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5 Hidden Costs of Moving Companies?

Professional movers are usually upfront with all their fees, but it happens sometimes for some charges to be written in fine print in your contract or not specified at all. Every agreement usually has hidden costs, so it’s best to know ahead of them and use a moving calculator. This way, you can be prepared when you’re planning to hire a moving company. You will know exactly what questions to ask in relation to the company’s fees and what answers you need to hear to be willing to hire their service.

Moving Companies Costs

Knowing about these moving costs ahead will help you set up an accurate budget and avoid any surprises when the moving bill is going to be handed to you.

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1. Voluminous items

Some moving companies, if not all, usually charge customers based on the distance their movers and trucks have to cross to take the customer’s goods from one place to another. However, this is not the only criteria used when calculating the final cost of the moving process. Many of them will also take into consideration the volume and weight of the shipment. So, if you have bulky or voluminous objects, such as pianos and pool tables, or royal canopies, you should always ask about the moving company’s policy related to bulky items. Moreover, if your building is not equipped with an elevator, and the mover will have to carry these items from a superior floor, this too might imply additional costs.

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2. Packing accessories

Packing is usually a service that moving companies offer for an additional fee. So, you should assume that, if you want to benefit from the services of professional packers, you will have to pay extra. However, just to be sure, discuss this service with your movers and see if and how much they are charging for it. Don’t forget to ask about the costs for packing accessories. Some moving companies cover these costs, while others will expect for you to pay for them. By packing accessories we mean things like boxes, moving blankets, protection for floors and doorways etc.

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3. Hoisting

If your goods are too big and there’s no way any mover could take them out of your home traditionally, through your doorway, or they don’t fit in hallways and stairways, your only option is to hire a relocation company that provides hoisting services. This means that the movers will use special equipment to move your items through the window. Considering the risks and the extra work involved in such cases, it’s only natural for this service to be quite expensive, so think twice before deciding to keep such voluminous items. Do you really need them?

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4. Express delivery

This is not exactly a hidden cost, but it’s always good to ask about this option. If you want your things to be delivered to the new place faster than usual, you should ask the moving company if they can provide this service and if it will cost you more than the standard delivery. For short distance moves, the fee might be insignificant, so this won’t be a problem, even if you forget to ask about it. However, when it comes to long distance moves, you should always make sure you know the cost of express delivery ahead.

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5. Cancellation

You should always ask the moving company about their cancellation policy and see what charges they apply in case you decide to cancel the move or postpone it for a different day. Most professional moving companies have a certain period of time during which the client can cancel the move without having to pay anything. However, if you’ve paid a deposit for your move, it’s very probable for the relocation company to keep it as a cancellation fee if you decide that you don’t need their service anymore. Always read the contract and pay attention to the fine print!

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Moving Truck Costs

Professional movers are usually upfront with all their fees, but it happens sometimes for some charges to be written in fine print in your contract or not specified at all. Every agreement usually has hidden costs, so it’s best to know ahead of them and use a moving calculator. This way, you can be prepared when you’re planning to hire a moving company. You will know exactly what questions to ask in relation to the company’s fees and what answers you need to hear to be willing to hire their service.

Knowing about these moving costs ahead will help you set up an accurate budget and avoid any surprises when the moving bill is going to be handed to you.

1. Voluminous items

Some moving companies, if not all, usually charge customers based on the distance their movers and trucks have to cross to take the customer’s goods from one place to another. However, this is not the only criteria used when calculating the final cost of the moving process. Many of them will also take into consideration the volume and weight of the shipment. So, if you have bulky or voluminous objects, such as pianos and pool tables, or royal canopies, you should always ask about the moving company’s policy related to bulky items. Moreover, if your building is not equipped with an elevator, and the mover will have to carry these items from a superior floor, this too might imply additional costs.

2. Packing accessories

Packing is usually a service that moving companies offer for an additional fee. So, you should assume that, if you want to benefit from the services of professional packers, you will have to pay extra. However, just to be sure, discuss this service with your movers and see if and how much they are charging for it. Don’t forget to ask about the costs for packing accessories. Some moving companies cover these costs, while others will expect for you to pay for them. By packing accessories we mean things like boxes, moving blankets, protection for floors and doorways etc.

3. Hoisting

If your goods are too big and there’s no way any mover could take them out of your home traditionally, through your doorway, or they don’t fit in hallways and stairways, your only option is to hire a relocation company that provides hoisting services. This means that the movers will use special equipment to move your items through the window. Considering the risks and the extra work involved in such cases, it’s only natural for this service to be quite expensive, so think twice before deciding to keep such voluminous items. Do you really need them?

4. Express delivery

This is not exactly a hidden cost, but it’s always good to ask about this option. If you want your things to be delivered to the new place faster than usual, you should ask the moving company if they can provide this service and if it will cost you more than the standard delivery. For short distance moves, the fee might be insignificant, so this won’t be a problem, even if you forget to ask about it. However, when it comes to long distance moves, you should always make sure you know the cost of express delivery ahead.

5. Cancellation

You should always ask the moving company about their cancellation policy and see what charges they apply in case you decide to cancel the move or postpone it for a different day. Most professional moving companies have a certain period of time during which the client can cancel the move without having to pay anything. However, if you’ve paid a deposit for your move, it’s very probable for the relocation company to keep it as a cancellation fee if you decide that you don’t need their service anymore. Always read the contract and pay attention to the fine print!

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When you decide to hire a moving company, you need to make sure you chose a reputable and professional one. There are many relocation companies on the market and probably in your city, but only a few of them are reliable and deserve your trust and money. So, if you don’t know what a good moving company should guarantee to their customers for them to enjoy a smooth moving process, here are some tips that will help you make your choice:

1. A+ rating

Just like any other companies, moving companies too have institutions that grade their performance and professionalism. So, if you want to be sure you’re hiring a reputable relocation company, you should make sure you choose a company that has received the A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

BBB is a private, non-profit organization that has the capacity to monitor businesses in various fields. They can rate the companies monitored on a scale from “F” to “A+”, with “A+” being, of course, the highest rate any company can receive. Consumers can trust the BBB and their decisions because their ratings usually reflect the service quality and products offered by the companies evaluated by their experts. So, if the moving company you choose has an “A+” rating, you can be sure you will be working with a professional company.

2. Free upfront estimates

It’s preferable for a moving company to conduct a free on-site evaluation of the moving process, so they can provide you with an accurate estimate. However, some companies manage to do this following a lengthy discussion with the person who needs their moving service, if they know the exact details of their move: distance, the number of trucks, crew size etc.

The most reputable moving companies guarantee free on-site estimates, which reflect the actual cost of the moving with the highest level of accuracy. You will find out then what services they include in their estimate, as well as if you need to pay for additional services. Make sure you get a written estimate because this way you will be protected by the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission, in case the company will try to add unexpected costs.

3. A moving arbitration program

According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), any moving company needs to have a moving arbitration program. This program allows the customers to raise claims against the moving company, in case they refuse to pay for damages or if they are not satisfied with their service, without having to sue them.

Arbitration is done by an independent arbitrator, and a dispute is usually handled in less than 60 days. Their decision is binding for both parties involved and will take effect as soon as it’s communicated. The arbitrators are professionals who know the laws regarding moving goods, so you will benefit from their expertise and benefit from a fair, impartial arbitration and decision.

4. Insurance

Any professional moving company needs to have an insurance. In case you items get deteriorated, lost or stolen during the moving process, the insurance will cover their costs, so you can replace them. You should work only with a company that can prove they have a valid insurance, as well as a legal license and a US DOT number. You can check to see if the DOT number is valid in the database of the FMCSA. If they don’t have this number, it’s best to keep searching for a different moving company. The DOT number proves that the company is well established and has been in business for more than 20 years.

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