20 Tips: How to Hire a Long Distance Moving Company
20 Ways to Guarantee You Choose the Right Movers
Choosing a Buffalo long distance moving company, it might seem intimidating. However, there are several ways to ensure you're making the right decision for your needs. You can simplify by asking four very important questions and using some practical advice when hiring your mover.
Ask every long distance moving company you interview these 4 key questions prior to hiring them:
- Is the long distance moving company asking you for a cash deposit before your move?
- Does the long distance moving company have a brick and mortar location (and not just a PO Box) on its website?
- Does the company list licensing information on its site, such as their DOT number?
- What is the company’s rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and are they certified with AMSA?
If the answer to any of these questions is no, then you could be dealing with a fraudulent moving company, or be falling victim to another type of scam.
The following is a list of the steps to take to be certain you make a wise move when choosing between moving companies.
Where to start
- Start your search for a long-distance mover by asking your friends, family members, and coworkers] about Buffalo moving companies they have hired and liked.
- Contact a real estate agent you trust to get at least three moving companies that have actual brick-and-mortar locations in Buffalo.
- If you are using the Yellow Pages, remember—just because a long-distance mover has an big advertisement does not necessarily mean it’s reputable.
- Once you have made a list of potential movers, contact the companies via phone to get the full name and “doing business as” names, contact information, and DOT / MC license numbers.
- Go to the the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) website, and search for the company using the DOT and MC license numbers to see safety ratings, any orders to cease operation, licensing, and other information. You can also check with the Better Business Bureau or other consumer organizations in Buffalo or New York.
- You need to schedule either an in-home or virtual estimate, which should be provided at no cost. A reputable long distance moving company WILL NOT give you a quote via a phone call, or without inspecting your belongings, home, and logistics.
- Don’t rely on an estimate provided without seeing the items over the phone or online. When moving to a different state, your charge is based on how heavy your items are, and the distance between your old and new location. You are better off meeting face-to-face with the mover’s representative to to be certain that you both understand the details of your move.
- During an in-person assessment, be sure to show the representative everything that is to be moved. Don’t forget about belongings in the basement, or the large furnishings you have sent away for repairs. Don’t be afraid to ask questions either. The estimator should also ask you questions – about your new home, the schedule of your move, and so on.
- Inquire about “valuation” packages. Valuation gives protection from loss to your goods. The valuation package you choose determines the basis upon which any issue will be adjusted and the maximum liability of the mover. The liability of a mover for breakage is based upon the mover’s fees, as well as federal laws and regulations, and has certain constraints and omissions. Valuation is not assurance; it is simply a price-based level of mover's obligation.
- Be wary of quotes that are substantially lower than the rest. "Artificially low" price quotes could result in significantly lower-quality service, or they could be an indication of a mover who plans to "raise" the price in a "deceptive" moving scam. Some "dishonest" movers are known to take household goods "hostage" and demand exorbitant fees before returning the possessions.
Go with a name you know
- There are several quality recognized van lines in Buffalo to choose from. If you are not aware of a particular long distance moving company, and you have no references from friends or business affiliates, be very careful! Don’t be persuaded by a cheap rate from a lesser-known company; remember, you are trusting your mover with nearly all of your personal possessions.
- When planning your move, it's important to consider the attentiveness of your point of contact is. Can you trust he or she will be there to help you through the packing and loading process? Do they provide additional support resources such as an additional support representative?
- If you're in the market for a mover, you may want to visit the mover’s warehouse. By doing so, you can get a sense of their level of quality and professionalism. It's essential to select a service provider that meets your expectations.
- Long distance moving companies are required by law to provide you with an electronic copy, or make it available on their website, “Your Rights and Responsibilities.” In this brochure, the “110 percent rule” is explained. The rule states that under a non-binding estimate, the mover cannot require you to pay more than the amount of the original estimate, plus ten percent more, at the time of delivery. You are obligated to pay any remaining charges over the 110 percent amount within the following 30 days.
Timing is important
- Make arrangements for your move well in advance – at least 4 to 6 days before the moving date. If at all possible, try not to move during “peak” times.
- Year-round, the end of every month is a busy time for movers, because of expiring leases and preferred closing dates.
- During summer – May to mid-September, when children are out of school, are “peak season” for movers. Schedule summertime moves as far in advance as you can…and again, try to stay away from month-end moving dates. Busy times moves should be planned at least 6 to 8 weeks in advance to make sure the dates you want are available.
If you fall victim
Unfortunately, many consumers will fall victim to dishonest moving companies this year. Fortunately, there is an organization called MoveAid available to help. Those who suspect they may have been defrauded should contact MoveRescue at 800-832-1773. Homeowners who call this number will talk to a consultant who will evaluate the situation and lead the caller through the appropriate procedures. MoveRescue, which is supported by a group of law firms throughout the United States, and backed by leading van lines, serves as a core reference for people who need legal assistance or anti-fraud information. In some cases, MoveRescue even offers “Shipment Rescue” for items being held by rogue movers.
Call CorriganThe best way to ensure a seamless move is to reach out to Corrigan. Backed by United Van Lines, Corrigan has over 90 years of industry experience. Our dedicated employees are committed to providing exceptional service in every move we make.