First time using movers

KyouguKyougu Registered User regular
Hey all,

Moving this weekend to a new apt, and its the first time I'm opting to use movers.

What's the etiquette with movers? Just stay back and let them do their stuff? Help out?

Also how much do I tip?

I actually don't have much stuff. Just a couch, an entertainment center my tv (though I may take that in my car for safety) and bed, among with a few packed boxes of clothing/kitchen stuff.

Posts

  • BloodycowBloodycow Registered User regular
    Make sure you take pictures of all of your stuff. Even better if you take video of any expensive electronics that you want to prove worked before you had them moved.

    I'm in the military so every 2 to 3 years my whole house gets packed and moved around the world. So moving across town shouldn't come with as many dangers of destruction of your stuff, but better safe then sorry.
    You can help them, but I would keep it to packing boxes. They might have liability issues with you putting stuff in their truck. I usually buy a pizza for them if they are interested.

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  • bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited August 2017
    Tip about 5-10% (it's not expected but if you like what they did, it's a good idea -- just make sure to give them all equal amounts), usually between $20-50.

    Offer water/refreshments and all that throughout the day.

    Label all the boxes and furniture for all the rooms they go in.

    No last minute packing, everything should be ready to go when they get there.

    Keep boxes light, and label them if they're heavy (books and your lead ingots).

    Always be nearby if they have any questions.

    bowen on
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  • ThundyrkatzThundyrkatz Registered User regular
    I have used movers 2x and in general be friendly but stay out of the way and don't micro manage them. If your not comfortable having someone move your stuff them maybe movers are not for you! Don't have them move anything fragile, and they generally don't want to move things that have liquid in them or are dangerous, that means your half used bottle of dish soap and your oven cleaner are out.

    Be ready to go when the movers get there. That means your bed is dissembled and ready to move and your entertainment center isn't loaded up with your games and what not. Have a clear plan for what you want them to do and make sure you have access to all the places you will be going.

    Both times I had movers, I made sure to have some Gatorade or water on hand and offered them a drink. The last time It was a bigger move and took most of the day, so I bought them lunch at a sandwich shop.

    As for tip, i'm not sure what your cost is. But make sure you give the cash in a way that is divisible by the movers present. So don't hand 1 of the 3 guys a $50 dollar bill. better to give them 3 $20's so they don't have to go make change.

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  • zepherinzepherin Registered User regular
    Also if you are packing Uhaul had the cheapest boxes. Get many medium boxes and pack into them, avoid loading up large boxes. It takes way long for 2 people to move a super heavy large box then 4 medium boxes.

    Most moving companies charge a handling fee for TVs so if can unmount and move your tv by yourself, it'll save you 60 or 70 bucks.

    Elvenshaebowen
  • ElvenshaeElvenshae Registered User regular
    Bloodycow wrote: »
    So moving across town shouldn't come with as many dangers of destruction of your stuff, but better safe then sorry.

    ... also a lot less risk of, "Oh, sorry, while your truck was traveling across Bumfuckistan, Middle-of-nowhere, one of the boxes 'fell off the truck' and had to be repacked. No idea why it was the one with all of your electronics in it. No idea where they are, either. Also, please ignore the grass in your wardrobe boxes."

    Also, I've got a table that movers have broken, like, three times now - the bar linking the legs is now mostly made up of steel reinforcements.

    To reiterate the good points:

    Have your stuff boxed and ready to go with labels for which room it's going in in the new place.

    Stay out of the way; you're paying them to move the boxes around, so let them move the boxes around.

    Medium boxes are the best; small boxes for books is a good idea. Label the heavy boxes.

    Your movers might be willing to do the bed disassembly as part of the move; if so, make sure they securely tape all your hardware to the frame / otherwise secure it.

    More generally, know beforehand which services (taking TVs off walls and reinstalling at destination, packing, bed disassembly, etc.) are included or not included in your rate.

    Offer drinks - especially water. They may bring their own cooler with them, and refuse, but you should at least offer.

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  • Drake ChambersDrake Chambers Lay out my formal shorts. Registered User regular
    I'm surprised no one has mentioned this yet, so maybe it's not that common, but regarding boxing things up yourself -- make sure you know your mover's policy on that. Both times I've used movers, their policy was that only things the movers packed themselves were insured. It's their job, so they know how much can go in a box, how much packing material to use, how to use it, etc.

    If you pack stuff up yourself and something breaks in transit, they might not cover the damage.

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  • ElvenshaeElvenshae Registered User regular
    I'm surprised no one has mentioned this yet, so maybe it's not that common, but regarding boxing things up yourself -- make sure you know your mover's policy on that. Both times I've used movers, their policy was that only things the movers packed themselves were insured. It's their job, so they know how much can go in a box, how much packing material to use, how to use it, etc.

    If you pack stuff up yourself and something breaks in transit, they might not cover the damage.

    I haven't run into that before, but that's a good point.

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  • FiendishrabbitFiendishrabbit Registered User regular
    A tip is to never pack a box full of books. Pack books only in the bottom layer, and then fill it up with something light like clothes.

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  • TOGSolidTOGSolid Drunk sailor Seattle, WashingtonRegistered User regular
    Bloodycow wrote: »
    Make sure you take pictures of all of your stuff. Even better if you take video of any expensive electronics that you want to prove worked before you had them moved.

    Cannot stress this enough. When I was a kid my Nintendo was stolen by movers.

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  • fightinfilipinofightinfilipino Angry as Hell #BLMRegistered User regular
    are the movers an established company or just a couple of guys or gals with a truck? if it's an established company, they should give you a contract with the fee up front. keep a copy of the contract. also check if they're licensed and bonded (insured). this is usually an easy internet lookup. in the U.S., states usually have license lookup sites you can check.

    sketchy outfits will just quote you a fee and then charge you exorbitantly over that fee when the move is almost done, basically holding your stuff hostage.

    if they're just folks you found on craigslist...i've had good experiences and bad. definitely take pics of your stuff and keep track of it all in some way. you're taking some risk if the mover isn't licensed and bonded.

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  • Fuzzy Cumulonimbus CloudFuzzy Cumulonimbus Cloud Registered User regular
    Be really careful that they don't trade your contract over and over and suddenly your stuff is sitting in a Jersey warehouse for a month

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  • GdiguyGdiguy San Diego, CARegistered User regular
    edited August 2017
    Elvenshae wrote: »
    I'm surprised no one has mentioned this yet, so maybe it's not that common, but regarding boxing things up yourself -- make sure you know your mover's policy on that. Both times I've used movers, their policy was that only things the movers packed themselves were insured. It's their job, so they know how much can go in a box, how much packing material to use, how to use it, etc.

    If you pack stuff up yourself and something breaks in transit, they might not cover the damage.

    I haven't run into that before, but that's a good point.

    Having just done this yesterday - at least in CA, most of the places we talked to did insurance by weight, not by item value. So insurance would cover something like $0.60 / lb. So while I agree that they'll usually know better how to pack things (particularly wrapping furniture), if there's things you really care about and want to pack extra carefully, I'd do it yourself.

    Also, you should check what's covered by your renter's insurance policy - that's likely to have better coverage in terms of both damage and theft than whatever the moving company has.
    Be ready to go when the movers get there. That means your bed is dissembled and ready to move and your entertainment center isn't loaded up with your games and what not. Have a clear plan for what you want them to do and make sure you have access to all the places you will be going.

    This is generally true, though it also just depends on how long you want it to take. Ours were perfectly happy to help disassemble things, because it's $50/hr/person they're getting paid to unscrew Ikea furniture as opposed to lugging heavy items around. But if you have nothing packed, don't expect it to be a 2-3 hour thing.

    Gdiguy on
    Elvenshae
  • mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    also make sure you get a price number not an estimate. i forget the actual wording, but one is the max value it will be and you can't get charged more, the other is the baseline estimate and you could see higher costs

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  • KyouguKyougu Registered User regular
    Thanks all!

    Moving was relatively painless. I had ice cold water bottles for the movers (gotta love the texas humid summers) and I tipped them 20 each since they took my old bed and bed frame to the dumpster and they really busted their asses and got the move done in two hours.

    Settled into my apt, now just gotta decorate.

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