What to Expect When Hiring a Mover
Hiring a mover means knowing that you have a lot to move and you want it to be done right. A mover can put everything you own into one truck and move it all in one trip. Depending on how much stuff that you have, it might help you determine whether you need a mover or not. Friends are helpful, especially if one has a truck or knows how to drive a bigger truck if you rent one. But it can also be time consuming.
There are things to expect when you hire a mover as well as things you need to know. Ask yourself the following questions and measure it against the costs involved with hiring a mover before you determine if hiring a mover is right for you.
(My recent experience with hiring a mover might be able to save you some time in the process and be better prepared in case a move is in your future.)
Is a Mover Right for You?
Questioning yourself is the first thing you need to know. Are you able to lift that furniture for a period of time that allows you to move it? Do you have any friends that can help move? Are you able to move around freely, meaning without pain or difficulty breathing? If you answer no to any of those questions than you are going to want to have a mover. Likewise, if you have a minimal number of items and can handle it yourself, or have at least one friend with a truck than you are ok to do the move on your own. If you have a lot of stuff and a short window to move, then hiring a mover is right for you. (I’ve moved many times in my life, always with the help of friends. My latest move we hired a mover and the cost was not bad, and the move was fast.)
How to Find a Mover?
When it comes time to finding a mover, there are several options. You can search Google and Yelp for local moving companies in your area. They will give you the top-rated ones, although they could also be the top most expensive ones, so make sure you ask about the rates. When you set up your utilities ahead of time so that they turn on when you get there, or the day before, there are links on their webpages for movers. The link I used puts the movers in a bidding war for your services. It does mean you will get a lot of calls, or texts until you settle on a mover that you choose, but you can find what you need within an hour this way. Many times, you will get texts stating a price and for how many movers they will provide, then you call or text them back the details (such as current address and the new address). They will confirm everything with you and set it up. It’s very easy, but I learned that there should be some questions you are going to want to ask, so that you can compare your options between movers, rather than settle on the first one that calls you.
If you know anyone that moved recently, try and get their mover information. Movers like repeat business, and business in areas they are familiar with. You can look up movers on the internet, in the yellow pages and by using basic search engines. There are tons of companies out there, but beware of the reviews. Don’t go with a company that has all 5 stars in their ratings as it could be false. Instead look at several reviews going over the pros and cons. This will help you with questions you want to ask them before you hire them.
There is always money involved in any transaction, and the more you know the better prepared you will be. When quoted a price it is usually just the rate of the basic service. Most companies charge you a certain rate for a limited amount of people, and you must pay for a minimum of 4 hours. For example, $75 for 2 movers, as a minimum of 4 hours is $300. It goes to $100 for 3 movers and so on, depending on the company. There is sometimes a gas surcharge of $50 or more, depending on the distance of the move. Beware though, as there are hidden costs that you might not be told about until the movers get there.
Some of those hidden costs include the use of their equipment, tape, shrink wrap, blankets and so on. Some movers include these costs in their entire package while others might nickel and dime you for everything they use.
What Happens When They Arrive
When the movers arrive, they will identify themselves and then they are going to want you to fill out several forms. (This is if you didn’t already do this in their office or via E-mail.) Most of them are for insurance purposes and their protection as well as protection of your belongings. You are going to then walk them through your current place, so you can show them everything that they will be moving. They will wrap any fragile furniture, and let you know if there is already damage to it, so they are not blamed in the process. This gives you an idea of how quick they will be, and what you might need to supervise. If you are hiring them to pack as well, they will bring the boxes and start the packing while other movers start on the furniture.
Questions to Ask / Tips
In order to save time and money you are going to want to ask questions before and during the process. Questions such as:
What time should the movers be expected?
Is there a window time frame I should know about in case they are late?
Who do you call if they don’t show up, or contact you?
What is included in their services?
Do you need to unpack any dresser drawers?
Are you licensed, bonded and insured?
Be sure to let them know how many bedrooms you currently have, as well as any odd furniture up front. You will want to move all your electronics and pets yourself. No matter what price you are quoted (Even after asking the questions), keep extra cash with you to be prepared.