Monthly Archives: November 2014
The votes are in! We combed through all of our reviews to determine what the highest rated movers on MovingCompanyReviews.com have in common. Check out the traits of the best movers in the biz!
Whether you’re trading in your city condo for the suburban life, or you’re an empty nester ready to downsize, many moves require getting rid of your current furniture and belongings. Instead of leaving your spare couch curbside, consider giving your gently-used items to charity organizations. Give back during your move by donating to one of the six national charities below.
Move for Hunger
During a move, most food is typically thrown away. Move for Hunger is an organization that works with moving companies across the country who donate their time to deliver your food to a local food bank. Choose from their network of movers and donate your food here.
Goodwill prides itself on using revenue made from donated items to fund employment programs for veterans, seniors, single mothers and people with disabilities. There are over 165 Goodwill locations across the country where you can drop off your gently-used items. Learn how to donate here.
Habitat for Humanity ReStore
Habitat for Humanity ReStores are nonprofit home improvement stores and donation centers that sell new and gently used furniture and home accessories to the public at a fraction of the retail price. You can donate at several locations in the U.S. and all proceeds from your donated items will go to building homes and communities across the country.
When you donate gently-used furniture to the Salvation Army, the proceeds fund 142 Adult Rehabilitation Centers across the world. These centers provide housing, work opportunities and therapy for people struggling with addiction. Learn how to donate here.
Furniture Bank Association of North America
The Furniture Bank Association collects gently-used furniture and household items and provides them at little or no cost to families struggling to furnish their home, including those impacted by domestic abuse, homelessness, fire and other natural disasters. Find a furniture bank in your area here.
GreenDrop collects gently-used household items and sells them on behalf of the Military Order of the Purple Heart and the National Federation of the Blind. All proceeds from your donated items will go to organizations that support military veterans and the visually impaired. GreenDrop also provides a free Home Clean Out Concierge Service, where a representative will come to your home to pack your unwanted items and prepare them for pickup.
After you clean house, pack like a pro with our top packing and moving tips here.
If you’re looking to add a pleasant move experience to the top of your gratitude list, it’s important to do your own online research before booking a mover. To make it easier to identify the most insightful online reviews, MovingCompanyReviews.com (MCR) data revealed the qualities of a top rated mover review (according to five star reviews for the top 10 movers nationwide on MovingCompanyReviews.com). When you’re searching to book a mover, make sure the below qualities are mentioned in the online reviews.
Top five qualities that make up a five-star review:
- Worked hard and efficiently (as indicated in 100% of reviews )
- Staff was friendly and professional (as indicated in 97% of reviews)
- Movers were on time or early (as indicated in 73% of reviews)
- Movers handled belongings carefully and protected the homes e.g. in bad weather (as indicated in 66% of reviews)
- Staff was easy to communicate with and proactively followed up post-move (as indicated in 52% of reviews)
Traits to identify when reading online reviews:
- Expert knowledge: When hiring someone to move your belongings, you want a crew who works quickly, efficiently and knows expert tricks of the trade. You will be in awe of how quick and seamless a move goes when it is clear that the movers are experienced and professional.
- Respectful: The best movers have friendly and respectful crews. These crews will make you feel comfortable, despite the fact that they are strangers who are in your home and handling your belongings. MCR reviews have mentioned that the best crews are even funny and enjoyable to have around.
- Timeliness: Top ranked movers on MCR repeatedly mention timeliness. No one ever complained that a mover came too early.
- Thoughtfulness: The best movers will take care of your home and belongings using the proper protective materials (blankets, shrink wrap etc) and will take special care to protect a home during bad weather like rain or snow.
- Honesty: If a problem occurs, the best movers are proactive about addressing it. Complications will happen, but it is the way that the movers handle issues that really matters. Several reviewers acknowledged that something went wrong but were impressed that the company owner or foreman stepped in to make things right – promptly and professionally.
Need a place to start your research? Visit http://www.movingcompanyreviews.com/ to search by your location.Before booking a mover, interview at least three different moving companies to avoid booking an unprofessional or unlicensed mover.
Big cities have a lot to offer — great food, entertainment and history. According to MovingCompanyReviews.com data, the top five cities with the most mover searches* are Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Dallas and Pittsburgh. If you’re moving to one of these thriving metropolitan areas, download the apps below to discover what makes your new city unique.
1.) Field Trip (iOS/Android, Free): Powered by Google, the Field Trip app takes your GPS location and indicates points of interest in your area, including restaurants, museums and historical landmarks. When using headphones, the app will also read you a brief description of the location and its significance. Available in: Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Dallas and Pittsburgh.
2.) Stray Boots (iOS/Android, Free): Perfect for exploring in groups, the Stray Boots app helps you discover your new city by sending you on a scavenger hunt. Select your location and the Stray Boots app will send “challenges” asking you to find unique places in your immediate area. Available in: Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Dallas and Pittsburgh.
3.) It Happened Here (iOS/Android, Free): Are you a history buff? The It Happened Here app notifies you of any significant events that happened near your location. The app includes historical events, memorable movie scenes and notorious crimes, so there is something of interest for everyone. Available in: Atlanta, Chicago and Dallas.
4.) Around Me (iOS/Android, Free): If you’re looking for something specific in your area, the Around Me app will locate nearby ATMs, coffee shops, restaurants and other businesses. This app works internationally, as well. Available in: Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Dallas and Pittsburgh.
5.) Transit (iOS/Android, Free): Even the most seasoned city-dwellers can be intimidated by public transit. Use the Transit app to plug in your current location and your final destination and the app will share the easiest routes to get there. Available in: Atlanta, Chicago, Denver, Dallas and Pittsburgh.
After a long day of exploring, come home to a space with your own personal touch. Find out the 5 Ways to Decorate Your New Home for Less.
*The top five cities with the highest quantity of moving company searches, per MovingCompanyReviews.com data
Sometimes there’s no such thing as a “simple” move.
Just Five Days To Find A Mover And Move Out
When Heidi Weclew hired local moving company, Mr. Mover, based in Orlando, to move her out of her two-bedroom apartment into a new one just 15 minutes away, she had no idea it would become one of the worst consumer experiences of her life.
Weclew, a real estate agent, has several moves under her belt and has had generally positive experiences with movers in the past. But when her job transfer unexpectedly fell through last Spring, she only had five days to hire a mover before she had to be out of her apartment.
So she went online and searched for local movers, checked out reviews and ratings and requested quotes. Mr. Mover quickly became the frontrunner because of their reasonable hourly rate, availability and temporary storage options.
“There were no red flags I could find online or from my conversation with them during the estimate process,” Weclew said. “Everything checked out and they seemed pretty straightforward with what they would and wouldn’t do and how much it would cost.”
$2,000 In Damages And $120 In Protection
On her scheduled move day, Weclew recalled the movers showed up on time, but the crew was unkempt, had no uniforms and showed up in an unmarked truck. They also immediately hit a pipe while backing into her apartment’s loading dock.
By the end of the day, her estimated four-hour move took twice as long to complete, resulting in a higher move cost. She also said she sustained nearly $2,000 in damages to her belongings, including a new 50” flat screen, dresser, mirror and leather couch.
Weclew also did not see a contract until the end of her move and despite the company’s assurances that she would be fairly compensated for the damage, she was only offered $120 based on the mover’s Released Value Protection policy, which makes them liable for no more than $0.60/pound per item.
“In hindsight, I would have purchased supplemental insurance or moved delicate items myself,” she said. “I figured if I needed something extra, that would be told to me. I put too much faith in the moving company.”
To help others learn from her experience, Weclew has posted reviews on consumer advocate sites like MovingCompanyReviews.com, Ripoff Report and through word of mouth with her local Realtor groups.
More Tips To Help You Avoid A Move Day Nightmare
- Find a reputable mover that has been independently vetted.
A great place to start is by hiring a certified Pro Mover, administered by the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA). Some states like Florida also have their own Promo Mover program, administered by AMSA and the Florida Movers and Warehousemen’s Association (FMWA).
“It’s very easy for companies to misrepresent themselves online, through fraudulent reviews or by faking their license and insurance coverage,” said Andy Newitt, FMWA Chairman. “This is why we highly recommend that consumers get in-home estimates and review the documents given to them by the estimator. Florida law requires that movers provide all of the paperwork prior to starting the job.”
MovingCompanyReviews.com also shows whether a mover has the proper licenses, with links to the state authority to make sure they’re up to date.
- Good movers book fast so start researching movers and requesting written quotes at least four weeks before your desired move date.
- Be prepared for anything. Even when you book a great mover, stuff happens.
Look into affordable move protection for extra coverage of your belongings and make sure you understand what your mover is liable for (and if you’re willing to take the risk). Many movers also offer additional valuation coverage; so don’t hesitate to ask for more info during the estimate process if you prefer this option.
Remember, reputable movers are behind many happy moves. Check out more tips on how to find a trustworthy mover.