How Do I Choose Between Moving Companies Near Me?

Whether you’re moving locally or going cross-country, finding a high-quality moving company to handle your stuff is the quintessential step in ensuring you have a successful move. There’s a lot of planning involved and searching for “local moving companies near me” on the internet or asking friends or family for a recommendation.

Sure, it can sap your precious time, money, and energy that can be spent elsewhere, but the convenience (and the peace of mind) it brings you can be worth the effort.

However, a reputable moving company can be comparable to a wild goose chase since there are plenty of mediocre movers who resort to subpar service, outrageous pricing, and moving scams. Either they have lost or damaged another customer’s belongings, charging high prices, and making last-minute changes to your moving service.

Moving is one of the most stressful things you can ever undertake in your life, and it doesn’t help that these moving services add up to your worries, so the only logical choice is to thoroughly assess and check for the best-moving companies near you before starting your move.

To avoid any stress and hassle for your next move, we have prepared a comprehensive guide on anything you need to know below.

Types of Moving Companies

Before we start picking apart the positive qualities you need to search for and find in a good moving company, we must first know what type of moving company you should get for your service.

Local Moving Companies

Also known as short-distance movers, these movers are usually on an hourly rate and will haul your belongings from one location to the next. They usually operate within the same city or state you are moving into because they might not have any licenses to do interstate moves.

However, they are usually the go-to moving company for any of your local moves since you can fully utilize the company to offer their experience and knowledge of the town/city/state you are moving into.

Take note that some local moving companies charge you an extra hour on top of your final price to offset their travel time.

Interstate Moving Companies

An interstate move involves any move that crosses state lines no matter the distance of your move. This means that whether your new location is a few miles apart but is located in another state, it is still considered an interstate move.

Interstate moving is different from local moves and is more complex since it falls under the state and federal regulations of your place which will really kick up the difference in the final price of your estimate.

Speaking of prices, interstate moves, unlike local moves, are priced based on the weight and distance of your belongings. This may be expensive at first, but interstate movers will handle every aspect of your move — from packing services to loading, transporting, and reassembling your furniture.

Long-Distance Moving Companies

Long-distance moving services are done if you need to cover more than 100 miles for your move. Due to the scope of the service, long-distance moves are priced at flat rates and require more meticulous planning and logistics compared to their local counterpart.

Long-distance movers are usually qualified and have the necessary experience and expertise to undertake your move. Whether you have a busy schedule or don’t have the capacity to handle such a large move, a long-distance move is your go-to moving service when relocating to another part of the country, often from coast to coast.

How Do You Know if a Moving Company is Good?

Well-Established in Your Community

When hiring a local moving company near you, it’s best to see if they really exist or not and if they’re really professionals, not just some scammers posing as a professional moving company.

The best course of action is to check for their digital footprint online and read reviews on crowd-sourced business review sites like Yelp and check out what past clients in the area might think of them.

A tip that you can utilize is to avoid focusing on positive reviews and instead actively look for negative reviews. A moving company with shady moving practices will get more negative reviews more often than positive ones, so this will speed up your process.

If you have free time on your hands, then you can swing by their company office and inquire about what moving services they do, what equipment they use, or any questions that might pop up during your visit.

You can also ask for personal recommendations from family members, friends, or colleagues and see if they can recommend a moving company off the top of their heads.

By doing all these precautions, you’ll prevent getting blindsided into signing a contract with a shady moving company that you saw on the internet offering low prices to bait you.

Up to date in Licenses and Credentials

Ensuring the moving company you hire is legitimate by doing your homework and checking if they’re properly licensed and accounted for.

This is because the moving business is riddled with moving companies who engage in shady and even illegal practices. These movers usually have a modus operandi of demanding a large cash deposit upfront without providing you with a formal binding contract for your move.

For local movers, moves that start state to state and end within the same state must follow county codes, state laws, and regulations in that area. They must be registered and complied with the state’s Commercial Motor Vehicle branch or Department of Transportation.

For interstate moves, moving companies will be given a license issued by the Federal Department of Transportation and a carrier number Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

These licenses are usually seen on the moving company’s website, and one states their moving trucks will then be marked as commercial vehicles that are hauling cargo.

Handy qualifications to look out for are if your moving company is part of the American Moving & Storage Association’s (AMSA) ProMover program and has a good rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).

To check state laws and regulations about moving companies in your area, you can start by heading to your local Department of Transportation branch.

Transparent Pricing

A shady moving company will often try to lure you in by giving you a very fast but suspicious estimate through the phone without sending an estimator on-site to check out your house.

A good moving company, however, will give you the option of paying by credit card. Not only are they convenient but can also protect your money should any problems arise.

A good moving company will also only require you to pay an upfront deposit of up to a maximum of 20% of the total moving cost, and they will only require the rest of the payment until your moving service is complete.


When you hire movers, you fully expect them to handle all the heavy lifting from the start to finish off your moving process — this is what’s known as a full-service move.

Full-service moves are perfect for people who have limited availability or value the extra time that’s otherwise spent on your moving process. Full-service moves can also benefit people with health conditions who are in no way able to pack, unpack, load, and unload their furniture on their own.

Unsure what type of service to get on your moving day? Here is a list of moving services that moving companies generally offer:

  • short-distance moves like in-state moves
  • long distance moves
  • packing and unpacking services
  • loading and unloading services
  • furniture disassembly and furniture assembly
  • junk removal of unwanted items
  • moving truck transport and delivery

How to Choose and Compare Moving Companies?

Choosing a moving company can be stressful, especially since many moving companies advertise themselves as the best of the best companies in the moving industry, only to find them delivering you with subpar expectations.

To completely avoid that problem, here are a few tips you can utilize in order to find the right moving company for you:

Follow the Rule of Threes

A good rule of thumb to follow in the moving checklist is to contact at least three companies in your area and compare the estimates you receive from them after assessing your property and household goods in person.

This is to ensure that you get the best deal possible since no moving company can really give you a precise estimate that would give you the best bang for your buck.

Watch Out for Red Flags

While cheap movers may look like a bargain on paper, you may be in for a ride since they are infamous for using shady business practices like charging hidden costs without even incurring any additional moving services.

So, always keep an eye out for red flags during your estimate. Professional movers wouldn’t do this and will always provide you with an accurate estimate for your moving process.

Another example is that most reputable moving companies won’t ask for a large cash deposit before you move. If your moving company demands to get paid in full upfront, better walk away because that is an age-old moving scam.

Another tip to follow is that during the in-home inspection, keep your eyes peeled on how professional the representative(s) behave and ask them specific questions related to your move. If they don’t look like they know what they’re doing, send them on their way and look for another moving company.

Some movers may also hold all your possessions hostage to coerce you into paying. If this happens, you can file a complaint to your local police since they may help you iron things out. Additionally, you can report a complaint with the BBB, AMSA, FMCSA, and local State Consumer agency to ensure your mover gets the proper sanctions they deserve.

When is the cheapest time to hire professional movers?

Moving can be a very large time-sink. From sifting through good movers, finding space and a good bargain on a rental truck, to packing and labeling boxes all on your own, it can be easy to put your relocation plans at the bottom of your moving checklist.

However, planning your move at a specific time can make your move easier and more convenient and potentially save you hundreds of dollars in moving costs.

Whether it’s the time of year, month, day, or hour, time is a valuable factor you can use to your advantage. Here are the cheapest time frames you can follow when hiring professional movers:


When looking to get the best hour of day for your moving service, we find that 9AM-10AM is the best timeframe to start your move after everyone has taken their cup of morning coffee.

Doing moves in the morning provides you with ideal temperature conditions that your movers will appreciate. Most moving companies will want to finish up before 2 PM to avoid the heat, especially during the warmer months.

In turn, your run-of-the-mill, local mover will have the time, energy, and ideal temperature they need to efficiently haul and pack your furniture.

If mornings aren’t your thing, you can schedule a move during the afternoon. However, avoid scheduling your move and coinciding with the rush hour of your area. That’s because if your rental truck gets stuck in traffic and your movers charge by the hour, you’ll lose money every second they’re in that traffic jam.


The cheapest moving days fall between Monday to Thursday. That’s because most moves are scheduled on Fridays and on weekends, so there is little to no demand during the weekdays.

To attract customers, a good portion of moving companies will even lower their rates during weekdays, so business continues as usual.


Avoid scheduling a move during the months of May to September since moving companies raise their rates to a whopping 30% to accommodate high moving demand since a majority of people move during those times.

If you want to save money that can be better spent elsewhere, then you can book and schedule a move during the October to April months. This is because moving companies will lower their average move rates since there is little to no moving demand during these times.

However, you can also factor in the weather in your decision. If you live in a particularly snowy area, it’s better to postpone your moving plans until Spring since wet and slippery roads can invite otherwise unwanted accidents.

If you have children, it may be worth spending a few extra bucks down the line to move during the summer in order to avoid disturbing their school year. It can also help them adjust and say goodbye to any friends they may leave behind.

The Bottom line

Hiring a reliable moving company, however pricey it may be, will save you from a world of stress, and worry, and give you the peace of mind you deserve. So, it’s imperative to vet and assess your moving company before setting anything in stone.

With the tips and the recommendations, we discussed above, we hope you can find the best moving company to handle your stuff on your moving day.

Similar Posts