How Seniors Can Make Sure They Find the Right People for Their Big Move
For seniors moving in or out of their home, a big step is making sure their belongings get from point A to point B safely, securely, and for a reasonable price. Hiring moving help is essential for seniors, as the moving process is difficult and fraught with possible danger. Here’s how to make sure you hire the right people for the job.
Treat it like a job interview
If you’re hiring movers, you’re hiring someone to work for you. Treat it as such. Imagine you are a potential employer and the moving company is your potential employee. Ask them any and all questions you would ask any potential employee, and don’t be afraid to be thorough! If a company seems put out by answering your questions, consider another option.
Here are some standard questions you should ask: What are your rates and are they fixed before the move? What’s the highest threshold cost? How do you pick your movers? Are you insured, and if so, up to how much? Are you a member of any state or local accreditation organization? How long have you been in business? Will you come to my house for an estimate?
Don’t make the mistake of not being thorough. These are your belongings, after all. Don’t trust them to just anyone.
Always get multiple quotes
Don’t just go with the first moving company you call. You need to get estimates from at least three different moving companies.
“Be wary of any company that comes in much lower than the others. Look at high bids to see where the extra costs are coming from. Call and ask questions if you don’t understand anything. If you have several reasonable-sounding bids from reputable companies, don’t be afraid to negotiate to get the best possible rate,” suggests RealSimple.com.
If a company quotes you a price that seems way too low, look elsewhere. It may be tempting to try to save a lot of money, but if they aren’t charging you enough they surely aren’t paying their movers enough to ensure they care about your stuff.
Always demand a full walk-through
If a moving company attempts to offer you a quote without gaining a solid inventory of what they’ll be moving, be wary. Always demand a full walkthrough of your property so the company can give you the most accurate cost assessment they possibly can.
“An estimator who performs a quick walk-through without noting what you plan to move is going to be off the mark. A good estimator will ask questions about what you plan to take from your current house to your next home,” notes Moving.com.
Beware of scams
It’s a sad fact, but people often prey on seniors because they think they are more gullible. Don’t be a victim. Never sign a blank contract and always know the price before approving your move. Check out online resources like the SAFER system to get the lowdown on the company and make sure they are legally able to move you. Search for reviews on sites like Angie’s List to spot possible red flags. Never hire movers that don’t have an online presence or some trail of their previous work.
For seniors, hiring moving help is a no-brainer (you may even want to hire someone to move some items to storage if you’re downsizing). The few hundred dollars you’ll spend is well worth it when you consider the alternative. Even if you have family that’s willing to help you move, a moving company can get the job done quicker and oftentimes have the tools and expertise to better protect your valuable items.
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