bill upon completion of the job.

2. Can you provide reviews and recommendations?

A moving company that has been in operation for a while will have earned several reviews and recommendations from previous clients. You can ask the company for referrals but you should do some research on your own as well. You can research specific businesses for reviews on sites like Yelp, BBB, HomeAdvisor, Angi, and Google My Business. If you find a company that has no reviews or referrals from clients then it’s a good idea to move on to a different moving company that is established and well liked.

Research Moving Company Reviews

3. Are there any Additional Fees I should know about?

Ask About Most Common Moving Surcharges

Even with a binding estimate there may be some additional fees that pop up that no one, including the movers, expected. No matter how well you planned you may find that the weather turns for the worse and it starts to rain. The movers will need tarps and other coverings to protect your belongings which may incur a charge. If the rain or traffic causes a huge delay then a fuel charge may need to be added. Make sure you arrive at the final location before or at the same time as the moving trucks. You will be charged an extra fee if the movers arrive before you and have to wait for you to show up. There may be other circumstances where additional fees might be added so ask the moving company what are the most common fees that happen.

4. Do you hire subcontractors?

Some moving companies handle the whole job themselves from start to finish. Other companies, usually larger ones, will hand the job off to a subcontractor. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing but you should know ahead of time if this is the case. Ask the moving company for the subcontractor’s name and rating and if they are insured under the parent company. If you don’t feel comfortable dealing with a subcontractor then ask the main company if they can do it themselves or search for another company that can start and finish the job on their own.

Image of a subcontracted moving company van

Know If Your Moving Company Has Subcontracted Someone Else

5. Do you have a storage facility?

indoor storage company San Antonio Texas

Ask About Storage And Pricing

Several moving companies also offer storage facilities for people that can’t move everything at once. Sometimes when you sell your house you may have to move to an apartment until your new house closes or is finished being built. In the meantime what do you do with all of your belongings? The moving company can move your belongings into their own storage facility. Some companies even offer climate controlled storage for items like electronics, fine artwork, leather furniture or anything else that can be affected or ruined by heat. Ask the moving company for storage prices and how long you can store it there. The movers can easily load everything from their facilities onto trucks and move it to your new house whenever you’re ready.

6. Is there a cancellation fee?

No matter how prepared and organized you may be; something could happen that will cause you to cancel the move for that day. The moving company will most likely have a cancellation fee if you cancel too close to the move date. This is understandable because they will be losing a day of work they planned on and they don’t have time to find a new client for the day. The fee will be pulled from the deposit you gave them. Ask the moving company what their cancellation policy is so you won’t be charged if you cancel in time and when you can reschedule your move.

These are some of the most important questions to ask a moving company before hiring them to make your move less stressful. You will have more questions depending on your own personal situation. Don’t be afraid to ask anything you’re not sure about. Professional movers will have the answers you’re looking for.

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