Choosing long distance moving companies can be tedious and time consuming. Moving is always a difficult and stressful proposition, whether moving across town or across country. Moving a long distance presents its own set of complications compared to local moves, which are easy enough on their own with a rental truck. Many people decide that they are going to handle every aspect of their move on their own. The logic behind this way of thinking is strictly to save money by doing all the work themselves. The reality is, if you sit back and calculate the costs of moving everything yourself, you might be surprised to find that savings incurred by moving everything yourself are often minimal.
Some costs of DIY moving include:
- Price of gas.
- Wear and tear on your vehicles and furniture items that may be packed improperly.
- Potential tolls that will need to be paid.
- Time off work to pack, travel, and move to your new destination.
To be sure all your possessions arrive intact, it’s important to hire a long distance moving company you can depend on. By asking the right questions, you can ensure your long distance movers will take good care of your things and get them where they need to go, when they need to be there.
Preparing for a Move Across the Country
While local moves might occur on short notice, most cross country moves take considerably more planning. Always do research on your new destination, including the quality of schools and employment in the area. Knowing as much as you can about your new hometown will help you get more familiar with your surroundings. Organize your belongings and donate or throw away any items you no longer need. Inform family and friends of your impending move. Finally, contact a moving service well in advance of your move date to ensure that a truck is available to be dispatched.
Building a List of Long Distance Movers
To start your search, make up a list of home movers you think would be a good fit for your move. Online sites can provide quotes to give you a general idea of how much an individual company might charge. Don’t necessarily choose the least expensive companies when narrowing down your list, as you’ll want to consider other factors before making a final decision.
Be prepared to provide the following information to get an accurate house moving quote:
- Moving dates.
- Whether or not you need car transport services.
- Whether or not you need temporary or long-term storage for some of your household goods.
- Any desire for packing services.
Once you’ve acquired several initial quotes and have narrowed down your list, it’s time to start asking the hard questions to help you select a household moving company.
In-Home Quotes and Detailed Interviews
An in-home quote is the best way to determine exactly how much your move will cost. Cross country movers can give you a general idea of cost, but, until they see exactly what you have that needs to be moved, they can’t supply an exact quote.
In addition to a detailed, in-home quote, you’ll want to interview the movers with a list of detailed questions. Some moving questions to include are:
- How much experience do you have? Experience includes not just moving, but quoting. An inexperienced mover might give an inaccurate quote, as well as not give you a quality move. This could end not only with damage to your possessions thanks to an inexperienced packer or driver, but a final cost that is higher than expected.
- When will my possessions arrive? A moving company might not be able to say when they’ll deliver to the minute, but they should be able to give you a window of a day or two. If the delivery time seems too vague, too optimistic, or doesn’t take into account possible weather delays or other issues, the movers might just be saying what they know you want to hear.
- Can you provide references? If the company has done numerous moves for local business on either end (or both ends) of your planned move, these references can give you a good idea of the kind of work the company does.
- How will you approach moving my specialty item, such as a piano? Most movers have a plan for moving particularly large, cumbersome, or valuable items. Many will not move pianos, but will provide references for companies who specialize in piano moving. If a company is apprehensive about moving any individual item, it might be a good idea to let them recommend someone else. On the other hand, if they are overly enthusiastic about moving your Steinway grand piano, it might not hurt to look elsewhere.
In addition to looking for the right answers, pay attention to the attitude and tone. Long distance moving companies that seem overly willing to take on any project, or are dismissive of possible problems should be avoided. Learn more about long distance moving services before you get your free moving quote!