Using moving companies is a great way to relocate large or significant amounts of property. People who are moving can use a company to move some or all of their property or they can choose to move things themselves and rent trucks like U-Hauls®. Though it would seem that hiring a moving company allows people to simply kick back and not worry about moving, it does take a little more work to have a successful move.
There are generally three types of moving companies. A full-service moving company can load and unload and even pack all belongings for a move. Self-service moving means that the people moving handle packing, loading, and unloading; examples of this type of company include the popular PODS®. Other moving companies specialize only in renting moving trucks and people must pack all goods, load and unload, and drive the moving truck from one location to another.
Price for moving property is going to depend on a large number of variables. These include differences in prices between companies, amount of things that need moving, number of people from the company who will actually work on moving day, hours involved in making the move, and distance between pick-up and drop-off locations. Other prices involved can include insurance to pay for replacement of damaged items and moving company type. Full service movers are most expensive, renting moving trucks is cheapest, and self service costs are usually somewhere in between the two.
Unfortunately, there are some moving scams, mostly involving raising the price on the day of the move by full-service moving companies. Though most moving companies are reputable, it is very important to speak to a few of them before hiring. Equally vital is getting a quote from the moving company that is in writing and signed. It’s also important to investigate the moving company with organizations like the Better Business Bureau (BBB), to find out if the company has many complaints lodged against it. In the US, those planning interstate moves can use the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) website, a division of the US Department of Transportation, to look up movers that have poor reputations.
Interstate moves are governed by the FMCSA, and full and self-service movers are required by law to present customers with a handbook entitled “Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move.” People can read this handbook online, but should be suspicious if moving companies don't give them a copy. In various US states, different departments may cover in-state moves, and it’s a good idea to research state laws that define legal rights of the moving company and the mover.