Friday, April 6, 2012

Self Service vs Full Service Moving; Who Stole the Savings?

For many years, consumers have always seemed to understand their choices when confronted with having to relocate or move their home. The thought process usually runs as follows:

"If I do it myself, and rent my own vehicle, and not use a mover, then I can savee some money..."
"If I hire a mover, it will cost a lot more than if I do it myself..."

Obviously, if someone does not have the means to hire a mover to move all of their possessions,
they really have little choice as moving options.

Today, with fuel prices so very high, it is our belief that each situation is different and should be
evaluated on its own merits. For example, there is a huge difference in moving locally vs moving
a longer distance, usually over 100 miles, as the farther away you move from your current residence, in both full service and self service moving, costs will rise the longer the distance between locations.

But what is most telling is that longer moves, over 1000 miles, I just do not believe that the savings in self service moving are great or compelling, if you have a choice. Consider these issues:
1) Fuel at $4.50 per gallon and YOU MUST REMEMBER THAT MOVING TRUCKS
Los Angeles to Chicago would easily cost over $1000.00 in fuel costs, or more
depending on the quantity of goods and how much weight is in the truck itself

Consider these additional factors:
You have to load the truck yourself or pay others to do it;
You are self insuring all of your goods for damage or loss and
there is no insurance carrier that will cover your own packing
moving negligence that leads to loss or damage; You are self
insuring your move;
You are not at all trained how to load a truck, with weight
distribution and making sure the load is packed correctly and
safely, as if the load is not secured properly, it can shift while
on the road and could lead to an accident;
Are you an experienced truck driver, used to stopping at truck
inspection stations, border crossings and you know all the roads
that are subject to flooding, or are not safe? Do you know where
the mandatory fire extinquisher is in the truck;
How about the toll lanes and bridge fees.....
HOw about the loading equipment and pads, they are extra...

I could go on and on, but my point is that if you carefully shop for your relocation and open your
search to a broader spectrum of choices, both the self service moving market and the newer containerized moving (i.e Pods) options are all very expensive in my opinion and the best approach in making a choice is to make sure you compare "apples to apples"

People need to become aware of how they are going to be charged: for full service movers, local moving is by the hour. End of story. But for long distance moves, it is usally by weight in the U.S. One needs to be wary of other means by which some firms charge, as in all cases, one needs to know what they are buying or paying for. So your move is based necessarily on what you have to move, not what you want to move, but what you actually take with you. Professional relocation firms, movers and firms like Box Brothers, always price their services on weight and iprice accordingly. What I see most often is that firms can under estimate the weight and make you feel that your cost will be x, when in fact, you are going to pay for every pound on that truck, no matter what. IT IS JUST LIKE BUYING BANANAS OR TOMATOES AT THE MARKET, WHAT YOU BUY IS WEIGHED AND YOU ARE CHARGED FOR THAT WEIGHT.

No mystery, no guessing, no fun and games. If you have 5000 lbs of goods, you will pay for 5000 pounds of goods. So you have to make sure when you compare services, you are comparing correctly to ensure that you are getting the best price per pound and the service
requirements you need, to start your new home, your new job, your new schoooling or whatever.

So many times, we find that our prices that we provide to our customers might seem higer than some of our competitors, as most people are confused by moving by weight as who would have any idea how much a bookcase weighs or how much their dining room table, 6 chairs and hutch one really does until is is weighed but I have competitors who ask their customers to guess how much it weighs, as it does not matter how they quote or how much you guess, you are paying for the whole enchilada, with cheese....

So please look at all your options, never be afraid to ask questions and you can ask any of us who
are professional to bind their estimate or guarantee their rates and services, so that you can get the best value and the best service, but you have to be willing to invest the time to obtain an understanding as most consumers just go for the thinking spelled out above, that one is always cheaper than the other and the other one is more expensive, but that analysis is so shallow, it will not be persuasive and correct for most moving consumers.

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