You have a lot of stuff.
You probably had a vague idea of that before. But now that you’re getting ready to move home, the sheer number of things you own can feel intimidating. All of this stuff needs to be packed away. Not only that but it’s got to be packed safely to ensure none of it breaks during the trip.
That’s a lot of hard work that’s going to require hours of your time.
Wouldn’t it be easier to hire professional NYC movers and packers to do it for you?
Yes, it would. Hence, many moving companies offer packing services as well as loading and transportation. Professional moving packers offer a full service that takes almost every aspect of the move off your plate.
You just need to know how to find the right packers.
In this article, we share some tips for hiring packers who’ll take care of your items and provide a great service. But before we do that, let’s look at some reasons why you’d hire professional packers.
The Benefits of Hiring Professional Packers
The most obvious benefit of hiring packers is the time you can save when preparing for your move. Professionals come equipped with packing materials and understand exactly how to pack items so they’re safe and ready to transport. Trying to do all of that work yourself takes hours. Furthermore, many professional moving companies have specific packing requirements. Following those requirements adds even more time to the task.
You can spend the time you save packing on dealing with other aspects of your move. On the other hand, you can simply use that time to enjoy yourself without a long-winded job hanging over your head.
Professional packers are also ideal for people with physical or mobility issues, as well as those with disabilities. They’ll handle work that you may not be able to do alone, allowing you to proceed with the move with less risk of injury.
Speed is also key with these professionals. Movers and packers are extremely efficient, which is ideal if you need to complete your move quickly. That may be the case if you’re moving at short notice and need to vacate your previous property by a deadline. This efficiency is complemented by a better understanding of how to pack items safely, meaning you can combine this speed with item security.
Finally, there’s the stress issue.
Moving home creates a lot of stress. You’re likely already dealing with the mortgage or rent paperwork, as well as issues at home. If you’re moving for work, you may have the stress of starting a new job to deal with as well. Being able to take a job that needs doing but will take a lot of time off your plate can reduce your stress levels, allowing you to focus on other things.
The Tips for Hiring Packers
Now that you understand the benefits of hiring packers, you need to know how to do it. You could take a risk and go with the first company you find. Alternatively, you can follow these tips to ensure you work with professionals who take proper care of your items.
Tip No. 1 – Ask About Their Inventory Procedure
Your packers should conduct a walkthrough of your property before you commit to using their services. This walkthrough provides them with an opportunity to create an inventory of every item that needs packing.
Why is this important?
First, that list acts as a checklist for the packers. They can tick items off as they pack them to ensure nothing gets missed. You’ll also be able to check this inventory to ensure the packers didn’t forget to list something ahead of your move.
Second, an inventory list gives you evidence if something gets lost or damaged during the move. You can use the list to show that an item was on it, thus demonstrating that the packers knew they were supposed to pack the item and have failed in their duty.
For that reason, you must ask your packers about their inventory procedure. Don’t work with any packers who claim this isn’t important. Professional packers always create an inventory to protect you and themselves from claims.
Tip No. 2 – Quiz Packers About Their Materials
Packing companies do more than pack your items. They also bring the materials needed to store them safely. These materials are designed to protect your goods so they can be transported safely by the moving company.
Ask about these packing materials. Though the specific materials may vary depending on what you need to have packed, the company should tell you it uses most of the following:
- New moving boxes
- Packing tape
- Packing paper
- Bubble wrap
- Styrofoam peanuts
The use of new materials is especially important. Boxes and packing supplies wear out over time. If a company reuses these materials, there’s a higher chance of them breaking during your move. You want new materials to ensure your items are secure and reduce the chances of boxes breaking during transit.
Tip No. 3 – Choose a Packing Option
If you want your professional packers to handle everything in your home, this tip isn’t an issue. As long as the company conducts a full inventory and passes your checks, you don’t need to worry about packing options.
However, you may decide to handle some of the packing yourself while leaving more complex items to the professionals.
For example, many people use professionals to pack their kitchen utensils and appliances. These are valuable and often fragile items that require extra care. But those people may feel more comfortable packing other household goods, such as clothes or children’s toys. Therefore, they require a partial packing service rather than a full one.
Most packing companies provide the option. Therefore, you don’t have to commit to a full home packing service if you don’t want to. Be wary of any company that tries to push you in this direction when you only need a partial packing service.
Tip No. 4 – Gather Quotes
You’ve asked some questions and you understand which packing option is best for you. Now, it’s time to gather some quotes. Ideally, you should aim to gather at least three quotes, though five or more is preferable to give the most accurate representation of the market.
Professional packers quote differently from moving services. A mover has to consider the distance they need to transport your items and the size of your property. Packers are focused solely on packing your items, which means two factors affect their quotes:
- The time the job will take
- Any specialty items you need packing
Specialty items are things that require special measures to disassemble and pack safely. A piano is a good example. The packers need the skills required to disassemble the instrument properly, as well as appropriate materials to ensure it doesn’t get damaged during transit. If the company has to purchase materials beyond what it would normally bring, expect your quote to reflect that fact.
Time is an issue because packers charge by the hour.
Expect to pay between $30 and $50 per hour for packing services. Of course, those with larger homes and more items should expect their packers to spend more time on the job than those with smaller homes. Some packers also charge separately for boxes and packing materials, while others work the prices of those materials into their quotes.
You’ll collect quotes so you can weed out any companies that are too far above or below the average hourly rates stated above. Companies that charge higher than the average are asking you to pay more for their service than necessary. Those who charge significantly less may have hidden fees or offer a poorer quality of service. Always remember the old adage of you get what you pay for when hiring packers.
Tip No. 5 – Check References and Reviews
There’s no hard and fast rule stating that new packing companies can’t deliver a quality services. However, a strong reputation makes you feel more confident in a service that you’re paying good money for. That’s why you always need to check for references and reviews.
Start by asking the packing company for customer references. Good professional packers should be able to give you several without any delay. Bear in mind that no company is going to refer you to customers who had bad experiences, so references always carry some bias. Still, asking for them is a good test because packers that don’t have references should usually be avoided.
After you’ve checked out the references, head online to search for reviews. Look beyond the testimonials on the company’s website because those are hand-picked to provide the best possible impression. Instead, check independent sources, such as social media, third-party review websites, and the Better Business Bureau. You’re looking for the company to have a high overall rating.
You’re also looking for negative reviews. Obviously, a large number of poor reviews is a sign to avoid the packing company in question. But one or two bad reviews don’t mean the company is terrible. Examine how the packers respond to these types of reviews. If they try and help the unhappy client reach a resolution, the company cares enough about its reputation to be trustworthy.
Tip No. 6 – Ask About Prohibited Items
There are several types of items that professional packers are unlikely to pack for you. These typically include chemicals and flammable materials, though some companies have more extensive lists that may cover firearms and specialty items they don’t work with.
Ask for the packing company’s prohibited list before you start working with them.
Check the list to ensure nothing you want to have packed is on it. If there are items the packing company won’t handle, you’ll either have to pack them yourself or look for a company that will do the job.
Tip No. 7 – Avoid Companies That Have Multiple Names
A company that operates under different names may have all sorts of excuses for why they do it. They might claim that they use different names for each territory they operate in. Alternatively, one of the names is a holding company, with the others all representing businesses that work under that holding company’s umbrella.
Whatever the claim may be, a good rule of thumb is to never trust a packing company that has multiple names.
Companies often change their names to escape the poor reputations they developed when operating under a previous name. Some companies set up multiple names to scam customers. They’ll accept money via one company and then claim to be another if you try to follow up on the service you’ve paid for.
Changing names shows a lack of transparency, which is the last thing you want to see from a company that’s going to be handling your most valuable possessions.
Avoid Mistakes When Hiring Packers
You wouldn’t trust any old person to come into your house and start manhandling your most personal possessions. Apply that same line of thinking when hiring packers. Research is key, even with packers that your friends and family recommend to you. The more you know about the people you’re allowing into your home, the more comfortable you’ll be when working with them.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions.
Professional packers expect you to ask questions because they know you’ve likely never used their services before. They’ll also come equipped with answers that demonstrate their professionalism and expertise. Avoid any company that doesn’t provide clear answers or tries to steer the conversation in another direction when you start asking questions.
Understand what you need from your packing service and collect quotes based on your requirements. Good packing companies are flexible enough to handle both full and partial packing services. Don’t get pushed into hiring a full service if you only want your packers to handle a portion of your items.
Finally, reputation is key.
Your packers should have operated under the same company name since they were founded and have a verifiable track record of happy customers.
NYC Movers and Packers has the type of reputation you’re looking for. Our team is fully licensed and insured, meaning you can feel confident in our services. We’ve worked with residential clients, real estate firms, and corporations throughout New York. And we’re ready to work with you too.
If you’d like to find out more, request a quote from our team online or call us at (833) 257-3391.