Moving requires a lot of planning and multi-tasking. You have to find the perfect come, consider your budget, potentially change schools for your kids, pack, and find the right professional movers NJ. If you’re already dealing with all the other aspects of moving, searching for movers might be your last priority. After all, aren’t all movers the same? The answer to that is a resounding no!
While it might add one more item to your ever increasing moving to-do list, it’s important to find reliable movers in NJ if you want to ensure all your items arrive at your new place intact. So how can you find reliable movers NJ? Check out the tips below.
Do You Research
Thanks to the internet, you can easily do some vetting of companies before you even make a phone call. Your first line of defense is to do some research on your own of moving companies in your area. A quick search of ‘movers near me’ should provide you with a decent starting point. Narrow down to around 10-20 movers in the beginning and then look at reviews and complaints on places like Yelp, Google, and the Better Business Bureau. While business owners can challenge negative reviews and potentially have them removed, it would be hard to get rid of all of them. If you notice inconsistent reviews on multiple sites, you should cross these movers off the list.
After you’ve narrowed down your list, look at their site to see if they list their department of transportation number listed. Some states, like New Jersey, also require movers to register with the state’s DOT. Registered moving companies will list their number directly on their website. You can then use this to look them up on the corresponding DOT sites to make sure they are still in good standing and properly registered.
Prepare Questions in Advance
Once you’ve narrowed down your options to around 5 companies, it’s time to start calling. Before you call, make sure to write down a list of questions as well as a general idea of what kind of service you would like to utilize. When you come prepared, you’ll be more likely to spot potential red flags and keep your cool if the movers on the phone try some hard-sell tactics.
If you’re not sure what questions to ask, here are some options:
- Is the company licensed through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration? This government agency regulations commercial vehicle operations to guarantee safety for companies and consumers.
- Is the company a broker or carrier? Brokers outsource their work to other companies while carriers handle your moving services with in-house staff. In general, you want to hire carriers in case something gets lost or broken during a move.
- Is the company insured? This is important in case the movers do any damage to your new or old building as they will be held liable for the damage.
- What is the cancellation/rescheduling policy? Life happens so it’s important to know exactly what will happen if you have to cancel or reschedule and the general timeframe. Most moving companies require around 2 days or so to cancel/reschedule without incurring a penalty.
- Are there any hidden fees? Reputable moving companies will list out all the fees in the initial quote so there’s no surprises. However, you should always ask if there’s something you need to consider. For example, if the movers will be going up and down flights of stairs they might charge a stair fee. Make sure to provide as much information as possible during the quote phase so you have an accurate picture of the total costs.
- Does the company provide the services you need? Not all moving companies offer the same services. Some might have more options while others only offer simple moving services. It’s important to know exactly what each company offers so you can make the most informed choice. Some services NJ moving companies might offer include:
- Loading and unloading
- Furniture disassembly/assembly
- Specialty item transportation (piano, billiard table, etc.)
- Moving supplies
- Plastic bin rentals
Look for Red Flags
There are many horror stories of people using a moving company only to realize after moving that many of their precious items were broken during transit or, even worse, they aren’t able to even get their belongings because the moving company is holding them hostage. If you notice the representative on the phone is dodging your questions, seems unprofessional, or is pressuring you into other services you didn’t ask for, consider it a red flag. Reliable and reputable movers are more than happy to answer any questions and will do so in a simple, easy to understand manner. They also won’t pressure you with aggressive sales tactics.
Speaking of red flags, a common one is asking for a large initial deposit. While most moving companies will ask for some form of a deposit in order to confirm your move date, it will generally be around $100-$200. If they ask for half of the quoted rate or more, it’s most likely a scam! Likewise, if a moving company quotes you a number significantly lower than other moving companies, it’s probably too good to be true and they’ll tack on plenty of hidden fees at the end.
Finally, a good rule of thumb is to check the website for information on their address, company name, and how many years they have been in business. Not all new moving companies are bad, but many scam companies change their name often to avoid a trail of negative reviews and legal issues. While you’re at it, verify their address by looking it up online. Make sure the moving company’s address is properly listed and registered under the company name. Avoid any address listed under a residential name.
Prepare For Your NJ Move
Finding reliable movers NJ takes some planning, time, and research, but it will be worth it at the end. Yes, it might be more expensive than using a ‘man with a van.’ However, when you hire professional movers you can rest easy knowing that they will treat your belongings with the care they deserve. If you’re still in the research phase, why not give NJ Great Movers a call and we can answer any of your questions.
Do moving companies provide full value coverage for my items?
Most moving companies only provide partial value coverage which will pay $0.60 per pound for any damaged or lost items. If you want the full value, you will have to get the coverage from a third party.
What can I do if my belongings are damaged during the move?
You generally have 9 months to report any damages to the company and insurance. That means you shouldn’t hold off on unpacking for too long. The sooner you can unpack the better as the longer you wait the more likely it is the insurance or moving company can try to discredit your claim as you could have accidentally damaged it during the 9-month period.
I think I fell for a scam, what can I do?
File an official complaint with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration and with a state appointed agency. You can contact your state’s association to learn the process to file a fraudulent complaint. Besides this, reach out to a trusted lawyer to see if you have valid case to bring the moving company to small claims court.