Monday, June 25, 2007

Some Tips on How to choose the Best Moving Company?

If you don't have a lot of stuff, especially if you don't have large items like sofas and bookshelves, you could box up your personal belongings (pack them well, use a lot of cushion/stuffing, and tape the boxes well, mark the boxes with a discreet name so you know what is in them but it doesn't scream (I have a diamond in here!)) then put them on a 48"X40" wooden pallet in GOOD condition, wrap that pallet with shrink wrap REALLY well, place a packing list on the outside, or a large label with destination and origin on it, then call a local LTL carrier to pick it up!

Bottom-line, check with local trucking carriers, specifically LTL (Less than a load) carriers. Always checkout for a Cheap Moving Company.

When you call the local carrier of your choice, stay away from using terms like "moving" and "furniture" or any reference to this being a household move. They will be quick to point out they are NOT a moving company!

Instead, ask about the charges for shipping two or three pallets of personal effects in boxes from point A to point B.

They will ask you questions like "is this a residential delivery?", YES, it is. "Does it require inside delivery?" TRY to avoid letting them (the carrier) take the load inside once OFF the truck. Instead, you and your family move the boxes, the extra cost will add up if you don't! "Do you need LIFTGATE" service?" NO! Don't ask for liftgate service! That adds a lot to!

Get a PRINTED quote from them, and make a copy of any final paper work. Keep a detailed list of WHAT you are shipping, and if possible, WHERE it is on the pallet, either by your own markings or code. WHY? Because if they damage it, they HAVE to pay!

They will ask for a CLASS for the contents. Keep it general, tell them it is FAK (freight all kinds), and use a mixed class. Try to keep the CLASS LOW, class 70 is the cheapest, but yields a lower claim. Don't lie about the class, but don't let them class something wrong! If it is USED, it is a lower class than a new item.

It really isn't that hard to use a LTL carrier, just familiarize yourself with the terminology from the company’s website, and expect a detailed paper process. OH, and take pictures of your FINAL pallets, right before the carrier picks them up, to PROVE the condition they are in, so if they get damaged, again you can back your claims!!!!

Do NOT package any HAZMAT in your shipment, such as flammable liquids, ammunition, etc. It really complicates things!

I see a lot of personal effects moved in my job, and KNOW it can be done, but as I mentioned, the LTL carrier does NOT want to be a moving company, so have your shipment ready for pick-up before they get there, refer to it as a personal shipment, not a household move! Let them know you have a palletized shipment, and it is totally ready for pick up, and you do NOT have a dock.

About LIFTGATE service, you MAY want liftgate service at pickup, unless you have a forklift or are near one. As for the delivery, they can "tailgate" the load to you, meaning they break it down, and put it at the back of the trailer, then YOU take the boxes inside.

Be ready to move quick, a carrier can charge you for WAIT TIME if you hold up the driver too long!

Charges for LIFTGATE, INSIDE DELIVERY, RESIDENTIAL DELIVERY, CONSTRUCTION SITE DELIVERY, SINGLE SHIPMENT (ONE BILL), and other various charges related to getting the freight to YOU are called "Accessorial Charges", ASK questions to clarify things BEFORE you sign the paperwork!

One last thing, they will want a WEIGHT, probably of each pallet, and then a total combined weight. If you hold each box in your arms, then stand on a bathroom scale, then stand on the bathroom scale with no boxes, just yourself, you can calculate the weights needed, BUT this will be considered an estimated weight, which is fine, because it is still way better than pulling a number out of thin air (guessing....), and will get you a more accurate quote!

Good luck!!!!

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