How To Spot A Fake Moving Review Online

Imagine buying a car or going to a new Chinese restaurant. What would be the first thing you do? Check the online reviews, right? Of course! Luckily, we live in the 21st century where getting information about different kinds of products, services or companies is possible and very easy.  All we have to do is check a company’s website or some online forums and the information is right there, available for everybody to see. However, how do you know when some information or an online review is true or not? There are some ways of finding that out, do not worry. This is especially important if you are looking for some information about something important, like moving companies. So, if you are interested in how to spot a fake moving review online, keep on reading.

Sometimes, a single comment can make or break your decision about the moving company. So, be extra careful when reading them.

A Moving Review Which is Too Positive

No company is perfect, remember that. Accidents happen, and sometimes it is not about what went wrong, but how the people from the moving company dealt with that situation. Always keep that in mind. So, if you go to a company’s website, and all you can see are the words of praise, something is wrong. Furthermore, clear signs of a fake moving review are words that are overly positive and complimentary. In the end, the most important thing is that a moving company can satisfy its customers’ needs and that the belongings are transferred safely and on time. If you see those words in the comments section, you are in the right place. Otherwise, keep on searching.

If the only thing you can see while reading the comments are words which overly praise the moving company, something is wrong. So, if something seems too good to be true, it probably is!

A Moving Review Which is Too Negative

And now, the complete opposite. Moving reviews which are overly negative. Many people do not pay enough attention to these negative moving reviews when trying to find storage or a moving company. They usually occur when some dishonest moving companies try to block or hinder the competition. And they do that to ruin their reputation by posting negative comments onto their websites or forums and blogs. The best way to recognize a fake moving review online is by paying attention to the language. If the language is offensive and derogative, it is probably fake.

Pay Attention to the Language

One thing is for sure, the language used while writing the reviews is extremely important. If you are, for example, looking for the best cross-country moving companies, you have to read a lot of comments and decide which company suits your needs the most. So, if you find yourself reading moving reviews written in academic language, you probably stumbled upon fake testimonials. Let us be honest, everyday people use everyday language, not academic one. That is where your focus should be. Always look for moving reviews written in simple language which describe a specific event that occurred while moving or which show content or discontent. Moreover, regular people should not sound like they have a degree in marketing, so if it looks like they do, you are probably reading a fake moving review.

Stay away from reviews that require having a dictionary by your side. Look for plain and simple reviews! Those are the honest ones.

Watch For Very Descriptive Reviews

So, if you were moving all out of sudden, the whole process would go very quickly. That is why people usually do not have time to remember all the details of the relocation process and the names of the movers who helped them. Nobody has time to remember personal names and every single detail. If you come across language that is very descriptive and full of unnecessary details, you are probably reading a fake moving review. For example, which of the two following sentences sounds more natural to you?

  • Michel and Anthony were extremely friendly and careful when transferring my belongings from the basement into their big orange moving truck; or
  • The guys were careful with my belongings, everything went great.

It goes without saying that the second statement sounds more natural, while the first one obviously looks like an overly descriptive online review, thus, a fake one. If you notice that somebody is trying too hard to make something sound great, it is probably a fraud. So, even though you are in a hurry, and you need to find a moving company as soon as possible, do not be fooled by overly descriptive and positive reviews.

Things Are Just Too General

Another thing to pay attention to are moving reviews which are just too general. Most fake moving reviews have that in common. Those are reviews and comments which are very general and broad, and which offer no specific details about the move. And how could they when the relocation process never happened anyway? So, while reading the comments section and trying to spot a fake moving review, ignore the ‘great’, ‘amazing’ and ‘wow’ comments. What you need to focus on are the specific details that show that the move actually happened. Things like date and time, problems and solutions, and so on. Actual details and substantial information are of great importance when trying to look for an honest moving review and thus stay away from a fake moving review.

A calculator, ready for your moving estimate

Non-Binding Moving Estimate vs. Binding Moving Estimate

There are a lot of things that you need to worry about when moving. You need to think about packing your stuff, setting up new utilities, the mountains of paperwork… The list can just go on and on! However, do not worry! Even though this may seem like an impossible task, it’s not hard to do. Finding a good moving company and planning your move in advance can not only speed up the process but also reduce stress during a move. However, for a first-time mover, it may be frightening to meet with phrases that pop up so often during this process that might not mean much to you. Learning them is a big part of a job and, today, we are here to help you with that. In this article, we talk about the differences between a binding and a non-binding moving estimate.

What is a moving estimate?

The first thing you might be curious about is what even a moving estimate is. Of course, the term might seem pretty obvious. It is a number the movers will give you when talking about the cost of your move. But what will an estimate include? How do you work it out with a moving company? At what time during the moving process does the estimate happen?

a measuring tape and a weight scale
Many factors will influence the estimate.

Well, first, the moving estimate should happen before you settle on a moving company. A representative should visit your home and take a look at your items. If they insist to do this over the phone, you should beware. It is one of the red flags of working with bad movers. Think about it – how can anyone decide how much to charge you based solely on a phone call.

The estimate, however, can include many things:

  • Depending on the length of your move, the estimator might be looking at the weight of your items or their size.
  • They might be checking the distance you are traveling as well as similar smaller services.
  • Finally, a moving estimate can also include additional costs that make the move difficult – stairs, elevators, tricky driveways, etc.
  • Sometimes, movers might also be charging per mover per hour.

You can read all of this in a document that the estimator will give you. Make sure you carefully look over it and see everything that is included – it can tell you a lot about the moving company. However, the most important thing to check is whether it is a binding or a non-binding moving estimate.

What is a non-binding moving estimate?

A non-binding moving estimate is a written estimate of the moving costs. It tells you what the estimator thinks your items will weigh and how much they will charge you. The first thing to realize about a non-binding moving estimate is what the name itself implies – this number can change over time. If you add extra stuff to your move, or if the moving condition somehow changes, then the movers can change their prices. However, they will usually give you a number that they will not surpass if nothing changes.

A person signing a paper.
Read everything before you sign it.

However, this is not a bid or a legal document. Because of this, the moving company cannot charge you for making it. Nevertheless, you should request the estimate in writing. The piece of paper needs to have your items written down. The services that your moving company offers to you need to be on it as well. The prices of these services need to be on separate forms called service order and the bill of lading. Remember not to sign these until the amounts the movers will charge for each form are there.

This estimate should be attached to your bill of lading – and the company needs a copy of it as well. A thing to keep in mind is that they will be able to refuse to move you if they think you are moving more items than the estimate notes. When it comes to any additional services, your movers need your permission for them before providing them – even when moving to another country. You will have an hour to decide upon service and make a deal about its costs.

What about binding moving estimates?

On the other hand, we have a binding moving estimate. Unlike the non-binding one, the movers may charge you when making a binding estimate. This is because after you get it, the company will not be able to charge you more, even when you are sending goods overseas, if your package exceeds the estimated weight.

A knot - just like a moving estimate ties the movers to it.
The movers are tied to their binding moving estimate.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Association has made a list of rules about binding moving estimates in order to make long-distance moves easier for everyone. First, the estimate needs to list what you are moving as well as what services the company will give you. If you have extra services – like flight charges, for example – then the company needs to bill you after the move, separately. They cannot do it when charging you while delivering your items. This is also the time they will charge you for the move – and you agreed to it by signing the estimate.

There are a couple of similarities between the estimates, though. First, the movers need to attach a copy of the estimate to the bill of lading. You will also get your own copy of the moving estimate, and it needs to clearly state that it is a binding one. Again, the movers can refuse to move your items if they believe you have more than you showed them. However, once they load up their truck, they agree to the estimate – and will charge you what it says on the document.

a row of trucks on a parking lot

Moving Red Flags: 5 Signs You’re Working With Bad Movers

When you decide to relocate to a new home, what’s the first thing you do? That’s right – start thinking about hiring a moving company. And this is definitely the right thing to do. Moving can get pretty complicated and frustrating, so having professionals by you side helps. When your relocation is handled by people who know what they’re doing, that definitely reduces stress during the move. On the other hand, though – you need to know how to avoid bad and fraudulent moving companies. Which is why we’ve decided to give you a few tips on recognizing the signs you’re working with bad movers!

Negative online reviews are among the signs you’re working with bad movers

Okay, so you decide to hire a moving company to help you out with your relocation. How do you go about doing that and finding the right company? Obviously, in this day and age – you utilize the power of the Internet! These days, you can use platforms like Yelp to find reviews on every service provider you can think of, so why not moving companies? And obviously, what you’re looking for here is positive customer feedback. Sure, some people leave bad online reviews for no reason, or for petty things, but if a company has consistently bad reviews across the board, that’s one of the signs you’re working with bad movers.

Still, make sure not to rush to any conclusions. And, in this case, we primarily mean not reaching a conclusion solely based on a numbered grade, or a low star review. Make sure to actually read the experiences people have had with any particular company. That way, not only will you know if their experiences are useful for your situation, but you’ll also know what to avoid in the future.

a laptop on a table, where you can recognize signs you're working with band movers
Make sure to read online reviews before choosing a moving company!

A lack of transparency

Of course, simply looking at online reviews is not enough, in most cases. If you want to check out any trace of signs you’re working with bad movers, you have to go a bit deeper. And bear in mind, this is true regardless of what kind of moving service you’re looking for. Even if you are looking for storage solutions, for example, and not a full-fledged relocation, you should still be careful. And one of the biggest red flags when it comes to moving companies is a lack of transparency of information on them.

So, first and foremost, check to see if the company that you’ll potentially hire is registered at all. Trust us, this is crucial; the first thing any reputable movers would do is register their company. And this is important for you as well because that’s your only guarantee that your items will be relocated safely to your desired destination.

Their demeanor is sketchy

Let’s face it, when it comes to hiring someone to do a job for you, there’s one thing that’s absolutely crucial – first-hand contact. Sure, you can do plenty of research online, and you can ask around all you want, but at the end of the day, there’s really nothing that’s more important than your own personal impression. That’s one of the main ways you’ll spot signs you’re working with bad movers.

So, to surmise – don’t forget to interview your potential movers thoroughly. Ask them as many questions about their jobs and their methods as you can think of. Reputable, registered movers will have no problems answering all of them – that’s their livelihood, after all. On the other hand, uneasy, unsure answers and sketchy behavior are definite red flags, so stay away from moving teams that exhibit them. If you pass on them, chances are high that you’re avoiding fraudulent movers.

People having a business meeting while drinking ice tea.
Don’t forget to interview your movers thoroughly!

Unrealistic estimates

So, if you’ve talked to a few different moving companies, what’s the next step? Generally, you should examine the moving estimates they’ve given you. Remember – if you want to pick the right moving company, storage unit or furniture movers, it’s important to have plenty of choices available. Which is why we recommend asking for written moving estimates from no less than four or three different movers. This is a move that grants you the opportunity to think long and hard, proceeding to make an informed choice in the end.

But how does a moving estimate help you spot shady movers? Well, once you take a look at all the different services they all offer and their prices, you may notice a large discrepancy somewhere. In comparison with legitimate, reputable movers, ridiculously cheap estimates are one of the signs you’re working for bad movers. Which is why it pays to have a few other estimates to compare them to, in order to know what the market average is.

Suspicious details

While there are many signs you’re working with bad movers that we’ve listed above, these are mostly bigger, major things you should be wary of in general. But just as often, people may run into a fraudulent moving company that’s less obvious in its misgivings. In this case, the devil is in the details, literally. So, be wary of small things like:

  • Lack of a logo – In most cases, reputable movers like to advertise their company with every opportunity, which is only natural because they’ve got nothing to hide. But if you see that a company has unmarked vans and trucks with no clear insignia, that’s something to be wary of.
  • Bad estimate – In most cases, the cost of your relocation will depend on the weight of the shipment. So, before giving an estimate, reputable movers come to your home and do a visual estimate. If they fail to do this, you’re bound to receive an inaccurate estimate.
  • A large deposit – If the moving company asks you to pay a huge deposit upfront, you should know that this isn’t standard practice, and avoiding that company is probably a good idea.
A pile of one-dollar bills.
If movers are asking for a very large deposit – avoid that company!

How to Reduce Stress During a Move

how to reduce stress during a move

Moving can be an exciting time in your life. Or, it can be a negative, unwelcome event. This is especially true if you’re moving to a new city and you’re not sure if you chose the right neighborhood. Moving, in fact, is one of life’s top stressors, right along with a job loss, a major illness, divorce, and death of a loved one.

Luckily, there are lots of ways to reduce the stress of moving. Here are 7 ways to manage your stress before, during, and after you’ve boxed up your whole life and decided to start over.

1.    Outsource and delegate.

As the saying goes, many hands make light work. And when moving, you need as many hands on-board as you can get. Craigslist and TaskRabbit are good online resources that you can use to search for people who can help you pack and move.

Prior to them leaving, request them to help you assemble the furniture and get the big stuff done first.

2.    Create ample time and deadlines.

Time is not always in your control. Sometimes you may need to move last minute when a move has sneaked up on you, and you’ll have to act fast. If it’s possible to plan ahead, allow yourself a couple of weeks. Eight weeks will do!

If you are planning a summer move and/or need to hire movers, then you’ll need even more time. Generally speaking, though, eight weeks are enough to do everything without putting too much stress on yourself.

3.    Protect your valuables.

how to reduce stress during a moveMoving is a major undertaking and in the process, your belongings can easily become damaged. Luckily, there are ways to avoid that.

Below are tips to pack your valuables when moving house.

  • Get sufficient packing supplies. How you pack your valuables determines whether they will remain in one piece during the move or not. Ensure you have enough bubble wrap, packing paper, and boxes.
  • Consider purchasing insurance for your valuable items. Contact your insurance company and ask them if your current home insurance policy covers the relocation of valuables from one point to the next.
  • Make a detailed list of your valuables. Also, keep any accompanying documents like certificates of authenticity, warranty cards, bills, receipts, etc. Don’t also forget to take photos of the items.
  • Pack your valuables safely. You want to invest in high-quality cushioning and protection. Most valuable articles are rather delicate and easily breakable.

4.    Clear out the clutter.

how to reduce stress during a moveDecluttering is a must before moving house. Some of the benefits you’ll get include:

  • Your new home will be easier to organize/clean.
  • You’ll have less to unpack in your new home.
  • Your home will be easier to stage (if you are selling).
  • You’ll save money. The less you have to move, the less it’ll cost to move it.

Before you begin decluttering, have markers, a shredder, and trash bags ready to help with the process. Next, be methodological and start small. Decluttering smaller places first will give you a sense of accomplishment that’ll help you tackle larger tasks later.

As you declutter, keep this quote in mind: “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”

5.    Hire professional movers.

No one really likes packing and lugging around furniture. If your budget allows it, then consider leaving the work to the experts.

Here are good reasons why you should consider moving experts:

  • Professional movers are insured. Having peace of mind that you’re protected by a professional mover’s insurance is priceless.
  • Professional movers have storage facilities. You can rely on them to safeguard your possessions either for short- or long-term durations.
  • They have the vehicles. They supply both workers and drivers as well as trucks of all sizes to fit your needs.
  • They have the right equipment. They arrive armed with labor saving devices like dollies, lifts, and ramps.

6.    Plan the move.

how to reduce stress during a moveCarefully planning can make things go a lot more smoothly. To be efficient, pack your stuff methodically. Move from room-to-room packing everything before proceeding to the next one.

Keep one suitcase for each person. Pack it as if you are going for a vacation, and then pack the rest of your home into boxes. Store the items that you’ll need to immediately access, such as clean socks, underwear, and a toothbrush.

In addition, clearly label each box based on the room it should be deposited to.

7.    Have a backup plan.

Have some options should some things fall out of place. For instance, allow a few days on either end of your move out/move-in day should your moving company not show up or cancel.

Also, keep a short list of back up movers and rental agencies, just in case.

Moving is part thrilling, part awful, always emotionally fraught. Be that as it may, it’s something that most of us will do at some point in our lives. With these tips, you can rest assured that you’ll have a stress-free move when that time comes.

Moving To Guides: Anaheim, CA

Located between Los Angeles and San Diego, sunny Anaheim is a premier business and leisure destination that’s best known as the home of Disneyland.

With more than 336,000 residents, it’s the most populous city in Orange County and the tenth most populous in California.

If you are relocating to Anaheim, Ca, here are some things you will likely want to know:

History

Anaheim was founded by German settlers in 1857, and its name is German for “home by the river.” They first came to the United States during the German Revolution of 1848, and they originally settled in San Francisco. A few years later when fifty of the settlers learned about cheap land that had been part of a Spanish land grant, they decided to move and create their own community that is still thriving more than one hundred years later.

Demographics

The median age of residents is 33.8 years, which is slightly lower than the state’s average of 35.7 years. The median household income is $57,550, and residents are fairly well-educated with 74.6 percent holding a high school diploma or higher.

Cost of Living

The cost of living in Anaheim is three percent higher than the California average and thirty-nine percent higher than the nation’s average.

Top Employers

The city’s top employers are:

Disneyland
Orange County
University of California at Irvine
CKE Restaurant, Inc.
Federal Government
Boeing Aerospace
State of California
Albertson’s
St. Joseph Healthcare System
Tenet Healthcare
Housing Market

The cost of housing in Anaheim is 109 percent higher than the national average, and the median sales price is $553,900. Home values have risen 7.5 percent over the last year, and it’s believed they will rise another 2.9 percent in 2017. The city is currently a strong buyers market as the level of inventory exceeds the demand.

Neighborhoods

Anaheim has several great neighborhoods to call home, including:

Southwest Anaheim – Southwest Anaheim is a great place to live as it is the city’s most walkable neighborhood and it’s home to the Disneyland Resort. The area boasts several shops, restaurants, and transportation options.

Platinum Triangle – As the city’s up and coming neighborhood, Platinum Triangle is currently undergoing redevelopment that includes a commercial and industrial zone, as well as high density housing. The neighborhood is best suited to young professionals with no children.

The Colony – Located in downtown Anaheim, The Colony is a historic part of the city that is also called the Colonial District. Residents enjoy an easy walk to school, restaurants, shops, and recreational opportunities.

Education

Orange Unified School District – School aged children living in Anaheim attend the Orange Unified School District. It consists of twenty-seven elementary schools, three middle schools, and four high schools, several of which have been recognized for their exemplary and quality educational programs by the California State Board of Education.

Higher Education – There are several higher learning institutions within Anaheim including:

West Coast University – Orange County
Westwood College
Southern California Institute of Technology
Bethesda University of California
Brownson Technical School
Everest College
Restaurants

There are a variety of great restaurants, such as:

The Pizza Press – The Pizza Press features a modern twist on its Roaring Twenties decor and delicious pizzas that are prepared in front of guests. Signature options include “The Press Cheese,” “The Chronicle,” and “The Tribune.”

Steakhouse 55 – Awarded four stars by the Orange County Register, Steakhouse 55 is where you can indulge in premium chops, seafood, and prime steaks. It offers an Old Hollywood atmosphere and friendly service, and meals include Cold Water Lobster Tail, Porterhouse Steak, and Prime Rib.

Tortilla Jo’s – Located in Downtown Disney, Tortilla Jo’s is a vibrant restaurant that celebrates the cultural heritage of Mexico. Its main menu includes Shredded Beef Burritos, Seafood Enchiladas, and Gorditas.

When you’re ready to relocate to Anaheim, please contact us. We’ll help you find the right professional movers who will work both quickly and efficiently.

Moving to Oklahoma city

Things to Know When Moving to Oklahoma City, OK

 

Oklahoma City is the largest city in the state of Oklahoma. It is situated nearly in the middle of the state and offers great amenities to its residents. As of July 2015, over 631,000 people called the city home. The metropolitan area was home to nearly 1.4 million people at this same point in time. If you are considering moving to Oklahoma City , OK, here are some of the things that can help make your time in this city more enjoyable and productive.

Economy

The economy in Oklahoma City, OK, is a strong one. The unemployment rate comes in just under 4%, which is significantly lower than the rest of the nation. Job growth is also a bit higher in Oklahoma City than it is in the rest of the United States, and it is expected to stay that way. The cost of living in Oklahoma City is also fairly reasonable, especially when you compare the city to other major metropolitan areas in the United States.

Housing Market

Over the past year, home values in Oklahoma City have risen nearly 6% and they are expected to rise another 2.5% over the next year. The median home value in the city is $129,400, and the median sales price comes in just under $159,000. While foreclosures are still an issue for the city, the overall foreclosure rate is still lower in Oklahoma City than in the rest of the country.

School Districts

The Oklahoma City Public School District is the largest educational district in the Oklahoma City Metropolitan Area. It is also the largest school district in Oklahoma and has over 46,000 students enrolled in 88 different schools. Currently, there are 55 elementary schools, 17 secondary schools, 4 special centers and 12 charter schools.

The great thing about Oklahoma City Schools is that they have many programs that help students prepare for the next level. For example, the schools offer career and technology services as well as career academies that help students prepare for their adult life. There are also programs that help special needs and gifted students get to the next level academically.

Outdoor Living and Sports

One of the best things about living in Oklahoma City is the access to great outdoor living options as well as sports. One of the favorite sports teams in the city is the Oklahoma City Thunder NBA Professional Basketball team. Since the team came to Oklahoma City, they have been a huge contender for the NBA championship and are a favorite team for those living in this area.

This area of the state is also in a great location to experience some of the fabulous outdoor activities the state has to offer. For example, locals love swimming, camping and hunting at one of the many campgrounds and locations throughout central Oklahoma. There are many businesses in Oklahoma City that can outfit you to enjoy these types of activities, which are favorites of those in the area.

Suburbs and Neighborhoods

Oklahoma City has about 35 different suburbs and neighborhoods to choose from. All are located near enough to the city to enjoy city living, but far enough away to enjoy a slower pace from time to time. Each of these suburbs has their own school districts and amenities. Some of the most popular are Norman, Midwest City, Edmond, and Moore.

Oklahoma City is a beautiful city to move to and it has many amenities. When you are looking for a beautiful afternoon adventure or a night out on the town, don’t forget to check out Bricktown. This is one of the most popular areas in the city for shopping and fine dining as well as other activities.

If you are looking for help making the move to Oklahoma City as smooth as possible, contact us today. We will help get your belongings moved to your new home as efficiently as possible.