|Picking a moving company can seem like a daunting task, especially if you've heard nothing but horror stories of rogue movers and scams -but if you take the time and choose wisely, you will be happy you made a well thought out decision come moving day.
So how does one go about choosing from all the moving companies out there?
Get quotes from movers in your area
The main goal in finding a moving company is choosing the one that is right for you. First, ask yourself a few questions:
Once you've narrowed down the type of moving services you will need, you can start by getting a free quote quickly and easily through Topmoving.ca.
- How big is my move?
- Is it long distance or local?
- Do I want full service moving?
- What is my timeline?
Simply select the type of move you will require, your province and postal code and receive up to seven free quotes for movers in your area.
Perform a background check
After you get an idea for the type of moving companies that fit your needs, perform a background check to ensure that they are trustworthy and reputable companies.
TIP: Be wary of anyone offering to not charge the Goods and Services Tax (GST) and who wants payment in cash, these are sure signs of a scam.
Get an estimate
After you have narrowed your search down even further, you can begin shopping around for estimates.
In order to get a proper estimate, familiarise yourself with your move as much as possible so that the moving company can give you the most accurate price.
For example, be aware of the new location you are moving to. Are there stairs? An elevator? How long will it take to get from your old home to your new one?
- Get at least three estimates from movers and get them all in writing
- Each estimate should be on company letterhead and include a rough idea of the number of boxes being moved, the size/value of your belongings, the cost of the service per hour (or the flat rate cost) and how long it will take to complete all the services - including a start and an end date
- See if the mover will physically come and inspect your items to determine how many trips are/will be necessary and how long it will take to move your home
- Find out if it is cheaper to move during different seasons or even mid-month to get the best deal
- Don't be afraid to negotiate, it may help you save money without having to compromising the service
TIP: Just because a company is the cheapest does not mean they are necessarily the best. Take into account more than just the cost.
Learn about insurance and liability coverage
In order to decide whether a company has your best interests at heart, find out what their insurance and liability coverage entails and if they have Replacement Value Protection.
Replacement Value Protection is coverage where the moving company is legally liable for the total amount of your property. If you do sign up for the protection, check that the estimated amount will cover all your belongings and personal effects.
For added protection, check with your current insurance carrier to see if they cover your move.
Other things to consider when making your choice:
- What and how much does their insurance and liability coverage cover?
- Does the company have a Workers' Compensation Board certificate to protect their employees? If they don't, you may be liable for any injuries.
- What are the terms and condition of their Replacement Value protection policy?
- Is there a deductible?Is packing your items yourself considered a liability?
- If there's a problem, how do you make a claim? Is there a time limit on this claim?
To get to know your potential moving company better and to get a feel for how they run their business, ask plenty of questions.
Some things to keep in mind include:
- Is the company aware of the Good Practice Guidelines for Canadian Movers pamphlet, which all moving companies are required by law to give you?
- Is a deposit required, and if so, will that money be placed in a trust as some provinces and territories require? Is this deposit refundable?
- Does the company have their own equipment or will they be using subcontractors? If so, which company will be providing this service?
- Are licenses or other documents needed if you are moving across the border?
- If the move is taking place over a period of time, where will your belongings be held overnight? What is the name of the area and will your goods be secure?
- For moves to other countries, who will handle the move on the other end?
Get the details
Finally, learn as much as you can about how the company will run things come the day of your move. How many people will be involved? What do you need to do to help prepare?
Knowing the nitty gritty details will help determine which moving company is the best one for you and your needs.