How to choose a removal company that’s right for you
Whether you’re moving elsewhere in the UK, such as Leeds, Manchester, or London, or venturing into Europe and the likes of Spain and Germany (or beyond, how about USA, Canada, or New Zealand?), you’ll need to look into at least a handful of removal companies, to find the best fit for you, your family, and your worldly possessions.
To help you out, we’ve explored how to choose a removal company, including the services you should look out for, what constitutes a reasonable price, and the insurance you’ll need. We’ve also highlighted our top tips for briefing your moving team.
In this article:
- What services do removal companies usually offer?
- Do removal companies offer insurance?
- How much do removal companies cost?
- Finding the best moving companies
- Top tips for briefing removal companies
What services do removal companies usually offer?
When comparing house moving companies, it’s important to consider the service each offers as standard. From helping to make the move as smooth as possible to going the extra mile, we’ve outlined what you could reasonably expect of the best removal companies.
Conduct an in-person survey
By visiting your home in person, your removal expert is able to give a more accurate quotation for the job. Getting an idea of the location also allows them to assess whether their vans are likely to have an issues accessing your home.
Understand your move
The best moving companies make an effort to gather an understanding of how they can help make your house move a smoother operation. Make sure to find a removals team that accommodates and is flexible to your needs and timings.
Offer a packing service
Packing up your home is a monumental task, so it can be helpful to have a team of experts offer a hand. The best removal companies will provide a boxing and unpacking service, so you can take a step back.
Provide you with a move manager
Moving home can be stressful. However, the availability of a move manager can lessen the worry. They’ll be on hand to offer guidance and advice about packing, transportation, and timings, as well as general wonderings you may have about the big day.
Do removal companies offer insurance?
Moving to a new house can be a taxing period for you and your family, which can be compounded by damaged or lost furniture, or issues raised by a third party. However, to lessen your concern, most reputable house moving companies will offer insurance to repair or replace your possessions in instances of misfortune.
With this in mind, though, you should always clarify what their insurance policy covers. Depending on the options available and your personal requirements, their insurance could cover:
- Scuffs and scrapes to your property and possessions.
- Damage or delay caused by poor weather.
- Missing or broken valuables and jewellery, as well as any associated documentation.
Before you move, it can be beneficial to get your goods valued by an independent professional. This gives you an inventory of what is being moved, and allows you to easily pinpoint the items missing when it comes to unpacking.
Additionally, while you may think you’re doing your removal company a favour by packing your furniture and possessions yourself, you could be doing yourself a disservice; often, insurance is only validated if your boxes are professionally packed by removals specialists.
How much do removal companies cost?
There are two key factors that are likely to impact your removal company costs:
- Volume of personal items
- distance between your old and new home
Invariably, the smaller the removal van required and the shorter the travelling distance, the cheaper your removal quote will be.
To give you a rough idea, though, it’s estimated to cost, on average, just short of £1,200 for moving companies to transport your belongings 50 miles away, if you have a three-bed house worth of furniture and belongings.
When choosing between removal companies, be sure to get a quote at least 4-6 weeks ahead of your move, to give yourself plenty of time to find a great deal; if you’re hoping to move on a weekend or during school holidays, it’s wise to allow additional time.
If you’re moving abroad, it’s important to give your moving company as much notice as possible so they can accommodate your requests and the journey involved. This means letting them know as soon as you confirm your moving date. The cost of international shipping can vary greatly, largely depending on the country you’re going to.
What is included in your removal company costs?
When house moving companies give you a quote, it’s important to gather an understanding of what the cost actually means. Does it cover the entire process, or is it just a calculation based on miles travelled? The key things to consider about removal company costs include:
- Is the cost of insurance included in your removal quote?
- Are boxes included in the price, and will your removal company box up and unpack your possessions for you for no additional cost?
- Will your removal company dismantle and reassemble your furniture for you; is this included in the price?
Before agreeing to a quote, make sure to clarify the details above, and ask for a breakdown of your removal price, or you could be in for a shock come payment day.
Finally, buying and selling a house at the same time doesn’t always align perfectly, so, if you have a short period between giving up the keys to your property and moving into your new home, you should check whether your removal company offers a storage option, or whether you need to make your own arrangements.
Finding the best moving companies
As with any business you work with, it’s important to choose a moving company that comes with a strong reputation. This means doing your homework, and spending a little time getting to know the company. You can do this by:
- Visiting the ‘about us’ page on their website; this should give you a flavour of what they’re about and how they operate, as well as how long they’ve been in business.
- Checking out online reviews from other customers.
- Asking your friends and family if they’ve heard of or used any good local moving companies, or if they know of any to avoid.
- Looking to see if any local moving companies are accredited by the British Association of Removers or a similar regulatory association.
Top tips for briefing removal companies
It’s one thing finding the best removal companies and getting in touch for a quote, but it’s another to brief them in the run up to moving day. To give you a hand, we’ve outlined our top three tips:
- Inform your removal team of any items that require special packaging or particularly close care. This applies to fragile or especially valuable possessions.
- Make your moving company aware of any heavy or awkward items or pieces of furniture, so they can bring enough people for the job.
- It can be helpful to inform your removal company of the layout and floorplan of your new home. This gives your team an idea of where furniture is going, prior to moving day, which can help the process run more smoothly.
- Provide your removal company with a list of the items you’re taking with you. If you’re leaving items with the property, they’ll know not to touch them.
Moving home is often an exciting time, but it doesn’t come without its hurdles. But choosing the right removal team can make the entire process so much easier. For more expert advice and the latest from us, head on over to our blog.