Before you choose which moving company to work with, you should get several quotes. How many estimates you get depends on where you are located, how many moving companies work in your area, and what you are hoping to pay. However, between three and five in-home moving estimates will give you a good idea of what the going rate for moving your home is. This will also allow you to see whether you received any estimates that are significantly higher or lower than the others. If you receive a particularly low estimate, there are several things you should ask yourself about the quote.
Is the company reputable?
A particularly low estimate can be a sign that a company is dishonest and trying to scam you. However, this is not always the case. Before accepting a low estimate, you should check for other red flags such as a large deposit up front, incomplete paperwork, incomplete licensing, or the lack of an official company name when personnel are answering the phone or sending emails. If you receive a low estimate and notice other red flags, then you may be safer choosing a more reputable company to help you move.
Does the quote include the same services as other quotes?
It is important to make sure that you are comparing similar services between companies. For example, a white-glove quote from one company will be significantly higher than a basic moving quote from another company. When you are getting your in-home estimates completed, make sure you discuss who will be packing items, who will be providing packing materials, and whether the items will be unpacked at the destination. These basic services can drastically change an estimate.
Did you forget something significant during your in-home estimate?
When you receive a low estimate, you should go through it to make sure that all of your major items are included. For example, you may have forgotten to show the attic or basement to one of the moving companies, or you may have forgotten to let them know that you need a specific moving day as opposed to a moving window. If you find something you left off, you can call for a second in-home estimate or a revision of your current in-home estimate
Is the quote binding?
There are three types of moving estimates: binding, non-binding, and binding not-to-exceed. For a binding estimate and a binding not-to-exceed estimate, your moving company may estimate slightly higher than they would with a non-binding estimate. This is because they will not be able to charge you more than the estimate value, even if your move ends up costing them more. If all of your estimates are binding or binding not-to-exceed, and you have one non-binding estimate, it is likely that your non-binding estimate will be significantly lower. You may want to call that company and see whether there is any way they will offer you a binding estimate instead so you can make an honest comparison.
Do the other quotes anticipate extra add-on features?
There are several extra moving services and features that cost more and are not usually part of the quote. For example, stair fees, elevator fees, shuttling fees, and storage fees can all raise the cost of your move. If you know that you will need these extra services in advance, a company may include them in your quote. However, many companies will not include them in the quote and will instead give you a breakdown of these extra fees instead. If these are not included in your quote, you should ask for the fee schedule and make sure you add on these extra features yourself.
Start talking to companies such as Wheaton World Wide Moving to find the company that is right for you.