Selecting a moving service requires a bit of research. Randomly selecting any old mover after conducting a quick online search or consulting with the yellow pages of your phone book will not suffice. Follow the advice outlined below to perform your due diligence and you will enjoy a professional move done right.
1. Check the Credentials
If you are set to embark on an interstate move, verify that the moving service is licensed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. You can check a moving company’s license by visiting www.protectyourmove.gov. Those who are moving within a state should also consult a similar resource that is specific to their locality.
You can also search for prospective moving service’s motor carrier license information by logging onto the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s website known as “SaferSys”. You can conduct such a search by entering the company’s DOT license number and clicking “search”. If the DOT number provided by the moving service is inaccurate, don’t hire them!
2. Inspect the Service Record
You should check the Better Business Bureau’s ratings before hiring a moving service. If you uncover an excess of consumer complaints, don’t hire the moving service. Also, the American Moving and Storage Service recommends that your interstate mover has the association’s ProMover logo. This logo is a strong indication that the moving service is professional and offers quality services.
3. Find out if the Moving Service Provide a Written Estimate
If a prospective moving service refuses to provide an estimate for your move, do not hire them. Ideally, this estimate will be provided in writing. Legitimate movers always provide a firm estimate after inspecting your belongings and determining how long it will take to transport them. The law actually requires moving services to deliver your possessions for no more than 10 percent more than the nonbinding estimate initially provided. If a moving service refuses to visit your house to analyze your possessions in order to come up with an estimate, move on to a moving service that will.
4. Keep an Eye out for Red Flags
If a prospective moving service shows any signs of illegitimacy, don’t give them your business. Such warning signs include requiring you to plunk down a large deposit before the move, the lack of a local address, use of a non-company rental truck on moving day and a failure to answer the telephone with the company’s name.
5. Ask for Help From a Local Real Estate Agent
Do not hesitate to step away from the computer and ask for assistance from a real estate agent in your area. He will be able to recommend several high-quality, trustworthy moving companies in your vicinity.
6. Is the Moving Company Insured?
As you peruse the reports found on SaferSys, make sure that there is at least $750,000 worth of BIPD and Cargo insurance filed through the FMSA. If you see $0 for BIPD or “No” under the Cargo section, the moving service does not have the proper insurance.