Managing the Costs

On the other side of the proverbial coin lies danger: too many options. Just as à la carte pricing can help you cut unnecessary costs, it can also inflate your total bill. A burger combo is more expensive if you buy the burger, fries, and drink separately. The combo can be a better deal. Moving services can add up as well if you buy each piece separately—or if you order more services than you need.

In addition, you may wind up paying for other services. Make sure they are necessary before you purchase. Remember, the total cost of your move may be increased if you want additional or special service. Before you agree to special services, make sure you clearly understand what the additional cost will be. Always consider that you may find other movers who can provide the service you need without additional charges.

One service option is a space reservation. If you agree to have your shipment transported under a space reservation agreement, you’ll pay for a minimum space in the moving van regardless of how much your shipment actually uses.

Another service option is exclusive use of a vehicle. If your shipment needs to be moved by itself on the mover’s truck or trailer, most movers will provide such service. Translation: mo’ money. Do you need the extra service?

Still another service option is guaranteed service on or between agreed dates. If you take this service option, the mover guarantees that your shipment will be picked up, transported to destination, and delivered on specific dates. If the mover fails to provide the service as agreed, you receive from the company a penalty fee or refund.

Before agreeing to any service options, ask the mover about the final costs. Consider all possible alternatives if you feel that the charges will be more than you are willing to pay.

How can you help the movers move you? First, be at the house before the movers arrive and plan to be there until after they leave. They’ll need someone at the house who knows exactly what goes and what stays, who has keys to any locked areas, who knows the trick to opening that sticky attic cubbyhole, and who can make a final check to see that everything (from the attic, basement, garage, and even that extra lawn mower stored at the neighbor’s) gets loaded onto the truck. Think about other things that can help:

  • Park your car down the block
  • Clear sidewalks and driveways of toys and tools
  • Prop doors open
  • Keep the kids and pets out of the way

Moving Words

flight charge is an extra fee for carrying large, bulky items (such as your mother-in-law) up or down stairs.

If you’re paying anyone by the hour, minutes repeatedly walking around Johnny’s bike on the sidewalk do add up. Probably your most important task on moving day will be checking inventory. Your mover will make a thorough inventory as everything goes out the door and into the truck. You are responsible to see that the inventory is accurate and complete. The mover may indicate on the inventory whether items being loaded have damage already. Again, your job is to check his or her accuracy.

Stay out of the way of the packers and movers so they can do their jobs efficiently. You don’t have to be out of sight; you have every right to watch how they handle your things. Just give them room to do it well.

Keep children and pets out of the way, too. Lots of bulky items are being moved and it’s difficult to see, let alone avoid stepping on, small children or small animals. Not only will children and pets wandering around get in the way and slow down progress, but they could get injured. And with doors open for loading, curious tots or pets could wander out the door into the street or even out of the neighborhood.

Well before the movers arrive, talk to the company’s representative to learn how you can best help the movers to ensure the safe loading, transport, and delivery of your goods to your new home.

 Managing the Move