Best Moving Companies (Hiring a Mover 101)

Moving can be filled with stress. But hiring a top moving company can make things significantly easier. Read on for the best moving companies and moving tips.


Finding the Best Moving Companies / How to Hire a Mover

Are you looking to move? Congratulations! It’s always an exciting thing, but there are also considerable stresses.

Hiring the best moving company for your needs can go a LONG way in alleviating a lot of the issues associated with moving. However, finding the best mover is not as simple as it seems. There’s a lot that goes into your decision.

We’ve tried to make it easy with the preceding reviews. But read on for our tips in finding the best moving company for you.

How to Hire a Mover

  1. Get a Walkthrough Estimate

    You definitely want your moving company to see your home, and see what they are moving. This way, there are no surprises. Let’s face it – you have so much on your mind that’s easy to forget things. We’ve heard of people forgetting to mention the basement with the twisting stairs… that didn’t go over well, and ended up costing extra, never mind slowing things up. So if at all possible, get a walkthrough.

    Tip: If a walkthrough is not possible, conduct your own walkthrough of EVERY area (yes, even the backyard shed), and make a note of everything. That way, you won’t forget to tell the mover everything.

  2. >> Update – What’s the Best Moving Company?
  3. Be Clear About Insurance

    Most moving companies have a default insurance of something low, like .60 cents per lb. So if they break a 10lb item, you get six bucks. Never mind that it was a $500 item…

    Almost all movers offer optional additional insurance. You should definitely consider it, and be clear on what is covered and what isn’t. This way, there are no surprises.

  4. Pick “Name” Brands

    There are tons of small, local movers. We’d rather go with a regional / national company. There are plenty to choose from (hint: we’ve got a bunch at the top of this page!) This isn’t to say you can’t find a gem of a local mover – if you DO want to go in this direction, do your homework and verify everything (their Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration number; see if they’ve been registered with the ASMA, etc.)

  5. Pay the Balance on Delivery

    Most good moving companies will require a deposit (usually up to 20%) to get things going, and accept payment of the balance when the move is completed. And that’s the way we like it.

    No reputable mover will demand full payment up-front. If they do, run.

  6. Know what to Look Out For

    Make sure your moving company has a legit address and phone number (you’d be surprised how many fly-by-nights don’t). Make sure they’ve been in business for awhile, and don’t have a lot of complaints online.

  7. Read Reviews

    This goes without saying. We’ve got great moving company reviews above.

  8. >> Update – What’s the Best Moving Company?

    Types of Moving Companies

    Carriers vs. Brokers

    A carrier owns their own fleets of trucks, and has employees paid by them. A broker is licensed to book moves and handles all logistics/details/administration, but uses third parties for the trucks and the actual loading/unloading.

    Both have merit – brokers usually have more dates available, but carriers handle everything “in-house”, so that makes a lot of people feel better. And there are some moving companies that do both – they handle moves to certain areas themselves, and act as brokers for other areas.

    In the end, choose who you feel comfortable with.

    Long Distance Movers / Local Movers / International Movers / Corporate Movers / etc.

    Many moving companies only serve a specific geographic area and/or country. Make sure you pick the right mover for your needs – cross country movers may have fewer options / dates than a local “across town” move.

    Also, you have moving companies that specialize in not only moving residential goods, but also movers who specialize in corporate / business moves. Again, make sure your moving company handles the type of move you need.

    Specialty Items

    Not every mover can move your classic antique piano or priceless artwork. Again, check and see if they can handle what you have.

    Moving FAQ

    Do I Pack My Items Myself?

    You can pack yourself if you wish, but most moving companies will also pack your goods for a fee.

    How About Unpacking?

    Again, you can do this yourself, or have the mover do it (most will, for a fee).

    How Large of a Truck Do I Need?

    A big one!! (we’re kidding – we don’t know).

    Seriously, your mover will have the answer to this (and is why we recommended a walkthrough earlier). In general terms, a 15-foot truck is good for up to a 2-bedroom apartment, where a 25 foot or so truck can handle a home with 2-4 bedrooms. But again, talk to your mover to make that determination.

    We hope your move is successful. Follow the above guidelines and read our reviews to find the best moving company for you. Or simply click here for our top choice.