Monthly Archives: July 2013
Looking for one good reason to do your homework and take the time to find a credible mover?
How about 3,100 of them? Or try more than 9,000.
That’s how many consumer complaints were filed against moving companies and received by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (up seven percent from the year before), and the Better Business Bureau, respectively. You can fill in the blanks with the moving horror stories you’ve probably heard from friends and family, including movers not showing up on move day, their stuff being held hostage and low-ball estimates.
Don’t worry, we won’t ask you to recreate that song from “The King and I,” but we do have a favor to ask of you. We heart movers and love talking to you every day. You’ve helped a newbie like us better understand the moving biz and we want to return the favor.
Won’t you please spend a few minutes to take our Mover Survey?
We want to understand your pain points, goals, gripes and more. The better we understand you, the better we can help.
Hate it or love it, reviews are out there. And positive or negative, real or not…they’re already affecting how people perceive your business. Ready to stop leaving your reviews to chance?
With Managed Verified Reviews (MVR), we can help you get authentic reviews from your customers. Just upload your recent moves and we’ll do the rest. We’ll even extend our cool promotions to your customers, helping them have even happier moves.
Want to be a beta tester and receive up to two months free? Let us know at email@example.com
We’ve heard from many of you that this is your biggest moving season in years…congrats! If you’re having to turn away business right now, it may be hard to even think about new business referrals, but we wanted to give our most loyal movers a heads up on an upcoming new feature we’re pretty excited about.
Launching in late August, MCR Referrals will let consumers easily select and be contacted by the movers THEY choose on our site. That means warm prospects coming your way!
They’ll be more robust too. We’re leveraging our relationship with HomeFinder.com to make it super easy for consumers to provide information about their move and their home, giving you rich information to begin your estimation process (including links to active home listings, square footage details, maps, satellite views and more).
Did we mention it’s completely free to you? Silly us.
Just another way to make it easy for consumers to find great movers, because we’re all about happy moves.
Stay tuned for more. In the meantime, let us know if you’re interested in being a beta partner by shooting us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Packing your things for an upcoming move? Depending on how much stuff you have, you’re probably going to need a whole lotta boxes. Sure, you have options when it comes to containers you can pack into your moving truck, but the classic cardboard box is a mainstay for a reason… it gets the job done.
Buying boxes is easy, but if you’re hoping to save on moving expenses, here are some suggestions for where you might be able to score free boxes. Some seem like no-brainers but some genuinely surprised us when we started researching these tips.
Friends, Family, Frequent Associates: A good place to start is within your network. Asking around is easier than ever these days. A few timely Facebook updates can find their way to helpful friends with boxes to spare.
Craigslist: Craigslist and other popular web-boards contain a ‘Free’ section, and cardboard boxes are a common sight among the unwanted wares. Search in your city or neighborhood and chances are you’ll find some posts from folks who just wrapped up their move and looking to unload some moving goodies.
Bookstores: Businesses of all shapes and sizes take shipments, so in general most will probably have used boxes they’d be willing to part with. But we’ve heard bookstores have some of the sturdiest boxes that have weathered the weight of freshly minted and vintage novels. With all businesses, call ahead or ask when the staff isn’t swamped.
Convenience store: Another business that’s constantly receiving shipments, your local store on the corner could have more clean boxes for you to use.
Fast food restaurants: Surprised to see this on the list? Many burgers and fries joints receive their shipments as frozen packages, which are less likely to leave behind residual funk.
Bars and liquor stores: Just like other businesses on this list, bars and liquor stores also receive shipments nearly every week. Bonus: these are usually uniform in size so you’ll have an easier time stacking these in your car or moving truck. Heads up: if you’re looking to re-use these boxes for shipping, be sure to cover up all the alcohol brands, logos and labels, which are restricted by the USPS.
Post Office: The US Postal Service often has free boxes you can pick up without any hassle.
These are only a few options, but it’s a solid start to your box hunt. When you’re all unpacked, remember to pass on your used boxes to help another happy move! If you think we missed any box gold mines, let us know in the comments!
Think this is too much of a hassle? You can purchase boxes online and get free 1-2 day shipping. Much, much easier. Aahhhh.
We talk to movers every day from all over the country, spanning both coasts and the heartlands in between. Despite the variety in geography, time zones and temperatures, it was clear that most of you are currently feeling the hectic pace of the busy moving season. And the same can be said for some of our northern neighbors.
So for this month’s Truck Talks, we decided to chat with Zach Williams, Director of Marketing & Communications of Williams Moving & Storage, to learn a little bit more about the relocation climate in western Canada.
MCR: We’re in our peak-moving season right now (the summer months between Memorial Day and Labor Day). Is Canada’s busy season right now too?
Zach: Yes. Volumes pick up in June and the peak season will run through September.
MCR: How did Williams Moving & Storage get started in this business?
Zach: During the great depression in 1929, George Williams was driving around Vancouver looking for a job. He drove by the port and saw all of the immigrants getting off the ships. He noticed an elderly lady struggling to pull a trunk full of her belongings, so he got out and asked if he could help her get to where she was going. When he dropped her off at her at her destination, the lady gave him some money. A light bulb went off, and Williams Transfer was born.
He worked everyday, transporting people from the port to their destination. What started with trunks and luggage eventually turned into furniture. When he became busy enough, he bought some trucks, hired some people and changed the name to Williams Moving. 84 years later, we are the largest family-owned moving company in Canada.
MCR: What are some common misconceptions between moving in the U.S. versus moving in Canada?
Zach: We have never moved anybody into an igloo!
MCR: Any fun local industry lingo you want to share with us?
Zach: “Bead” when referring to packing tape. You will often hear professional movers saying “put a bead on it!” when packing a carton or wrapping a piece of furniture. What they are actually saying is “put some tape on it!”
MCR: It’s been our experience that movers are usually very active and involved in their community. Does Williams Moving & Storage have any charities, projects or community activities that you’re close to?
Zach: We are heavily involved with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease). Former Williams President & CEO Sonny Williams succumbed to it in 1996. We hold many events throughout the year to raise money and awareness. We are also heavily involved in the community. We participate in local events all over British Columbia and Alberta. We firmly believe in giving back to the communities that we work and live in.
MCR: What’s the coolest thing you’ve ever moved for a customer?
Zach: Our Special Products Division transported a giant telescope up a mountain to an observatory once. We have also transported dinosaur skeletons for a museum exhibit.
MCR: What are some of the biggest mistakes you see when you arrive at a move job and how can these be prevented?
Zach: Our biggest thing is communication. Ensure the customer and your sales team have worked out all the details of the move. This allows Operations to provide your crews with the tools they need to perform the job, and sets the move up for success.
MCR: What advice would you give to a customer on their first move?
Zach: Do your homework! Make sure you qualify the moving companies you get quotes from. We often tell our customers to check with the BBB or look for reviews online.
MCR: Brokers, rogues and unlicensed moving companies are a big issue in the U.S. Is Canada fighting similar competition from rogue movers?
Zach: Yes unfortunately we are. It seems like anyone with a pickup truck thinks they can be a professional mover. It gives the industry a bad name, however there is not much that we can do about it. The best way to combat it is to educate the consumer on what to look for when selecting a professional moving company.
MCR: What advice would you give to a new moving company just starting in this business?
Zach: Buckle up!
Thanks for the tips Zach. We hope you and the Williams Moving & Storage team have a productive rest of the moving season. Next time we move, we’ll be sure to “put a bead on it!”
Have questions you’d love to see in a future Truck Talks? Give us a shout at email@example.com.
One of the biggest fears when it comes to your move is damage to your belongings. While being smart about finding trustworthy, experienced movers and securely packing your items can go a long way toward safeguarding them, you should be prepared and know what to expect if your stuff gets damaged during your move. It’s especially important to understand your mover’s policies before you move so there are no surprises when it comes to your coverage and the mover’s liability.
Most movers offer two levels of liability agreements: Full Value Protection and Released Value.
Full Value Protection works like it sounds. If an item is lost or damaged, the mover must repair it, pay you for it or replace it in full, or to the market value equivalent.
The cost for Full Value Protection varies by mover. Refer to the Rights and Responsibilities guidebook to read up on “items of extraordinary value” which need to be specially designated in an inventory and are subject to different assessments of compensation. Take the time to learn a mover’s policy for Full Value.
The other type of coverage is known as Released Value. This coverage is free, but the mover will only be liable for 60 cents per pound of your cargo. What does that really mean?
Let’s say your favorite guitar gets damaged during your move. If it was worth $1300 and weighed 15 pounds, under released value, your mover is only required to reimburse you $9.00.
Besides these two choices, you can also opt for insurance. Most moving companies aren’t licensed to sell your insurance directly, but often you can arrange for third-party insurance with your current provider or another one that fits you and your movers’ needs.
In the event that things go terribly wrong, movers are required by law to inform you of arbitration processes that they must comply with. This is usually a last resort for movers and their customers.
We know it’s not fun to plan for the worst, and we hope your move goes smoothly, but like most things, it’s best to be prepared!