Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

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LJeanne

Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

Postby LJeanne » Sat Jul 08, 2006 12:22 pm

I'm looking for advice in choosing a mover for my family's move from Chicago to Columbus Ohio. I chose companies to get estimates after reading a couple of very helpful threads on this website. Prager (North American) wouldn't give me a binding estimate because we have stuff in separate offices that we want moved, which the estimator hadn't viewed. He gave me a nice short delivery window, though, of two days, two days after loading. (I'm very concerned with a short window, since we have two toddlers.) Westerberg (Atlas) was about $1000 higher, but I was impressed with their policy of having one guy in charge of packing, driving, and unloading. Their estimator gave me a not to exceed estimate and a 5 day window, but said he might be able to narrow the window, after checking with some other office, if I call him up and say I want to go with them if the window is shorter. Then I called a local mover, USA moving. They have zero complaints with the BBB, and a local consumer award. They can deliver the day after they load. They mostly do local, but their guy told me that they ship to other midwestern states about 3 times a month. The estimate was not to exceed for the moving, but just a guess for the packing. The format of it was a bit loose.
Prager and Westerberg both look good on the BBB too, though Prager has one complaint that was never replied to, which is slightly concerning. Only two complaints in 36 mo., though.
Thanks much for any advice! I have Glen Ellyn (Mayflower) coming out on Monday, but I doubt I'll go with them and I want to decide on Monday.

BigLeeCalif
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Location: Escondido, California

Re: Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

Postby BigLeeCalif » Sat Jul 08, 2006 12:44 pm

Be careful when dealing with any company with USA in the name.. That is a known tactic of scammers, making use of a patriotic sounding name to fleece the public.

I did find a USA Moving in PA, but they only have 2 trucks and 2 drivers. That company has only been around for 2 years with FMCSA authority. And with 2 trucks and drivers they will probably broker your shipment to another company.

What is your issue with Glen Ellyn Mayflower? They are one of the respected Mayflower agents in that area. I have worked with them and met many of their drivers coming in and out of California.

Where is your second location in relation to the first. Prager should have been able to see both, unless the second is not near. Either way, expect to pay for extra pickup.

Not familiar with Westerberg but if they say one guy doing all, it must be a self haul.
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

Diane
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Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

Postby Diane » Sat Jul 08, 2006 1:12 pm

LJeanne,

It sounds to me as if you have three good choices here. It seems as if all three companies are going to do a self-haul.

Lee, Nelson Westerberg is a reputable Atlas agent and USA Moving & Storage in Skokie with MC #297382 is OK in my opinion. I would only be a little concerned about not having a cap on the packing expenses with them since a couple of people have said that they're pricey. I agree with Lee that Prager should have been able to view the second pickup location in order to give you a Not to Exceed estimate.
Diane
Check out domestic companies on this thread. Click here for a detailed, authoritative article on international moving.

BigLeeCalif
Posts: 4668
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 5:59 pm
Location: Escondido, California

Re: Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

Postby BigLeeCalif » Sat Jul 08, 2006 1:24 pm

Diane I know you said USA looked ok...

The reason I didn't see it by name on saferweb is I did USA Moving, when it shows as U.S.A.

I am concerned about their driver out of service ratio though.. They show 3 driver inspections, with 2 placed out of service, for a 66.7% out of service, as opposed to the national average of 6.78%. The inspections are for the 2 yrs ending 7-5-06. They show 6 trucks and 5 drivers... And in 2003 they only show 82,500 miles driven. Divide that by 6 trucks and it comes to a little less than 14,000 miles average per vehicle. I do more than that in my car, and these trucks are usually supposed to be working at least 6 days weekly.

They are legally licensed and insured, so perhaps this short distance of around 360 miles wouldn't be an issue. They are right, though.. That is usually an overnight trip. They might be trying to build a load to go there, but since the distance is so short, they can run that over in a bobtail without having to wait for a return load.
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

Postby Diane » Sat Jul 08, 2006 1:57 pm

I agree with Lee that USA Moving is the most "iffy" of the three. (Its website is www.usamovingandstorage.com.) I am wondering whether you could have a delayed pickup or whether your things might not go directly to destination. They are primarily a local mover and all the good reviews of USA are for local moves, not interstate moves like yours. I would check with Pat McLaughlin at the Illinois Movers' Association (phone number in my summary post linked to below) before going with this company, because there could have been changes since I last wrote about it.
Diane
Check out domestic companies on this thread. Click here for a detailed, authoritative article on international moving.

LJeanne

Re: Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

Postby LJeanne » Sun Jul 09, 2006 4:14 pm

Thanks much for the helpful replies. I don't have any issue with Glen Ellyn Mayflower. And given that I haven't decided yet, I'll listen to their estimate tomorrow. The guy from Westerberg/Atlas suggested that Mayflower in general was declining, but he is a salesman after all. (I was strongly leaning towards Westerberg, but now I see from the list of all reviews that it got one terrible review where it took 15 days for a load to get to Houston. I find that pretty offputting.)
Here's a specific question: If somebody tells me that they guarantee delivery on a certain day, or spread of days, does that actually mean anything? I asked the guy from Prager if delivery during the two day window was guaranteed. He said yes. I asked whether that means that I'd have some legal recourse if it didn't arrive on time. He said he didn't know, because that never happens. Hmm...

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

Postby Diane » Sun Jul 09, 2006 4:38 pm

There is someone who works for Prager who posted here recently as "Mr B" (real name Steve). I've sent him a Private Message inviting him to comment on your question.

Mr B
Posts: 8
Joined: Tue Jun 20, 2006 6:40 pm

Re: Chicago to Ohio move-- advice choosing mover?

Postby Mr B » Mon Jul 10, 2006 6:31 pm

If Prager guarantees delivery dates,it will be there within that window.Prager hauls 90+% of the shipments we book,most exceptions are the Northwest and Colorado which we hand off to North Americans system in many cases.If your shipment doesn't arrive within the window the internal policy is to reimburse hotel expenses up to $75 per night and food expenses up to $25 per day with reciepts.

As for the one unresolved claim with the BBB,we have responded to it numerous times but since we are not a "paying" member they have taken their sweet time.

Best of luck with your move whichever way you decide.


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