Monthly Archives: December 2014
It’s been an exciting year here at MovingCompanyReviews (MCR)! Nearly two years ago, we started MCR to give consumers a better option for planning their moves, and to help great movers grow their business. In 2014, we grew our traffic exponentially, added hundreds of new verified reviews to the site, and generated thousands of free move referrals in what was the busiest move season in years. We also introduced our first paid mover product offering, Suggested Mover. We’ve been thrilled with the results and feedback we’ve gotten so far from our loyal mover customers. Please keep that feedback coming. We have lots more exciting stuff in the works for the coming year. Cheers to a great 2014 and an even bigger and better 2015.
- The MCR Crew
Shirlee, Shannon, Heather, Czarina, Marcus, Denzell, Dave and Brock (Doug not pictured)
As the housing market continues to recover, MovingCompanyReviews.com anticipates that competition within the moving industry will intensify, due to an increasing number of home sales. According to the National Association of Realtors, home sales are expected to be higher in 2015 and this growth in home sales will benefit both buyers and sellers, as improvements in inventory, slower price gains and pent-up demand contribute to the trend.
MovingCompanyReviews.com (MCR), a site that connects consumers with reliable moving companies, identified 2014’s moving industry trends and predicts how housing trends will impact the moving industry in 2015.
Moving on up
According to MCR data, 2014 was a year of expansion as consumers moved into larger sized homes. The median square footage of homes consumers moved from was 1,100 square feet, and moved into homes that were a median of 1,728 square feet.
On a national level, consumer moving trends indicated:
On the move
According to MCR data, out of state moves make up approximately 20% of moves on the site. In 2014, the top five states where the most consumers moved from were:
In 2014, the top five states where the most consumers moved into were:
Preparing for 2015
As home sellers, buyers and renters prepare for 2015, hiring professional movers is likely to be on their moving checklists. MCR anticipates the five below trends will be prevalent in the moving industry in 2015.
1) Mover availability will be tight in spring and summer months. 2014 was the strongest move season in years according to MCR’s moving company customer feedback. This increase resulted in a nationwide truck driver shortage, making it difficult for consumers to book the move dates they wanted. Consumers can expect this same problem in 2015 and should book a moving company as soon as they know their moving date. The average person books their mover only two weeks in advance, so beating that timeframe means consumers will have a better chance of getting the date they want. This is particularly important between Memorial Day and Labor Day, with moves peaking in August.
2) Major metros are still hot. In 2014, MCR reported the most moves in the nation’s largest cities, including Chicago, Atlanta, Houston, Denver and Dallas. Continued urban population growth and the return of post-recession new construction will continue to fuel moves in these cities. For consumers looking to move in these cities, MCR advises to book a mover at least one month in advance.
3) Interstate moves will expand to smaller cities. MCR anticipates growth in some of the mid-size cities that are joining the trend of urban development, with investments in jobs, housing, retail and dining. The 2015 Emerging Trends in Real Estate report, published by PwC and Urban Land Institute, lists Charlotte, Raleigh-Durham and Nashville as “markets to watch”. MCR data identified a healthy number of moves in these cities in 2014 and expects the trend to continue into 2015.
4) Square footage will remain flat. According to MCR data, 2014 saw an upgrade in home sizes, by a median of 628 square feet. MCR does not expect any more significant upgrades. While the economy is improving, the rental market is still strong.
5) Mover scams are still a threat but more controlled. 2013 and 2014 saw the rise of illegitimate companies that preyed on unsuspecting consumers. These individuals and companies marketed to consumers looking for the lowest price, and then scammed them by drastically increasing the rate at the point of delivery or even holding goods hostage. In 2014, the American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA) and state moving associations made significant efforts to educate consumers on how to choose a vetted, licensed mover. Using a site like MovingCompanyReviews.com helps consumers understand the industry rules and regulations and identify the licensed movers with verified reviews from real consumers.
Are you making a big move in 2015? Before you start packing, take time to crunch some numbers and set a realistic moving budget. We’ve listed five unexpected moving costs below. Avoid sticker shock by considering these costs when calculating your budget.
Packing supplies can be a huge surprise expense if you don’t do your research. Avoid purchasing boxes from standard mailing centers and use a wholesale bulk retailer instead. After selecting your mover, you can purchase packing supplies kits directly on MovingCompanyReviews.com that are specifically tailored to the size of your home. Also, don’t skimp on bubble wrap or packing paper — that extra layer could mean the difference in your items arriving in one piece.
Assuming your movers do a good job, it’s best practice to tip them. The industry standard for a full day move is between $20-$30 per person, or $10-$15 per person for a half or partial day. Assuming you have three workers performing your move, this could add up to an additional $60 or more on top of your basic move costs.
Moving can involve a lot of hiccups, including those that will require you to put your items in storage. Storage costs vary widely by area, so research companies in your new community to find an option that works for you. For a temporary fix, we recommend renting a self-storage unit.
Deposits and utilities
When planning your move, budget for current utility bills that may overlap with deposits and bills for your new home. This unexpected cost catches many homeowners by surprise and can make the first few months in your new place stressful. If you rent, thoroughly clean your apartment so you receive your full security deposit.
Unexpected Moving company fees
When using a mover, there are several fees that could drastically increase the cost of your move. Read the fine print of your contract so you fully understand each individual cost.
Some surprising fees include:
- Driving charges: Most movers charge for the time it takes to get from their primary location to your home. In most cases, they will charge their hourly rate, or pro-rate it to the quarter or half hour depending on your home’s distance. Ask your mover about this cost if it’s not called out explicitly in the estimate. If there is anything unusual about your location, including nearby construction or closed roads, let them know to avoid paying for the time it takes them to find your home.
- Long-carry fees: You may be charged a long-carry fee if your movers have to carry your items further than their standard “distance limit.” Ask your movers what their distance limit is and if they think it could be an issue. Apartment or city-dwellers beware, as this fee normally results from limited available parking and if your condo or apartment unit is more than a few units away from the elevator and the movers have to carry your belongings down the hallway.
- Elevator fees: If you’re moving in or out of a high-rise, your mover and/or building may . charge an elevator fee. Your building may also charge a move-in/out fee. Make sure to check with your building management before you move.
- Supplies fees: Many movers will wrap your belongings with blankets and tape, and pack your clothing into wardrobe boxes. You may then be surprised with charges for these items on your final bill. Understand the cost for any packing materials before you book your move, and work with your mover to estimate what you need to include in your overall budget.
Once you’ve established your budget, use these apps to make your move as smooth as possible.
Moving can be an exciting and stressful time. The anticipation of closing one chapter in your life and exploring another can have you filled with curiosity with what the future holds. But before you can get to your next adventure in life, you need to pack. Probably the least exciting thing about moving, you will be left wondering how you will get all of this stuff organized, packed, labeled and on the truck.
Rejoice techies! Here are some of the most useful apps to help you get the job done. So take a break from your social media and start putting that tablet and smart phone to good use.
Planning Your Move
The most difficult of tasks when packing for a move is creating a plan of action. Whether you are relocating from an apartment or a four bedroom home, having a plan will have your home packed in no time. Certain apps will help you create a plan or checklist allowing you to pack each room with ease.
Move Planner- This app will allow you to create a checklist for your entire move. Keep track of what has been packed, which room has the most items and sort through your inventory in a snap.
Sortly- Never forget where any of your possessions are with this app. We all have items in the attic, storage and closet that we need but have completely forgotten about. This app provides an easy solution to enter and track all of your possessions when you are planning your move.
The day has finally arrived. It is time to have everything packed and load it on the truck. But what is in each box? How will you know where to put your belongings when you get to your new home? You need a way to keep track of what is in each box and these apps provide the solution.
Moving Day- This app will help you keep your items and boxes organized on moving day. Create your own inventory. Now you can make sure that everything is packed, loaded and delivered without skipping a beat.
Moving Van- Now you can easily identify what is in each box. You can forget about tearing into a box to see what items are in it. Create a label and identify the contents of each box. It will make unpacking as simple as it can be.
For The Drive
If you are moving cross country you will need some help during your travels. Stopping to fill up, finding a place to eat or just needing to stretch your legs, it is important to find the best places along the way. These apps will provide the necessary assistance to help you on the road to your new home.
Road Ninja- Why read each exit sign with anticipation that there will be affordable gas and some good food? Road Ninja will just show you where they are. Now you can find the best gas prices, your favorite food and whatever you may need on your journey.
FuelMyRoute- Moving is already a financial burden, so why pay even more in gas during your drive? This app will help you find the best prices on gas throughout your drive to help you keep more cash in your pocket.
So don’t go through moving alone. After updating your status, go ahead and download one of these apps the make your life a little easier. There are even apps that will help you with moving pets, moving overseas and so much more. Use that smart phone for what it was made for.
Guest Post by Caleb McElveen, a media relations specialist and writer for HigherVisibility. Caleb contributes tips and advice on real estate, finance and relocation.
We get it. Winter is here and with more holidays around the corner, it’s tough to book jobs.
The good news: People still need to move. We know because every day they’re requesting quotes from great movers like you on our site.
The even better news: In select markets*, we’re offering an exclusive cash back rebate, called “MCR Moving Deal,” to encourage consumers to book a mover from their MCR quote request. The rebate is paid and managed by MCR.
What do you need to do?
Nothing! If someone contacts you about our rebate, confirm with them that MCR sends the check after the move and send other inquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
How does it work?
- Consumers request a quote from the mover(s) of their choice on MCR.
- If eligible, we email consumers the rebate offer encouraging them to book with a mover from their quote request. The Rebate Offer: Pay $25 and receive $75 cash back from MCR for booking and reviewing a participating mover.
- After the move, when the consumer reviews their mover on MCR and we verify it with their Bill of Lading, we’ll send them $75.
The rebate is paid by us and does not indicate a discount on your services. It’s our way of thanking consumers for sharing their experience, while helping you book more jobs and get more reviews.
Like it? Love it? Lukewarm? Give us your feedback.
*We’re offering the Moving Deal only in states without restrictions regarding rebates/discounts. Currently confirmed states that permit the MCR Moving Deal are AK, AR, AZ, CA, CO, DE, FL, GA, IN, NC, NJ, TN. TX, VA, WA, WI and Washington D.C.