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Moving household across country: what method/companies have you used?

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  • Moving household across country: what method/companies have you used?

    We are making a move across the country (1,900 miles). My job does offer relocation money ($5k) and the "full service" fancy relocation company they sent our way gave an estimate of $14k. Obviously that is too much.
    --at this point I'm considering getting ABF U-pack trailer, finding local movers on craigslist to load it up and then the same on the other end to unload.

    1. Anyone have experience with cross country moves where goal is to do it at a reasonable price?

     

  • #2
    I heard previous residents had good experiences getting one of those pods and having it delivered to their future location.

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    • #3




      We are making a move across the country (1,900 miles). My job does offer relocation money ($5k) and the “full service” fancy relocation company they sent our way gave an estimate of $14k. Obviously that is too much.
      –at this point I’m considering getting ABF U-pack trailer, finding local movers on craigslist to load it up and then the same on the other end to unload.

      1. Anyone have experience with cross country moves where goal is to do it at a reasonable price?
      Click to expand...


      On a related topic, if you have a choice in how the new employer pays for the relo, ask if you can use an "accountable plan". Under this method, you would turn in the receipts and be reimbursed. Since it appears you will be out of pocket somewhat on the move, this would benefit you the most.

      If the payment is reported on your W2 or in Box 7 of a 1099, you will either pay extra taxes or have a greater likelihood of receiving an inquiry from the IRS.
      Working to protect good doctors from bad advisors. Fox & Co CPAs, Fox & Co Wealth Mgmt. 270-247-6087

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      • #4
        We've used pods and friends who recently moved across the country did the same. Neither of us had a ton of stuff at the time of the move though - coming from small apartments. Not sure if that makes a difference.

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        • #5
          under NO CIRCUMSTANCES use a company called ALLIED.

          I personally had significant problems 2 years ago with lack of professionalism and damage of my property

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          • #6
            Get multiple quotes. Pack it yourself. Think about selling anything that is made of particle board before you go because it might not survive the trip. Local movers at each end is not a bad idea.

            We did a full service move and have vowed to never do another. We were really busy, thought we had a good price but ultimately they did a crap job packing and delivering our stuff. We used United. I dont think it matters who you use unless you can get a good local review for the actual individuals who are moving you.

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            • #7
              No matter who you go with, pack a big bag with at least twice the amount of clothes etc that you think you'll need. Our local company did a good job in our cross state move but they were way off on timing, didn't plan for traffic and I wound up in a gas station around midnight 150 miles from my new home, buying toothpaste and deodorant in the middle of nowhere while trying to find a hotel. Hopefully I'm done moving but if I ever do I again, I'll start by packing an overnight bag!

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              • #8
                I used ABF to move from one end of Virginia to the other. The company itself was great. I paid exactly what I was quoted, the drivers were courteous and professional. I used their website to find movers to load and unload, and found that the quality of the help is highly variable. The folks who loaded up the trailer took good care of the goods and the house and were fast. The unload crew was a dude and his girlfriend who lacked equipment such as straps and dollys, and wound up not finishing the job in time. If I had to do it again, I would research the moving help a lot more.

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                • #9




                  We are making a move across the country (1,900 miles). My job does offer relocation money ($5k) and the “full service” fancy relocation company they sent our way gave an estimate of $14k. Obviously that is too much.
                  –at this point I’m considering getting ABF U-pack trailer, finding local movers on craigslist to load it up and then the same on the other end to unload.

                  1. Anyone have experience with cross country moves where goal is to do it at a reasonable price?

                   
                  Click to expand...


                  Sadly I think the advice is like most things in life, if you want it done right, you'll likely have to do it yourself.

                  I used a reputable local company (word of mouth) to assist in moving cross country for my transition from medical school to residency. Most of my stuff wasn't worth much to begin with but I'd say 60% of it ended up damaged / nicked / scratched / flat out destroyed. At least it was cheap.

                  Ended up scrapping most of my damaged stuff and just packed everything myself into a midsized family sedan for another cross country move from residency to fellowship.

                  And finally, I actually found it liberating to do one last purge so that as I made one final cross country journey from fellowship to attendinghood, I easily fit everything into my wife's midsized SUV. I was also able to renegotiate my job's "relocation bonus" into a simpler "signing bonus" and found it easier (and funner) to just go shopping in my new town/home.

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                  • #10
                    1.  Quotes really don't matter.  Interstate moving rates are fixed by the federal government.  You pay based on the weight of the items you ship, with a multiplier for the number of flights of stairs they have to walk or carry, distance from street to door, etc.   A quote might give you a ballpark figure, but it won't matter.   That's one reason for many disputes with movers.  People rely on quotes and can't afford the difference.

                    If you think the quote was unreasonable, get another, and get one that's bare bones, without the packing.  Ask for an itemized estimate so you can see what they're factoring in.  Remember, it will all ultimately be based on actual weight of the truck, so if estimates vary based on the weight, disregard that and just assume that the higher weight is more accurate.

                    Remember that the people promising you things when they book the move are not the people who will be doing the move, so don't expect too much.

                    I have had packing done for me.  It was quite pleasant compared to doing it myself.  Plus, they do a better job.  In that case, you're paying by the hour for the workers doing the packing, plus paying for materials, which you can probably buy cheaper if you do it yourself, but it won't amount to a lot of money in the greater scheme of things.

                    2. The company you use matters very little.  Most of the big name companies you see locally  are just small local movers who affiliate with large companies for branding purposes.

                    3.  Local moves are charged by man-hours.  They should be able to give you a quote, but there too, if the hourly rate is the same, the quote won't matter.  You'll pay based on how long it takes.  The estimate won't make a difference.

                    4.  I moved cross country 3 times, and again from LA to the San Francisco area, and never had a single problem, because I understood the above issues.  I had nothing damaged, but stuff happens, and you have to expect that to happen.

                    5.   My last local move from a 2 bedroom apartment to a house 10 minutes away cost $2750 14 years ago, but they estimated wrong and needed to make 2 trips with the truck as it was too small.  That move took about 15 hours of steady work.

                    ADD:  I moved furniture summers in college.  I have a lot of empathy for those guys.

                     

                     

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                    • #11




                      1.  Quotes really don’t matter.  Interstate moving rates are fixed by the federal government.  You pay based on the weight of the items you ship, with a multiplier for the number of flights of stairs they have to walk or carry, distance from street to door, etc.   A quote might give you a ballpark figure, but it won’t matter.   That’s one reason for many disputes with movers.  People rely on quotes and can’t afford the difference.

                      If you think the quote was unreasonable, get another, and get one that’s bare bones, without the packing.  Ask for an itemized estimate so you can see what they’re factoring in.  Remember, it will all ultimately be based on actual weight of the truck, so if estimates vary based on the weight, disregard that and just assume that the higher weight is more accurate.

                      Remember that the people promising you things when they book the move are not the people who will be doing the move, so don’t expect too much.

                      I have had packing done for me.  It was quite pleasant compared to doing it myself.  Plus, they do a better job.  In that case, you’re paying by the hour for the workers doing the packing, plus paying for materials, which you can probably buy cheaper if you do it yourself, but it won’t amount to a lot of money in the greater scheme of things.

                      2. The company you use matters very little.  Most of the big name companies you see locally  are just small local movers who affiliate with large companies for branding purposes.

                      3.  Local moves are charged by man-hours.  They should be able to give you a quote, but there too, if the hourly rate is the same, the quote won’t matter.  You’ll pay based on how long it takes.  The estimate won’t make a difference.

                      4.  I moved cross country 3 times, and again from LA to the San Francisco area, and never had a single problem, because I understood the above issues.  I had nothing damaged, but stuff happens, and you have to expect that to happen.

                      5.   My last local move from a 2 bedroom apartment to a house 10 minutes away cost $2750 14 years ago, but they estimated wrong and needed to make 2 trips with the truck as it was too small.  That move took about 15 hours of steady work.

                      ADD:  I moved furniture summers in college.  I have a lot of empathy for those guys.

                       

                       
                      Click to expand...


                      Not at all local movers can charge according to the weight of the boxes and the distance covered.I think you have chosen the wrong mover for your move.

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