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The truth about online moving quotes.

When you research movers on the Internet, you’ll soon discover most of them offer an online moving quote (or instant moving quote). This can be a good way to get an idea of how much it may cost you to move. But keep in mind that any moving quote online gets you in the ball park at best, and not necessarily in box seats. You may be standing in the back bleachers.

Accurate pricing for interstate moves depends, ultimately, on the weight of your goods and the distance they will be transported. Of course, other factors enter into the equation, such as whether you will need to place items in storage, how much packing assistance and materials you will need, and even the time of year you are moving.

But the biggest and most important variable in assessing your moving cost is weight. The heavier the shipment, the greater the expense to move it. (Which is a very good reason to hold a yard or garage sale before moving day.)

Shutterstock _145836326Most online moving quotes use forms designed to capture, in broad terms, information that allows the moving company to arrive at a good starting point. The number arrived at is based on experience with other customers (in our case, based on the tens of thousands of moves Atlas handles each year for people all over the U.S. and Canada).

You’ll notice our online moving quote captures information about your location and destination, number of rooms, and your approximate move dates. There’s also a space to note additional comments, such as questions about moving special, high-value items (such as your fine art or wine collection), or any concerns you may have about access to your home. (FYI, we move people to and from mountain retreats as well as the top floors of high-rise buildings.)

While this kind of instant moving quote can get close (it’s called a non-binding estimate), getting an accurate cost will require an experienced estimator to come to your home and conduct a survey of everything you plan to transport. The surveyor has tools that enable him or her to accurately assess the weight (without actually weighing the items). If you like, you can ask the surveyor to provide the estimate with and without the cost of packing materials. (Some people prefer to do their own packing—a cost saving option for those who have the time and know-how).

A word of caution about pricing before closing. Beware of online moving quotes that are far lower than other companies’ estimates. Sad to say, our industry is plagued by some movers who use price estimates unscrupulously to “get a foot in the door.” Always check the background of a moving company before agreeing to an in-home estimate.  (Advance Relocation Systems carries the ProMover designation, giving you our industry’s assurance that we abide by ethical business practices. Our online moving quote also carries a “click to verify” badge that affirms we are a genuine Atlas agent.

When you’re ready to get a moving quote from one of Baltimore’s most trusted movers, fill out our easy online moving quote form or contact us today.

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