5 Tips To Hire Reputable Movers in Houston

Image of Houston Skyscraper when moving to Houston

Make Moving to Houston Easy

Houston is home to NASA, Rice University, Reliant Stadium, and now you. Before moving, the first step is finding a great moving company. We’d like to share five tips for a great move to the country’s 4th largest city.

Ask Friends

According to the American Moving and Storage Association, ask friends and colleagues about their experiences with movers in the area. The association also suggests that consumers check with the Better Business Bureau or other consumer organizations before signing with a mover.

 Ask your Realtor for their referrals.

Realtors usually have a list of several companies that they recommend and often get feedback from their clients as to the level of service performed. Other good sources of moving company referrals include local antique and high-end furniture stores, your interior designer, or even your home builder.

Research your potential candidates for the proper licensure.

The moving industry is a regulated industry and to lawfully operate, a mover must have one of two licenses. To operate nationally, a mover must be licensed by the Interstate Commerce Commission (ICC). To operate within a given state, a mover must have a state license. In Texas that license is obtained through the Texas Department of Transportation.

In order to obtain licensing, a moving company must carry certain levels of both liability and cargo insurance. Full Time employees of licensed companies must have pre-employment background checks completed and must submit to random drug testing. Additionally, licensed movers are subject to certain guidelines when it comes to what they can legally charge for moving services.

First and foremost, when looking for a moving company, you should find a mover with a valid state or national license. Nice web sites and yellow page advertisements do not guarantee a moving company is operating legally. Always verify a moving company’s license.

Select a company that will do an onsite visit.

Estimates done over the phone or online are rarely right and can lead wild variations in the final bill. Verify that the company you choose is an actual moving company and not a broker that will sub-contract your move to a third party.

 Choose a moving company that uses full time company employees to complete the move.

Many companies use contractors, sub-contractors, or even worse, day laborers. When moving your most personal and valuable belongings, you want full time, uniformed, benefited, legal employees who value their jobs and consider themselves professionals.

Have Confidence When Moving!

Armed with knowledge, your move will be a great move. Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter for more information about best practices when moving!

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New App Makes Buying a House Easier

 

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Moving to Houston: Big City, Big Task

While moving is exciting, we know that looking for a house is a giant task. Recently, Trulia created a mobile app to narrow down your search for the best open houses. It’ll save you time and energy as you view the outside, interior, and even the neighborhood of the home! Navigate a potential new home easily from the app and find out important information such as the average price of other homes in the same neighborhood, schools, and crime. Once you find your new home, be sure to download “The Fine Art of Moving”. Don’t forget to subscribe to our email list!

Experience Happy Hunting When Searching For Your New Home

From the Article: Get Some Of Your Sunday Back: Our Redesigned Apps Make it Easier Than Ever to Identify the Must-See Open Houses

We’ve all been there: you scan your phone throughout the weekend looking for open houses, only to be disappointed when you actually drive through one of the neighborhoods (this part of town doesn’t seem too safe) or notice that the home you’re in doesn’t quite look like the one you saw online or on your mobile app (the bedrooms are so small!). You aren’t alone. It’s a common problem that we at Trulia wanted to help solve. And that’s why we’re excited to announce the redesign of our iPhone and Android apps, just in time for the spring house hunting season.

Continue reading the article by clicking here.
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Organize Before Hiring a Moving Company

Image of Moving Company Checklist
The plan seems simple before you move: hire a moving company. However, moving day will go much more smoothly if you get organized several days ahead of calling the movers. The starting point includes developing a to-do checklist, which will guide you through the whole moving process. Putting together a questionnaire for the movers ensures that you and the company are on the same page, and a designated file for moving-related documents will help you stay organized. Finally, taking photographs of your home will also help with organization; for example, they will provide evidence in the case of an insurance claim.

Organization is the Key to a Stress-free Move

Instead of being stressed when moving, stress your organization abilities. Create a checklist and stick to it. Get with your moving company early on and make sure they are as organized as you are! Prepare a questionnaire for your mover which lists your expectations. For example, “I expect my movers to be timely, clean, organized, etc.”

It’s a good idea to start a “move file.” Use it for estimates, receipts, and other documents related to the move. Also, check with the IRS, some of your expenses may be deductible.

Photograph the contents of your home. Make a complete descriptive inventory. Save all of this information onto a disc and store it in a safety deposit box. This is invaluable if there is an insurance claim. It is also great reference material.

If you have high value art and antiques, consider having them appraised and photographed prior to the move. Make sure you have adequate levels of insurance coverage for the move. Check with your home-owners insurance provider to see if your current coverage includes insurance for the move. If not, consider purchasing a consumer moving policy.

Get Everything Cleaned Like Brand New

This is a good time to have all of your carpets picked up by professional carpet cleaners. You may want to have upholstered goods picked up, cleaned and the pillows re-stuffed. Plan on having a refinisher come to the house, after the move, and touch up all of the little scuffs and scratches that have happened over the years. Finally, have professional drapery installers remove, clean, store, and re-install all draperies. When you move to a new space, you want to start fresh.

Now is the time to get rid of old clothes, kid’s clothes, toys, stuff that you don’t want or need, before the day of the move. Work your way room by room deciding what to dispose of.  Use up cleaning products and frozen foods, these things are difficult to move.

Pack an Overnight Bag

Once you’ve gotten down to what you want to move, be sure to pack an overnight or two day bag including all your medicines, child’s medicines, school uniforms, etc., and keep it within easy reach. The last thing you want is to be searching for something among the many boxes. Items such as jewelry, coin and stamp collections, stock certificates, family portraits, guns, insurance documents, passports, and computer data discs should be packed in an overnight bag and placed in your personal vehicle for moving.

Now You’re Ready to Call the Moving Company

Many people list moving among the most stressful events of their life. Getting organized is a great way to alleviate the stress, and we wish you the best in your move. Make sure to share this on Facebook or Twitter; you never know who is going to be moving in the near future.

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Budget a Move Effectively

budget a moveThere are a number of ways to budget a move effectively. You can spend a great deal of time preparing for your move, but if you don’t budget what is going to cost beforehand, things can get out of control rather quickly, making it much harder than necessary to pay the full cost of your move. So, make sure to research the costs and know what it will cost to cross county, state, or national borders when you move next.

Repairs and New Items

To start with, what is it going to cost to set up your new housing arrangements? You might need to make repairs, buy new appliances, have utilities installed or replaced. Things like this are fairly common when moving into a new home, and even if something is not a vital repair, you may want to consider having it done so that it does not become a major issue in the future when you’ve been living there for some time already.

Rental Costs

If you are moving into a new apartment or rental space, how much is the move in cost – what does it cost to pay your deposit and do you need to pay a first and last month’s rent? Additionally, what storage and utility costs are added on to the rent? These are all factors that will affect your overall impression of where you end up living. You need to be sure you can afford whatever they include.

The Move Itself

Finally, make sure to consider the cost of the move itself. Too many people get caught up in how much it will cost to set up their new home that they forget a move can be a pricey experience. You need to hire a moving service or rent a truck. You’ll need to buy packing containers and other moving supplies. You’ll need to pay for insurance or valuation to protect your possessions. You need to hire professionals to unhook things like your gas stove or your freezer and prepare them for shipping. Then there is the cost of the trip itself, including plane tickets or gas, tolls, meals, hotels, and anything else related to the drive or flight.

In short, a move is an expensive endeavor and one that will require a great deal of time spent researching and preparing. If you do not take that time and ensure that you have properly laid out what is required of your pocket book, you may be in for quite a shock.

When the moving consultant does your estimate, they will gladly provide you with a detailed breakdown of the estimate so you can see what is beings charged for each individual service. To obtain a free estimate from C&M Moving and Storage, call 713-839-7677 and we can set up an appointment for an on-site survey.

5 Tips to Prepare for a Move

tips to prepare for a move

#1: Find a good moving company!

So, it’s time to move. You’re probably a little worked up right now, and for good reason we imagine. To help you make the move easier and less stressful, here are five tips on what you can do to prepare for your move before it happens.

1. Find a Good Moving Company

Step one is to find a good moving company. You can talk to your realtor or you can look on the Internet for reviews of local companies that have good reputations. Make sure to get references and always check for any complaints or issues with licenses locally. A good company will have long term employees who are all highly trained, offer you a binding estimate, and provide a wide array of services without being problematic with your contract.

2. Organize Your Home

Start organizing your possessions early to make the process easier. You’ll find that if you pack up each room in order, without mixing the contents, color code each box, and ensure that everything is carefully prepared for the move three or four weeks early, the week or two before a move will be far less stressful than it might be otherwise.

3. Get Rid of the Old Stuff

If you have old items you don’t need, broken junk you haven’t gotten around to throwing away, or anything you just don’t feel like paying to have moved, start paring it down. You can give away items to your family and friends if they’re still useful or to the goodwill or salvation army if they’re borderline. You can throw away or recycle anything that is beyond use and if you think it is worth money, have a garage sale or hit up eBay to see if your old items can make a profit.

4. Clean Everything

Many people, in the chaos of a move, forget to have their old home cleaned before leaving. In fact, this is a great time to not only clean the old house but to clean all your possessions. Have old clothing dry cleaned or washed, get your rugs cleaned, and dust everything as it goes into boxes. The new owners or tenants will appreciate the gesture and your possessions will come out of their boxes nice and fresh.

5. Appraisal and Insurance

Anyone moving needs to be sure they have protection for their possessions. The best way to do that is to have an appraiser come out for any antiques, fine art, or collectibles. Additionally, you will need to get a good insurance plan or rider to cover the move. Most home owner plans do not cover moving damage, and most valuation offered by moving companies is not sufficient if real damage occurs. So, you will need to do some extra research and purchase a policy that will match the full appraisal you receive from whoever you hire.

Ultimately, a move doesn’t need to be the most stressful experience in your life. It can be a smooth, relatively simple process that thrives from some careful planning and foresight on your part.

Call us at 713-839-7677 so we can help you get started on your stress-free move!

The Ultimate Moving Guide from the Moving Experts – Free E-Book

fine art of moving - ultimate moving guideA client once asked us, “I am getting ready to move for the first time in many years. I am a little nervous – and am afraid that I might forget some details. Do you have any advice?”

In preparing for a move, infrequent movers should indeed research all aspects. You can never be too careful in selecting a quality moving company, or in storing and packing your personal items. We recommend getting to know your moving company first hand – to be sure you are comfortable with their moving and storage procedures.

Ask around, as a company’s reputation is the best source of information. “On the Move – The Ultimate Moving Guide from the Moving Experts”, C&M Moving and Storages’ new e-book, is a great source for helpful tips and advice for first time movers, as well as experienced ones.

Below is the table of contents from the e-book, to give you an idea of all the great information you’ll find! Fill out the form to the right to download the e-book.

  • Planning Your Move…1
  • Where Should You Start…1
  • Budgeting…3
  • The Hidden Cost of Moving…3
  • Moving Industry Price Guide…5
  • Understanding the Moving Industry Tariff…8
  • Saving Money On Your Move…9
  • Should You Pay In Advance…10
  • Downsizing Your Possessions…11
  • The Garage Sale…12
  • Qube Sheet…13
  • Movers Bid Evaluation Form…15
  • Packing and Materials…17
  • Preparing Major Appliances…18
  • Handling the Moving Day…19
  • Quick Tips…19
  • Finishing Up the Moving Process…20
  • Moving Your Own Stuff…20
  • Timing Your Arrival…21
  • Post Move Issues…22
  • Insurance for Your Move…22
  • Special Circumstances…24
  • Moving with Children…25
  • Moving with Pets…27
  • Moving Plants…29
  • A Quick Self Moving Guide…30
  • Seven Things You Should Know About Moving…32
  • FAQ…34
  • Consumer Handbook…39