Although theoretically possible, moving internationally without professional help is extremely difficult. The good news is that there are thousands of relocation companies available out there, but not everyone meets the professional standards. Hence, it is crucial to know how to choose a moving company. Knowing that your belongings will be in safe hands during such a long journey will calm your nerves a lot.
The issue of how to pick a moving company should be approached with utmost seriousness. Many people believe that it is enough to open the internet browser and hire the first one that pops up. However, it is not that simple. There are many dishonest and unprofessional businesses, and a person has to know what to look for when moving overseas.
You Need to Hire an International Moving Company on Time
If you are relocating abroad for the first time, “how to select a moving company” should be one of the first points on your relocation checklist. Although there are cases of last-minute relocations, if you want to reduce the inevitable relocation stress, you should start thinking about how to find a good moving company at least two months before the relocation day. We mustn’t forget that relocation enterprises have their schedules, and it can often happen that they are already booked for your preferred relocation dates.
What to Look for When Using a Moving Company? – You Will Need to Hire Various Services From International Movers
When moving abroad, you will need various services from an overseas shipping company. Therefore, a good starting point to see whether a certain business is even worth considering is to see whether they offer the following necessary services for relocating to another country:
Packing services are absolutely essential when your belongings have to cross long distances. Not only will your relocation be efficient, but your items will also be adequately secured for transport by a professional mover. Packing for the move is not easy at all, especially when you remember all the fragile items that you have to pack.
If you are thinking about relocating your car overseas, every reputable overseas moving company will have an overseas auto transport service available. International car shipping is always much easier with a professional relocating enterprise as your mover will perform everything required for safe auto transport.
A reputable mover will always look to do the job in a professional manner. However, accidents happen, especially when your possessions have to be relocated internationally.
Finally, you should check with an enterprise whether they perform the relocation of special items. By special, we mean situations where a mover has to prepare and pack a piano, for example. Such items require special treatment, and a relocation crew has to be qualified for such tasks.
Look for Recommendations When Hiring International Movers
How do I find a reputable local mover? Whether you are relocating to Spain or the United Kingdom, there is bound to be an expat community that you can contact and ask for advice. These people have most likely already had experience with relocation companies. This kind of information is the most reliable, and people will be willing to share both their positive and negative experiences. Therefore, be sure to check all your social networks for groups made by expats, but also there are many blogs and videos available as well.
Don’t Forget to Read the Reviews of the Relocation Companies on the Internet
What is the most reputable moving company? Well, there certainly doesn’t exist a single best relocation enterprise in the USA, but all renowned ones have high online ratings. Hence, it is useful to read online reviews about a certain enterprise, and reputable ones have usually been reviewed a lot. But don’t just look at the five-star or four-star comments. But pay attention to the negative ones too. This will help you get a much better idea of how a particular business operates.
It is likely that there isn’t a single reputable relocating crew without at least a single negative review. But, generally, the best enterprises have a lot of reviews. If a certain crew has, for example, just a couple of five and four-star comments, this is an indication that it might be a fraudulent enterprise.
Always Try to Find Professional Assistance for Your Move
It is not advisable to hire an enterprise whose offices you can’t visit in person. Most of the relocation scams are done by shady businesses that can only be reached via the internet. Reputable businesses have on their websites precise addresses of their offices which you can visit at any time and ask them about any relocating tips that interest you or ask to see their equipment. Most importantly, you are probably wondering – “How do I hire a moving company?”. It is rather easy. Just type in Google your location and “relocating crews near me.”
Only Consider Enterprises That Perform On-Site Estimates of Your Belongings
What to consider when choosing movers? One of the first questions that you should ask when contacting a certain relocation enterprise is whether they perform on-site estimates. One of the main factors that affect the relocation price is the number of home possessions that you are relocating. All reputable businesses will send an appraiser to your location before any relocation process starts. You will have to create a precise inventory list, and the appraiser will estimate each item from the list and establish a quote accordingly. Some people also like to call a few different appraisers after they have finished searching and then compare the prices.
Avoid All Companies That Don’t Estimate Possessions in Person and Have Dubious Cost Policies and Regulations
How do I choose a moving company? There are many shady businesses that don’t send appraisers to estimate but rather establish prices once everything has been loaded in their trucks. This practice is a huge red flag. Under no circumstances should you make this relocating mistake and accept such terms. These situations often turn into scams.
People end up losing a lot of money and ultimately regretting their decision to go live abroad, which is a sad turn of events, to say the least. Also, shady businesses don’t have clear regulations and policies (some don’t even have proper addresses) on their websites, and their movers are reluctant to answer questions in a straightforward manner. Here is a video that shows the terrifying experiences of people that got scammed.
On the other hand, when you visit a website of a reputable relocating enterprise, the terms and regulations, addresses, credentials, pricing structures, and such are clearly displayed. Furthermore, if you choose to contact a certain enterprise, the worker should always be polite and show a willingness to answer any questions concerning your relocation.
How to Choose a Moving Company? Be Sure to Check Whether Relocating Companies Are Licensed and Insured
This can be performed either first or last, it doesn’t matter, but one thing is for sure – this should be the first or final test that a particular relocating crew should pass. First of all, the US Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is the official institution tasked with supervising the trucking industry. Therefore, all relocating enterprises must comply with the official FMCSA regulations, and there is a great way to see whether they are doing so.
All legal relocating businesses have the US DOT number that can only be issued by FMCSA. You have the right to ask for a US DOT number, but you can also visit the official FMCSA website and type in the company’s name. If a certain enterprise doesn’t exist in the official database, there is nothing more to talk about. You should move on and start looking for another relocating crew. On the other hand, if they appear, all basic information (address and phone number) should be present, so it is not a bad idea to cross-check this information with the one on the relocating crew’s website
Proceed to Examine the Legitimacy of an Enterprise Using the Better Business Bureau
Better Business Bureau (BBB) is a US institution committed to cultivating trust in the marketplace. They also have a special department that deals only with fraudulent activity. BBB meticulously keeps records of all complaints but also of their outcomes. Hence, when you type in a certain relocating crew, if there were any former complaints, they are all open to the public.
However, it is also important to see how a certain relocating enterprise addresses problems. A reputable one will immediately start looking for ways to rectify a mistake, and an agreement is made without any problems. Nevertheless, it is still best to see that a certain relocation enterprise has a clean record on the BBB website.
Here Are Some Questions That You Should Ask a Relocating Crew in Order to See Whether They Are Legitimate
As mentioned above, you should start examining the validity as soon as you get in touch with a certain mover. Politeness and transparency are two mandatory characteristics, and here are some good questions and tips for testing the validity of an enterprise:
- Do you have a clear pricing structure without hidden costs? A renowned relocation enterprise should almost sound offended by this question and immediately offer to show you its pricing structure. On the other hand, if there is no clear answer to this question, better move on to the next enterprise.
- Are there any objects that are forbidden for shipment? If you haven’t known, there are certain home possessions that a relocating crew won’t move, so you have that information before you start to pack for your relocation. A renowned relocation enterprise will immediately show you a list of all banned objects, and even if a certain item raises the relocation cost because of its size or weight, they will refuse to move it.
- Can I come and inspect your storage units or trailers? Transparency is the key in this business. After all, you are trusting a certain enterprise with all your possessions. Therefore, there should be no signs of reluctance when asking this question. You are absolutely entitled to inspect everything.
Relocations Are Much Easier With the Assistance of a Good Relocation Crew
As you can see, when addressing the issue of how to find a moving company, a certain amount of time will have to be spent. But, in the end, everything will be worth it. International relocations are complex procedures, and knowing that you have hired a trustworthy relocation crew makes a world of difference.