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How to Avoid a Low-Ball Estimate

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It’s a fact of life that moving can be stressful. There are many different things to take into consideration and keep track of while planning such a big life event! The last thing you want to worry about is overpaying or working with a moving company that is not trustworthy.

Sometimes, you may find out that the quote a moving company gave you does not match up with your final bill in the end. This is an understandable mistake that many people make when moving. In order to have the best experience with your moving company, here are five ways to avoid a low-ball estimate:

5 Tips to Avoid a Low-Ball Moving Estimate from Moving Companies

Do your research

A little bit of research goes a long way when you’re moving! Be sure to speak with your potential moving companies about exactly what you’re looking for.

It’s important to ensure that the moving company is aware of the full extent of your needs in order to receive the most accurate estimate possible. This means sharing the distance you need your items moved, a good idea of the items’ weight, and making them aware of any large or specialty items, such as a piano or a beloved family heirloom, that require different care. Are your driveways level or will the men need to load from the street? did anything have to come in through the window? Have you had any remodeling done that would make it difficult to move items out of your home?

Once you start to talk to different moving companies, be aware of price estimates that seem too good to be true. As the old saying goes: if it appears too good to be true, it probably is! Be on the lookout for estimates that seem drastically low.

Get multiple estimates

The best way to ensure an accurate moving estimate is to contact three different moving companies to get an idea of the price range.

Typically, getting an estimate from 3-5 movers should help you nail down an estimate that best fits your needs – and your budget. However many people get sticker shock from the first quote. Then as they walk through with the 4th and 5th company, they are not asking for as much packing or perhaps thinking about somehow selling items or moving them themselves. After meeting walking through your home 5 times with 5 different companies seeing all the work that needs to get done you will begin to wonder why your even moving! So three 3 estimates is plenty. It really is up to you to make sure that companies are giving you an accurate estimate for moving costs by showing them everything you want packed and moved. If one company provides a quote that’s very different from the rest, they are most likely trying to get you on board with a low quote – only to tack on hidden charges later on.

When you work with a company like Harrington Moving & Storage, you receive a free, no-obligation moving quote and we even offer No Excuse Pricing™. That means that what you see is what you get! Whether you’re preparing for a local, long-distance, or even an international move, we have you covered with quality guaranteed.

Check out reviews and references

You know those neighbors with their finger on the pulse? Talk to them about their experiences with moving companies in the area. Getting to know more about movers from trusted friends and family is a great way to decide what movers will help you through this important process.

While it’s great to get a personal recommendation, be sure to check out online reviews of moving companies as well. Online reviews can be deceiving! So make sure you also click on the google pictures of the company. This will actually show you there facility and the trucks they will be moving you with. This will tell a lot about the company and may be an eye opener. Getting the scoop on which companies are trustworthy will help provide with peace of mind.

I can remember doing a move in Summit New Jersey in 1999. We had been at the residence for 30 minutes and were just finishing up protecting the carpets, walls, banisters and hard wood floor when I heard some trucks pull up. The husband  had forgot to cancel the other moving company. I heard him say to his wife “Thank god you hired Harrington Movers”.  The trucks were nothing like moving trucks and they were old and dirty. The men that hobbled out of them look like they came straight from the bar, not one in uniform and in no shape to be carrying furniture. So believe me and look of the companies trucks. The decals and branding is not cheap but sets the stage for, uniforms, training, customer service from the men moving on moving day. When I see a moving truck where the owner has really went cheap on the banding of his company, it tells me a lot about their intentions in this business.

You can also check out resources such as American Moving and Storage Association and New Jersey Warehousemen & Movers Association for a list of reputable moving companies in your area. The Better Business Bureau is a wonderful resource to find accredited businesses with a proven track record of success and quality business practices. A moving business with a great reputation that is BBB-Accredited is more likely to support you and your family with accurate quotes and all of your moving needs.

Request an in-home consultation

A great way to get an accurate moving estimate is to request an in-home consultation. It’s easier to receive an accurate estimate when a moving company can get to know your needs in person.

Most movers have seen it all! When they can see your large or delicate items in person, they can better evaluate what may require extra care and inform you of any associated costs in a written estimate.

Be aware of additional costs

Your move is all finished and you receive the bill – and it’s MUCH higher than the moving quote. Before you make this common mistake, talk with your moving company about any added fees that could arise throughout the moving process.

Some movers will charge hidden fees without informing you of them first. They may charge for stairs, long-haul fees, packing services, or an included gratuity that was not included in your estimate.

To avoid this issue, get to know your movers and the specifics of what they charge for first.

Now that you’ve learned these helpful tips on how to avoid a low-ball estimate, you’re all set to have the smoothest move possible.

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