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How to Find Moving Help You Can Trust

Movers carrying a cardboard box into a house
Zero Creatives / Getty Images

When you need help moving, you have plenty of options. Whether you’re moving down the street or across the country, there’s assistance that’s sure to fit your lifestyle and your budget.

If you’re asking yourself, “How do I find the best moving companies near me?” you’re not alone. Should you find local movers or go with one of the large moving companies? How do you choose a mover and how do you make sure they’re trust-worthy?

You don’t want to be stuck paying movers that handle your belongings carelessly or don’t show up to moving day on time. So, take the time to really think about what moving service you really need and do your research. If that seems overwhelming, don’t worry. MYMOVE is here to help.

Stop worrying and start deciding with our list of moving service options below.

Options to get the moving help you need

1. DIY move

Of all your options, moving your things yourself is one way to make sure that you maintain complete control of the moving day. But, moving yourself from one place to another is the most exhausting option. First, you line up the moving truck, pay whatever deposits the moving service requires, and then pick it up. After that, you need to pack it, drive the huge truck, and unload all your things within a short window of time. Take too long and you’ll pay more than expected.

So don’t be shy in asking everyone you know for help moving. In this case, the more, the merrier. But, make sure your recruiting friends and family that are strong enough to do the heavy-lifting and careful enough to safeguard your valuables. And if you get enough friends to pitch in, your move will not only go faster, it might even be fun.

2. Rent a moving container

For a non-rushed move, consider a moving container. Many of these companies offer week-long packing periods. If you need more time, pay a little more, and keep packing on your terms. This might be exactly the type of help moving that you’ve been looking for.

When your pickup date arrives, the moving container company will grab your pod and take it away. Where it heads next is up to you. The company could take it to their own on-site secure storage until you’re ready for delivery. Or you can have it hauled to your next location. You can even keep some moving containers locked and in your front yard — that way you have access to your most precious belongings while you move.

3. Freight trailer moving company

If you pack it, a freight trailer moving company will carry it. Fill the trailer with your stuff in the allotted time, then the company will head back to pick up and deliver the trailer to your new home. You get to skip the fees of having someone else do the packing while avoiding driving a large truck yourself.  Just make sure you read reviews about how freight trailer moving companies handle the trailers. See how many people have complained about lost items, or receiving damaged valuables after their move. If you see many, call and ask to speak with a representative.

Doing some of your own legwork costs less than paying someone to pack your stuff too. But for this type of help moving to work, you will need to have a place big enough to set the trailer.

4. Full-service moving service

Busy people, those with young kids, or people without room for stacks of boxes might want all the help moving they can get. They’ll want to research their options with full-service moving companies.  Skip the hours of packing and figuring out where to put everything. A full-service moving company does everything for you, from packing to lifting; driving to unloading. Like you would while shopping for anything, do your research. Look at reviews of the moving company and see how they are rated on customer service, efficiency, and care. Also, ask about pricing and make sure you understand your quote. You don’t want to be stuck with unexpected fees when the job’s done.

5. Ship your belongings

College students and studio apartment dwellers don’t need massive moving operations. When you don’t have much stuff or need to fly to your new home, it may be more cost-effective to ship your things. Pack up your books, clothing, and personal mementos. Compare the rates of the usual shipping services to see where you can save money. Just know, some items could get lost or damaged in transport. Make sure to keep your most precious valuables with you when you move.

Tips for finding movers you can trust

1. Ask around

Good news travels fast. Ask your friends and family, your neighbors, and your real estate agent for a referral. If anyone has worked with dependable local movers in the past, it’s a good way to find out.

2. In-home estimates

Nothing is more convenient than asking for an estimate over the phone, however, that’s not the way a reputable moving company works. Professional moving companies need to physically see your house. How else would a moving service be able to gauge the work involved in moving your household?

Steer clear of any company offering you a quote over the phone, sight unseen. That’s not how the most dependable moving companies operate.

3. Read the reviews

So you Googled “best moving companies near me” and think you found a winner. Try again. Drop in the word “review” to the end of the company’s name. Are there more positive or negative reviews? Is it a question of customer misunderstandings or something bigger? Dig into online reviews to whittle down your list of potential moving companies. The Better Business Bureau is a good place to start.

The bottom line

Moving should be exciting. Don’t let the stress of organizing your move take away from feeling good about your fresh start. Finding a trustworthy moving company doesn’t have to be overwhelming.

For help moving, consider your circumstances and your budget. Total up the time and energy you will spend moving when deciding on the right moving services for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much should I tip movers?
Whether you provide lunch for your movers or not (and you should), you are expected to tip the moving crew. A gratuity is rarely built into a moving contract. Plan to tip 5% to 10% of your moving costs and divide it by the number of crew members. If the moving company was awful, but the actual moving crew was excellent, set your irritations to the side. Focus on the hardworking crew and tip well.

How do you know if a moving company is a scam?
If you don’t know anyone in your network who has used a particular company, it doesn’t mean it’s too good to be true. Ask about licensing and insurance. Look for the company on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website. Has the moving company registered with the Department of Transportation (DOT)? It’s one way to make sure the company you choose will have your best interest in mind.

What is Replacement Value Protection?
Replacement value protection is extra insurance coverage. This supplemental insurance better covers broken or damaged items. If moving destroys some of your stuff, Replacement Value Protection gives you better protection. You’ll receive more money back than you would from general insurance. It will cost extra, but for long-distance moves, it may be worth a look.

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