Our tips for finding the right moving company

Are you about to move and don’t fancy dragging boxes around or asking for favours from friends? Then it might be worth hiring a moving company. There are countless moving firms out there offering their services. But which of them are serious professionals? And what do you need to be aware of when getting quotes from moving companies? A few simple tips can help you find the right moving company and save money in the process.

Whether you’ll be managing the move yourself or want to leave it up to the pros, check out our practical tips.

How much help will you need to move?

Most professional moving companies offer a range of services for a stress-free move, from transporting items from your old place to your new home to helping with packing or dismantling furniture. Your choice of services will depend on how much help you want and how much money you have to spend. If you have delicate items, it may be worth getting your things professionally packed. But even large items of furniture may not be all that easy to take apart yourself.

If you know exactly what you want, you can get several quotes from moving companies in your local area. You can find suitable contacts in our moving partner directory. The more detail you provide, the more precise the quotes will be. Key details include:

  • Moving date
  • Apartment size
  • Old and new addresses, including floor
  • Is there a lift?
  • Are there parking spaces? Do parking spaces need to be blocked?

A free, no-obligation viewing of the premises with consultation on-site is also standard.

Fixed or hourly price?

A basic distinction is drawn between a fixed price for the job and an hourly rate.

  • Hourly rate: One moving company may estimate a very different number of hours for your move than the next. If you opt for a provider who works on an hourly basis, you should definitely agree on a fee cap, which specifies the maximum number of hours you will have to pay for. If the move doesn’t take as long, you only pay for the hours actually worked. If the move takes longer than expected, you pay the capped fee stated in the quote.
  • Fixed price: A fixed-price quote is a set fee agreed with the moving company for the job, regardless of how long the move takes.

Watch out for added costs

Read the quotes through carefully, as there may be hidden costs added on top of the actual price of the move. These can include:

  • VAT
  • Fuel
  • Travel in both directions
  • Extra charges for heavy objects (washing machine, piano, etc.)
  • Furniture lift if required
  • For an hourly rate: when does it start? Is there a minimum number of hours?

Comparing quotes

It's certainly always worth getting several quotes and comparing them. Tread carefully with any quotes that are much lower than the rest: the cheapest company may use untrained workers or unsuitable vehicles. The estimated number of hours for the move provides a handy point of comparison. If a company has an unrealistically low estimate of the number of hours, the actual price may end up being a lot higher.

Moving portals like Movu.ch allow you to obtain and compare quotes from moving companies easily and free of charge, and save you a lot of hassle to boot.

Compare quotes from moving companies

Liability & insurance

Before moving, you should definitely clarify who will be liable for any damage during transport. If this hasn't been ironed out and something gets broken, it can turn out to be both annoying and expensive. If you’ll be packing the boxes yourself but want a moving company to transport them, you are responsible for any damage to the items. Valuables such as computers are not generally insured, even if the company is taking care of the packaging and transport. Be aware of the liability limit, too (usually CHF 500 per m3). If this isn’t enough to cover you, be sure to arrange additional transport insurance.

Paying

Before moving, you should also discuss payment with the company, as often such firms still want payment in cash on the day. If you ask, however, you can usually get them to issue you an invoice. Whatever you do, be sure not to pay in advance.

If everything goes smoothly, your movers will be bound to appreciate a tip. CHF 10 per helper per half day is a good rule of thumb.

More moving tips

Have you found a moving company that you like the look of? Then you can start preparing to move to your new home. Plan in enough time to pack boxes and dismantle any furniture. Good planning will help you to have a stress-free move.

Our guide to moving contains lots more tips and checklists to help you plan effectively.

 

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