Moving is a stressful time and the right movers can take a lot of that weight off your shoulders. You’ll be trusting movers with your most valued possessions, and to not damage your new property. There are many things to know about hiring movers to make sure that you end up with a company that you trust and that you’re covered from an insurance perspective.
Here are four tips to follow:
1. Get Insurance
One of the biggest benefits of hiring movers instead of renting a truck like with U-Haul and moving yourself is that the professionals should have insurance. Your possessions should be covered if there is an accident. However, the kind of coverage may vary. Inquire as to which kind of coverage your movers have:
- Full value: In this case, your mover’s insurance covers either full repair or replacement of any items that are damaged during the move. However, this may only apply to your high-value items.
- Alternative: In this case, the mover has responsibility for only a portion of damaged items.
You should always discuss the level of liability and insurance that your moving company has. Know exactly what is covered and how it will be replaced in the event of damage, theft, or accidents.
2. Pay Only a Small Deposit, If Any
If you are paying your moving company a deposit, it should be small. Paying a great deal upfront puts you at a disadvantage. It’s a red flag if a company wants a large deposit upfront, and you certainly should not pay the entire bill before the move has been completed.
3. Get Estimates
How much does hiring movers cost? It all depends on the company, so you should get an estimate. Written estimates are very important. It is much easier to hold a moving company to their word when you have a written estimate, and, in many areas, they will not be legally allowed to charge more than 10% of the final price on the estimate.
Estimates are especially important when hiring movers when moving long-distance as many moving companies add on additional charges for long moves. Ask if your movers have included every fee, charge and tax in the written estimate that they have provided you.
Stair, elevators, large properties, narrow streets and other obstacles in the way of your movers will often also incur fees. Consider if your current or new property might be challenging for movers and be sure those fees are accounted for in the estimate.
4. To Pack or Not to Pack
Many movers will offer packing services. This can be very convenient to help you move if you’re short on time or not an efficient packer. However, these can be steeply-priced services. The mover is taking on liability for the packing process in this case.
You can go without packing services, but you may still be able to get boxes, tape and other supplies through your mover. Talk to your specific mover about what they offer.