How to Avoid a Bad Moving Company
At Exodus Moving and Storage, we pride ourselves on being one of the most trusted Fort Collins moving companies. But, we know that you may not be in our immediate area or near any of our offices, and that means that you’ll have to find a mover near you to get the job done. We also know that this can be a tough task! Sure, the Internet and review sites help, but finding a mover that’s trustworthy and not fraudulent is really important.
After all, the moving company that you hire will be solely responsible for moving everything that you own! So, it’s kind of vital that the company you choose is the best one you can find, right? Since we’ve been doing this for a long time, we thought we’d let you know how to find a great moving company – and how to avoid those companies that you shouldn’t go near with a ten-foot pole.
1. Look for any company that you’re considering on the Better Business Bureau website. Any reputable company will have a great reputation, and won’t be afraid to list on the BBB site. If you see any questionable claims or problems, look into those issues before booking any company.
2. Get your rate in writing. It’s all well and good to have a word of mouth rate from a moving company, but it’s always (never fails!) a better idea to have all terms related to your move in writing. If a company won’t put something down on paper in advance, it’s a good idea to look for a different option.
3. Find out what a company’s liability policy is. If something breaks along the way, are you responsible or will the company pick up the bill? This is, by far, one of the most important things that you can do to ensure a safe and secure move without any kind of unexpected monetary hassle.
4. Read the Bill of Lading carefully. The Bill of Lading is the contract that you will have with a moving company. Sometimes, less than honest movers put a lot of little clauses that weren’t agreed upon into that contract. The result can often be disastrous! Even though it will take some time, read, read, read – and ask questions if you don’t understand something.
5. If you plan to ship something, know that you have the right (by law) to be there when that item is weighed. Since some shipping companies charge per weight, you’ll want to check out the scale when your items are weighed (otherwise, there may be a brick or two on that scale!).
6. Make sure to clearly list pick up and delivery dates in advance – once again, this is where writing things down will come in handy. Don’t wait until the day of the move to specify dates, locations, or any other details. Get it in writing in advance.
7. Know that an email is binding. Going back to the writing thing (can you tell that it’s important?), if you can’t get paperwork in person or faxed, emailed, or scanned to you, make sure that everything you negotiate with a moving company is written in an email. Emails are considered legally binding in most cases, and it’s always a good idea to be able to point to an email agreement in case something doesn’t go the way you originally planned it to.
8. Gather lots of bids. Sure, that moving company down the street may look great, but it’s a good idea to gather at least four different bids. You wouldn’t simply walk into the nearest store to buy that massive flat screen TV without shopping around first, right? Well, the same goes for the company that will move everything you own from one space to the next. Get those bids, and make sure that everything is (say it with me!) in writing!
9. Get copies of every estimate. Ask a mover to explain all details of an estimate to you, in writing, and then get physical copies of those estimates. This can be tough if you are booking a mover from another state or country, but it can be done thanks to the Internet. If something is unclear, make sure that it is explained.
10. Go with your instinct. Don’t trust the guy that didn’t have a lot of answers on the phone? Have a bad feeling about a company? Often, your instinct is spot on. Trust your gut, and know what you feel comfortable with.
In the end, picking a moving company may take a few weeks and lots of estimates and paperwork, but it will be worth the time. If you have any additional questions, don’t hesitate to ask us!