5 Tips for Finding a Great Mover

If you don't have a truck, or better yet - friends with trucks - then moving is going to cost more than pizza and beer and could turn into a headache.

If you're looking for how to find a mover, then here are five tips to get you started...
1. Put the computer away, at least until you get a few estimates on your own. While there are many reputable moving companies on the Internet, there are also many that will take your money and run. You're better off finding a mover in your local phone book or by getting recommendations from your local real estate agents.

2. Do your homework. Find moving companies that have been in business at least 10 years. Set up appointments to have them come to your home and do an estimate. If they won't do an in-house estimate, keep searching. Find out if they'll be doing the work themselves or contracting it out - you'll want them to be doing the heavy lifting, not a subcontractor. Visit their office to make sure they exist and check that their trucks and storage facility have their company's name permanently marked on them.

3. Price compare. As you collect estimates, leave them out for the next moving company representative to see. Make sure you're comparing the same services, such as the amount of insurance included or the valuation of your belongings. Don't hire a company based on a quote of cubic feet. Don't sign any blank paperwork, understand any document you sign, and don't feel pressured to hurry with your reply.

4. Now go online and research. After getting the U.S. DOT and MC license numbers from the moving companies you've researched, do a state corporation search of where your moving company is based. You can also use those license numbers to check if your mover is properly licensed to perform your move and if they have insurance by going to the SaferSys.org Web site. There are also message boards to check out to see if your mover is praised or bashed.

5. Know your rights. Every moving company is required by law to provide you with the booklet "Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move." Get it and read it before hiring a mover. And if anyone other than the moving company you hired shows up on moving day, you have the right to fire them on the spot.

For more moving tips click here.

Aaron Crowe has lived in at least five rental properties in the San Francisco Bay Area. Reach him at www.AaronCrowe.net
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