Baltimore is one of those great cities that is underappreciated by people who don’t live there, especially those who live nearby in Washington, D.C. The two towns are only 45 minutes apart and are similar in size, both with much to offer. If you are looking for a moving company to manage a move into, out of, or around Baltimore, you probably already know what a great place it is to live. You are one of the more than 700,000 people who call it home.
Finding a good moving company in Baltimore isn’t too hard. There are plenty to choose from. As with selecting any service vendor, it’s up to you to be informed and selective. First, be aware that the rules for moving companies are different depending on whether you are choosing a mover for a local move or an interstate relocation. For local moves within the State of Maryland, a new law will require household goods movers to register with the state. However, Maryland has not yet developed regulations to implement the law. If your move crosses over a state line, it is considered interstate regardless of the move’s distance. Interstate moves are subject to the jurisdiction of FMCSA, which is the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Because of the geography in the Baltimore area, most moving companies are involved in both local and interstate moves, so it is common for companies to register with FMCSA and follow their rules. But keep in mind that you may have to ask the vendors to follow some of the requirements voluntarily for local moves.
Most of us turn to the internet when looking for a new company to do business with these days, and that’s an excellent place to start. A better place to begin is with your friends and family if you know anyone who has moved recently. Ask for recommendations from people who had a good moving experience and vetoes from anyone who had a poor one. Once you get a shortlist, do some research on the candidates. The FMCSA site is full of helpful information. You can determine if the mover is licensed and investigate its safety history and any complaints that have been filed by consumers. Next, check the potential mover out with the Better Business Bureau. The BBB collects and publishes reviews about all kinds of companies and rates them on impartial criteria. The BBB is concerned about moving industry fraud, and this year issued a report that helps consumers recognize and avoid the signs of deception by movers.
Now you have some potential companies to do business with. Invite at least three of them to come to your home and look at what you need to move. This step in the process is a requirement for an interstate move, and you should ask for it even if the job is local. It’s an essential element in the development of the estimate. The mover can’t accurately assess the move without seeing what you are moving. If the company balks at this, politely move on to the next one. One of the red flags of a potential scam is that the company is reluctant to do the in-person survey. The mover will tell you that it can give you a good price over the phone, using your verbal description of the move scope, or have you complete an online form. They offer you a tempting price, and you accept it. Unfortunately, when moving day arrives, things don’t go well. Possibly the mover doesn’t show up at all. If they do show, they may start to load your goods and then announce that the estimate was wrong, and tell you that in order to continue with the move, you are going to have to pay a lot more. This action places you in a very precarious position since some of your possessions are already on their truck, and you probably don’t have a signed agreement. The unscrupulous mover is counting on you giving in and paying the extra amount.
You can avoid this problem by making sure that you get legitimate quotes from several movers. There are different kinds of estimates, so check to see if you have binding or nonbinding estimates. A binding estimate means that the price is guaranteed. If the mover didn’t accurately assess the weight, and the shipment is heavier than anticipated, your price doesn’t change. The exception is if you add something to the load that wasn’t in the original walk-through (so make sure the inventory is correct) or ask for extra services like packing. A nonbinding estimate is not guaranteed. If the mover underestimates the weight, inadvertently or deliberately, the price will increase when the shipment is weighed. Clearly, a binding estimate is better for the consumer, and movers are allowed to charge a fee for preparing these.
Getting professional movers to assist with your move in Baltimore can be reasonably priced. The best way to determine the cost is to ask for the estimates. There are differences in cost, depending on the amount of stuff you need to move and how far you are going. You can make a difference by doing some of the work yourself. It’s beneficial to sort through your belongings before you pack, and if possible before you get the moving quotes. You may be surprised at how much you can reduce your shipment’s weight if you are judicious about paring down what you want to move.
Also, if you want to save money on the move, you can pack the boxes yourself. Moving companies will provide packing services for a fee. They can pack efficiently, but you can do well on your own if you are organized. Here are some tips from pros to make the packing less stressful: