Moving to a new location is often an exciting time for you and your family, but it can also be stressful. It involves a lot of planning, coordinating time schedules, and making sure nothing gets left behind. Moreover, moving from one state to another may create even more stress. That’s why it’s important to do your homework and research to find the best moving company suited for the job and your unique needs.

The following are questions you can ask before you choose the right mover for transporting your family and belongings to a different state.

1. Do you have the proper licensing?

Make it a point to ask whether or not your movers are licensed. Ensure that they are permitted and have operating authorities, such as Motor Carrier of Household Goods and Authority to Transport Household Goods, as well as Broker of Household Goods if you’re working with a broker. Safety and fitness permits are also crucial to assure your items are in good hands. Remember to trust only properly licensed NYC moving companies for your interstate move, as they can better guarantee a hassle-free relocation.

2. What kind of services do you offer?

Some moving companies may not offer the type of service you need. In your case, many movers don’t provide relocations across state borders. So, of course, you’ll need to hire one that can transport you long distances.

Other services you might also want include custom crating for better security of your stuff, specialty moves for heavy and fragile items, and furniture assembly and disassembly. You can also ask for packing and unpacking services, loading and unloading, as well as storage solutions to minimize your work. Hire a moving company that can answer all your needs and preferences.

3. Will you provide a binding quote?

Many moving companies offer non-binding estimates. That is, the price of your move is subject to change depending on actual costs, and you could end up paying more than was originally estimated. If possible, choose a moving company that offers a binding written estimate in which the final cost won’t exceed the estimate.

4. Who will handle the actual move?

Some companies have a moving staff on hand ready to do the heavy lifting involved with your move. Other companies, however, hire transient workers who aren’t loyal to the company or dedicated to the moving industry. Also, someone employed by the moving company is more apt to have worker’s compensation coverage – which means you aren’t liable if they’re injured during your move.

5. Who’s liable if my possessions get damaged or lost?

Many moving companies offer different levels of protection for your items should they be lost or destroyed. Check with each company you research to see how much coverage they provide and what you have to pay for it for each level of coverage.

6. Are they experienced in your type of move?

Not every family or individual moves from a typical house to another. Perhaps you’re moving to a high-rise apartment or a townhome with multiple stories, for example; if so, ask your mover if he or she has previous experience with that type of move. The best moving companies are prepared for all scenarios – whether they entail steep stairs, limited parking near the residence, a lack of elevators, etc.

7. Are there any extra fees I might pay?

Hidden charges are a common scheme among rogue movers. They tempt you with unusually low prices only to surprise you with a heap of additional fees by the end of the relocation. That’s the last thing you could ever want after a tiring and stressful move.

Never forget to pop this question when talking to moving companies. If they lay out an honest, straightforward pricing, that is a huge plus. But if otherwise, and they answer vaguely, it might be best to start doubting them. Refrain from being reeled in by cheaper options and prioritize quality over the cost at all times.

8. Some other questions to ask

You’ve heard the phrase that there’s “no such thing as a dumb question.” It certainly rings true when talking to a moving company. So, ask away, including questions like:

*How long will the move take?

*What types of payment do you accept?

*How do I contact you and the driver during the move?

*Do I have to pay for additional moving supplies?

*How do you pack specialty items, such as televisions and electronics?

*What’s your cancellation policy, if any?

The bottom line is that it pays to be thorough when hiring a moving company to transport your belongings to a new home in a different state. Ask a lot of questions until you truly understand what each mover provides, or doesn’t provide.

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