Moving a houseful of furniture and personal items yourself can be a hassle and hiring a moving company can be confusing. What do you need to know to make the move go smoothly and make sure your items are protected and you’re not overcharged?
The following tips should help:
- Get several estimates in writing and be sure to disclose the number of steps involved and any heavy or bulky items such as pianos, pool tables, refrigerators and freezers.
- Ask if the movers are members of an industry organization, like the American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA) . They often provide customers with many protections, including arbitration of disputes.
- Ask about expected gratuities and include them in the contract.
- Make sure the contract includes all prices.
- Ask if they guarantee the price or the number of hours the job will take, allowing for a slight overrun.
- Be wary of any price that is well below competitors. Scammers sometimes purposely underestimate the weight of your goods and raise the price once they’re loaded on the truck.
- If packing yourself, use strong boxes and containers that can be secured tightly. You’ll want to be able to close all boxes.
- Avoid loading more than 50 pounds into a box.
- Label each box indicating whether it’s fragile and to which room it should be delivered.
- Keep a master list of the boxes and generally what’s in them.
- Cushion contents with packing material such as bubble wrap, newspaper or tissue.
- Watch loading and unloading and examine all items carefully before signing a receipt.
American Moving and Storage Association
Kansas Attorney General