When researching potential moving companies, most people do their initial research online. In this day and age, that’s really the fastest and smartest way to do it. However, it’s important to note that the price given online or over the phone isn’t necessarily a done deal. It’s best to get around 3 written estimates before you make your final decisions. While you’re at it, you might want to ask your family and friends for referrals and check out a few reviews before you settle on any particular company. A small amount of research goes a long way to making sure that you don’t face any nasty surprises further down the line. Reputation and past experience are of the utmost importance in the decision-making process.

Schedule an In-House Estimation

Yes, moving companies are busy. However, they should never be too busy to schedule an in-house moving estimate. If you’re a first-time mover, you may be worried about time constraints. It’s important to take a breather and remember that this is a fairly big decision. Take the time to call a few moving companies and get them to do a proper estimation for you. They’ll really only be able to give you an accurate quote if they’ve had a look at the contents of your home. When doing the estimation, the movers will also be able to tell you if they foresee any additional costs. It’s often difficult to communicate “special circumstances” over the phone.

Additional Service Charges

When you’re presented with your written moving estimate, you’ll also be given a list of additional services. This includes packing and storage. With all the costs written down, you’ll be able to budget properly. Can you afford a professional packing service? Is storage a viable option for you? You may find that doing your own packing will save you a pretty penny. That being said, if you can afford to lift the burden, that may be a smarter choice in the long run.

Insurance Coverage is a Must

Generally speaking, professional moving companies all offer some kind of valuation coverage. In many cases, they’ll offer you the absolute bare minimum. Take the time to ask them if additional coverage is available, and at what cost. If you have any special items or antiques that need moving, it may be best to check with your insurance provider. Saving on insurance might not be the best bet if there’s any risk of damaging your valuables. Look at your budget, and think carefully before you make your final decision.

Gathering more than one quote may seem like a bit of a schlep. In all honesty, though, it’ll be worth your while in the end. You want to have a moving experience that’s as stress free as possible. Collect an extra moving estimate or two, and get to know the movers before you make your decision. A reliable moving company will set your mind at ease.