When preparing for a move, the hard part is getting your stuff packed and ready to go. Many people only think about movers as an afterthought, and, come moving day, may plan to move everything themselves or rely on the kindness of friends. But if you wait until just a few days before the move to finalize your moving-day plans, you may find yourself in over your head: too much stuff, too many heavy items you don’t have the manpower to lift, and a looming deadline to vacate your current place.
Hiring the best local moving company, like Movegreen, is a great way to remove stress and anxiety from the moving process. Try to find a moving company that is closer to your home. Movegreen has convenient locations in Santa Barbara County, Ventura County, as well as Orange County. This will make your moving process substantially easier.
There is also much to be said for having professionals who quite literally handle the heavy lifting. The job of getting your stuff securely packed, loaded, transported, and unloaded falls on somebody else, meaning you have more time on moving day to take care of other necessary responsibilities.
A simple Google search will provide you a list of local movers, but how do you know which ones are reputable? Follow these five simple expert tips to make sure you’re trusting the right local moving company with your valuable possessions.
1. Positive Word-of-Mouth Recommendations
The best way to learn which local moving company is the best is to ask other people who have moved in the area. For example, if you are moving to a different city in Southern California, reach out to friends, family, and professional colleagues to ask about their experiences, and especially who they would (or would not!) recommend in that specific area. If a friend had a bad experience with a moving company, chances are history will repeat itself. Word of mouth is also a great way to learn about hidden fees that the moving company doesn’t publicize online. By asking people you already know and trust, you are more likely to find the best local movers for your job and budget.
2. Positive Reviews
Just because a friend had a good experience with a local moving company doesn’t mean that experience is universal. Once you have the names of some reputable companies, check their online reviews to get a more general idea of the quality of their work. People tend to leave reviews when they’ve had especially good or bad experiences, which will be instructive when it comes time to make your decision. Especially important here is to look at the number and quality of reviews a company has. A local moving company that is just getting started will obviously have less feedback than more established local movers, but if all of those reviews are positive, that may be an indication that the company is a solid choice. Likewise, the presence of more negative reviews than positive is a clear indicator that you should stay away, and a curious mix of both positive and negative reviews can indicate that the quality of a company’s services varies greatly with the individuals they send to do the job. Do your homework so you have the most information possible before you make your decision. Also, make sure to check out the positive reviews we’ve gotten from our amazing customers of Movegreen.
3. Licensing and Insurance
You should never use a local moving company that isn’t both licensed and insured and willing to show you proof of licensure and insurance upon request. Anybody with a truck can claim to be a moving company. Or perhaps you’re looking to save money by paying some college kids a few bucks to haul your stuff. What will happen if there is an accident or something gets broken? When people are hauling heavy loads, accidents can happen. A reputable professional moving company, like Movegreen, should be licensed and insured so that you are protected if your belongings are damaged in transit or by the movers.
If you plan to use local movers for an interstate move, make sure that the company is properly registered with the United States Department of Transportation, which provides each registrant with a unique license number. You can check to see if companies you’re looking into have a valid USDOT number and review the scope of their insurance protection here (http://li-public.fmcsa.dot.gov/LIVIEW/pkg_carrquery.prc_carrlist).
4. Clearly Communicated Rates
You should be immediately wary of any moving company that cannot provide a fee range for their services. Most movers charge a flat hourly rate based on the number of man-hours required for your move. That said, most experienced movers also know that they cannot give an accurate estimate over the phone; instead, they need to see your space and the amount of stuff that needs to be moved in order to provide an accurate quote. There will then usually be surcharges for packing materials, movement of especially large or heavy objects, and there may be incidental charges such as mileage. Be sure to ask about the nature of any fees which are not included in the quoted price.
As with all things, you get what you pay for. The cheapest movers are probably not your best bet, and you may regret trying to save money later when some of your belongings are broken or, worse, missing.
5. Experience Moving Specialty Items
Did you know that the interior well of most washing machines is spring-mounted for shock absorption, and that improperly securing the washing machine during the move can throw off the calibration of the well, leading to unbalanced laundry loads and, eventually, a broken washing machine? You probably haven’t thought about that. There are probably other such things you haven’t thought of, like the fact that improperly moving a piano can cause it to require re-tuning. Make sure your moving company has the experience and materials necessary to move specialty items. This includes not only washing machines but also art, fragile electronics, delicate items, pianos, and some furniture. If your rocking chair squeaks after your move when it didn’t before, you’ll wish you’d hiring movers who treated your stuff as if it were their own. You can rest assured that Movegreen will take exceptional care of all your belongings.