Recently I was giving an estimate to a woman who brought up a lot of great questions for long distance moves. One of the questions she asked that stood out to me was, "Why is your estimate so much lower than all of the other estimates I have received?"
This is a great question, because estimates that are much lower than the average are usually a red flag. In order to determine whether or not an estimate is legitimate, here are some steps you can take.
It all starts with the list
Every single estimate starts with a list of items. It does not matter whether the moving company charges by weight or by volume, the list of items is the single most important section on an estimate. Without an accurate list, a moving company cannot give you an accurate quote. One of the common mistakes when comparing moving companies, is not making sure the list of items in the inventory matches from estimate to estimate. If one company gives you a quote for moving 45 items, and another company only quotes moving 30 items, it stands to reason that the company that quoted moving more items would be more expensive. Always check your inventory list for any mistakes and missing items.
We utilize our own drivers and trucks
Eagle Lines owns and operates its own trucks and trailers. By doing so, we are able to control our prices more so than movers who sub contract to other moving companies, because they rely on other companies to ship their customer's belongings long distance. This means they also rely on other companies' rates. This is one of the reasons brokers are often more expensive than going directly to the mover. Brokers have to have enough padding in their numbers in order to be better prepared for higher moving rates and make money.
We earn the majority of our business through referrals
The moving industry, especially in Boston, is very competitive. Eagle lines is fortunate enough to acquire the majority of their business through referrals from past customers. Because of this, we do not need to allocate as much money towards marketing as a lot of other Boston movers. We take pride in this fact, and want to continue operating this way well into the future.
We have lower minimums than most other Boston movers
Because of the reasons stated above, we are also able to set lower minimum prices for all of our long distance moves. Running a lean operation and controlling as many aspects of the business as we can allows us to do this. You can ask every moving company you receive an estimate from what their minimum is. This will give you a good base line when you are comparing other moving companies. For really small moves, the price difference between companies can be explained completely by each companies' minimums.
At Eagle Lines, we want to continue utilizing our own trucks and trailers, and continue to retain the professional drivers we have here on site, in order to keep our prices competitive and reduce delivery transit times. Whenever you are not sure if an estimate is accurate or not, always start with the list. After that, check out the moving companies' reputation on websites like the Better Business Bureau and www.movingscam.com. Once you are ready to agree to terms with a mover, make sure you have "binding to the list of items" listed somewhere on the contract. That way, you can ensure you have an accurate price based on the list of items and have legal protection if the estimate was not what was promised.