Category Archives: Helpful Moving Hints

How Long Does It Take to Move?

If you’re POTUS, that’s a straightforward question to answer, since it’s been reported that it takes approximately 95 workers to labor for precisely 5 hours to move one First Family out of the White House every four or eight years on Inauguration Day (aka Moving Day) and another First Family in, with time to spare in between for any painting or repairs needed.

But for the rest of us who don’t happen to be the Leader of the Free World? The time can vary, depending primarily on three factors.

  1. LENGTH OF LOADING

Some people own a little stuff, some people own A LOT of stuff! Needless to say, volume is a factor in estimating how much time to block off for your move, but to get it done right, two things matter most: (1) choosing the appropriately sized moving truck and (2) knowing how to load it most efficiently. If space is underestimated, that can slow everything down as you scramble to find another vehicle or to make multiple trips you weren’t planning on. And if items aren’t loaded properly—if they’re tipping over, if the weight on bottom can’t support the weight on top, if items start rubbing up against each other damaging your valuables—then taking everything out just to bring it back in will turn very frustrating very quickly, eating up valuable time.

  1. DISTANCE OF MOVE

Obviously, driving the truck farther away will take more time than local moves. If you’re going the DIY route to your relocation, though, and try to save a little money by renting a smaller truck to take several trips, you might want to reconsider. Your plan can easily backfire, for any money you save will surely be sucked up in the time expense it takes to repeat the same steps multiple times throughout the day. Not only will you spend more on gas, but you’ll have to switch gears multiple times: loading at the old place and unloading at the new place over and over, driving back and forth and dealing with any traffic or delays you may encounter (not to mention exposing yourself to possible vehicle trouble/accidents more than only one time), spending precious daylight hours in transit, locking up the houses each time, making sure family members are where they’re supposed to be, vacuuming only half the house because the other half is still stacked with boxes … a lot of little details like that that people forget about when they think it’ll be fine to just “take a few trips.” Multiple trips will wear you down faster than just doing it all at once.

  1. AMOUNT OF SUPPORT

This is by far the most important variable when determining how long it will take you to move. Whether you’ve hired a company to move you or whether it’s going to be a group effort among your family and friends, the more support you have—the more hands on deck—the faster the job will go. Much faster. Four arms and four legs get tired much more quickly than ten arms and ten legs. (That’s why the White House hires 95 workers for 5 hours instead of 5 workers for 95 hours!)

You won’t need that many movers to manage your relocation for you, but a professional moving company will surely assign the right number of team members, give you a firm estimate of start time and end time, and make sure that your move goes off as swiftly and efficiently as possible.

Call us today for a free estimate.

BB&D Moving Services
301-57-5447 (MD)  |   571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

Commercial Moving Services

Some people think that a move is a move is a move—that residential moves and commercial moves are just two sides of the same coin … six of one, half dozen of the other. Well, that isn’t the case. The two types of moves may be cut from the same cloth—both in involve packing away, boxing up, and shipping out, after all—but they’re actually quite different in terms of content, constitution, and concerns.

First of all, business equipment isn’t like knickknacks and craft-room supplies and the kids’ favorite toys—most of it can’t be safely ensconced in bubble wrap and snugly tucked away in reinforced boxes. Rather, there are bulky shapes involved, very sensitive and vulnerable pieces, cords and wires hanging out every which way. Second, moving a business can be a heavy-duty enterprise—wooden desks, metal chairs, conference tables, whiteboards, endless boxes of years’ worth of files and folders … these are not lightweight items that people can just easily load onto a U-Haul by themselves and drive on over to the new office. And third, there’s simply a different level of attachment to professional possessions versus personal ones. Sure, you need that printer or photocopier to get Tuesday’s workload done, but if it breaks or malfunctions, it can easily be replaced or repaired in a day, usually even covered by business insurance. Aunt Julia’s tea set, handed down through the generations? Not so much.

What all this means to the business owner is that it’s appropriate, applicable, prudent, and even emotionally comfortable to hire an outside company to complete the commercial move for you. Not just any company: a highly reputable one with expert-level service and extensive experience handling commercial relocations. So whether you’re moving from one town to another for a better lease arrangement or you’re downsizing or completely restructuring amid today’s great transition to remote work, here’s what you can expect from BB&D’s first-rate commercial “Smart Moving Package”:

  • Packing and Unpacking: everything from IT equipment to furniture and office supplies
  • Handling: loading and unloading of all office items
  • Eco-Friendly Plastic Containers: drop-off, pack-up, and pick-up options available
  • Plastic Dollies: to reduce volume and maximize time- and cost-effectiveness
  • Storage: lighted and temperature-controlled facilities, with 24/7 security
  • Disconnect and Reconnect: all office equipment and technology
  • Archiving: file and documentation backup and storage services available
  • Multiple Destinations: making as many stops as you need, to deliver specific items or to specific locations

BB&D is a family-owned company that employs full-time, background-checked, uniformed workers. We’re known for going above and beyond for our customers; let us go the extra mile for you so that you can get back to work quickly, safely, and efficiently.

BB&D Moving Services
301-57-5447 (MD)  |   571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

Moving with Cats: It’s Not Just People Who Can Have Trouble Transitioning

Check any ranking of stressful life events out there, and you’ll find moving pretty high up on the list. As exciting as residential relocations can be, they also pose challenges, fears, and anxieties that don’t fully subside until everyone and everything is all settled in and unpacked at your new home.

That includes your pets. And not all pets are created equally: Cats, in particular, have particular characteristics and habits that need to adjust to new places.

Fortunately, there are steps you can take to help them more smoothly transition to new digs. With a bit of advance planning, you can have your beloved feline contentedly purring away in no time!

Steps to Smoothly Transition Your Cat(s)

  1. If you have an outdoor cat, begin limiting outdoor time at least a week before the move, then keep your cat indoors only for several days before your move. Cats can get nervous around all of the boxes and bustling activity and may decide to stay away from home for a few days. The last thing you need to deal with on moving day is a missing cat!
  2. Before you move into your new home, make sure it’s been cleaned thoroughly, especially if the previous owners or renters had pets. Cats are very territorial and sensitive to smells, and they can get upset or even mark their territory if they smell other animals. Getting any carpets professionally cleaned can go a long way toward making your cat comfortable.
  3. On moving day, keep your cat either locked in a room that the movers will empty last or in a pet carrier to ensure that your cat doesn’t run outside while the moving truck is being loaded.
  4. At the new house, keep your cat in the carrier until you have a room set up for them—preferably the room where the litter box will be. The litter box is absolutely the first thing you want your cat to investigate in your new home.
  5. Just like people, cats have different personalities. Some respond to the stress of moving by becoming more affectionate. Some would rather be left alone while they spend time investigating every nook and cranny of their new home. Some may lose their appetite for a few days. There is a wide range of normal reactions a cat can have to moving, and usually there is no need for concern. If your cat’s uncharacteristic behavior still concerns you after several days, though, it may be time for a visit to your vet.
  6. If you have an outdoor cat, wait until behavior has returned to normal before allowing any outdoor exploration. A good rule of thumb is to keep your cat indoors for at least a week after the move, allowing your cat to get used to one thing at a time.

Following these steps will make things easier for your cat—and, in the process—easier for you!

Visit our website for more tips on packing and moving, and call us anytime for a moving consult or estimate:
BB&D Moving Services
301-57-5447 (MD)  |   571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

How to Properly Pack a Bedroom

When it comes time to pack up your house for a move, most people assume that large pieces (like pianos and pool tables) and fragile objects (like crystal and figurines) require the most forethought … and that assumption wouldn’t be wrong. It’s just that different possessions and different areas of your home can each benefit from careful planning and prep work, and bedrooms are no exception.

In fact, bedrooms can be one of the trickier rooms to pack. Why? Because they contain items you and all your household members use every day. So you don’t want to pack away needed items too soon, nor do you want to wait until the last minute, when you’ll likely be rushed and stressed with the moving truck in your driveway and the daylight hours ticking away. Just like anything else in life, following a step-by-step plan will keep things at hand, keep you on schedule, and keep your move on track.

Simple Steps to Efficiently Packing Bedrooms

  1. Schedule sorting time. Before you put one thing in one box, make sure you’re not wasting time, energy, and money by moving things you no longer want, need, or use. You can get through this step pretty quickly if you devote about one hour to each bedroom, one session at a time. Start with the least-populated room and work your way up to the master bedroom, since, admittedly, the master closet might need a little extra attention. Better yet, have each family member be the “sorter” for their own room, sifting through all its contents and extracting those items that can either be thrown away, given away, or sold. The broken hat rack in the corner? On the curb for trash pickup. The rocker you haven’t rocked in since your teenager was a baby? List it online. Toys the kids no longer play with and books they’ve outgrown … the sweater with the permanent stain … the empty dust-collecting perfume bottles … the lamp you’ve been meaning to fix for months but never will—time to let it all go and start with a clean slate. As for clothing, the universal rule of thumb is that if you haven’t worn it in over year, it’s safe to donate (like that prom dress from 2001). The great thing about this step is that you can complete it long before packing begins and it can greatly reduce the volume you’ll be moving.
  2. Off-season items go first. Moving in late spring or summer? Then it’s completely safe to pack up all winter things in the bedroom: flannel sheets, blankets and quilts, furry robes, and all your cold-weather apparel—coats, sweaters, scarves, gloves, boots. Same goes for a late fall or winter move: pack up your bathing suits, shorts and tanks, flip-flops, flimsy pj’s, pool toys, suntan lotions and potions now and it’ll save you valuable time later.
  3. Stow away those knickknacks. Have small boxes and plenty of protective bubble wrap / cushioning material on hand so you can clear away your tchotchkes and such at a casual pace, without fear of breaking or damaging anything by moving too quickly or carelessly. Yeah, you love that graduation photo, but it doesn’t need to be out on your dresser till moving day, so now’s the time to pack up shelf decorations, photos, collectibles, glass articles, and anything else nonessential to the daily operations of your bedroom. While you’re at it, add all but one of the books stacked on your nightstand, your photo albums and journals stowed away in drawers, tokens and trophies … for the next couple of weeks at least, you can get by with only necessities, not extras.
  4. Proceed to shoes and bedding. We’ve all got more pairs of shoes than we’d ever wear in a given time span, right? Might as well pull out just the few you’ll need and wear most often as your move approaches, then pack up the rest in medium-sized boxes. And you won’t be needing more than one change of sheets, either, so it’s safe to pack up any other bedding and linens that aren’t currently in use on beds already; given how light these items are, you should be able to squeeze a lot of throws and pillows in just a few large boxes.
  5. Label, label, label! This last step is the most important, and it applies to your move as a whole. Make sure you clearly mark what room each box, tub, and crate belongs in, along with its contents and any special instructions, such as a FRAGILE sticker. There’s nothing more frustrating in the immediate aftermath of a move than trying to find something you need quickly and having to go on a lengthy treasure hunt to locate it. Oh, and be sure to fill your boxes to the brim, leaving no empty space, so that they’ll stack nicely in the truck.

All that’s left now falls into two categories: (1) things you need on a daily basis and (2) your furniture. Bring along the things you use every day in your car with you, to make sure you have uninterrupted access to them. As for your furniture, mattresses, and other large items, leave those to your professional movers. They’re experts at taking things apart when necessary, wrapping and protecting all your bulky items with care, and setting them back up, ready for your first night’s sleep in your new home.

Visit our website for more tips on packing and moving, and call us anytime for a moving consult or estimate:

BB&D Moving Services
301-57-5447 (MD)  |   571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

Moving 101: The Basics

With as much as 25% of the U.S. adult population moving or considering a move amid the current national climate, relocating is a timely topic and has taken center stage in a lot of people’s minds. Whether you’re 18 or 80, own a little or a lot, or are moving near or far, moving is known to be a stressful life event. But there are steps you can take to reduce the stress and professionals you can call to ease your load.

When things are complex, make them simpler. When something feels overwhelming, make it manageable. The following tips are exactly that—simple and manageable—so that you can start your move off on the best foot possible, with an eye toward keeping the whole process running smoothly and successfully.

Tips to Start Your Move Off Right

Tip #1: Pick an Advantageous Date. Having a set date on the calendar is the single-most important factor in launching a low-stress move. Try to find a date that’s beneficial for both you and your moving company. You want it to fit nicely into your schedule—not too soon or too late, not conflicting with any work or family commitments, and not interfering with any holiday or travel plans—but you also want to take advantage of a moving company’s slower days of the week or slower times of the year so you can get the most personalized attention and the most affordable pricing. Call around to learn about cost and availability differences at different times.

Tip #2: Schedule Backward from Your Moving Date. Once you’ve settled on a date, you can stay organized, on track, and on budget by allowing yourself enough time to proceed through all the moving tasks in orderly, efficient, and feasible time chunks. Map out your schedule ahead of time: how much time you’ll need to separate what’s coming with you from what you’ll donate or dump, what rooms/items to pack in what order, when to shop for moving supplies, what day you’ll need help to disassemble your entertainment unit, when to start in on pre-moving cleaning, when to schedule your utility shutoffs.

Tip #3: Get At Least Three Box Sizes. One size does not fit all, especially when it comes to moving boxes. Gather as large a variety as you can—from grocery stores, liquor stores, retailers, friends and family—so that heavier items (like books) can be packed in sturdy boxes no larger than one armload, so that small items (like costume jewelry and figurines) don’t get lost and squashed in huge piles in massive boxes, and so that larger items that need to be boxed (like table lamps or floor vases) can comfortably fit without parts jutting out that could get damaged during the move. Acquire what you can for free (neighborhood networking websites are a good place to look), purchase the rest.

Tip #4: Safer Material for the Safety of Your Possessions. Think outside the box—literally! Sure, standard cardboard boxes will work for the majority of your goods, but plastic, wood, and metal containers are great options when it comes to fragile items like electronics, glass, china, and heirlooms. Such materials won’t bend, pucker, or collapse under weight the way cardboard can. But there are also specially made heavy-duty boxes for things like dishes, mirrors, artwork, and clothes that you can purchase at hardware stores or through your moving company.

Tip #5: Don’t Forget Packing Material. It’s not just what goes in your boxes that matters, it’s also what goes around your items, protecting and stabilizing them. Styrofoam peanuts, shredded paper, newsprint, packing foam, rolls of plastic and tissue paper, bubble wrap, dish dividers–use ’em all so that there’s no loose space left in your packed and taped boxes.

Tip #6: Cleary Label Everything. Clearly labeling and tagging your bundles and boxes just might be the most critical step in a stress-free move. Make sure your labels are large, legible, easy to understand, and won’t peel off or wash off when wet. Not only will it help you immensely to keep track of your belongings, to know what goes into which rooms, and to be able to quickly find what you’re looking for once you’re in your new place, but labeling also helps your movers know what they’re carrying, how to stack/pack it on the truck, how much special care should be taken with fragile or unruly items. Take the time to mark up each and every box, and it’ll save you untold time in the long run.

Looking for a skilled, reliable, and trustworthy moving company to take things from here? Look no further than BB&D Moving Services to help you with all your organizing, packing, storage, and moving needs: 301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

Tips for Moving in the Fall

Fall can be a great time of year to move. The weather cools down, making the manual labor side of things more comfortable, without having to pack and haul in the heat of summer. Not only that, but since the spring-to-summer span is the most popular time of year to move, you’ll often find better prices and more availability in terms of moving company and truck rental costs.

As a buyer, you’ll likely be in a better position in autumn as well. Spring and summer are also the peak seasons for buying and selling a home, so you’ll face less competition both on the market and in your home search if you list and house-hunt after the peak. All of this can translate to less pressure to make a decision before you’re ready.

When you are ready, though, following these tips will make for an optimal fall move:

  • Clear your sidewalks and pathways. All that fall foliage blanketing our yards sure is beautiful … but fallen leaves can be dangerous too, especially when wet. Make sure you sweep, rake, or use a leaf blower on all curbs, sidewalks, and driveways to avoid slips and spills. Piles of fallen leaves can also conceal hidden debris and branches that could do serious damage to you, your movers, or your belongings, so it’s always better to play it safe by clearing all walkways entirely.
  • Schedule your move during the school day. The school calendar doesn’t affect families without kids much, but if you do have school-aged children, take advantage of booking your local move when they’re busy and distracted at school, for minimal disruption to everyone. Most moves are scheduled for weekends, so if you have the flexibility to move on a weekday instead, it can improve an on-time, on-point, on-budget move all the more.
  • Dress for the weather. Layers are always a good bet in the fall, when weather can be quite unpredictable. Whether it’s cool mornings and evenings but warmer days or an unfortunately timed downpour, you don’t want to be in the middle of moving or in transit with clothing that leaves you too hot, too cold, or wet and soggy. Have a jacket or sweatshirt on hand, and keep a raincoat unpacked and readily available. And no matter what time of year you move, comfortable and supportive closed-toe shoes are always a must.
  • Plan for sundown. As the fall months progress—particularly once daylight saving time ends—the days get shorter and shorter and dusk comes earlier and earlier. Start your move as early in the day as you can, to benefit from as much sunlight as possible.

If you can, take advantage of the benefits a fall move offers. With just a little advanced planning, you can have a great experience in the primo pocket of time after summer vacation and back-to-school hubbub but before the holidays hit. So fill your coffee cup to the brim, put on your favorite comfy sweater, and enjoy the scenery around you as you transition to your new home!

We’ve got lots more guidance and advice for smooth and successful moves. Contact BB&D Moving Services today for a free consult and estimate:

301-57-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

 

What NOT to Pack on the Moving Truck

Much has been written about prepping and packing for the moving van when the big day arrives. But it’s just as important to know what not to pack—what to hold out and transport yourself, either because (a) certain items are not permitted on moving company trucks or because (b) certain items are too valuable or irreplaceable for you to entrust to anyone else’s care.

The first category—what’s not allowed, usually for safety or insurance reasons—includes objects or substances that you’ll have to move yourself or perhaps just dispose of prior to moving day:

  • Gasoline: Make sure you use up the last of your gas in the lawnmower and that your propane tank is disconnected from your gas grill. If you have portable gas containers for your cars and such, those must be empty too or you can bring them along in your car trunk, where they’re usually already stored anyway.
  • All other liquids: Gardening sprays and chemicals, cleaning fluids, paint tins, solvents—none of them should be packed on the truck, including beverages, booze, and other frozen food or drink items that will melt.
  • Batteries: Any and all batteries—whether for cars, remote controls, smoke detectors, toys, and anything in between—should go with you, not the movers.

The second category is more subjective and consists of anything and everything you truly cannot afford to lose, misplace, or have damaged. It also includes items you’ll want with you immediately upon arrival at your new location, simply for practicality and convenience. In your own vehicle or luggage, consider packing:

  • All important documents: Paperwork like birth certificates, passports, social security cards, marriage certificates, financial records, and the like are best kept with you during the move, not only because they’re most secure that way, but because you also may need some of these documents along the way for interstate or international moves. And don’t forget the moving contract—you’ll want your own copy on hand at delivery.
  • Jewelry, family heirlooms, old photos: Anything expensive or very near and dear to your heart should be kept that way. Best to keep them on your person for those very rare but possible “just in case” scenarios.
  • Perishable or open food: An unopened box of rice or canned vegetables aren’t likely to do any harm, but why transport edibles in a hot moving truck when you can just do your best to empty your fridge, freezer, cupboards, and pantry in the days leading up to your move. Eat up all those leftovers, drink all the juice and soda, and cook meals with the groceries you already have on hand before heading out. If you really want to keep that special maple syrup you bought on vacation or your grandma’s canned peaches, pack a cooler and bring it with you in the car.
  • Pet food: Unless you plan to stop at a store on your way to your new home, your pets will appreciate not having to wait for dinner! (And make sure you have some kind of receptacles for their food/water.)
  • First night’s bedding: After a long day of moving, the last thing you’ll want to do is go on a hunt in boxes or be without your pillows and comfy sheets so you can get that good night’s sleep you’ve earned.
  • Toiletries: You’ll also surely want your toothbrush, toothpaste, comb and brush, and any other bathroom items that will make you comfortable that first day and night.
  • Medications: Any prescriptions or supplements you take on a daily basis should be close at hand. You don’t want to be rummaging around for them in a house full of unpacked goods or, worse yet, without them altogether if the moving truck is delayed for any reason.
  • A day or two’s worth of clothing: Filling a bag or suitcase with a few changes of clothes for each of your family members is a smart, time-saving move. Just bring along whatever you would pack for a weekend getaway and you should be all set.
  • Chargers: Who goes anywhere without their cell phone these days, right? But it won’t do you any good if it goes dead. Make sure your smart devices are juiced up so you can receive and send messages throughout the move.

Want more helpful hints from a tried-and-true professional moving company? BB&D Moving Services is here for you to meet all your moving needs large and small. Contact us today for a consult or estimate: 301-57-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

Not Your Average Move

When people think about moving, most often they envision a pretty straight line from here to there: You sell or vacate one place, pack it up, and move into another, right?

But sometimes that’s not the case. Sometimes, in the fluid, flexible, and open society we live in, people have more individualized needs, special circumstances, or more complicated relocations than just going directly from point A to point B. For example, sometimes moves are only temporary. Sometimes moves happen so quickly that there’s a need to sell or disburse belongings in a hurry. Sometimes people aren’t sure of where they’re going to end up yet, and sometimes they are indeed going from here to there, but “there” is a looooong ways away, and they’re wary of managing an overseas transport.

In cases like these—temporary moves, sudden life changes, downsizing, merging homes—a full-service professional moving company like BB&D Moving Services can actually take care of a lot more than just moving for you. We can service you from soup to nuts, no matter your personal situation or challenges.

Some of the Specialty Services We Offer

  • Cleaning & Handyman Services: When time is tight, when repairs are needed before you can depart, or when you just don’t want to take care of the finishing touches yourself, we can arrange for housecleaning and minor home repairs to give you peace of mind and take some of the weight off your shoulders.
  • Junk Removal: Not bringing all of the things in one place to the next place, but want to get rid of them without any hassle? We can haul away loads, small or large, and make sure they’re properly disposed of.
  • Furniture Sales: Have some sellable items that you just don’t use anymore or won’t fit where you’re going? If you don’t want to list them online, we’ll do that for you—easing your load, literally and figuratively!
  • Packing/Unpacking & Packing Materials: Movers don’t just move—we can do the lion’s share of packing and unpacking too, greatly decreasing your effort and shortening your timeline. And if you’d rather not scrape together or have to shop for boxes and tape and liners and fillers, we can also provide all the packing materials you’ll need at a very reasonable added cost, delivered right to your door.
  • Storage Options: It’s not uncommon anymore for people to be “in transit” as job placements, relationship statuses, family circumstances, and wanderlust preclude us from immediately putting down anchor somewhere new. We offer both short-term and long-term storage options in lighted, temperature-controlled facilities with around-the-clock monitored security cameras.
  • International Moving Services: Moving across foreign borders requires not just specialty expertise in international transit and regulations assistance, but someone you trust to manage your transport professionally and efficiently, getting everything to you safely and intact in your destination country.
  • Additional Services: Need something else? Just ask and we’ll see what we can do! For example, we can digitally scan documents so you don’t have to haul boxes of hard copies with you. And we can make sure your boxes are properly labelled so they’re delivered right to the room in which you want them.

Call BB&D Moving Services today to learn more about how we can make your move and take care of your moving needs—however simple or complicated—as stress-free as possible:

301-573-5447 (MD)  |  571-375-2826 (VA)  |  786-390-4040 (FL)  |  bbdmoving.com/

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/