Finding the right moving company for your commercial or residential move is vital to whether or not your relocation goes well. While a do-it-yourself move is an option, getting help from a reputable moving company means that you’ll get someone with experience making sure that your move is completed efficiently. If you want confidence in your choice of movers, you’ll need to know exactly what to look for. Finding a credible moving company can be easy if you follow these helpful tips for choosing a quality mover.

Research Moving Companies Online

It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the amount of moving companies to choose from on the internet. Different movers should be thoroughly researched, but it doesn’t have to take forever to get this done. Use Google search to find multiple movers in your area and if you’re moving long distance, consider looking at national van lines companies. Study the movers’ websites to see what types of moving services they offer and in what areas. This will quickly narrow down your options as some movers might not offer the type of moving services you need.

Read Moving Company Reviews

Also, be sure to look at review sites. For each potential mover, look at a few review sites before making a final decision. Reputable review sites include the Better Business Bureau, Google, Angie’s List, MyMovingReviews.com and more. Make sure to look at more than one review for each company you consider, and try to find ones that mention the exact services you will need such as local, long distance or international moving services. Try to find user reviews from people who have used them recently, as these reviews will better reflect the moving company’s recent work. Taking a multifaceted approach to searching is a great first step to finding movers you can trust.

Get an In-Home Estimate

Ask for a detailed, in-home estimate from your movers. The quote should be based on the inventory the movers took during the walkthrough of your home. Make sure the movers check all areas of your home where there are items that will be moved! An in-home moving estimate, as opposed to an online estimate, will closely reflect the total costs of your move. In-home estimates are often more accurate than quotes that are completed online, but many moving companies offer an online form to fill out on their website, or you can send them photos or videos of everything to be moved, so you can receive a moving quote.

If you are unsure about something on your moving estimate, now’s the time to ask. Don’t wait until your move is complete and the costs are not refundable. Your mover should be able to explain any moving terminology on the quote that you don’t understand so you can have a good idea of what each item covers for your move. Estimates should be free. Most moves can be fully paid for once you’ve finished moving.

Ask If There Will Be Any Extra Fees

Tell you mover everything about your move beforehand so they can completely fill you in on the details of your moving costs. Ask if there will be any extra fees for your move based on what you’ve told them. Some moving companies may not tell you about any extra fees that will be applied to your move if you don’t ask. You can expect extra fees for transporting items up a flight of stairs, an elevator, or down the street if the movers have to park far away. You can also be charged extra if the movers transfer heavy items such as large furniture and if you choose to use the company’s packing supplies.

Review Your Moving Paperwork

Lastly, carefully read through all of your contracts and documentation from your movers. Don’t sign anything before you read it! You wouldn’t want to be stuck in a moving contract you can’t get out of. Thoroughly inspect every detail of any moving paperwork you sign. Never sign a blank contract, and make sure you clearly understand all of the conditions of what you’re agreeing to. Get all details of your moving plan and costs in writing so you know exactly what to expect from the moving company on moving day. Remember, move at your own speed, and don’t submit to any pressure to move faster or do anything else you’re uncomfortable with.

Caitlin Renton is with Mountain Moving & Storage, a reputable moving company in Lakewood, Wash., serving those who need local, long distance, commercial and residential moving services.