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How to Get an Accurate Moving Estimate

How to Get an Accurate Moving Estimate

  1. An Accurate Estimate is Key to a Successful Move
  2. Don't Let Yourself Be Surprised By a Higher Cost!
  3. Get All of the Estimates Done in the Same Day
  4. Get Everyone Involved
  5. Make Everything As Clear As Possible
  6. Ask Questions: Communication is Vital!
  7. Don’t Forget to Mention Dates
  8. Packing and Unpacking Estimate

1. An Accurate Estimate is Key to a Successful Move

Everybody who moves knows that an estimate is a key to happiness during the moving process. An estimate that is too high can send people who are moving into a frenzy trying to save money during the process, while an estimate that is too low could cause suspicion about their legitimacy as a moving company, upsetting the moving company. Not to mention, an inaccurate estimate could be a major issue in the event that the cost of the move is greater than what the customer is willing to pay or had planned a budget for.

2. Don't Let Yourself Be Surprised By a Higher Cost!

This article is meant to help you obtain an accurate estimate from your moving company, and avoid all the trouble that comes with having to pay an unexpected price. After you have chosen a group of reputable movers to work with, give each of them a call and set up estimates. Use Moving Authority's moving cost estimate tool to find the most comprehensive list of reputable movers in your area.

3. Get All of the Estimates Done in the Same Day

A normal in-home estimate should not take more than an hour. Although it may seem grueling, if you are knocking out one estimate after another, you will not regret it. Leave a two-hour opening between each appointment. During this time, you can take notes or make changes to your plan. Scheduling all estimates for the same day keeps information fresh in your mind. This is one of the most important steps during your moving process. To get an accurate estimate make sure that you have already made a list of inventory. Anything that's been forgotten to add in the estimate will give you a false sense of how much a moving company will cost. This will create problems between the movers and the customer, who will be charged more than they were originally quoted. 

4. Get Everyone Involved 

If your spouse does not have time to be present with the movers, then you should schedule another walk around with them. More often than not, the inventory will be vastly different from the first estimate to the second, depending on the person. Try to get everyone in the family that you can to help with inventory, you'll find more often than not that each member comes up with different estimates

5. Make Everything As Clear As Possible

If you do not do this, you run the risk of having to pay more on the day of the move because of items left out of the initial estimate. Take time before any of the movers arrive to ensure that there is nothing out of site that will have to be moved. Very often, people moving will forget that they have items in the attic that need to be moved out of there on the day of the move. If these items are not seen by the mover, then you will not be provided with an accurate estimate.  It is of vital importance that you ensure all items are accounted for, especially larger ones. Check attics, basements, and garages, and inform the estimator of any special items that must be moved.

Some moving companies also require a list be made of items that are not being moved. This is a way to save themselves in the event that a fraudulent claim is made for a missing item when in reality the movers were never in possession of the item, to begin with.

6. Ask Questions: Communication is Vital!

Keep in mind that you are doing a lot more than just collecting prices during the move. You are also getting some time to get a feel for the company you will hand your entire life over to. Many moving companies will offer similar prices for your move. So, it is crucial to collect other pieces of data on them as well. This will make it easier for you to get a good sense of which company you should go with. If you know what questions to ask, you may also protect yourself from rogue movers. 

7. Don’t Forget to Mention Dates

In the moving industry, it is a known fact that dates have a massive effect on price. If you want a fairly priced estimate, then you should not have a set-in-stone move date. If you want an exact date of delivery, be ready to pay more to get it. Find out what your moving window delivery time might be. 

How to get a good estimate

8. Packing and Unpacking Estimate

Depending on your individual situation, it may or may not make sense for you to do packing yourself. If you are planning on packing everything yourself, you will still get a list from the estimator that details how many boxes and what kind of materials you will need. If you request a packing and unpacking estimate, you may find that it is financially logical to add the convenience to your move. On the other hand, the packing and unpacking service may be way too expensive, and you will find it far more reasonable to get things packed yourself.

If you do choose to use packing and unpacking service through the moving company, use the time you are saving to do some other things. For example, you may want to take the time to get rid of things you don’t want to take to your new home. This can also help you save money on the move since some (usually long distance moves) are based on weight. If there is less for the movers to pack, then you will pay less for packing services as well.

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Beginning the the early 20th century, the 1920's saw several major advancements. There was improvement in rural roads which was significant for the time. The diesel engine, which are 25-40% more efficient than gas engines were also a major breakthrough. We also saw the standardization of truck and trailer sizes along with fifth wheel coupling systems. Additionally power assisted brakes and steering developed. By 1933, all states had some form of varying truck weight regulation.

In the United States, shipments larger than about 7,000 kg (15,432 lb) are classified as truckload freight (TL). It is more efficient and affordable for a large shipment to have exclusive use of one larger trailer. This is opposed to having to share space on a smaller Less than Truckload freight carrier.

In 1999, The Simpsons episode Maximum Homerdrive aired. It featured Homer and Bart making a delivery for a truck driver named Red after he unexpectedly dies of 'food poisoning'.

According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 40 million United States citizens have moved annually over the last decade. Of those people who have moved in the United States, 84.5% of them have moved within their own state, 12.5% have moved to another state, and 2.3% have moved to another country.

As most people have experienced, moving does involve having the appropriate materials. Some materials you might find at home or may be more resourceful to save money while others may choose to pay for everything. Either way materials such as boxes, paper, tape, and bubble wrap with which to pack box-able and/or protect fragile household goods. It is also used to consolidate the carrying and stacking on moving day. Self-service moving companies offer another viable option. It involves the person moving buying a space on one or more trailers or shipping containers. These containers are then professionally driven to the new location.

The number one hit on the Billboard chart in 1976 was quite controversial for the trucking industry. "Convoy," is a song about a group of reckless truck drivers bent on evading laws such as toll booths and speed traps. The song went on to inspire the film "Convoy", featuring defiant Kris Kristofferson screaming "piss on your law!" After the film's release, thousands of independent truck drivers went on strike. The participated in violent protests during the 1979 energy crisis. However, similar strikes had occurred during the 1973 energy crisis.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) is an agency within the United States Department of Transportation. The purpose of the FMCSA is to regulate safety within the trucking and moving industry in the United States. The FMCSA enforces safety precautions that reduce crashes, injuries, and fatalities involving large trucks and buses.

In 1938, the now-eliminated Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC) enforced the first Hours of Service (HOS) rules. Drivers became limited to 12 hours of work within a 15-hour period. At this time, work included loading, unloading, driving, handling freight, preparing reports, preparing vehicles for service, or performing any other duty in relation to the transportation of passengers or property.   The ICC intended for the 3-hour difference between 12 hours of work and 15 hours on-duty to be used for meals and rest breaks. This meant that the weekly max was limited to 60 hours over 7 days (non-daily drivers), or 70 hours over 8 days (daily drivers). With these rules in place, it allowed 12 hours of work within a 15-hour period, 9 hours of rest, with 3 hours for breaks within a 24-hour day.

The FMCSA is a well-known division of the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT). It is generally responsible for the enforcement of FMCSA regulations. The driver of a CMV must keep a record of working hours via a log book. This record must reflect the total number of hours spent driving and resting, as well as the time at which the change of duty status occurred. In place of a log book, a motor carrier may choose to keep track of their hours using an electronic on-board recorder (EOBR). This automatically records the amount of time spent driving the vehicle.

The main purpose of the HOS regulation is to prevent accidents due to driver fatigue. To do this, the number of driving hours per day, as well as the number of driving hours per week, have been limited. Another measure to prevent fatigue is to keep drivers on a 21 to 24-hour schedule in order to maintain a natural sleep/wake cycle. Drivers must take a daily minimum period of rest and are allowed longer "weekend" rest periods. This is in hopes to combat cumulative fatigue effects that accrue on a weekly basis.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) issues Hours of Service regulations. At the same time, they govern the working hours of anyone operating a commercial motor vehicle (CMV) in the United States. Such regulations apply to truck drivers, commercial and city bus drivers, and school bus drivers who operate CMVs. With these rules in place, the number of daily and weekly hours spent driving and working is limited. The FMCSA regulates the minimum amount of time drivers must spend resting between driving shifts. In regards to intrastate commerce, the respective state's regulations apply.

In 1893, the Office of Road Inquiry (ORI) was established as an organization. However, in 1905 the name was changed to the Office Public Records (OPR). The organization then went on to become a division of the United States Department of Agriculture. As seen throughout history, organizations seem incapable of maintaining permanent names. So, the organization's name was changed three more times, first in 1915 to the Bureau of Public Roads and again in 1939 to the Public Roads Administration (PRA). Yet again, the name was later shifted to the Federal Works Agency, although it was abolished in 1949. Finally, in 1949, the name reverted to the Bureau of Public Roads, falling under the Department of Commerce. With so many name changes, it can be difficult to keep up to date with such organizations. This is why it is most important to research and educate yourself on such matters.

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) is a division of the USDOT specializing in highway transportation. The agency's major influential activities are generally separated into two different "programs". The first is the Federal-aid Highway Program. This provides financial aid to support the construction, maintenance, and operation of the U.S. highway network. The second program, the Federal Lands Highway Program, shares a similar name with different intentions. The purpose of this program is to improve transportation involving Federal and Tribal lands. They also focus on preserving "national treasures" for the historic and beatific enjoyment for all.

The 1980s were full of happening things, but in 1982 a Southern California truck driver gained short-lived fame. His name was Larry Walters, also known as "Lawn Chair Larry", for pulling a crazy stunt. He ascended to a height of 16,000 feet (4,900 m) by attaching helium balloons to a lawn chair, hence the name. Walters claims he only intended to remain floating near the ground and was shocked when his chair shot up at a rate of 1,000 feet (300 m) per minute. The inspiration for such a stunt Walters claims his poor eyesight for ruining his dreams to become an Air Force pilot.

Smoke and the Bandit was released in 1977, becoming the third-highest grossing movie. Following only behind Star Wars Episode IV and Close Encounter of the Third Kind, all three movies making an impact on popular culture. Conveniently, during that same year, CB Bears debuted as well. The Saturday morning cartoon features mystery-solving bears who communicate by CB radio. As the 1970's decade began to end and the 80's broke through, the trucking phenomenon had wade. With the rise of cellular phone technology, the CB radio was no longer popular with passenger vehicles, but, truck drivers still use it today.

Heavy trucks. A cement mixer is an example of Class 8 heavy trucks. Heavy trucks are the largest on-road trucks, Class 8. These include vocational applications such as heavy dump trucks, concrete pump trucks, and refuse hauling, as well as ubiquitous long-haul 6×4 and 4x2 tractor units. Road damage and wear increase very rapidly with the axle weight. The axle weight is the truck weight divided by the number of axles, but the actual axle weight depends on the position of the load over the axles. The number of steering axles and the suspension type also influence the amount of the road wear. In many countries with good roads, a six-axle truck may have a maximum weight over 50 tons (49 long tons; 55 short tons).

In today's society, there are rules and regulations everywhere you go, the same goes for commercial vehicles. The federal government has strict regulations that must be met, such as how many hours a driver may be on the clock. For example, 11 hours driving /14 hours on-duty followed by 10 hours off, with a max of 70 hours/8 days or 60 hours/7 days. They can also set rules deciding how much rest and sleep time is required, however, these are only a couple of regulations set. Any violations are often subject to harsh penalties. In some cases, there are instruments to track each driver's hours, which are becoming more necessary.

Commercial trucks in the U.S. pay higher road taxes on a State level than the road vehicles and are subject to extensive regulation. This begs the question of why these trucks are paying more. I'll tell you. Just to name a few reasons, commercial truck pay higher road use taxes. They are much bigger and heavier than most other vehicles, resulting in more wear and tear on the roadways. They are also on the road for extended periods of time, which also affects the interstate as well as roads and passing through towns. Yet, rules on use taxes differ among jurisdictions.

Many people are familiar with this type of moving, using truck rental services, or borrowing similar hardware, is known as DIY moving. Whoever is renting a truck or trailer large enough to carry their household goods may obtain moving equipment if necessary. Equipment may be items such as dollies, furniture pads, and cargo belts to protect furniture and to ease the moving process.