Planning for a move can be incredibly hectic; you have got to get your belongings in order, choose the destination you will move to, and pick out the perfect moving company to assist you in your move. A large chunk of your time will simply go by in gathering moving quotes and finalizing the company you go with. It can get tricky when you collect quotes. Some companies may charge you a few hundred dollars while others may charge a few thousand, all depending on the services your move will demand.
It’s best to understand the quote you are provided so you can discuss the costs with the moving company before the move. This way, you won’t be handed a large unaccounted-for bill after your move.
Why Get A Moving Quote?
The moving quote or estimate is crucial for getting an accurate idea of what your move can cost. You may not know this, but according to the FMCSA, you must be provided with a non-binding estimate in writing that describes the shipment and associated services offered. Under this non-binding estimate, the company cannot bill you more than 110% of the original estimate at the time of delivery. This is to protect you from being overcharged for services you were not aware of.
How to Calculate Your Local Move Quote?
In case you aren’t sure whether or not you would like to further look into a company just yet, you can always calculate your quote on your own.
In the case of local moves which involve short distances, the company may charge you an hourly rate for their services. To calculate the estimated quote, you simply have to multiply the hourly rate of the company by the estimated number of hours needed to complete the move.
Moving Quote = hourly rate x number of hours x number of movers hired
This hourly rate for local moves usually ranges from $25-$50. Also, keep in mind that you may have to pay for the extra services you choose. The quote you calculate may not be entirely accurate, but it does give you a general idea of how much your move can cost you. When making the final cut, you should always contact the company and have them send you a quote.
How to Get a Moving Quote?
You should contact the company you are considering hiring and have them provide you with a moving quote. You may notice that many companies can provide you with instant moving quotes online; all you need to do is feed some information about your moving requirements to get the quote. However, these quotes aren’t always accurate. It is always recommended to get your written quotes in person or after a one-on-one discussion with a company representative.
To get a quote in person, you will have a company representative come by your home and inspect the requirements in person. They will assess the size of your belongings, the labor you will require, the moving distance and give you a more proper assessment of the associated costs. It helps to get quotes from at least 3 different companies in your area before you make the final decision. You could always get a better deal!
When you receive your contract, be sure to ask them to specify the type of estimate they are providing you with (we will discuss these below shortly). This estimate should also come with your Bill of Lading, the name of your mover, the miles traveled, minimum weight and estimated weight, and the associated services (packing, unpacking, storage, transportation charges).
Types of Moving Estimates/Quotes
Now that you understand why you need to get a written estimate and how best you can get a written estimate, you must now understand the types of quotes that may be provided. Note that you should never sign any blank or incomplete estimates, always demand a full estimate specifying the type from your moving company.
Binding Moving Estimate
As the name suggests, a binding estimate indicates that you and your mover are bound to the estimate laid out in writing. With a binding estimate, you only pay the estimated amount, not a penny above.
This type of estimate usually takes into account your total inventory, and the company will only deliver the inventory accounted for. Any additional inventory you add will change your costs, so make sure you plan according to the inventory at hand. This is a surefire way of ensuring you aren’t being charged additionally for services you aren’t aware of.
Non-Binding Moving Estimate
A non-binding estimate serves a completely opposite purpose. This estimate only provides you with a general outline of the costs associated with your move, but this price is not guaranteed. This type of estimate is usually calculated by taking into account the weight of your items to be moved. But although this price is not guaranteed, the moving company cannot charge you more than 110% of the original estimate at the time of delivery.
Non-binding estimates are perfect for those who want to pay a lower price. With a binding estimate, if your costs happen to fall short of the estimate, you still have to pay the full amount. This is not the case with non-binding estimates; instead, you pay the actual costs.
Binding Not-to-Exceed Moving Estimate
Some consider this option to be the most reliable out of all three. A binding not-to-exceed estimate in writing is based on the weight of your shipment. In the scenario that your actual weight of the shipment is more than the original quote, you still only pay the original quoted amount. On the other hand, if the weight is less than the original estimate, you will pay a lesser amount.
What is Included in the Estimate?
Several factors weigh into the final estimate you are provided at the time of delivery. These include the following:
Most moving companies will provide you a quote that is generally based on the weight of your belongings that are being shipped. A larger, heavier move will, in this way, cost you more than a simpler move with a few belongings.
The number of movers employed to assist in your move will affect the final quote. If you need an extra pair of hands to get the job done faster, you will have to pay a higher price.
This one goes without saying; if you are moving a long distance, say interstate, for example, you will be charged a higher fee. However, if your move is to a relatively close location, it won’t cost you as much.
Most companies will give you a quote based on a list of services they will provide and the associated changes. However, there may be cases where your move will demand additional services, and you will be charged for them accordingly. This may include going up and downstairs, packaging goods, unpacking goods, long-carry services, or storage services. When hiring a company, you also want to research available additional services that best fit your needs. Some additional services you may be charged for include the following:
Packing/Unpacking: If required, you can request the company to pack your items before the move and unpack them upon arrival at your destination. Such companies are experts at packing all sorts of items, particularly sensitive items which require proper packing and padding materials.
Furniture Disassembly/Reassembly: The moving company you hire can also help you disassemble your larger furniture for safe relocation. They will also reassemble your furniture once you reach your final destination.
Handling Bulky Items: Some items that are extremely heavy and bulky such as pianos, poo; tables, and hot tubs, may require special treatment and packing. As a result, movers may charge an extra fee for these services.
Hoisting/Rigging: Sometimes, larger furniture may be impossible to move through doors or narrow staircases or hallways. In this case, the moving company will have to use a rope-and-pulley system to hoist the items through a window/balcony. The company will have to employ specialized hoisting equipment for the procedure, and this will also demand more labor and will cost you more.
Stairs: Climbing up and down several flights of stairs means you will have to pay extra charges. This is because not only do stairs make navigating more challenging but also consume extra time. Some companies may charge you a flat stairs-carry charge, while others may charge you for each flight of stairs after the first flight. You should discuss charges for these services with your movers beforehand.
Hire Swiftway Services and Get A Free Quote Today!
Swiftway Services moving company Maryland Washington DC is one of the USA’s leading providers of home and office relocation today. We have helped clients all across DC and the US in their household moves, corporate moves, apartment moves, and local moves, among others.
Moreover, we provide our clients with a FREE quote on the spot from our website! Simply specify where you are moving from, your destination, the size of your move, and the date you wish to hire our services. If you wish for a more guaranteed rate, you can also contact one of our in-house estimators to provide you with a quote!