The New York State Movers Association provides these 10 tips for finding a qualified mover:
- Call your local DOT office to verify his license
Make sure the mover you are considering is duly licensed by the N.Y. State Department of Transportation as required by law and that his DOT certificate number is legitimate. Anywhere in New York State, call 800/786-5368.
- Check your local BBB about constant complaints
A responsible mover might have a few complaints lodged against him but his record with the Better Business Bureau should show that he responds to and resolves complaints.
- Ask if he carries Worker's Compensation Insurance
The DOT requires such coverage. This adds to the cost of doing business but it protects you. Be suspicious of the very low bidder for he may be cutting costs by cheating on this needed protection.
- Make sure his place of business really does exists
Paying a visit tells you something about the mover's integrity and professionalism, for you can confirm that his place of business is there and appears clean, organized and properly staffed.
- Be wary of high-pressure tactics from telemarketers
This could be a ploy simply to get a sales person into your home to give you an estimate. Be careful, do research and you decide who to invite into your home, based on references.
- Don't listen to sales personnel who tell stories
A high-quality firm with a good reputation doesn't need to knock the competition, or to criticize other moving firms in an attempt to make themselves look better.
- Was the company listed in last year's Yellow Pages?
If not, it could be a legitimate new company. But it could also mean the mover's DOT license was revoked and he's trying to operate under a new name or the name of another licensed mover.
- You should be able to meet or talk to the owner
If you can talk to the owner of the business, even if only by phone, you will be able to develop a feeling of confidence that he is experienced and capable enough to assure a professional move.
- It's a good idea to get a recommendation
A satisfied customer is the best sales pitch for a mover. Remember, even a mover with a big franchise name is still a local businessman who is only as good as his local reputation.
- Ask if the company is a member of NYSMWA
NYSMWA was established 77 years ago to provide consumers the highest quality, reputable service at reasonable cost. It checks a mover's DOT certificate, workers' compensation insurance coverage and reputation before accepting him as a member.