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Beware the Internet Broker:
When using the internet to research moving companies, you are guaranteed to find more than one option. What separates Dewitt Companies from other professional moving companies is the fact that we genuinely WANT you to shop around, ask questions, and get rates from multiple carriers. Why? Well how else are you going to understand just how great our pricing is?
There are a few things that you MUST watch out for in your online search for moving companies. We recommend that you contact moving companies that have been in business at least ten years, and above all, DO NOT HIRE AN ONLINE MOVING BROKER!!! Online internet brokers may appear to have better moving rates on the surface, but you are sure to have multiple hidden fees. Make sure that you are comparing “apples to apples” so to speak when you are comparing moving companies and moving rates.
IMPORTANT: The current consumer protection laws related to the movement of household goods only apply to Motor Carriers and not to Household Goods Brokers. Translation: You as the consumer are not protected if items are damaged or lost in transit.
This brings us to the next set of important questions: How do you distinguish between an online internet broker and a certified professional mover? How do you know when you are dealing with a moving company that you can trust? Here are a few basic things to keep in mind:
1. What is the Difference Between an Internet Broker and an Asset Based Professional Mover?
The first thing that you want to do is check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). We also recommend that you verify whether or not they are a current member of the American Moving and Storage Association (AMSA). These are two very important and easily verifiable credentials for any professional moving company. Remember: Movers are federally regulated, where as online brokers have no rules or regulations. Movers must follow DOT compliance, have a valid motor carrier number and applicable insurance. You as the consumer are NOT PROTECTED if you book your move with an online moving broker.
2. Does Their Webpage Look Professional and Clean?
Transparency is always best. If a moving company’s website looks unorganized, uninformative and roughly put together in a day, this is a good indication that they are not a well respected, viable professional moving company. If the website is vague and uninformative, this is a great indicator on their overall “professional” moving service. Again, we recommend that you check with the Better Business Bureau and verify their credentials BEFORE you invite them into your home to collect all of your personal belongings.
5. Does the Moving Company Charge You by the Weight or by the Cube?
With no exceptions, PLEASE make sure you are getting rates quoted by the pound, as opposed to the cube. Why, you ask? That’s easy. The average consumer does not know what 200 cube looks like or feels like. The average consumer DOES know what 200lbs looks like and feels like. If they insist on quoting you by the cube.. RUN! Then… Dewitt Companies a call so that we can set up a no cost, no obligation survey of your goods. If you are serious about your upcoming move, you owe it to yourself to obtain, at the very least, an estimate so that moving companies can access your goods, and quote accurately. This truly is the best way to obtain the most cost effective method of shipping your goods.
If you remind yourself to ask the above five questions when researching online moving companies, you will be better equipped to begin the process of elimination. Please remember to do your research BEFORE you pick up the phone and start calling moving companies that you have found online. 5-10 minutes of preliminary research vs. hours and hours of potential headache is well worth the extra effort.