Portland Movers Company Blog

Movers vs. Online Brokers? What’s The Difference?

Movers vs. Online Brokers? What’s The Difference?

If you’re not doing the moving yourself, the chances are that you will hire help. There are two ways you can do so. One is to hire a moving company directly, and the other is to use an online broker.

That being said, you need to know the difference between the two. After all, a moving company can make or break your move. It pays to know which works best for you so that you can save yourself lots of headaches.

Let’s look at how the two differ.

Movers

Movers do what the name says – they help you with the actual move. They are part of a moving company which often owns an array of moving equipment and a fleet of branded moving trucks. Some provide the necessary moving supplies, including boxes, tapes, markers, labels, and so forth.

Movers are full-time professionals who have undergone extensive training to handle all kinds of moves. Reputable Portland local movers are fully-licensed, bonded, and insured. Before the move, they’ll send an expert to your home to do a little survey and provide you with an accurate estimate or quote. And that isn’t all; you can ask the rep any query and iron out outstanding issues.

The beauty of hiring movers is that you’ll get face-to-face interaction before agreeing.

Online Brokers

The internet has made myriad of things possible. Now you can connect with all sorts of Portland moving companies with a click of a button, which brings us to online brokers. They are NOT the actual professional movers. Instead, online brokers are the go-betweens that match you with professional moving companies.

As such, online brokers neither have a crew nor own moving trucks and equipment. They just provide people moving with the convenience of finding the right movers. You can say they are “sellers” of moving services.

It’s important to note that there are some risks involved when working with brokers. The chosen Portland local movers, for instance, can reject your job because of a low quote, lack of equipment, and so forth. They might also charge you additional fee.

Brokers can also connect you with unlicensed or uninsured movers. This can become a huge nightmare for you because brokers don’t accept any liability in case of damage goods and whatnot.

According, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires that online brokers:

  • Be registered with them
  • Work with only movers registered with FMCxSA
  • Have a list of (and a written agreement with) moving companies they work with.
  • Make it clear that they don’t provide the actual service

Wrap-Up

While working with online brokers can be convenient, it can also present a set of challenges. You are better off working directly with reputable Portland local movers.

Interstate Movers vs. Intrastate Movers? What’s The Difference?

Interstate Movers vs. Intrastate Movers? What’s The Difference?

 

Moving to a new home is stressful as it is. There are so many things that go into the planning to make the move a success. One of the best ways to make your move manageable and enjoyable is to hire a moving company.

Sure, there are myriad of moving companies in Portland Oregon and out there. But, it is crucial that you know your rights and familiarize yourself with terminologies used in the industry.

That being said, there are two types of movers – the interstate movers and the intrastate movers. It’s essential that you know the difference so you can choose the right one for your move. Picking the wrong type of a moving company could potentially cost you money and cause you lots of headaches.

Let’s look at the difference between intrastate and interstate movers, shall we?

Interstate Movers

Interstate movers do what the name says – they move items across state lines. In some cases, interstate movers conduct international moves. Since interstate moving companies move goods out of state, they are typically not regulated by state local agencies. Instead, they are governed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, popularly shortened FMCSA, regulations, and rules.

If you enlist the services of an interstate mover, it’s considered an interstate move even if the moving company doesn’t actually cross state lines. Interstate movers are, naturally, used for long-distance moves which often mean passing through many states. More often than not, it costs more to hire interstate movers than intrastate movers.

FMCSA requires that all interstate movers be registered and licensed with them. Every interstate mover has a unique US DOT number that you can run by FMCSA database to get all the information about the moving company.

Intrastate Movers

Unlike interstate movers, intrastate moving companies in Oregon complete a move without crossing state lines. You can say they are Portland local movers.

As such, FMCSA regulations and rules don’t apply to intrastate movers. Nonetheless, local US Department of Transportation offices and state agencies provide precise terms and conditions these movers must abide by. Some states like California have stringent regulation and licensing guidelines for intrastate movers. The good thing is that most Portland local movers usually cost far much less than interstate movers.

That being said, there are things to keep in mind about intrastate movers. For one, they can charge you additional fees for long distance intrastate moves. That is why you need to look deeper into the charges and costs that every intrastate moving company charge.

How to Prep For Your Office Move

How to Prep For Your Office Move

Moving your office is not easy as you think – there’s a lot of prepping that goes into it. In fact, experts suggest that you start prepping for the move at least 12 months prior. This way, you can ensure minimal disruption to your employees and business as a whole.

Here are our business tricks that can help you prep for your office move like a pro.

Generate an office plan early enough

Drawing up an office plan is one of the most important steps when you are planning to relocate your office. Draw up a floor plan days or months in advance. It should incorporate vital factors such as the number of employees transferring and the floor size.

Consider Office Rental Storage

Renting office storage can help you reduce clutter conveniently and in an affordable way. It’s paramount if you have too much office content and furniture. From old files to extra chairs, office storage can come in quite handy.

Consult with your Old and New Building Managers

You want the transition to be as smooth as possible. Contact both old and new managers to ensure loading docks and elevators are secured in time for your office move. Always keep in touch with them to keep a tab on new issues that may affect your move.

Keep Employees in the Loop

Tell your employees about your plans to relocate offices in advance. Always send out weekly reminders and progress updates. It’s also best to involve employees in the planning stage. They can pitch in on floor plans, moving date, and so forth. You can even ask for their help in packing and moving light stuff.

Inform Your Customers and Clients

Much like employees, you need to keep your clients in the loop. Provide them with weekly email or new letter reminders and updates. You can also use flyers to keep them aware of your move.

Schedule Your Move on a Weekend

Weekend and night office moves have gained increased popularity. And for a great reason. They offer an excellent way to minimalize disruption to your business.

Invite Moving Companies to Inspect your Premises

Get up to five moving companies in Portland Oregon to check your old and new business premises. This way, the best Portland local movers can give you reasonable estimates.

If an office move is not well planned, work morale and productivity can go down, affecting the bottom line of your business. No matter how you look at it, you need first-rate prepping can make your office move effortless and efficient.

How to Check a Moving Companies Credentials

How to Check a Moving Companies Credentials

 

Bringing in a moving company in Portland OR can make your move manageable, and (dare I say?) enjoyable. However, finding reputable movers who will show up and do a bang-up job is no picnic. You have to do some due diligence.

One of the best ways to ascertain the credibility of moving companies is to check their credentials. That means you’ve to check if the said Portland local movers have insurance, proper licenses, certifications, and so forth.

Keep reading to learn top 5 ways you can check movers’ credentials.

#1. Confirm the Basics with an Online Search

It’s somewhat laughable how some people are still scammed of their hard-earned money by online “movers.” Some hire moving companies from Craiglist and end up losing their money as well as their valuables. Don’t fall prey to these conniving thieves – check basic info like address, phone number, email or even the name with a simple Google search. Such a trivial move can save you a massive headache.

#2. BBB

Better Business Bureau is a god-sent when it comes to cross-checking a moving company’s credentials. They have an easy to navigate website where you can find everything about BBB-accredited movers in Portland. You can check out their standing, complaints, reviews, and an array of other credentials. This should be your first stop.

#3. Check the License with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration

FMCSA website boasts a snazzy tool that can help you locate licensing information for any interstate moving company. You will need the movers’ US DOT number to key into the search bar. And with a click of a button, you will be availed with all the details you need.

#4. Check with Local US Department of Transportation Office

If your moving company operates intrastate, you will have to contact a local US Department of Transportation office to get information above. Even so, you will still need the moving company’s US DOT number.

#5. Confirm with the Insurance Company

Most people would shy away from contacting an insurance provider, but it can be a huge lifesaver. The insurer can tell you if the movers’ policy is still genuine or not. You can also confirm with the insurance company what’s covered and what is not.

If you don’t want to go through all the trouble with the insurance company, you can still view the moving company’s insurance information from the FMCSA website under “Insurance Data.”

These are just but a few ways to confirm movers’ credentials. You can also contact their references to ascertain their credibility.

Full-Service Movers vs. Labor Only Movers

Full-Service Movers vs. Labor Only Movers

Moving can be quite stressful, especially if you don’t have the time. That is why it pays to hire reputable Portland movers to do all the heavy lifting for you. But did you know there are several types of movers and moving companies in Portland?

That’s right – there are at least two: labor only movers and full-service movers. What’s the difference? And what type of movers is right for your moving project? In this article, we’re going to answer above questions. Please read on.

Right off the bat, it’s important to think about what you really want to get done and the amount of work you’re willing to put in.

Full-Service Movers

Full-service movers are exactly what the name says: a full range moving company. They do everything. Full service moving companies in Portland provide the moving van or truck. They load the truck. They drive the truck. And they unload it.

The thing is that full service moving companies in Portland or elsewhere often charge more. After all, they are offering premium moving service which could include additional help such consultation.

Legally, full-service movers are required to have USDOT licenses if they operate across states. Most full-service Portland movers offer interstate moving services, so, naturally, you’ve to inquire about the license. For an intrastate move, the permit isn’t paramount but recommended.

Labor Movers

As suggested by the name, labor movers provider the “muscle” to physically move your stuff. In other terms, they are professional Portland local movers without the van or truck. Essentially, labor movers load and unload containers, portable storage containers, rented moving trucks, freight trailers, pickup trucks, and so forth.

In short, moving labor companies are ideal if you’re completing a DIY move. It is quite common because most people prefer to rent a trailer or truck on their own.

Full-Service Movers vs. Labor Movers: Which is Right for you Move?

If you are on a lean budget and willing to chip in, labor only movers in Portland are your best bet. By combing labor moving service with a rented truck, you may end up saving up to 50% on the cost of moving. There are other reasons to choose labor only movers over full-service counterparts. Some offer impartial advice, quality movers, and versatile experience, making them a better choice.

Ideally, full-service moving companies are great for every move. They are perfect for someone who doesn’t want to lift even a finger. They can be a little costly, but you’ll get full-range help. If you’re making a long move, full-service companies are the obvious choice.

 

Downsizing? Moving To a Smaller Home and Needing To Sell Your Items

Downsizing? Moving To a Smaller Home and Needing To Sell Your Items

Downsizing comes with a host of tantalizing benefits as well as a set of challenges. On the one hand, you are saying sayonara to colossal spending (read: high rent, large bills, and so forth), and, on the other hand, you’ve to part ways with convenience and some of our stuff.

I won’t lie to you; moving to a small home is no small feat. From packing and loading to unloading and unpacking, the entire process can be overwhelming. And then you’ve to get rid of some of your stuff – lots of it.

Are you thinking of downsizing? Here are industry tricks and tips that can help you downsize without wracking your nerves.

Take Stock of Your Stuff

It’s not going to be easy. But, you need to take inventory of all your belongings. Sort through all your stuff, and decide what stays, thrown out, and sold. These should go into different boxes clearly labeled as such.

The rule of thumb is anything that has not been used for the last twelve months, must go! Don’t forget to involve every member of the family in the process.

Get Rid of Duplicate Items

Once you’ve done an inventory of your stuff, it’s time to eliminate unnecessary duplicates. The kitchen is where the action is. Do you really need several sets of silverware, spatulas, and drinking glasses? What about the shoes? Oh, the shoes!

Start Early

It pays to start your downsizing efforts at least three months before hiring a moving company in Portland OR. Once a week, you can go through the closets, garages, attic, bedrooms, and other spaces. It also gives you plenty of time to get over the emotional part of downsizing.

Use Floor Plans to Get a Glimpse of your Move

Draw up floor plans, and pre-arrange furniture and other house content. This way, you will get the feel and look of your new homes so you can make the right decisions.

Take Advantage of Storage Spaces

When it comes to downsizing, storage space can be a huge lifesaver. Make the most of it. From inside ottomans to under the stairs to under the bed to built-in shelves and much more, all these are excellent storing options.

Sell Some of Your Stuff

There is no reason why you can get a few bucks for your unused stuff. After all, you need a little boost of money to help with the move. Organize yard sales. Put some on sale on eBay, Craiglist, Etsy, Amazon, and so forth.

You can also consider donating some of your belongings. It can make you feel great about downsizing.

Free Free Free! … Where You Can Get Free Boxes for Your Move

Free Free Free! … Where You Can Get Free Boxes for Your Move

 

Moving to a new place is already stressful enough. Having boxes can make your move effortlessly easy. The good news is that free moving boxes can be found everywhere; if you’re looking in the right places.

So where can you get free boxes for your move? Read on for our comprehensive list of 10 places you can snag moving freebies.

Moving Tip: Just because the moving boxes are free doesn’t imply that you should take them. Ensure that they are in good shape and reasonably clean.

Craiglist

The open marketplace Craiglist has gained increased traction with people looking for free moving supplies. After all, this is Craiglist we’re talking about, the place you can find about anything! As if that isn’t fabulous enough, the marketplace as a “Free” section where locals list stuff they want to give away. Start off your hunt for free boxes here.

You can also make a post informing users that you’re in need of free moving boxes. Ensure that free boxes from Craiglist are clean and in good shape before you start packing. As with most social marketplaces, it’s important that you meet with the person giving you free boxes in a public and open place.

U-Haul Box Exchange

Prime moving company U-Haul has a comprehensive program that lets people across the country connect and exchange moving supplies. Just enter your location and a keyword: free boxes. You’ll undoubtedly find many local people looking to swap or give away free boxes.

Liquor Stores

Is there a liquor store in or around your neighborhood? Most liquor stores have tons of packing boxes they want taken off their hands. Pay a visit to a local liquor store and inquire from management if there are boxes you can use. Try these before hiring Portland local movers; it can save you lots of cash.

Grocery Stores

Much akin to liquor stores, grocery stores receive lots of supplies packed in sizeable cartons. These can be easily converted into moving boxes. Pop into one near your home and ask the manager if you can take some of the boxes off their hands.

Rental Truck Companies

As part of their value-added services, truck rental companies offer free packing boxes. So, if you’re planning to hire a truck, you can actually get free boxes delivered to your place before moving day. Create an inventory of your stuff in order to get a good feel of the number of boxes you will need for the move.

Friends and Neighbors

The chances are that your friends, family, neighbors or colleagues have packing boxes lying around in their closets or garages. Don’t be shy to ask around. They will be happy to have someone take them from their hands. And, of course, they’ll get to say goodbye to you. Another reason to be neighborly, right?

Recycling Centers/ Drop-Off Points

Here’s another place that’s a hotbed of free stuff. That’s right; most recycling drop-off points receive boxes that are still in good order. It doesn’t hurt to check out your local recycling center. This way, you will pull double duty; you will be helping them recycle as well as save money in the process.

Full Services Movers

The beauty of full-service moving companies in Portland OR is that they can help you with everything. Depending on your move, they can help with packing, loading, driving the truck, unloading, and even unpacking.

And that isn’t all; they can also provide you with moving supplies, including packing boxes, moving equipment, moving tapes, and so forth. Even if they don’t supply packing material, they can advise you on how to get free boxes. That is why it pays to hire the right movers in Portland OR.

Facebook Community Groups

Several Facebook groups can help you with just about anything. Search for friendly Facebook local groups that deal with free items and swaps. If you cannot find someone giving out free boxes, you can post that you are in the market for them. You’ll be amazed by the number of replies you will get.

Office Buildings

It’s no secret that office buildings receive lots of packages, implying that they churn out many unpacked boxes every day. Pay a visit to office buildings near your home or workplace. Approach the front-desk worker or the building manager to inquire if you can get some free boxes. You will certainly not return without a few free boxes.

Apartment Buildings

Apartment complexes are a hotbed for free moving supplies. People move in and out of apartment buildings every time. Check with the manager’s office if you can snag some free moving boxes. A good manager should be able to direct to the person responsible for such stuff.

Dorms and College Buildings

College buildings and dorms get tons of packages every week. If you happen to get to a college on a move-in day, you’ll be spoilt for choice.

These are just but a few places you can get free moving boxes. Yard sales, retail stores, and Freecycle are also great places to garner free boxes for your move.

BBB … Why Reviews Are So Important

BBB … Why Reviews Are So Important

Sure, you have seen the BBB logo and name on the websites of some moving companies in Portland Oregon. In fact, it’s almost synonymous with businesses that deliver reliable, ethical, and trustworthy services to the customers.

Right from the outset, you need to know that BBB maintains one of the highest accreditation standards in the industry. It requires business to abide by ethical business practices, including safeguarding customer privacy, fair advertising, and full disclosure of material facts to clients.

Which brings us to the question: why are BBB customer reviews so important?

Identify the Scammers

Those moving companies that don’t have BBB accreditation or reviews are most likely fly-by-nights looking to scam you of your hard-earned dollar. Reviews are the basis for the companies that actually interact with customers. Otherwise, there wouldn’t be any review.

Know who is certified

Reviews usually reveal companies or moving agencies that don’t have proper documentation. If a customer realizes that a company is not licensed, for instance, he or she will sure mention that on the review. And USDOT license is paramount for out of state moves.

Know who charges questionable or hidden fees

Some shady moving companies in Oregon offer seemingly rock-bottom rates but add lots of extra charges later. That is a big no-no. And the best way to know is to read online reviews.

Know who does a good job

Generally, companies that boast positive reviews often deliver excellent work. Whether moving, driving, or unpacking, you can count on these movers to do a bang-up job. Customers usually rate companies based on professionalism, cost, quality, and so forth.

Helps Companies Improve

Customers can pinpoint areas of improvement for companies in their reviews. This way, the moving firms can change for the better. They’ll know if their rates are high, if their turnaround times should improve or if they should even fire some employees.

Request a quote

BBB review also offers a nifty way for customers to request a fair and open quote from a moving company in Oregon. This way, you can be sure that you are working with a good company.

Rate Business

The reverse is also true. You can post positive reviews for companies that delivered excellent work, allowing others to take advantage their superb skills. Similarly, you can post a bad review for a shady moving company, saving many people out there lots of headaches.

BBB reviews go beyond star rating. It offers customers the opportunity to zero in on good companies, the ones that will deliver each and every time.

Avoiding Disaster on Moving Day: Tips On Hiring Movers That Will Show Up And Do A Great Job!

Avoiding Disaster on Moving Day: Tips On Hiring Movers That Will Show Up And Do A Great Job!

 

I won’t lie to you; not all movers are created equal. Reputable Portland movers will show up and do a bang-up job, leaving you with a big smile. Then there are the fly-by-nights, the shady folks who just want to get paid.

So how can you tell them apart? After all, you are paying top-dollar to get the best Moving company Portland.

Check out our trade tricks below for choosing the perfect moving company in Portland (or any other place, for that matter).

Inquire about Experience

You want movers who’ll deliver a fabulous job. That is why it pays to ask how long they have been in the moving business. Don’t fool yourself; experience matters and a track record reveal a mover’s capability to deliver each time. For example, you want to know if your potential movers have dealt with vintage paintings or delicate furniture.

The best way to know if a moving company is experienced is to ask past clients, read professional reviews, and check out credentials. Don’t settle for just anything – go for the most experienced movers in Portland Oregon.

Go for Fully Licensed Movers

If you are moving out of state, it’s crucial that the moving company is registered and licensed with the FMCSA (Federal Motor Car and Safety Administration). The last thing you want is for your stuff to be impounded on the road. Ensure that you movers are licensed by searching their US DOT number in US Department of Transportation or FMCSA database.

Licensing can also be paramount for some intrastate movers. In fact, some states may also require moving companies to acquire state licenses. Check with local US Department of Transportation office to see if the movers are duly licensed.

Don’t Pay a Large Deposit

If you don’t want your move to be a disaster, it’s best that you don’t make a substantial down payment. It’s a big no-no. After all, good Portland local movers won’t demand a large deposit or cash.

Most scammers who parade online as moving companies usually ask for a huge deposit and never show up for the move. Don’t fall prey to these conniving online scammers; don’t pay any down payment to a company that has not conducted a pre-move survey. Even better, you can remit the deposit using a credit card to keep fraudsters at bay.

Ask for Recommendations

Don’t hesitate to ask for recommendations from people your trust. There’s a good chance that your friends, colleagues or relatives know or have worked with a reputable moving company in Oregon in the past. Collect at least five recommendations; they will come handy when choosing the right movers for your job.

Read Reviews

Information at your fingertips – that’s the beauty of the internet. In the digital era, it’s easy to know what others are saying about a moving company. Does the moving company have reviews online? Movers without reviews online are undoubtedly inexperienced. Check out the mover’s rating with BBB (the Better Business Bureau). A good standing with BBB shows that the company is reputable and delivers a good job each and every time.

You can also check out online reviews from social media websites such as Google, Yelp, Citysearch, TrustLink, Angielist, and so forth. These sites will give you a glimpse into other customer’s experiences with the movers. Yelpers can be your best friend when looking for genuine reviews. Needless to say, moving companies in Portland with bad reviews should be avoided at all cost.

Watch out for hidden fees

Good movers often offer a free estimate or an accurate quote. In fact, the estimate or quote should list all charges involved clearly, without any ambiguity. Hidden fees or questionable charges are a tell-tale sign of a bad moving company. A good moving company should be able to explain each charge or fee in great detail.

Invite 1-3 Movers for a Pre-Move Survey

Before presenting you with an estimate or a quote, each company should visit your home and assess your belongings. This way, they can take inventory of your stuff in order to offer you an accurate estimate. You can use estimates to choose the moving company, plan, and budget for the move without much hassle.

Look Out for Awards or Accolades

Have the movers won any award or accolade? If a moving company has not been recognized with an accolade, the chances are that they are not going to win you either. Don’t forget that great credibility and recognition are vitally important when picking the right Portland local movers. After all, no one gives an incredible review to a moving company that does a shoddy job.

There you are – top tips on how to choose the right moving company for your move. With these handy tips, you can rest assured you’ll find the right guy.

10 Packing Tips That Will Help You with Your Move

10 Packing Tips That Will Help You with Your Move

Packing is an indispensable part of moving. Some people say it’s quite enjoyable. Others dread even the thought of it.

Sure, packing is no picnic, but with our ten industry tricks, it can become manageable or even fun!

#1. Get Rid of Junk Items

Professional organizers recommend that you get rid of all the junk from your house as soon as you plan to move. It makes sense. The more unnecessary things you get rid of, the fewer the items you’ll have to pack. According to expert Portland movers, anything that has not been used for the past twelve months should go.

#2. Sort Your Items by Category (Not by Room!)

Instead of clearing out the whole room, why not spend the morning sorting through all the clothes? Scour every nook and cranny for any article of clothing. It’ll be easy to pack the right clothing items in the right boxes.

#3. Garner Enough Boxes

Don’t be the person who has to wrap some items in shrinking wrap. If you think you need 25 boxes for your stuff, you are better off getting 30 or more moving boxes. The good thing is that you can easily snag a good deal packing supplies. Better yet, you can get free boxes, if you’re looking at the right places.

#4. Check if you have original packaging for electronics and delicate appliances

Do you think your flat screen LED TV can withstand 10 hours on the road in cardboard box? Scour the closets or garage for your electronics’ original boxes. It can save you another trip to electronic store – and of course oodles of money.

#5. There’s power in numbers

I know it’s a cliché, but the more packers there are, the better. Call in favors from your friends, colleagues, and close relatives.

#6. Hire a Babysitter

Let someone else take care of your little ones and pets so you can get things done.

#7. Prioritize Decorative Items

Decorative items are often oddly-shaped and delicate. It’s best if you can pack them several days before the move; it’ll give you ample time to think about their cushioning and protection.

#8. Use number labeling system

Take box labeling to the next level with the number system. As you pack the boxes, jot down where each item goes.

#9. Heavy Items go to Small Boxes

Stuff light items in large boxes and heavy ones in small boxes. It’ll make the move easy.

#10. Hire the Right Moving Company

Reputable movers can offer you packing tips as well as free moving supplies. You can also go for full-service movers who can help you with packing.