You’ve decided to move. You’re getting excited, searching for a new place and bidding farewell to the old one. It’s a bittersweet time – you likely have some pretty great memories in your current home. Good friends around, your favorite local coffee shop, and your weekend ritual of walking through your neighborhood park.

Moving can be a time of mixed emotions as you reflect fondly on old memories while looking forward to building new ones. The emotional side of things can certainly take its toll. Thankfully (right?), you have practicalities to snap you out of it.

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Planning, sorting, packing, donating, saying goodbyes, updating accounts… every time you tick something off the list, it feels like another task shows up!

Hiring a moving company is best done at an early stage. You’ll tick a massive thing off the list and give yourself a moving date to work backward. But how do you choose a moving company? Here are a few things to consider:

What Type of Mover You Need

Before you begin searching for a mover, it’s essential to know what type of mover you need for the job. Local movers will typically take a job within about 50 miles of your home. Long-distance movers are those moving further than that, including intrastate and interstate moves.

You should also decide if you’ll pack and move on your own, or if you’ll let your mover do it for you. Full-service moving companies will take care of all of the tedious preparation for you. They’ll save you the step of hunting for boxes and supplies by bringing them to your home. They’ll save you from wrapping and packing by doing all of that for you. They’ll even disassemble your large pieces of furniture for safe transport.

That’s not all. Once you arrive on the other side, a full-service mover will take care of everything there too. They’ll reassemble your furniture, unpack your boxes, and they’ll even take the supplies away with them.

If They’re Legal and Reputable

Once you’ve determined the type of mover you need, you can search for the right one. It’s crucial only to hire a licensed and insured mover. No exceptions!

Whether you’re going down the road or across the country, you’ll entrust your mover with all of your most precious things. Make sure you hire someone you can trust. That means not only verifying their business license and their ability to operate legally. It also means checking their insurance coverage.

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With even the most reputable companies, sometimes things happen that are out of anyone’s control. While everyone involved hopes for a smooth move from point a to b, things sometimes happen, and items may get damaged. It’s essential to hire a moving company that offers you insurance protection for your belongings so you can have peace of mind.

It’s a good idea to check online for reviews from past customers. Places like Google Maps or Yelp will give you an insight into what others experienced when working with your mover. It’s the next best thing to a direct recommendation from a friend.

Their Price

Of course, before you hire a moving company, you’ll receive an estimate for the cost of getting the job done. It goes without saying that hiring a trusted mover should also fit your budget.

Comparative quotes from trusted moving companies will help you understand market rates and narrow down your options. Get a few quotes for the job and see how the prices stack up. 

The best place to start with this is by first understanding how much you’re taking with you. Spend some time sorting your things and downsizing where possible. Movers will consider the truck’s size and the number of movers required for getting you to your new home. That means that while you won’t pay based strictly on the amount of stuff you have, your price will be affected by what you’re keeping and moving.

Ask questions and make sure it’s clear what is included in the price you’re quoted before you commit. Understand the terms of their guarantee and the conditions of your mover’s service.

What Fees Are Involved

If you’ve done your due diligence when researching a mover, you will hopefully have chosen a trusted company without the risk of hidden fees and surprise charges.

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Even if your quote seems cut and dried, make sure you understand what additional fees may come up. Make sure your mover knows if you have a complicated entry including the distance from your door to parking, flights of stairs, elevators, and other factors as these things typically mean additional charges. Discuss any large or awkwardly shaped items as your mover may need specialty equipment. That includes artwork, a piano, pool table, or antiques.

Understanding fees comes down to good and clear communication with your mover. Check in to see if they’re asking good and thorough questions, and make sure you ask some yourself.