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Jan 16, 20:14
Question by metz1055 (Max)


Is it ok to hire a mover if there are no trucks on the site?

I have visited a few of the moving companies on my list. Out of the five I have visited three of them had their office out of a private house, one in an office building. I did not see any trucks on site. Is it still okay to hire them? Moving long distance from NY to NC. Thank you

Jan 17, 00:13
Answer by julie (Julie Owens)

Maxine,

First of all it is a very wise decision to visit the offices of movers you are considering for your move. This is probably the best way to learn how your belongings will actually be handled.

Your decision to hire a mover or not should be based on several factors in addition to the physical inspection of their offices and warehouse: first you should research the movers public record and complaint history (see How to find a good moving company), filter the obvious bad seeds, and only then visit the offices of the companies with relatively good credentials.

The locations you will visit should not be their sales offices but rather their operations offices, which are usually next to a warehouse or storage buildings. There you would also see parking spots for their trucks.

All interstate movers should be able to at least show you the transitional storage facility they will most probably use to store your belongings. Usually for small to medium size moves the procedure is as follows:
  1. After the pick up (usually with a small local truck up to 28') your items are unloaded to the transitional storage facility either owned or rented by the company. The items would usually be placed on wooden pallets and are held together with stretch wrap, or put in a separate storage room(s) or wooden storage pods.

  2. The items stay in the storage until the designated interstate truck becomes available. Then the items are loaded on the truck in the most efficient way (space-wise), and delivered to your new house.


There could be other scenarios, but I would safely assume that 90% of all interstate moves follow this one. Another scenario is that the movers will simply drive the pick up truck to the destination (NY->NC is one full day drive), but you should know that this scenario is unlikely to take place due to a very low potential profit margin.

So here are the points you should verify with your future mover:
  1. Where is their transitional storage located? (If they don't have one ask what would the scenario of your move look like)

  2. How is it maintained, and how your items will be stored? (This should be verified by actual visit to the facility)

  3. What trucks will be used to do the pick up? (They should be able to show you at least one truck, although keep in mind that their trucks might be out there doing moves)

  4. Who will deliver your items? (It could be either the company itself, if they have interstate trucks (quite unlikely), or a subcontractor (in which case verify whom they use and run a check on this company as well). In case it is an agent of a major van lines you can safely assume the delivery will be performed by the interstate truck of this van line.)

You should get satisfactory answers to all those questions before you make your choice of a mover. And always remember, the actual move takes place in their operational environment, so it matters very little where their sales activity takes place.


P.S. Check this article in our Moving Guide regarding the physical location of a moving company



Good luck with your move,

Julie Owens @ MovingAnswers.org


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