When preparing to move into a new home, one of the many key decisions you will have to make is which moving company to use. The right movers can streamline the process and save you from stress and strain. Selecting the wrong moving company will do just the opposite.
Paying for the services of a moving company is a significant investment. That’s why we’ll assess your needs and match you with a selection of Houston-based moving companies that can meet them—at the lowest price. Get a free quote from the professional movers we work with.
Remember: the company you choose will be handling your most cherished possessions. You will want a reliable company experienced in packing, transporting, and unpacking the things that make your home a home. When researching your options, consider these seven tips for choosing a moving company.
1. Ask trusted people for recommendations
Friends, family, and trusted colleagues should serve as your first source for moving company options. Ask what companies they recommend (or don’t recommend) and what their experiences were with them. You will be more likely to find people who had negative experiences with otherwise highly rated companies and people who had great experiences with new or lesser-known movers than if you rely solely on Google or Yelp. By asking people you know and trust for their suggestions, you will acquire valuable insight.
2. Screen recommendations with online reviews
After you have compiled some recommendations via word-of-mouth, dig deeper using online reviews, which will point out the very good experiences and the very bad ones (people are typically motivated to post reviews when their experiences are extreme, one way or the other). By reading about other people’s experiences, you will be able to glean more information to help you make your decision.
3. Look for consistent, long-term success
You can always consider a new business, but you will likely experience better and more trustworthy service from a moving company that boasts a successful track record. You’ll want a mover that has consistently provided on-time service with fair rates and earned a reputation for maintaining the condition of people’s possessions. All other factors being equal, you will probably be better off hiring a company that has demonstrated competence over a longer period of time.
4. Check that the company is properly licensed and insured
It’s not wise to use a moving company that is unlicensed or uninsured. If you do, you’re just hiring a bunch of guys and a truck. They are not legally required to protect your possessions. Whatever money you might save you will pay out when mishaps occur.
If the company you are considering performs moves between states, it is required to register with the U.S. Department of Transportation. You can check if a company is licensed and insured by accessing the online database provided by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. If companies only do moves within a state, they will be licensed by that state. So in Texas, check with the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles to verify the moving company’s license and insurance.
5. Understand the rates
Once you select a moving company, they will charge you a base rate for your move. This rate is based on the number of hours required and number of workers needed. This base rate will not include costs for packing supplies, special rates to move extremely heavy items, or other incidental charges. Don’t forget to ask about these potential additions to the cost. If the company balks at providing this information, consider using a different company.
6. Determine the best fit for your move
As you consider these tips for choosing a moving company, you have to understand the unique aspects of your relocation. The moving company you hire will need to be able to service these unique aspects, whether you are moving from a studio apartment into a two-bedroom home or vice versa. Ask specific questions to ensure the moving company you select suits your needs. Some questions might be:
How big is the moving truck, and will it hold all my possessions?
Can the company provide packing supplies if necessary?
Is the company available at the time most convenient for me?
7. Stay cautious
Scams happen. Though rare, rogue movers do take advantage of unsuspecting customers every year. Again, be sure to check a company’s license, service record, and physical address (companies with only a PO Box for an address should be considered suspicious). Be cautious of movers that ask for a deposit, particularly if it is 20% or more.
If you spot any red flags when researching a company, move on, and don’t stop looking until you find a mover that has demonstrated safe, reliable service over an extended period of time. Houston provides many moving company options, and competition is stiff. Spare yourself the stress of wading through the options, and get free estimates from reputable moving companies who have a proven track record of customer satisfaction.
The work you put into weighing your options will pay off in the end. Follow these tips for choosing a moving company and you will be able to make your final decision with confidence.