Category Archives: Helpful Moving Hints

What Are “Rogue Movers”?

The world is full of wonderful people to meet, services to try, and places to go. Unfortunately, it’s also got its fair share of wheelers and dealers, shady schemes, and unscrupulous scammers. The damage “questionable” elements can do varies in degree and depth, and when it comes to moving—to entrusting all your worldly goods and assets to a company to get you from here to there—it’s just too big a task to take too big a risk. The risk in this industry? It’s called “rogue movers” … and you want to avoid them at all costs.

The Dangers of Rogue Movers

Here’s just a sampling of what can happen to trusting and unsuspecting consumers who hire a professional moving company that isn’t really a professional moving company:

  • Serious overpayment, with estimates that don’t match final invoices
  • Severe delivery delays
  • Having your possessions held hostage until you pay up extra
  • Receiving damaged goods, if you ever even receive your goods back at all
  • Not being able to get ahold of anyone once things start heading south

How to Spot Rogue Movers

Being conned by a fraudulent outfit is bad news. But the good news is, warning signs are there—if you know what to look for:

  • Unprofessional dealings. When you call the company for info, do you get the sense they’re not on the up-and-up by the way they talk to you, the things they ask (or don’t ask), a lack of official paperwork and materials to email for your review, unclear answers to your questions? If you’re treated brusquely, rudely, or unprofessionally in any way, move on.
  • No online presence or home base. These days, a website is certainly expected, if not actually mandatory, to do business as a legitimate, accountable, and transparent customer-facing company. If you can’t find much of an online presence for the company you’re considering, it’s highly likely they’re not a real presence at all. Similarly, if you cannot easily locate the address of the business, or they won’t provide you with an address when asked, odds are they aren’t real movers. Real companies have real contact information that makes them readily available to their consumer base.
  • Sketchy payment policies. Do they accept only cash payments, or are they asking for cash up front? Do they neglect to give you their estimate in writing or to show you their contract during negotiations? When going over charges, do some of them make no sense to you? If so, you’re probably dealing with a rogue element from which you should immediately steer clear.
  • Unrealistic promises. When a quote sounds too good to be true, it usually is. When truck space needed and delivery times are given without the company even knowing the details of your move, then just getting your money—not reliably and expertly moving you—is the real motive. Professional movers have professional standards and procedures. Stay away from declarations that just don’t ring true.
  • Fuzzy branding. Is this a clearly identified entity that conducts business efficiently and effectively? Employees wearing company shirts or uniforms, business cards to hand out and logo-branded swag to leave behind, professionally printed paperwork bearing the company info? If not, your antenna should be up. If the workers are unkempt, if the equipment and materials are in disrepair, and—especially—if the trucks are unmarked or are rentals from U-Haul or Penske or some such, you should seriously doubt entrusting these people with your lifetime possessions.

Avoiding Rogue Movers

Okay, so now you’re clear on the warning signs and the dangers. What can you do to avoid it all in the first place?

  • Do your homework. When you’re spending this much money on a service, it’s worth spending some time online to check consumer protection agencies and research the company under consideration at such sites as Moving Scam, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association (FMCSA), and Moving Authority.
  • Read online reviews. Information is plentiful and easily accessible today. Check Facebook pages, Yelp, BBB, Angie’s List … Confirm business listings on reputable websites, like that of the American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA).
  • Verify credentials. No state license? Then don’t give them license to scam you. No S. Department of Transportation (DOT) number? Then don’t sign on the dotted line.
  • Get a free in-home estimate. In fact, get three. Legit moving companies provide accurate quotes by actually visiting your site and inventorying your goods in person. In turn, you get to physically meet a company representative, compare the behaviors and standards of each, and be supplied with sufficient informative material to make an informed decision. It should cost you nothing to shop around for the best deal and quality of service.
  • Don’t settle for less than open communication. A reliable company picks up their phone, promptly answers written correspondence, makes and adheres to appointments, and is happy to explain their policies and procedures to you so that you both know what to expect on each end. In our opinion, open communication is, hands down, the most important aspect of choosing a mover.
  • Beware the cheapest quote. You want a good deal, sure, but if a company’s quote comes in as low as half the others, that’s a warning sign that you’ll likely not be getting the high-quality service of the others.
  • Do not pay your total up front. Asking for a deposit is one thing—just like you, companies have a right to secure your slot on their schedule and confirm your good faith. But if an outfit already has all or the bulk of your full payment without fulfilling their service contract, there’s no incentive to finish the job properly; more than that, it’s a sign that your money is all they’re interested in getting their hands on.
  • Read and understand the contract fully before you commit. Afterwards, it’s often too late to do anything to counter sinister motives and dishonest dealings.

At BB&D, we know that a proper business is clean, licensed, and has nothing to hide. Talk to your movers. Learn about their business and look to their reviews. Your movers should work to earn your trust so you feel comfortable allowing them to handle your valuables. If anything gives you pause, go with your gut.

Call BB&D Moving Services today for trustworthy, expert-level service you can believe in and count on:
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

How Do I Move My Piano?

It’s pretty common knowledge that hiring a professional company for a long-distance move will drastically cut down on the stress and drastically improve your chances of a smooth, problem-free relocation. Sure, small moves for an individual just starting out in a new apartment can readily be handled by a U-Haul and a few friends with willing arms, but when a whole family and their whole household is pulling up anchor? With their furniture, technology, trunks, bunks, and gardening tools? It’s a no-brainer for large loads, heavy items, precious goods, and family heirlooms.

But what about when you just need something heavy moved down the road or even elsewhere in your own home? Like if Aunt Linda is finally ready to take your grandmother’s huge china cabinet off your hands, or it’s time to move the piano from the basement to the living room or from the living room to the new music room? You might feel tempted to attempt this undertaking yourself or with a few guys-for-hire. That’s not advisable for several obvious, but nevertheless significant, reasons:

  • Pianos are heavy. (And by “pianos,” we mean any hefty and possibly odd-shaped item.) Items of great weight cannot simply be carted around willy-nilly on a dolly or casters. There’s tipping and bending involved, securing loose parts and protecting breakable ones. There’s maneuvering around corners or even up and down steps. Consider this: The average piano weighs anywhere between 600 and 1,100 pounds. Risk of injury is real and damage to the item is probable.
  • Pianos are expensive. If someone’s going to go to the hassle of moving something of great weight, it’s clearly something of great value to them (and likely to their wallet as well!). Something like a piano in the garage, an antique trunk in the attic, or an old-time safe in the back of a closet is often a prized possession that has been handed down through the generations. And if it’s something you’d want to replace if it breaks, that could cost thousands. You don’t want to trust an investment like that to amateurs.
  • Pianos are cumbersome. When you’re talking about an exceptionally expensive and exceedingly heavy piece, it’s the sheer bulk of it that makes moving it so dicey and difficult. We’ve all heard stories of the pool table that was never level again or the piano that never sounded the same again after moving, the splintered legs or the scratched surfaces. Oddly proportioned, awkwardly weighted items like these that are larger than three refrigerators can cause a lot of damage when mishandled—to the item itself, to your home, and/or to your person.

So what’s the short answer to “How do I move my piano”? By using a professional moving company—we know what we’re doing even when we don’t do it with a truck! We have experienced and informed solutions to your challenges, we have the proper tools to properly handle your valuables, and we have the training to do so quickly and successfully. At first, you might be hesitant to pay for what you consider a short move of a single item. But when you think about what it might cost you in terms of home repairs, medical bills, or replacement expenses if something goes awry, it’s definitely worth a small investment to yield large savings on time, energy, efficiency, and safety.

Call today for a free estimate:
BB&D Moving Services
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

Costly Mistakes Made When Hiring Movers

Planning a big move in the near future? Great! Moving can be a fantastic experience, full of new adventures, fresh starts, and clean slates. But there can also be an unfortunate downside. Sometimes moves don’t go as planned, and there’s no shortage of people with stories about how they got burned by movers in the past. When this happens, it tends to color opinions and create a negative bias toward moving companies in general.

The experts at BB&D don’t want your moving story to be an unhappy one. To help keep your move on track and your experience positive, here are some tips on how to avoid common mistakes consumers make when choosing a moving company:

  • Know that not all movers are equal. This doesn’t mean that you’ve got to sift through a lot of bad to find the good. Rather, it means that not all movers will be a good fit for your particular needs and concerns. Often, to save time and hassle, consumers just go with the first available option. But this can be a misstep. Just like buying a car or getting an insurance quote or seeking a second (or third) opinion on a health ailment, it’s worth the investment to shop around a bit—to pick a moving company that aligns with your budget, schedule, content volume, business values, and work ethic.
  • Be sure all fees are crystal clear up front. Don’t get blindsided by hidden fees that don’t hit you until during or after the move. Talk about and settle on all aspects pertaining to cost before signing on the dotted line. You should feel free to ask all the questions you want to feel comfortable and confident in knowing what your total payment will be before it’s time to pay.
  • Confirm that the moving company is insured. All proper moving businesses are insured, so do a little research and ask for proof of insurance while you’re shopping around. Insurance alone can make all the difference between hiring a solid, dependable company instead of a bunch of swindlers.
  • Avoid a last-second move. We get that people can’t always control the flow of their life—new job offers can arise quickly, you can be called on to relocate near family members at a moment’s notice, and your college-bound child could be moved off the “wait list” and into the “accepted” pile at any point. Still, picking a mover out of a hat at the eleventh hour is never advised. It can lead to unclear details, unnecessary costs, and unanticipated obstacles—none of which will ultimately get you where you need to be any quicker.
  • Discuss the entire process. As with any negotiation, you’ll want to discuss all steps of your move before it actually begins—from the exact date of pickup to what items to pack yourself to how to contact your movers en route. Understanding all the details before moving day is the best step you can take to create a moving day that ends well!

The professionals at BB&D are always clear, concise, honest, and punctual. Keep these tips in mind to be well on your way to a clean, stress-free move.

Contact us today to learn more:
BB&D Moving Services
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

 

Why to Choose Local Movers Over Brokers

When it’s time to choose a moving service, there’s certainly no shortage of options out there! If you start your search on the internet, you’ll have hundreds, even thousands, of listings literally at your fingertips in seconds flat. Between the huge nationwide chains, moving brokers, and local companies, how do you even start differentiating among them and narrowing down your choices? It’s precisely because the process can get so time-consuming and overwhelming that many people just take the easy route and let a broker handle the entire transaction for them.

Well, we’re here to tell you that the easiest way isn’t always the best way. Consumers can and have encountered BIG problems when enlisting the services of a broker, so you’ll want to weigh your options carefully based on some important considerations.

What’s a Broker?

A broker is a company that arranges for the transport of your goods rather than transporting them itself. Basically, the broker plays the middleman between you and the company that will eventually serve as your carrier.

Brokers are not movers, brokers are not authorized to transport, brokers do not own trucks, and brokers do not employ professional moving people. Instead, brokers will make an estimate on your move from the information you provide when you contact them, then they act as “matchmaker” to try to find you the best deal among their network of for-hire carriers. And sometimes they do find you the right deal—the date you want in the timeframe you want at the price you want. But that’s not always the case …

Disadvantages of Brokers

  • Most moving brokers operate from call centers located virtually anywhere, so you don’t interact with them face-to-face and they’re never directly involved with your home, your belongings, or the actual move itself.
  • Brokers are more of a sales team than an actual service provider, meaning they “sell” your move to bidders. In turn, they are not responsible for any follow-through after the connection has been made.
  • As such, brokers take no accountability for your cargo and assume no liability for the actions of the moving company they commission.
  • For interstate moves, brokers are required to use only movers that are registered with the FMCSA. In a perfect world, this would always occur … but it’s not a perfect world, as we all know, and there have been documented instances of unlicensed movers being commissioned for jobs.
  • When it comes to estimates, brokers don’t always hit the nail on the head. This can lead to carriers refusing to take the job when the actual calculations don’t match the approximation. Worst-case scenario, you could end up with no mover on moving day; best-case scenario, you can end up paying significantly more than you planned.
  • Similarly, consumers can sometimes be surprised by hidden fees incorporated in the broker process. “Extras” can start showing up above and beyond the straight carrier fee.
  • Sometimes a broker will have difficulty placing a job for various reasons, like a too-low estimate the carriers won’t consider, no availability for the requested moving schedule, or limited resources to properly complete the job. Bottom line: you don’t want to get stuck without a mover on moving day because of a broker issue with supply and demand.

Advantages of Local Movers

Given all the things that can go wrong when you use a go-between, why not go directly to the source to ensure the proper resources for your move? With a local mover, you get:

  • Personalized customer service: A local mover comes to your home, meets you in person, and takes a physical inventory of your goods to provide a firm quote and go over all the requisite paperwork.
  • Elimination of a middleman: You work directly with your own company representative so that all expectations, fees, regulations, and job parameters are addressed and negotiated one-on-one.
  • Honesty and transparency: Everything is laid out in black-and-white in writing—what you see is what you get.
  • Accountability: The local mover’s name and reputation are on the line with each and every customer they serve. They work harder for you because, to be frank, they have more to lose than a massive corporate chain or a regional franchise of that chain.
  • Streamlined personnel and continuity of service: Smaller companies have smaller staffs—that means you’ll be dealing with the same representative from start to finish; and just in case something goes wrong, you won’t be dialing a generic 800 number and you won’t be left on your own to resolve any issues.
  • Established history of trust: When you hire in your own community, the feedback and reviews on the company that you can research are from your own neighbors.
  • And don’t forget the satisfaction and goodwill of supporting local business in your area!

BB&D Moving Services is a local business specifically for consumers in Maryland, Virginia, and Florida. Rest assured that we take care of our community members because we are a community member. When you want things to go right, GO LOCAL! Contact us today to speak directly to a BB&D team member about your upcoming move.

BB&D Moving Services
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-409-4799 (FL)  |  
bbdmoving.com/

 

How to Prepare for Packers and Movers

Moving can be one of the greatest events in your life — the prospect of starting afresh in a brand-new home, possibly in a brand-new town, with all new things to do and sites to see. But it can also be very stressful, which is why so many people opt to engage a full-service professional moving company to both simplify and expedite the process. But planning accordingly is crucial to a smooth operation: prepping the environment for the packers and movers to arrive on the scene will benefit all concerned parties. Here’s a list of top-ten tips to help you optimally get ready for the big day:

  1. Clear your schedule. A homeowner who is late, distracted, or even absent on packing and/or moving day can lead to a lot of headaches and misunderstandings, so it’s best to clear your schedule for the entire time the moving company will be present.
  2. Gather trip essentials. Items you plan on taking with you personally should be set aside in an area that the movers will not have access to. Make sure you clearly separate what the company is transporting from what you want to stay with you throughout the move.
  3. Reduce crowd traffic. If possible, arrange to have your pets out of the way and engage your kids elsewhere while the movers are on-site, to keep the moving space safer and less chaotic.
  4. Assign roles. Let everyone involved know the game plan before things are set in motion — this will drastically reduce confusion and keep people on task.
  5. Take measurements. Measuring furniture and entranceways will keep the plan intact and will allow for any necessary arrangements to be made ahead of time. If a piece was constructed in-room, for example, it might need to be deconstructed to get it out the door. This applies at both the departure home and the arrival home.
  6. Pack fragile items separately. Breakables should receive their own dedicated packing, whether you do it yourself or whether the moving company will be responsible for properly encasing your valuables. There are special packing materials used to protect fragile belongings, so either procure them yourself or have your movers supply them.
  7. Dispose of perishables. Defrost your freezer and empty your refrigerator, throwing away any perishable items. The last thing you want is a nasty surprise in the fridge once it’s delivered to your new home!
  8. Eliminate dangers. Drain or remove all fuel sources from pertinent equipment, like gas from your landscaping tools and kerosene from heaters and lanterns. Take batteries out of all electronics and store them somewhere you can easily retrieve them later; back up your computer files; and empty entertainment devices of CDs, DVDs, and cartridges.
  9. Take inventory. Have a list of all the items in your home. Or, if you just want to use the mover’s inventory as your guide, at the very least, take stock of all your valuables, such as jewelry, expensive technology, and heirlooms.
  10. Confirm. Always confirm your scheduled dates and times with your moving company well in advance.

Following these steps can lead to a much better experience, ensuring that you can move forward without any obstacles blocking your path to your new home.

BB&D Moving Services
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-409-4799 (FL)  |  
bbdmoving.com/

How to Schedule Movers

Unless you’re moving into your first place, your belongings fit in the trunk of your car, and your friends are willing to schlep your boxes for free pizza and beer, you have a “real” move on your hands—and the best way to tackle that is to hand the job over to real, professional movers.

But how to choose the right moving company and manage the process for the most successful move possible? Start with this basic checklist, sort of like a 101 intro course on moving for those who can benefit from a step-by-step guide:

  1. Choose your moving date. The busiest times on the calendar for professional movers are at the beginnings and ends of months and on weekends, so scheduling your move for midweek or in the middle of the month is ideal.
  2. Research moving companies at least a month before. Ask friends and family for recommendations, do a Google search in your area, and check customer review sites. Make sure the moving company has a USDOT (U.S. Department of Transportation) number and check online to confirm it. Factors when choosing movers include:
    • How much stuff needs to be moved
    • How many valuable items you own
    • The movers’ policy for liability of damaged items during the move
    • Whether payment is based on a flat fee or on an itemized inventory
    • When and where you plan to move
    • How soon the movers can deliver your belongings to your new place
  1. Ask for an on-site estimate and get everything in writing. Ask the movers to do an on-site estimate of the total moving cost. Then ask for that estimate in writing, along with the company’s USDOT number, insurance information, and the date and time of the move. Confirm this information a couple of weeks before your moving date.
  2. Collect moving supplies. Get free boxes from grocery or liquor stores. Use towels, comforters, and newspapers to wrap, protect, and separate fragile items. Make sure you have packing tape, permanent markers, and special containers like wardrobe boxes.
  3. Allow yourself ample time to pack. Give yourself at least a month. Start with the things you use the least. Reserve boxes and suitcases for stuff you use on a daily basis and will want to unpack first when you arrive at your new home.
  4. Use the move as an opportunity to declutter. You don’t want to pay to move things you don’t need or want anymore. Donate the items in good condition to charity and get a receipt for your tax deductions.
  5. Arrange payment and tip. Depending on when and how you’re paying, be prepared to pay the movers, and upon completion of a job well done, 10–15% of the total bill is the standard tipping range for good service.

Call BB&D Moving today to learn more about how we can help you throughout the entire moving process, from planning, budgeting, and packing to storage, delivery, and setup.

BB&D Moving Services
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-409-4799 (FL)  |  
bbdmoving.com/

 

Tipping & Treating Your Movers

Moving isn’t a particularly technical or complicated task. After all, how many of us, at one point or another, have moved our own home or office contents ourselves, filling our trunks and backseats over and over and taking ride after ride to our new location? But is can be tedious, it can be extremely time-consuming, and items can and do break or get damaged in transit—especially today’s newfangled gadgets and large or fragile electronics.

So there’s still a strong argument to be made for hiring professional movers to conduct your move: to get you from point A to point B safely, properly, punctually, and reliably. And if you’re moving a great distance away, you’ll no doubt want the know-how and expertise that only professionals can provide.

When you’re ready to book, plan for, and budget your move, there are three steps you can take to select the company best suited for your specific move and then reward them for a job well done.

  1. Picking the right moving crew. You’ll be entrusting all your valuable belongings, not to a logo or a website page, but to actual people who will be handling and delivering your goods. So you want movers who will handle with care and be responsive to your needs.
  • Gather recommendations from friends, coworkers, and local real estate agents.
  • Do research online, confirming a company’s U.S. DOT number on the website of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and checking references and reviews.
  • Be selective and zero in: If you need interim storage, does the company offer that? If you want your car shipped too, does the company move autos? If you’re an avid mountain biker, do they have experience properly shipping expensive sporting equipment? If you own a valuable art collection, is special insurance available for that?
  • Get multiple estimates from your narrowed-down list of moving companies and assess the “right fit” with them: Is everyone you interact with courteous and professional? Does the company supply its policies in writing? Did the assessor give you adequate time and attention and answer all your questions? Use your own judgment when judging the best choice.
  • Get a written copy of your inventory list.
  • Give explicit directions to your new home if any navigation is tricky.
  • Exchange phone numbers so you can communicate with your crew during the move.
  1. Tipping your movers. Movers are as much a part of the service industry as restaurant wait staff or bellhops or hairdressers, so they should be treated with the same etiquette when they do a good job. But how much should you tip and when? As with any other service provider, you should tip based on a combination of job performance and cost of the job. There’s no firm rule as to how much, but consider how much the safe and intact delivery of your worldly possessions matters to you. If your movers were careful, punctual, helpful, and friendly, adequately express your gratitude for that. Exceptional workers appreciate acknowledgment of their exceptional customer service and work all the harder for it. Oh, and keep in mind that the crew that loads you might not be the same crew that unloads you across the country, so you may need to plan for two different rounds of tipping. Here are just a few sites where you can get an idea of current guidelines:
  1. Treat your movers to refreshments. Moving an entire household is hard, backbreaking work. Especially in extreme temperatures, especially when stairs are involved. So be prepared with an adequate supply of cold bottled water, soft drinks, and/or sports drinks on hand. If loading/unloading time is lengthy, it’s acceptable to provide lunch for the movers. They might not take you up on it, but they’ll certainly welcome the offer. Just be sure to ask them what they’d prefer—sure, pizza seems like a great idea, but you might be the tenth client to order that for them this month! One more strong suggestion: Don’t offer your movers beer when they’re done. As kind as it sounds, most legitimate moving companies have strict rules against alcohol on the job and in the trucks. Keep everyone and everything safe by sticking to nonalcoholic beverages.

Call BB&D Moving today to learn more about how we can help you throughout the entire moving process, from planning, budgeting, and packing to storage, delivery, and setup.

BB&D Moving Services
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-409-4799 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

Picking the Right Moving Company Is Key

Life is full of big decisions. What school to attend. What job to take. What city to live in and what home in your chosen location. Selecting a mover to get you there might not be a life-altering decision, but it’s important nonetheless: If all goes well, your move turns into a one-day event that proceeds smoothly, according to plan; but if things don’t go well, your move can turn into a stress-fueled, frustration-filled nightmare from which you just want to escape.

The difference between scenario A and scenario B? Choosing a qualified, reputable, and experienced full-service moving company you can rely on. Here are some steps you can take to pave the way for a problem-free move:

  1. Seek out recommendations and referrals. Take advantage of your own personal network as an invaluable source of dependable and useful information. Just like you’d trust your family and friends to set you up on a blind date or help you find just the right restaurant for that special anniversary dinner, leverage the collective knowledge of the people around you to help you zero in on a good fit. A new colleague at work or a new family at your kid’s school? Ask them what mover they used and if they were happy with their choice. Word of mouth is almost always worth listening to.
  2. Research online information and reviews. Typing “moving companies” into your Google search bar will result in a long list of options in your area, but geography and availability shouldn’t necessarily be the deciding factors. Instead, you’ll want to look at what information a company shares online, what their reputation is in the industry, and what reviews have been posted about them. Sure, no one receives 100% satisfaction ratings 100% of the time, but when the general consensus shows the company to be professional, reliable, well-received, and well-reviewed, that’s a great start to narrowing down your options.
  3. Get multiple on-site estimates. An established moving company will have a streamlined, systematic process in place to provide you with a detailed estimated cost for your entire move. In writing. To do so, they should offer a timely visit to your home, where the estimator can conduct an in-person inventory of all your belongings to accurately assess weight, volume, and approximate move time. Securing several estimates will allow you to compare and contrast.
  4. Check credentials. A legitimate company will be licensed, bonded, and insured. Without these credentials, the company isn’t responsible if something unfortunate happens to your possessions en route, nor are they liable for injuries that could happen to their workers, your family members, or your property. For interstate moves, movers are also required to be registered with the U.S. Department of Transportation and have a DOT number. Ask for proof of credentials if this information isn’t already provided in the company’s paperwork and/or on their website.
  5. Read the fine print. Consumers have responsibilities in moves as well. Make sure you read through the company’s policies and procedures before you sign on the dotted line and ask for clarification on anything you don’t understand. Which leads us to our final suggestion.
  6. Ask questions. Experienced movers are used to inexperienced customers who may have lots of questions and concerns, such as:
  • How long will your move take?
  • Will you be able to contact the company and the driver during the move?
  • Does the company subcontract the move or the delivery, or will they be in possession of your belongings from start to finish?
  • What is the cancellation policy?
  • What forms of payment are accepted, and when is payment made?
  • Are there any packing restrictions or limitations you should be aware of?
  • Any extra or hidden fees for special services, supplies, or labor not readily apparent in the estimate?
  • Which items will the moving company take care of themselves and how (e.g., electronics, furniture, large or odd-shaped items, items that don’t fit in boxes, like bicycles and rugs)?
  • How are the movers trained, and can you expect them to show up on moving day in uniform?

There are lots of online sources to help you pick the right moving company, among them:

BB&D Moving can help you as much or as little as you want throughout the entire process, from planning, budgeting, and packing to storage, delivery, and setup. Call us today to learn about how we can get you from “here” to “there” as swiftly and efficiently as possible!

BB&D Moving Services
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-409-4799 (FL)  |  http://bbdmoving.com/

Why October Is an Optimal Time for Renovating

If you’re planning on moving and know your home could use some renovations to prep it for resale and greatly increase your chances of getting top dollar for it, now might be a very good time to start thinking more seriously about your plans. That’s because October is National Kitchen and Bath Month, when lots of remodeling businesses offer special offers and lots of retailers have big sales on kitchen and bath supplies.

Why October? Well, it conveniently falls right between the hot, humid days of summer, when you don’t really want all your doors and windows open while workers come and go, and the frigid, icy days of winter, when you want everything in your home to be buttoned up and unexposed to the elements. More importantly, however, October is perfect ramp-up time to the holidays—especially to all the high traffic your kitchen and bathrooms are subject to with holiday entertaining and holiday guests.

Maybe you’re thinking about some minor updates and upgrades, or maybe you’re in the market for a complete remodel of one or more rooms before you put your home on the market. Either way, here are some things to consider:

  • Go “window shopping.” Today’s home buyers are savvy and sophisticated, having grown up amid the DIY industry spurred on by such home improvement giants as The Home Depot and Lowe’s and having been groomed by countless episodes of Fixer Upper and Flip or Flop on HGTV. They want granite countertops, they expect double sinks, and they’re drawn to clean lines and open spaces. So go to open houses in your area to start getting a look at and a feel for today’s modern, marketable interiors. Talk to your friends about their own remodels—their list of do’s and don’ts, their recommended vendors. Stroll the aisles of decorating stores to learn more about available features and finishes, costs and space considerations.
  • Appeal to the masses. Remember, you’re redoing your home for resale, not for yourself, so you’ll want to take into account colors, textures, materials, and products that will attract the greatest number of potential buyers. Trendy can work, but timeless is your best bet. Vibrant can be eye-catching, but you can’t go wrong with neutrals. Easy to clean and easy to maintain, long-lasting and highly functional, cost-effective and energy-efficient … these are the elements that will appeal to anyone’s taste and will make house hunters feel comfortable and assured in their next home.
  • Research resale value. This step is crucial, because only by knowing the “comps” in your neighborhood can you make informed decisions about how much to renovate, how much to spend, how much you can ask for your house. Bottom line: you need to have a solid idea of how much value your reno will add to your current home before you decide how much valuable time and resources to invest in it. A real estate agent can help you research comparable home prices; you can also do a lot of this research yourself online, on sites like Zillow, which not only specify list and sold prices, but which show lots and lots of pictures of the homes for sale in your market, so you can compare yours to theirs.
  • Make a budget. Planning for your expenses before you begin the renovation will save you a lot of headaches afterward. And make no mistake—renovations can be very costly. So while you’re shopping and researching, map out an expense sheet that prioritizes necessities over wish-list indulgences, and choose wisely when it comes to options for things like appliances, cabinetry, lighting, tiles, backsplashes, faucets, mirrors, and everything in between. It doesn’t have to be high-end to be high style or top-of-the-line to get your house in top form!

When you’re ready for your move, BB&D will be there for all your relocation and storage needs.

BB&D Moving Services
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-409-4799 (FL)  |  http://bbdmoving.com/

Supply Checklist for Your Upcoming Move

Preparing for a move can be one of life’s more overwhelming events for most people. With so much to do and juggle—not just planning and packing and organizing in the home you’re vacating, but also planning and unpacking and organizing in your new home—it’s easy to get so stressed out that you start forgetting things, that details start falling through the cracks.

The most efficient way to tackle the planning process is to write everything down—make a checklist of all that you need to do, all that you need to get, and you’ll be thanking yourself later on when things get even busier as your move date approaches.

One list you don’t have to make is an inventory of your belongings—once you have your professional moving company of choice on board, they’ll take care of that for you. The inventory list will give both your movers and you a very good idea of the number and types of boxes you’ll need. Your moving company can supply those for an extra charge—in every conceivable shape and size—or you can procure them yourself. Regardless of which option you choose, here’s a typical list of what you should have on hand to get the packing off to a great start and under control.

TYPICAL PACKING SUPPLY LIST:

  • Large moving boxes
  • Medium moving boxes
  • Small moving boxes
  • Extra-large moving boxes
  • Wardrobe boxes
  • Heavy-duty boxes
  • Large roll(s) of bubble wrap
  • Multiple rolls of tissue paper
  • Permanent black marker
  • Rolls of sealing tape
  • White labels to paste on boxes

Now, when it comes to specialty boxes and wooden crates for fragile items such as large mirrors, marble tops, glass tops, valuable artwork, computers, printers, electronics, and other bulky, hard-to-move items, we recommend consulting with your professional movers. But all of the other contents of your home can be safely and securely packed up with the above materials, at a pace that’s comfortable for you and works with your schedule.

Then it’s time to proceed to the crucial step of labeling the boxes. Trust us, your move will go a lot smoother and settling in to your new home will be a lot easier when boxes are delivered to the rooms they belong in.

BB&D Moving Services can do all of the above (and more!) for you, but we’re also here to help you do it yourself. Contact us today to learn more or to schedule your move:
301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-409-4799 (FL)  |  http://bbdmoving.com/