Ellis Moving & Storage

How to Choose a Long Distance Moving Company

Whether you are moving across the province or across the country, a bit of new scenery can be exciting. No matter the reasons for your fresh start, it is important to start it off on the right foot and it all begins with the move. A pleasant moving experience can help to make things easier, helping to manage stress and the right long distance moving company can do just that.

Long distance moving services are a dime a dozen, particularly throughout the Greater Vancouver Area. With so much competition within the industry, it can be difficult to find the right one. From poor service to price gouging and scams, there are plenty of things to watch out for. Instead of focusing on all the possible negatives, there are a few key things to look out for instead. If you are looking for a bit of insight before an upcoming long distance move, use this quick guide to help choose the right moving services for you.

Getting Started: Researching Long Distance Movers in Your Area

Ask for Recommendations: Chances are, if you live in an eclectic city like Vancouver, you know someone who has come from out of province, or even from another country. While these types of moves can be good for all the right reasons, the experience can be either sweet or sour. Asking for recommendations can be the first step to finding a reliable and reputable company. As great as references from friends and family can be, online reviews are a great source of information that speak from experience and often give an insider view of customer experience. Once you’ve collected a few names, it is time to start the comparison phase of your research!

Shop Around: It is easy to just choose the first option, especially when feeling overwhelmed or stressed. Even with a recommendation, this can be a mistake. When you want the best results, it is always better to compare several companies to ensure that you are getting exactly what you want/need. Getting estimates from several companies allows potential clients to lay out their options for a more clear view. Knowing your options will help to weed out scams and identify the right fit.

Opt for In-Home Surveys: In order to provide proper estimates, home visits are a must. Basic estimates over the phone are often far lower than the actual final costs will be. Overlooked areas, like attics, crawlspaces or even cluttered spaces like bookshelves can account for added costs, as can heavy items.

Watch Out for Added Services: Additional services mean additional costs. Everything from packing to unpacking, disassembling furniture or storage and assembly will cost you. Making sure that these are present on estimates will save you a headache (and a nasty surprise) later on. Each estimate should feature an initial fee, as well as hourly breakdown of labour, travel, as and other typical resources.

Run the Numbers: After consulting several long distance or Cross-Canada moving companies, it is time to compare them. Each estimate should be relatively similar but will differ from business to business. If one seems far higher than the other, it is likely overpriced, while lower numbers can signify a “lowball offer”, which are often used to bait potential clients.

The Best Long Distance Movers: What to Do When You Find Them

The “best” option for quality moving will differ from person to person. Some might put customer care above cost while others might take the opposite route. Knowing your own preferences will help to narrow down the search. Once you have found an option that seems best, it is important to create an opened dialogue with your chosen company.

Being able to ask questions about your estimates and processes is key to fully understanding services and ensuring that you are not being met with surprise costs. Before committing to any one company, ask about:

  • Insurance for property and staff
  • Is there a cap on fluctuating costs after surveys
  • What are the finer points of your estimates (mileage, hourly staffing, etc.)

Considering these points will help to ensure a smooth move with less stress!