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Published: Mar 17, 2023 12 min read
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If you're planning to relocate — whether for personal or business reasons — hiring movers can be a great way to make the process easier and less stressful. But with so many moving companies to choose from, it can be overwhelming to figure out which one is right for you.

Businesses that relocate to larger offices are usually expanding in personnel as well. ZipRecruiter can match companies with top candidates to help them grow into their new spaces. If you find yourself relocating across multiple states, check out our article on best long distance moving companies.

In this article, we'll provide tips and guidelines to help you find and hire reliable and trustworthy movers.

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Why hire a moving company?

One of the primary reasons people choose to hire a moving company is convenience. Moving can be a time-consuming and physically demanding process. Hiring a moving company allows you to take care of other aspects of your move while professionals handle the heavy lifting and transport your belongings to your new location. Movers know how to safely handle heavy objects without the risk of injury to you or your staff.

Hiring a moving company also saves time. Movers can complete a relocation quicker than you could on your own, especially if you have many items or a large space. This can be particularly beneficial if you have a tight deadline or need to be out of your current location by a certain date.

Hiring movers can also relieve some of your burden since they can take care of the logistics. This is particularly true if you’re handling a corporate move and need to focus on the business side of things, such as the hiring and onboarding processes and the day-to-day operations.

They also offer insurance for your belongings, which can provide peace of mind and financial protection in case of any accidents or damages during the move.

What to look for in a professional mover

If you're using a moving company, here are some factors to consider to help you hire the right professionals for the job:

  1. License and insurance: Make sure the moving company you choose is licensed and insured. A licensed company will have the necessary permits and certifications to operate legally, and insurance can protect your belongings in case of any accidents or damages during the move.
  2. Reputation: When it comes to finding a reputable company, word of mouth can be a powerful tool. Ask friends, family, and colleagues for recommendations, as they're likely to give you honest and unbiased feedback based on their personal experiences. Make sure they're real people — you can check online reviews to get a sense of the company's level of service and how helpful they are. Keep in mind that it's important to read reviews from a variety of sources, as this will give you a more well-rounded view of the company's reputation and help you find the best moving companies.
  3. Services offered: Determine what services you need and make sure the moving company you choose offers them. Some companies may offer full-service moving, including packaging supplies for fragile items, packing, loading, transport, unloading and even storage, while others may offer only certain services.
  4. Cost: Compare price estimates from multiple companies. Keep in mind that the cheapest option may not always be the best, as you often get what you pay for. Ask about any additional fees or charges that may not be included in the initial estimate.
  5. Communication: Look for a company that is responsive and communicates well. A company that is difficult to get a hold of or unresponsive to your questions may not be the best choice once the truck departs to your new destination.
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What steps are involved in the moving hiring process?

There are several steps involved when hiring a moving company:

  1. Research different moving companies: Look for reviews online, ask for recommendations from friends and family, and compare quotes from multiple companies to find the best option for you.
  2. Make sure the company is licensed and insured: Check with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) to verify that the company is licensed to operate in your state and has the necessary insurance coverage.
  3. Get an in-person estimate: Most moving companies offer free in-person estimates to give you an idea of the cost of your move. It's important to have an estimator visit you to view the number and types of items you need to move, as well as the layout of your space and any particulars (such as stairs or narrow doorways).
  4. Review the estimate and ask questions: Make sure you understand all the charges on the estimate and ask about any fees that are not clear. Also, be sure to ask about the company's policies for handling damaged or lost items.
  5. Sign a contract: After you've chosen a moving company and agreed on the terms of the move, you'll need to sign a contract that outlines the details of the move and any additional services the company will provide.
  6. Pack and prepare for the move: Start packing your items well in advance of the move, making sure to label boxes clearly and pack them carefully to prevent damage. You may also want to make arrangements for any special items. Take pictures of large items or valuables that are at risk of being broken. If you have to make a claim on insurance, a time-stamped photo of the condition of the item before the move will be invaluable.
  7. Meet the movers on moving day: On the day of the move, have your boxes and belongings ready for the movers to load onto the truck. It's also a good idea to be present during the loading and unloading process to ensure that all of your items are handled carefully.

Confirm the movers offer the services you need

Before you start searching for a moving company, you must determine exactly what services you need. Do you need a company that can help you pack your belongings? Do you need a company that can provide storage solutions? Make a list of the services you need and use it to guide your search for a moving company.

Ask them the right questions

Once you've identified several potential moving companies, it's important to come up with the right questions to ask them. Some examples are:

  • What types of insurance do you offer?
  • Do you have experience moving expensive or unique items?
  • How do you handle disputes or damages?
  • Can you provide references from previous customers?
  • If this is a long-distance move: how long will the truck take to get to my location and is it making any other stops?

Asking these questions will give you a better understanding of the company's competencies and policies and also help you determine whether they are appropriate for your move.

Shop around and get several quotes

Ask for quotes from several moving companies to know you are getting the best deal, don't just go with the first company you find. Take the time to compare each company’s prices and offerings to find the best fit for your needs and budget and to make sure you avoid overpaying for services.

Get everything in writing before signing

Before signing contracts with a moving company, it's important to get everything in writing. This helps prevent misunderstandings that could arise during the moving process. For example, if the moving company fails to deliver the items on time or damages your possessions, you can refer to the contract terms to resolve the issue.

This also includes the details of the services being provided, the cost of those services, and any additional fees that may be involved. Don't be afraid to ask for clarification on any terms or conditions you don't understand. It's better to be well-informed than to be blindsided by unexpected costs or issues down the line.

Ask about valuation options and insurance policies

Another important consideration when hiring a moving company is the valuation of the items being moved. Most moving companies offer several different valuation options, ranging from basic coverage to full replacement value. Ask about each option and choose the one that makes sense for your move.

It's also a good idea to ask about the company's insurance policies — what kind of coverage is included and what types of damages are excluded.

Determine which truck size you need

Finally, it's important to calculate the size of the truck you will need for your move. Most moving companies offer small, medium and large truck sizes that can vary in total capacity. You should check with the moving company beforehand to make sure they have the truck you need for the size of your move.

Consider the size of your space and the number of items. Don’t overpay for a large truck when a medium-sized one will do, but also make sure that you have enough space to comfortably fit everything. Go over this during the in-person estimation so you don’t run into any surprises come moving day.

Hiring Movers FAQ

How much does it cost to hire local movers?

The cost of hiring local movers can vary depending on several factors, including the distance of the move, the amount of stuff you need to move, and the services you need. Movers may charge you extra for things like bubble wrap or packing services. Most companies will either charge you an hourly rate or a flat rate, but regardless, it's important to get price estimates beforehand.

Are quotes free?

Most moving companies offer free quotes to potential customers. To get a quote, you'll typically need to provide the company with some basic information about your move, such as the size of your space, the distance of the move, and any special requests or needs. The company will then provide you with a quote based on this information. Compare quotes from multiple companies to get the best deal. But remember that this quote can significantly vary from the actual final cost.

How do you check mover qualifications?

When hiring a moving company, it's important to ensure that they are qualified and reputable. You can check the company's license, read online reviews, ask for references, check the FMCSA and check their membership in professional organizations such as the American Moving & Storage Association.

Can you pay over time?

Some moving companies may allow you to pay for your move in installments by setting up a payment plan or by allowing you to pay with a credit card. You can ask the company about payment options when getting quotes.

Are weekends or weekdays cheaper to hire movers?

Weekdays are generally cheaper than weekends, as demand for moving services is typically lower during the week. However, this can vary depending on the moving company and the time of year.

Find the best movers for your needs

To find an expert mover, start by researching moving companies with a good reputation and that are licensed and insured. Check online reviews and ask for recommendations from friends and family.

Once you have a list of potential movers, contact them to get quotes and additional information about their services. Find out if they have experience in handling moves similar to yours, such as long-distance moves or moves with a lot of fragile items.

Finally, don't be afraid to negotiate with the moving company to get a better deal. If you have a large move or are moving during a slower season, you may be able to get a better price. By following these steps, you can find a moving company that is reliable, experienced, and affordable and that can provide the services you need to make your move as stress-free as possible.

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