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How to Hire a Qualified Moving Company

Moving is stressful.  Here are a few tips to simplify the process.

Before even considering what mover to hire sort through your things and decide what you can donate or get rid of because why move (and pay to have moved) things you no longer use or want.

Take an assessment of what you will actually require movers to move and what you can do yourself.  Your huge couch, bedroom set and flat screen t.v. might be best left to the capable hands of a moving company.

Get names and numbers of moving companies from friends – word of mouth is your best resource when selecting a reputable company. Look at online rating sites for reviews. Double check those companies with the American Moving and Storage Association to see if a moving company is a member. AMSA members are licensed, insured, comply with federal regulations, abide by ethical business practices and receive acceptable Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratings.

Next, contact those moving companies to ask for an estimate. Know/list what you want moved. Many companies will actually come to you to provide a free estimate.

Movers charge between $70 – $100 an hour.  Be wary of pricing on either side of those ranges. Don’t pick a mover who bases their fees on weight – you could be in for a hefty surprise.

During the estimate process ask the representative from the moving company specific questions, such as:

  1. What extra charges could be incurred during a move?  You may not have enough information when the estimate is being given to completely cover all moving scenarios so its good to ask the expert.
  2. What is the estimated time the movers will arrive and will you be notified by the driver prior to arrival on your move day?
  3. About how long should the move take?  This is especially important to ask when you are being charged by the hour.  If the move seems to be taking much longer you might want to check in with someone in charge at the moving company.
  4. What supplies will the moving company provide?  Wardrobe boxes are very handy and might be worth an extra fee if you have many hanging clothes.
  5. What type of payment will the moving company accept; cash, credit card, check, personal or certified?
  6. When is payment expected?  Do not pay in full for a move prior to the move – EVER!
  7. Will the movers disassemble and then reassemble all items during the moving process?
  8. All legitimate moving companies carry insurance.  Ask for a copy of their policy.
  9. Ask if there are any additional fees – if there are, think twice about that company.  If the moving representative assures you there are no additional fees make certain that it is stated in your contract.
  10. Ask for references and then be sure to call the people on that list.

Prior to the move date you should notify the apartment management companies at both your present residence and the one you are moving in order to make any necessary parking arrangements for the moving truck.

Finally, if the moving company has done a great job, tip them.  The general rule is 15 – 20% for protecting and transporting your valuables.

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35 Chicago Avenue
Oak Park, IL 60302

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