Hiring professional movers in Washington D.C. may seem daunting, but doing your homework to make this important decision means you’ll save time, money, and headaches later. Our step-by-step guide will outline seven steps for finding and working with a trustworthy movers.
- Ask for referrals. One of the best ways to find reliable movers is to ask friends and family for recommendations. Real estate agents are also good sources for referrals. Finding a mover through one of these channels is preferable to choosing a random name out of the phone book or going with the first name you see on Google. You’re much more likely to have a smooth move if you know someone who has used the mover and had a positive moving experience.
- Consult AMSA. If you can’t come up with at least five different moving companies using your contacts, you can find additional companies through the American Moving and Storage Association, pros trade organization for movers. They have a search engine you can use to find reputable, certified movers.
- Do your homework. After you have a list of at least five recommended reputable movers, do initial background checks. You want to deal with companies in good financial standing that have been in business for a while and have a great customer service record. Do a search on the Better Business Bureau Web site to check out the companies on your list. If a company has a negative rating, remove them from your list.
- Get estimates. The next step on your checklist is to get moving estimates. A company should send a representative to your apartment to do estimate. Show him all you will move, including the contents of closets, garages, and other storage spaces. And be sure to ask him our list of the nine important questions to ask movers.
- Compare estimates. Compare moving companies by reviewing their estimates. Each estimate should include an inventory of your items and explain the services included in your move. (Note that there are different types of estimates, and the final cost of your move may differ from what’s on paper. Refer to our Moving Terms Dictionary for an explanation of these types.)
- Do more homework. At this point, you’ve probably narrowed down the field to two or three professional movers. Now it’s important to do a more thorough background check on these companies. Visit the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration online to find detailed information about your final contenders. Make sure a company has the proper licenses and an unremarkable complaint history. Keep in mind that every company has had complaints filed against it, so complaints alone shouldn’t take a mover out of contention. However, you should take note of the types and frequency of complaints against a company. and make sure that a company resolves issues in a fair and timely manner.
- Make your choice. Now you can make an informed decision — one you can feel comfortable with. Contact moving company and confirm the dates and details of your move. (Will your moving company be packing for you, as well, for instance?) Make sure you get a signed contract to confirm that you’re good-to-go.
Once you’ve made it through this step-by-step list, you’ll be ready to welcome your professional mover into your apartment on moving day. Shopping around for a good moving company may take a bit of effort, but the peace of mind you’ll feel will be well worth it!