January 18, 2023 Posted in Moving Tips

What Are Some Mandatory Questions to Ask Movers When Relocating

Relocating your entire home or office can be an overwhelming experience, which is why it’s important to find reliable movers that you can trust. Make sure to create a list of questions to ask movers in order to get the best service available and avoid any unpleasant surprises once the relocation starts. To help guide you through this process, here are some essential questions that should always be asked when dealing with professional movers.

Cross-country movers packing furniture
Knowing the right questions to ask movers before relocation can save you from unnecessary complications

Some of the questions to ask moving companies include asking them if they have licenses, how they are forming their prices, whether they have any additional costs or options for additional services, what coverage options are available, and are their broker or carrier.

Is Your Long Distance Moving Company Licensed Through FMCSA?

If you’re planning a long-distance move, it is essential that you hire a professional moving company that is licensed to offer interstate moves. While there are some reputable companies out there, it is important to do your homework and make sure that the company you choose is indeed licensed through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). This will help you avoid potential relocation scams as well as unnecessary relocation mistakes. Here’s what you need to know.

What Is the FMCSA?

The FMCSA is an agency of the United States Department of Transportation (DOT). The FMCSA was established in 2000 as part of the Motor Carrier Safety Improvement Act of 1999. The FMCSA’s aim is to decrease the number of collisions, injuries, and fatalities that involve buses and trucks. As part of their mission, they regulate and oversee commercial motor vehicle operators in interstate commerce. This includes long-distance moving companies offering services across state lines.

Have a Stress-Free Move Get a Free Quote

How Can You Tell if Your Moving Company Is Licensed?

The best way to find out if your long-distance moving company is licensed by the FMCSA is to check their website or ask them directly. All interstate movers must have a valid USDOT Number issued by the FMCSA if they are offering services across state lines. The DOT Number should be clearly visible on their website or on any documents they provide relating to their services, such as contracts or estimates.

Additionally, all legitimate movers must also show proof of insurance when asked by customers before signing a contract with them for services related to an interstate move. It’s always a good idea to ask for important documentation of insurance coverage before signing any contracts so that you can rest assured that your belongings are protected in case something unexpected happens during transport.

Two surprised girls looking at a laptop
Researching the company's DOT number can provide you with a lot of information

Are You a Broker or a Carrier Moving Company?

When you’re planning a move to another city, one of the most important decisions you’ll make is choosing the right relocation company. At first glance, it may seem like all companies are roughly the same. However, there are important differences between brokers and carriers that can significantly affect your move. Let’s take a closer look at the differences between these two types of companies.

What Is a Broker?

A broker is an independent middleman between customers and carriers. In other words, they serve as intermediaries between those who are looking to ship goods (such as furniture or household items) and those who have trucks to transport them (carriers). In this way, brokers act as matchmakers – they will connect customers with the right carrier to meet their needs at the lowest possible cost.

However, brokers do not actually own any trucks themselves – instead, they hire third-party carriers to transport goods for their customers. This means that when you work with a broker, there is an extra layer of responsibility added to your move – you must also vet and trust the carrier that will be transporting your belongings.

What is a Carrier?

Carriers operate their own fleet of vehicles (usually trucks) and offer services such as relocation assistance, packing materials delivery, loading/unloading services, and more. They are responsible for ensuring the safe delivery of your goods from Point A to Point B – meaning that you don’t have to worry about vetting individual drivers or third-party carriers on your own. The downside is that working directly with a carrier often comes with higher costs than working with a broker. This price will eventually lead to a more efficient move.

Long-distance movers packing a truck
Choose the company that's up to the highest standards, and you'll have a safe and efficient move

What Kind of Coverage Does Your Company Offer?

When it comes to relocating to another state, there are a lot of things to keep in mind. One important factor to consider is insurance coverage. You need to make sure that your belongings are covered while they’re being transported from one location to another. One of the most important things to acknowledge when picking a company is that you should never assume they offer some specific service you need, at least before you ask them about it. The same thing applies to insurance questions.

Don’t assume that everything is covered by insurance just because you hired a professional long-distance moving company. Sometimes, if you don’t pay for the additional insurance, the company might offer you a contract with just the regular insurance (which usually doesn’t cover high-value losses). With that said, you should know that there are usually two types of insurance packages.

Basic Liability Coverage

The first option you can usually choose is basic liability coverage. To be precise, you don’t actually get to choose it, as it is included with the long-distance moving services package. With basic liability coverage, belongings are insured at $0.60 per pound for moves to another state. Considering this often won’t be enough to cover your losses, you will probably want to get the other option as well.

woman taking money out of the wallet
Paying for additional insurance will leave you stress-free

Full-Value Protection

Your belongings are insured for their full market worth under the terms of full-value protection (FVP). If you have FVP and your table falls off the relocation truck while it is in transit, you will be compensated to the extent that it is either repaired or replaced with an item of equivalent value. Full-value protection, on the other hand, typically comes at an additional fee and is not provided by all insurance providers.

Coverage options can vary from one insurance provider to another, and some insurance providers even provide their own custom coverage plans of their own design. That’s why you should always inquire about the coverage choices available before you decide to engage a firm to help you move.

What Services Does Your Company Offer?

Relocating can be a difficult and stressful process, but with the right services, it doesn’t have to be. Qualified companies, such as California-Seattle Express, offer a variety of relocation services that are designed to make your transition from one home or office to another as seamless and stress-free as possible. Let’s explore some of the most important services you can find on the market, so you can choose the best option for you:

  • Moving Service – Professionals provide full-service moves for commercial and residential customers. A good team is trained in loading and delivery techniques to ensure that your belongings are safe during transport. They should also provide furniture disassembly and reassembly if needed and even clean up after themselves once they’ve finished relocating all your items. With professional relocation service, you can rest assured knowing that everything from your moving-out list will arrive safely and on time at the new destination.
  • Packing Service – Packing can be one of the most tedious steps of any move, so hiring professionals can really help here. Every experienced team should be well-versed in proper packing techniques, ensuring that all items are packed securely for travel. Professionals also use only high-quality materials such as boxes and bubble wrap for extra protection during transit – no need to worry about damaged goods!
  • Storage Options – Need some extra space? No problem! Professionals offer both short-term and long-term storage options that are monitored 24/7 for added security. All the good storage units also come equipped with climate control features to ensure that your belongings stay safe no matter what time of year it is, which is great whether you’re relocating during winter or summer.
  • Car Shipping – This is another amazing service most professional companies provide to clients. It includes shipping your vehicle across state lines, and you can choose between different types of trailers for transportation and delivery methods, so the price of the service will depend on the options you choose.

Before booking a company, you need to make sure that it offers the services you need. The options and prices usually vary depending on different factors, so you should check every detail before making any final decisions.

Cars carrier truck at asphalt highway road
Car shipping services are a great option if you need to relocate your vehicle with professional assistance

How Are Your Moving Prices Calculated?

Relocation can be an exciting time, but it can also be an expensive endeavor. Before signing up for relocation services, you’ll want to know exactly how your move will be priced and how much you’re supposed to tip movers. As this is one of the most important moving company questions, let’s take a look at the factors that go into calculating the cost of a move.

Weight and Distance

The weight of your belongings and the distance they need to travel are two of the most influential factors when it comes to determining relocation expenses. The farther away you’re going and the more items you have to move, the higher your price tag will be. For this reason, if you’re looking to save money on the move, consider downsizing or consolidating your belongings by learning what to keep when moving and what to get rid of before setting off on your journey.

Time and Schedule

How quickly you need your move completed is also a factor in pricing. Generally speaking, last-minute moves cost more since movers need to account for their own time and resources in order to complete them in such a short window. If you’re able to plan ahead and give yourself time for your move, you may find that prices drop significantly compared with last-minute moves. You can also try saving some money by choosing the cheapest time of the year to move and avoiding the peak relocation season.

Additional Services You Can Choose

Many moving companies offer additional services beyond transporting items from point A to point B. Packing services and storage solutions come with an added cost but can make your life much easier during a stressful transition period. When looking around for quotes from different movers, it is important to note any additional services that are included (or not included) in each quote so that there is no confusion later on down the line about what is expected from both parties involved in the move.

Are There Any Hidden Moving Costs?

With all of the costs associated with packing, renting a relocation truck, and hiring movers, it can be difficult to keep track of every expense. One thing you don’t want to overlook is hidden fees. Before you commit to a relocation company, it’s important to ask if they have any hidden fees that could add up over time.

Being aware of these hidden fees will help you avoid unexpected surprises on your final bill when you move into your new home. It’s important to read through your contract carefully so you know exactly what services will be provided and what additional costs might incur, as well as any potential discounts available from your chosen mover.

Packing Services

Our professional packers have methods and techniques to ensure all your items are intact during and after the move.

Learn More

Storage Services

Looking for storage space while you get settled? California-Seattle Express provides 30 days free storage with your move.

Learn More

Car Shipping Services

We can ship your vehicles using the best freight options available. Your car will be moved safely and securely and arrive as planned.

Learn More

Types of Hidden Fees to Look Out For

When researching different relocation companies, there are a few types of hidden fees that you should look out for. The most common one is an additional fee for stairs or long carry charges, which cover the cost of carrying furniture from one point to another if the distance between them is too great for the movers. This fee can vary greatly depending on the company and how many flights of stairs the workers will have to cross. Note that some long-distance movers may charge extra fees for specialty move items like pianos or safes that require extra precautions when transporting them.

Other possible hidden fees include fuel surcharges, overtime charges for working over 8 hours in a day, reassembly charges for large furniture pieces that need to be put together after being disassembled, packing materials charges (if the company doesn’t provide their own materials), storage charges if they need to store your items while waiting for transportation or delivery, and taxes and travel expenses based on where you live and how far away your new home is located.

A woman talking on the phone after long-distance moving
Make sure to double-check your contract and don't miss out on hidden fees

Hiring a Cross Country Moving Company Can Help Take Some of the Stress Out of Your Move

Knowing important questions to ask a moving company can mean the difference between a good move and a bad one. Be sure to ask about movers from Seattle to California and their experience, what kind of insurance cross-country movers have, how they handle damage claims, and whether or not they’re licensed. By taking the time to ask movers from California to Seattle these questions up front, you can avoid problems down the road and have a stress-free move. If you need a mover, California-Seattle Express is one of the top companies in the business, so don’t hesitate to give us a call and request your quote today.

Anastasia Hill

Apart from being the next fashion icon, Anastasia is also a freelance writer and expert on moving (and packing clothes).

Moving Quote

    Auto Quote

      Moving & Auto Quote

        We Cover

        © 2024. California-Seattle Express