Many larger moving companies offer online estimating tools for local and long distance moves. These handy tools are usually easy to use, and they can help you get a rough idea of how much your move is going to cost. However, instant quotes are not a replacement for an in-home survey from a qualified, reputable moving company. In fact, it is best to get several estimates from a variety of companies in order to see what prices are available. This will also help you identify red flags like a company refusing to do an in-home survey or asking for a large upfront deposit.
Online estimating tools are engineered to estimate the weight and space of your belongings based on the information you provide. Most tools will ask for information like the size of your home, how many bedrooms, vehicle relocation and if you need packing assistance. Many will also ask for the number of boxes and the weight of your belongings. The more accurate the information you provide, the more precise your quote will be.
The time of year can affect moving costs, too. Many movers are busier during the summer, so you may see higher charges than at other times of the year. If you know the exact date of your move, try to schedule it during a slower time of the year to save money.
If you are completing a long-distance move, the online estimate tool should ask you how many people you need to move and whether you need packing assistance or crating services. It will also need to know the weight of your shipment, since most interstate movers charge by the pound and must follow rules established by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA).
A good mover should also send you a written estimate within hours after you complete the online form. This should include all of the pricing information you provided, along with a full inventory list of all items being moved. It should also provide a breakdown of any extra fees that could be incurred, such as appliance disconnection and reconnection, stair or elevator charges, oversized items or a storage fee.
If you prefer, you can request a nonbinding or binding-not-to-exceed estimate. A binding-not-to-exceed mover will give you a price up front based on the estimated weight of your belongings, and the actual cost won’t go over this amount. A nonbinding estimate is less risky, but the final bill will depend on the actual weight of your belongings and the moving services you choose. Either way, don’t sign incomplete or blank documents the day of your move, as this can be a red flag for a moving scam. The FMCSA recommends comparing several estimates before making your decision. This will ensure you’re getting a fair price and the services you need. Then, you can rest assured that your move is in good hands! get a moving quote online