BDMovers’s Blog


My phone estimate for moving is only….

Posted in Moving,moving scams,Regulations by bdmovers on November 27, 2010
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I get upset when I hear a client  telling me that so and so, who they found on x list, is only charging….

I get upset because we are not expensive. We charge enough to pay our bills. No vacations in Europe, no fancy cars, no large bank accounts.

 

Let’s look at the other quote logically.

The rate quoted on the phone is for how many men?  If those men had moving skills and years of experience, what would be a fair wage? If the company pays a reasonable wage to each man does that exceed the rate they quoted?
If not, where is the other money coming from?

Speaking of moving men, do they background check their men? Are they men you would want in your house?

Does the quote include a moving van? If you were to rent a truck, what would you expect to pay for the day? Don’t forget gas and tolls.  Oh, and add in the cost of renting dollies and hand-trucks and blankets to protect your furniture.

Does the quote include packing? Can they safely move your Flat screen? (just blankets are not OK)           Hire a good NJ Moving company

Do they charge for tape? Blankets? Stairs?

Does the quote include liability or insurance? If a man falls, are they covered? If not, you will be paying the medical bills. Is the furniture covered if damaged? If not, you’re just out of luck.  If the truck damages your mailbox or gutters, are they covered?

I am all about saving money and cutting corners. I do here at company every day.

I would love to meet these movers that can legitimately offer such great pricing, but I do not meet them at education or training seminars, or association meetings. I do not see them at chamber events nor are they supporting our local charities. They are not found on the BBB with “A” ratings.

They are seen on TV when consumers complain about their last mover and they are found during sting operations. (18 last month in NJ) They are seen picking up day laborers at the local corner or at a tavern. They use a fleet of rental trucks, and do not own their own. They have many business names. The advertise on phone poles, bulletin boards and lists .

They prey on us wanting something for what we know is too good to be true.

Faith can move mountains, for everything else there is BD Movers!(tm)

 

 

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Moving phone estimate

Posted in Moving,moving scams,Regulations,Uncategorized by bdmovers on March 22, 2010
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I recently had a phone call that went like this:
My mover just called and said they can’t move me, can you help?
Yes I can, Where do you live? I need to come out and see what you have so I can give you an estimate.
The other mover didn’t.  What do you charge to move a small house – they said 4 hours.
I want to see it, and I can tell you. It is the law in New Jersey to protect the consumer, so, when can I come out?
I don’t want an in house estimate, I just want a price.
I understand it may not be convenient, but the last mover never took the time to take responsibility for your move. I want to so there are no surprises, and no problems on the day of your move.
Never mind then, I’ll someone else.

Plenty of movers will take this job without looking at it. Why?  Because the customer has invited them to charge whatever they want on moving day. Make us take responsibility for your move.

Faith can move mountains, for everything else there is BD Movers! ™
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NJ Moving Estimates

Posted in Moving,Regulations,Uncategorized by bdmovers on March 5, 2010
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If you are hiring a mover, here is a quick review of how your mover will come up with a price for you

When they come out (not if! insist on it!) A reputable mover will fill out a “cube sheet” on what you have in the house, apartment or office. They may use a computer to do this or may old school it by hand. Either way is OK. You’ll walk room by room and point out what will go and what will stay. What you are packing, what they are packing. This is very important so there is no confusion on the day of the move and so an accurate price can be given. Let them look in closets, attics and basements.
With this information they will figure out the total cubic volume , weight and also the hours it may take to complete your move.

Pricing is based on one of those three numbers.

  • Cubic volume – your mover may charge you for “x” amount of space on a truck. Not used often by professional movers, still OK though. This is mostly used by self move options. For instance – some self move companies will sell you space on a truck, you load it and pay for the space you use. Self storage units and PODS charge by the space you need. The problem is you will usually overpay on self move options because you are not a professional packer and will use more space than they will. If your mover charges by space and does what is politely called a “loose pack” you could be over-charged.
  • If your mover uses weight, you will be charged for how much everything weighed when they went to a “truck scale”. Many movers use this because it is easy to measure. Furniture weighs, on average, 7 lbs per cubic foot (see how this ties in?) The problem arises when your furniture is not average and weighs more. Think of Formica furniture and the huge oak stuff. Books and office furniture are heavier. So even though it takes up the same space in the truck and even though it didn’t take any extra time, you pay more.
  • If you are charged by the hour, it is easy for you to see how your charged. They show up at 9 and finish at 3, chargeable hours are 6 ish. ish? Well there is travel time, the cost of getting to you and back at the end of the day. This is fair, it’s not their fault you moved 50 miles away and people have to be paid. What happens if the estimate is way off? you pay. What happens if the men were not experienced and not efficient? you pay. What if they got lost? you pay.

So obviously, there are problems with each method for the consumer. Which choice do you take?

Always choose the business or the man/women, over the price. Good businesses do good work at a fair price. A good place to start your search is the BBB or the New Jersey Warehouse and Movers Association. Or just call me. 😉

Faith can move mountains, for everything else there is BD Movers(tm)

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Great NJ Movers!

Posted in Moving,Regulations,Uncategorized by bdmovers on January 24, 2010
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Today is about balance. I can rant about the unlicensed and uninsured movers but there are lots of great movers in NJ, besides BD Movers 😉 , here are a few I know of:

  • Harrington Movers : Jeff Harrington was recently voted mover of the year by the NJ Warehouse and Movers Association.  Great Guy! Jeff came up through the ranks like myself. On the trucks everyday and carrying furniture. Today he has offices in north NJ and NY.
  • Ridgewood Moving : Cindy Meyer is the owner. Cindy came into moving through marriage. She now runs the operation and has recently joined with Arpin Vanlines. She is a member of  NJAWBO and specializes in senior moves.
  • Brantley Brothers : I’ve known Ike King for years. The company is located in Newark, a well rounded mover that does a lot of residential and office moving. Ike has been a mentor to me at times and I am in his debt for his generosity and knowledge.

To be honest, all these individuals and many more,  have helped me and my company grow.

The three I picked are all directors of the NJ Warehouse and Movers Association. They, and 13  other dedicated movers, make time each week and month to help other movers create the best moving companies they can. I am proud to say I serve with them.

I encourage everyone to choose your New Jersey Mover from the members of NJWMA. The only place you are assured a licensed mover.

Faith can move mountains, for everything else there is BD Movers!  ™

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NJ Moving companies are not equal

Posted in Moving,moving scams,Regulations by bdmovers on December 7, 2009
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Today I received a call from a client I gave an estimate to last month. He wanted to hire us to move the items the low quote mover had not moved. I asked what had happened and heard this story…

The other mover had quoted on the phone (by NJ law we must come out to give you an estimate) a price substantially cheaper than my in house estimate. Although I had informed him of the laws governing movers, they were enticed by a great price. The phone estimate movers showed up and proceeded to find all sorts of new charges. The agreed price was gone and at the end of the day, my price was considerably cheaper. They refused to move the items that did not fit on the truck ( I had estimated for a second truck) but they would come back tomorrow at an additional cost. When he complained, they surrounded him and intimidated him. He now was concerned about his family’s safety.

Please, please, please check us out with the NJ board of consumer affairs, you can do this online if you want, or check out http://njmovers.com/ to at least see if we are licensed and members of the state association of movers.  Check us out with the BBB

At the end of the day we all have to make a living, hire a moving company that wants to move you every time, not just once.

Faith can move mountains, for everything else there is BD Movers!(tm)

twitter – @njmovingguy

Household Moving NJ

You need to move and you are working your plan to find your moving company. Here are your choices,

  • Phone book – possibly a hundred movers are listed in your phone book. You know none of them but recognize a few names. The problem – you know none of them.
  • Internet List – lots of choices here also. The problem – anyone (almost) can list themselves as movers here. Is it a couple of  guys and a pickup or is it a moving company with insurance?
  • Internet “find a mover” sites. There are thousands of movers here! Some sites are very good and reputable. The problem – Who is a mover and who is a broker? The site sells the leads to movers, so often the mover with the largest budget gets the lead.
  • “Google” search for movers. Actually not a bad choice if you search on a locality and check to see where the company is based. The problem – many movers use keywords in their websites that make them appear to be in Toms River NJ,  but they are really 100 miles away.
  • Mover associations like the New Jersey Warehouse and Movers Association. I like this a lot. The members are licensed for the state you searched in. They more than likely signed a “code of ethics”. They are committed (presumably) to learning more about their industry and improving it. The problem – no problem.
  • The BBB. Many companies are listed here, and the BBB give them a rating based on complaints. I like it! The problem – some excellent movers are not listed if they did not join the BBB.
  • The chamber of commerce. Good thinking. The members are local, they are active in the community and may have agreed to a code of ethics there as well. The problem – not every company joins, and lousy companies can join if they pony up the dues each year. In reality though, I rarely find that to be the case.
  • Ask around. This should be part of the equation. You will hear of the bad experiences quickly, that should weed out the worst companies and guide you to a couple of good ones.

If you put it all together, you should be checking out the state movers associations, check out the local chamber, asking around and checking with the BBB. If your mover is showing up in most of those places, you probably have found a good choice for your move.

Faith can move mountains, for everything else call us! ™

International Moves, 5 things to remember

Posted in International moves,Moving,Regulations,Uncategorized by bdmovers on May 4, 2009
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OK, you decided to move to Lithuania or Egypt (both moves we are doing right now) Maybe you ordered the overseas container yourself and are getting anxious to take the next step. Here’s what you need to to remember.

  • 1. Call the embassy or your forwarder and get a fact sheet on the country you’re moving to. They may have restrictions on what you can take. Some countries are very concerned about books, video tapes, and media coming into the country. I won’t point fingers, you can probably guess which ones, but every country has their quirks. Respect them and you avoid a world of trouble.
  • 2.Make a complete inventory of what you are taking. You will need a list for customs that should include all your furniture, appliances, and cartons. You must list what is in the boxes also. If the new country speaks Lithuanian, give us a copy in that language also. Make multiple copies. I like to have one in the container taped to the last bulkhead we build.
  • 3.Check out what appliances will work overseas. Electrical current is different around the world, your TV and toaster may be paperweights over there. By the way, video formats can be different also.
  • 4. Check transit times. Some countries are harder to get to. Some go through a yearly season of strikes, others may be in or close to war zones. If you are over there waiting, have clothes for that climate.
  • 5. Set up bank accounts, credit card, etc before you get there. You may need money readily available.
  • 6. bonus – hire a mover experienced with overseas moves to help you, the learning curve is steep.

Faith can move mountains, for everything else there is BD Movers.

Hey! http://twitter.com/njmovingguy

Rogue Movers, NJWMA and the BBB

http://www.youtube.com

The New Jersey Warehouse and Movers Association has just posted a few videos to Youtube. (it ain’t just kids anymore) I can not tell you how pleased I am that they are being so proactive about this issue. ———Disclaimer: I serve on the board of directors for the NJWMA
Our industry has a problem with unlicensed movers, (have I mentioned why you want a licensed mover? have you read my first 13 posts?) Other states such as Maryland have also developed videos to inform our consumers of the problem.  Bravo!

Speaking of the NJWMA, they also have program for “Circle of Excellence” movers. Although all of the member movers are great, these few companies have held themselves to even higher standards. I applaud all of them.

The BBB recently changed the way they grade companies. It now is a letter grade from F to A+ , based on pass customer service and few other factors.  This should make it easier for the consumer to compare movers to each other.

Happy Easter!

Faith can mountains, for everything else there is BD Movers!

Open letter to NJ Movers

Here are my latest deep thoughts on the lead services. I realized the other day I am paying for the opportunity to compete with hundreds (?) of other movers in a market that demands the winner has the lowest price to get attention. (I was promised, like you, that the leads only go to 3 to 5 movers. Our experience shows this must be a lie.) I do not think anyone in our association has a problem competing with any other member on the “streets”. But email quotes are different; they do not see your professionalism, trucks, or references. They do not see you arrive on time and prepared for your estimate. They do not see you believe in your product. They only see price.
It has been explained to me that I can just quote a price and see what happens. They are fishing for a price; why not throw some bait in the water also? I see how that might work, but it still removes the things that make my company and your company unique. We become generic. Generic will always have little value.
So here is what I have decided, I am dropping the last couple of lead services I have tried. I am tired of paying for the chance to undercut a mover not even in my state. I admit I am not very good at competing with hundreds of emails. I am looking to promote my company in unique ways. The mantra to the business community has been that “branding” is the only way to thrive/survive, if that is true, then this must be seen as the complete opposite.

Faith can move moutains… foreverything else there is BD Movers!

The number 1 question to ask your mover

You know to ask for the licence number and you better ask about liability insurance. What else? The number question on the phone should be “will you come out to give me an estimate?” You want reality , not guesses and lies. You want a mover that will take responsibility for your move. The only way he/she can do that is to see what you have. Don’t complain to me that it’s inconvenient or you think it is a waste of time because so many movers will quote on the phone. MAKE THEM BE RESPONSIBLE!
I bet at work there are tasks you must do to be proficient at what you do. Would your boss allow you to “call it in”? You are the boss on moving day, do not let them call it in.
Let’s say you made a couple of movers come the house. What are the most important questions now?

  • Is this price firm or is approximate?
  • What might change the price? (long carries, shuttles, weight, extra packing are all usual extra cost)
  • Will you provide me with a copy of your insurance and License number.
  • Are you a member of the BBB. (Is it them or the Vanline they represent?)
  • Will you guarantee a pickup date and delivery date?
  • Am I the only customer on the truck?
  • What payments will you accept? (certified check and credit cards are the norm)
  • Will you guarantee no damage?  (trick question, accidents happen so what do they do if something is damaged?)

Follow these few guidelines and you will weed out 90% of the bad movers out there.

Faith can move mountains, for everything else there is BD Movers!

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