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  1. Ask friends and coworkers for moving companies they have had success with. Check moving companies by calling the Better Business Bureau.

  2. Find out what is included in the quote. Find out what the company will, and will not move. If you are moving items that require special handling, make sure that the mover has experience and the correct equipment to move those things.

  3. Get several estimates. The only way to get an accurate estimate is for the mover to inspect your home and see what needs to be moved. Ask the mover if the estimate is binding, and if so for how longs, and find out if there is a cost for the estimate.

  4. If one estimate is much lower than the others – find out why.

  5. To minimize costs, dispose of unnecessary or hard-to-move items before you get an estimate.

  6. Write "subject to further inspection for concealed loss or damage" on the contract when you sign it to protect yourself in case you find damage when unpacking.

  7. Understand the types of insurance coverage offered. Be sure to ask movers to price out all the options so you can make an informed decision.

    • Basic Liability – Usually about 60 cents per pound per item, it is often included at no additional charge, but it does not cover the full repair or replacement of a damaged article.

    • Depreciated Value – Also called standard protection. It is additional charge that insures your shipment based on the weight and value of your possessions; however, with this type of insurance, the mover is only responsible for the determined depreciated value of each item.

    • Full Value – provides the most comprehensive coverage (replacement of full repair) but requires a larger additional fee.

  8. Ask to see a copy of the mover’s ICC (Interstate Commerce Commission) Annual Performance Report. Interstate movers are required to provide information about past performance and complaint handling procedures. They are also required to provide you with a copy of an ICC publication about your moving rights and responsibilities.

  9. Make an inventory list and label the contents of all boxes.

  10. When the van arrives at your new location, be ready to pay the charges so the crew can unload your shipment. Carefully check your inventory list and mark any discrepancies on the driver’s inventory list before you sign it. Note any damage to the outside of cartons.

  11. Unpack any items of high value, such as silver or art, immediately.

  12. If you want the movers to unpack for you, be sure to inform them prior to delivery.


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