**Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

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vagabond123
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Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:50 am

**Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby vagabond123 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:28 am

Ok, I have read a lot about this subject and looked at many reviews across the internet. It seems that one finds more bad reviews than good reviews probably due to satisfied customers continuing on with their lives and not bothering writing about the good service they received. Every time I seemed to have found a good company, a bunch of terrible reviews turned out elsewhere.

Anyways, I have a one large bedroom with a grand piano. For the grand piano, I'm going to have professional movers come to my apartment and take pack the legs and prepare the piano for moving (padding it). I am then going to have the piano mover by the "regular" moving company. Other piano movers are going to assemble it on the other side. For this, I consulted with the sales person who sold me the piano and she has been quite informative and helpful about it.

Now, I did receive some quotes over the phone ranging from as low as $2,300 (with a $400 piano moving fee which sounded fishy) up to $4,000. An Allied agent came to my house and performed and estimate. It ended with about 4,600 lbs. and nearly $6,000. However, he did state that their regular truck won't fit into the street and they'll have to use a shuttle in LA as well as in NYC which is going to add to the costs. I think this is too expensive.

I decided that I cannot load/unload stuff and have to have full service movers, especially due to the piano.

After having read many reviews, I decided to call the following companies (I have yet to do so):
* Delancey Street Foundation Movers: (323) 890-2300
* Moovers Inc. CA: (888) 858-6668
* Atlas World Group (800) 638-9797
* United (800) 948-4885
* Mayflower

I should always:
* Make sure an in house inspection/estimate is made.
* Have as much as I can in writing.
* No cubic feet jargon should be used in estimate
* No upfront paying of full or part of the service (apart perhaps from something symbolic like $100 deposit or the likes)
* Have "Binding Not to Exceed estimate" or similar.
* NEVER use brokers. Only deal with the company directly (they may have local agents, naturally).

My questions are:
* Have I made a good research? Are the above mentioned company reputable in your opinion?
* Any special things to note about the piano?
* If price can change according to weight (depends on the agreement), what proof do I have about it? Should there be a formal report from a weighing station?

Thanks!

ArchieWhite
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Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 11:38 am

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby ArchieWhite » Thu Jun 25, 2009 11:00 am

You have done your homework.....those movers you listed will be fine, they will compete on price and service and any of those can do a good job. Moving is not easy, for you or the movers, and it might not be perfectly done, no matter who you choose, but all of those are professional, well run companies, and are not scammers.

report back when more info is known.

rydog444
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Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby rydog444 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 12:23 pm

Couple things:

If you are paying by credit card, expect your mover to charge your credit card before they load, usually anywhere from 3 days before to day of load. You can avoid having to do this by electing to pay by any other method.

Every mover uses cubic feet. It just has nothing to do with the way you are charged when you are dealing with a legit mover.
My job is to give the best domestic and international moving services to my corporate clients by using the best movers in the world, regardless of vanline affiliation.

vagabond123
Posts: 39
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:50 am

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby vagabond123 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 3:03 pm

rydog444 wrote:Couple things:

If you are paying by credit card, expect your mover to charge your credit card before they load, usually anywhere from 3 days before to day of load. You can avoid having to do this by electing to pay by any other method.

Every mover uses cubic feet. It just has nothing to do with the way you are charged when you are dealing with a legit mover.

Well, if things go bad, at least with a credit card I can always dispute the transaction. But I'll ask about form of payments beforehand.

About cubic feet, you mean that the final charge should be based on weight rather than volume? I read some posts saying that any company providing estimates based on cubic feet should go in the "NO" list. Perhaps I misunderstood but I would greatly appreciate it if you can provide some more details on this. Thanks.

EastCoastMover
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Location: Indiana

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby EastCoastMover » Thu Jun 25, 2009 5:28 pm

what ry means is you will see cubic feet mentioned in all moving transactions..we need this to determine how much of the truck your goods will use up.. also we use cubic footage in our estimatiion formula... however a legit mover will base their price on weights not cubes..you may see cubes mentioned on the cube sheet but in all dealings that pertain to pricing,only accept estimates based on weight...

vagabond123
Posts: 39
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:50 am

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby vagabond123 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 6:33 pm

EastCoastMover wrote:what ry means is you will see cubic feet mentioned in all moving transactions..we need this to determine how much of the truck your goods will use up.. also we use cubic footage in our estimatiion formula... however a legit mover will base their price on weights not cubes..you may see cubes mentioned on the cube sheet but in all dealings that pertain to pricing,only accept estimates based on weight...

Ok, thanks.

Now, on another note, there are a few things I'm a little confused about. There are some major companies such as Allied, Mayflower, United, etc.
And they work with local agents. However, the agents belong to an agency with a totally different name. How exactly does this work?

There is also Atlas Van Lines, United Van Lines, a lot of other XXX Van Lines. For example, I scheduled an estimate for next week with "Andy's Transfer & Storage". On their web site it reads "North American - an agent for North American Van Lines". I find all of this a little confusing and I would like to understand more so that I won't be making arrangements with subcontractors or brokers.

Rick
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Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby Rick » Thu Jun 25, 2009 7:00 pm

Removed
Last edited by Rick on Thu Nov 11, 2010 12:10 am, edited 1 time in total.

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cnoblit
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Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby cnoblit » Thu Jun 25, 2009 7:07 pm

It's really quite simple: when a move takes place within a state (New York State to New York State for example) the "little name" mover operates as itself and moves your shipment under the operating authority granted to the "little name" mover by the local governing state authority (the NYS Department of Transportation in the case of New York State). These state-to-state moves are called "intrastate" moves. However, when your move across state lines the move is generally performed under the operating authority of the "big name" (the national van line brand name) which is granted authority by the Federal Department of Transportation. I say "generally" because many smaller moving companies are not affiliated with a big national "van line" brand name and these small companies often operate under there own Federal Department of Transportation authority for moves that cross state lines (which are called "interstate" moves).

Furthermore, it is worth mentioning that the quality of services between different agents of the same van line brand name can vary greatly. Most van line agents are independently owned and operated. The American consumer tends to view the van line national brands as they would McDonalds, and certainly the quality control exercised by an organization such as McDonalds is extraordinary. But that's not always the case with national van lines where (sometimes) the quality differential between ABC Movers and XYZ Movers (both agents for BigGreatVanLines, Inc.) can be dramatic. While all of the national brands attempt to address quality control with various "Quality Programs," the nature of the agent/van line agency agreement...and the nature of the relocation industry...sometimes allows for significant differences between agents from the same van line.

As a result, a customer who had a great experience with BigGreatVanLines, Inc. some years ago...but who had a bad experience with BigGreatVanLines, Inc. some years later...will ask "what happened to BigGreatVanLines, Inc.!!!?" Well...nothing happened...it's just that the customer chose a good BigGreatVanLines agent 10 years ago and a not so good BigGreatVanLines agent for the latter move. What's a consumer to do? That's simple: do research on the quality of the individual van lines agent...not just the big national brand. Which leads us to the conclusion that a moving job is not a hamburger.
Christopher Noblit
Professional Mover

EastCoastMover
Posts: 173
Joined: Wed Nov 16, 2005 1:48 pm
Location: Indiana

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby EastCoastMover » Thu Jun 25, 2009 7:16 pm

but everyone wants a double whopper for the price of a whopper jr :wink:

vagabond123
Posts: 39
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:50 am

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby vagabond123 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:09 pm

Rick wrote:Seems that your willingness to invest so much in special handling for the grand makes that your pride and joy.

Splitting responsibility for disassembling, wrapping, tranportation, and reassembling the piano between three separate parties could complicate your ability to file a claim for damage against any of them because of the segmented service.

Most van operators and agents for national van lines have experience handling all type of piano's. You might want to make your agent selection on who has the most piano handling expertise and let the mover handle the entire move.

Not so much. However, I used to have an upright piano and the pedal got bent on a local move. The piano technician commented on the bad way they probably used the dolly and he was right.

I spoke with the manager of the piano store I bought the piano from. She was very helpful when she sold me the piano and was very helpful about tips of moving it (she being a piano owner for decades on herself and moving a lot). I do not want to repeat the experience with the upright piano with the grand piano. Every moving company will say they can move a piano. However, there are movers who can move a piano and there are movers that know how to move it.

vagabond123
Posts: 39
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:50 am

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby vagabond123 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:10 pm

cnoblit wrote:It's really quite simple: when a move takes place within a state (New York State to New York State for example) the "little name" mover operates as itself and moves your shipment under the operating authority granted to the "little name" mover by the local governing state authority (the NYS Department of Transportation in the case of New York State). These state-to-state moves are called "intrastate" moves. However, when your move across state lines the move is generally performed under the operating authority of the "big name" (the national van line brand name) which is granted authority by the Federal Department of Transportation. I say "generally" because many smaller moving companies are not affiliated with a big national "van line" brand name and these small companies often operate under there own Federal Department of Transportation authority for moves that cross state lines (which are called "interstate" moves).

Furthermore, it is worth mentioning that the quality of services between different agents of the same van line brand name can vary greatly. Most van line agents are independently owned and operated. The American consumer tends to view the van line national brands as they would McDonalds, and certainly the quality control exercised by an organization such as McDonalds is extraordinary. But that's not always the case with national van lines where (sometimes) the quality differential between ABC Movers and XYZ Movers (both agents for BigGreatVanLines, Inc.) can be dramatic. While all of the national brands attempt to address quality control with various "Quality Programs," the nature of the agent/van line agency agreement...and the nature of the relocation industry...sometimes allows for significant differences between agents from the same van line.

As a result, a customer who had a great experience with BigGreatVanLines, Inc. some years ago...but who had a bad experience with BigGreatVanLines, Inc. some years later...will ask "what happened to BigGreatVanLines, Inc.!!!?" Well...nothing happened...it's just that the customer chose a good BigGreatVanLines agent 10 years ago and a not so good BigGreatVanLines agent for the latter move. What's a consumer to do? That's simple: do research on the quality of the individual van lines agent...not just the big national brand. Which leads us to the conclusion that a moving job is not a hamburger.


Are the agents just estimators or they have their own crews? When you finally sign an agreement, who is the company you sign it with? Aren't agencies act like subcontractors?

BigLeeCalif
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Location: Escondido, California

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby BigLeeCalif » Thu Jun 25, 2009 9:54 pm

Scam companies can give you a cubic ft estimate based on ex. 100 cu ft, and then the driver comes out, and says its going to take 500 cu ft.
The average shipper, not knowing visually what 500 cu ft vs 100 cu ft is, is pretty much stuck.

Legitimate moving companies will take the cubic footage, translate it into weight, and give you the estimate based on that weight. Dispatchers want to see the cubic footage, because then they know how to plan the load for that truck. I listen to my dispatchers all day, and when drivers are away or on the East coast, they don't ask how much weight can they take, they ask them how many feet they have left.

What part of LA are you moving from that might require a shuttle?
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

vagabond123
Posts: 39
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 8:50 am

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby vagabond123 » Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:51 pm

BigLeeCalif wrote:Scam companies can give you a cubic ft estimate based on ex. 100 cu ft, and then the driver comes out, and says its going to take 500 cu ft.
The average shipper, not knowing visually what 500 cu ft vs 100 cu ft is, is pretty much stuck.

Legitimate moving companies will take the cubic footage, translate it into weight, and give you the estimate based on that weight. Dispatchers want to see the cubic footage, because then they know how to plan the load for that truck. I listen to my dispatchers all day, and when drivers are away or on the East coast, they don't ask how much weight can they take, they ask them how many feet they have left.

What part of LA are you moving from that might require a shuttle?

I'm moving from Studio City. I live in a big apartment complex. While a "normal" size truck can fit in the driveway or may find parking on the street, the Allied agent told me their shipping everything in a "BIG" truck which can't make it in the driveway and won't be able to find parking anywhere near on the street.

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cnoblit
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Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby cnoblit » Fri Jun 26, 2009 8:24 am

vagabond123 wrote:...Every moving company will say they can move a piano. However, there are movers who can move a piano and there are movers that know how to move it.


Read this and you can tell them :wink:

How To Move a Baby Grand Piano
Christopher Noblit
Professional Mover

BigLeeCalif
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Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 5:59 pm
Location: Escondido, California

Re: Moving from Los Angeles to New York (Manhattan)

Postby BigLeeCalif » Fri Jun 26, 2009 9:14 am

I can see where a shuttle would be needed in Studio City. I was up there a couple of weeks ago, and it reminded me of Berkeley. I saw streets with trees in the middle of turnarounds in apt complexes, and my favorite... at the entrances to complexes, now they put arches with the complex name on them, and they are about 8 - 9 feet tall. Some of them are so low you can't even get a straight truck into.
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain


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