MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

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Elletrod
Posts: 52
Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2006 2:13 am
Location: VIRGINIA (moving from NJ)

MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby Elletrod » Thu Feb 08, 2007 2:00 pm

Finally! Here’s the play by play of my move from Edgewater, NJ to Fairfax, VA on Jan. 5 (loading day) and Jan. 9 (delivery day).

DAY BEFORE MOVE - THURSDAY
The day before my move, Jimmy at University Van Lines (Atlas Van Lines), called me to tell me that if I was still interested in witnessing the weighing of the truck that the truck would be at Tullo’s Truck Stop (S. Kearny, NJ) between 8:30 am and 9 am the next morning (Friday – Moving Day).

MOVING OUT DAY – FRIDAY
I arrived at the truck stop at approximately 8:45a. The truck arrived a little after 9a. I was parked amongst a sea of other trucks, but it was quite evident which truck was “my” truck. The truck, which I believe was a 24 footer, was clearly marked with the Atlas Van Lines name on it and trademark red, white and blue colors. The name of the agent, University Van Lines, was also printed clearly on the truck as was the US DOT number and University’s “An Educated Move” logo.
I witnessed the weighing and the ‘head mover’ gave me the official tare weight receipt. The gross weight of the ‘empty’ truck was 17940 lbs.
(Note: Empty signifies that there was no other furniture from a previous move, but the truck did have dollies, ladder, hand trucks, pads, etc. It’s legal to weigh a truck with equipment that will be needed during your move..)

At about 9:45a, the four guys University sent arrived at my old place -Andy (head guy), Danny, Eddie and Miguel. All four men were professional, personable and all worked very diligently and efficiently together. Before they started, the men asked for a tour of my 1000sq ft 2-bedroom apartment. (My thought was that they needed to asses what items needed to be packed and loaded; what needed to be loaded first or last; and of course how labor intensive the job would be.)

After the mini tour, the men started loading my things around 10:15am. Before each item was packed and loaded, Andy documented any pre-existing marks, nics or scratches on the inventory sheet. It was very interesting to see how they packed each piece of furniture, such as how they individually pad wrapped my dining chairs and leather couch, which they also shrink wrapped. They crated a glass top desk for an extra cost of $115.00 (Note: My glass desk cost about $150.00, so in a way it wasn’t worth it the price. But, the movers wouldn’t take it without it being crated.) I also paid extra to have a few of my wall pictures and a wall mirror boxed. The also boxed our daughter’s queen mattress and box. They shrink wrapped our King mattress and 2 twin boxes. (Andy told me he didn’t have boxes large enough for the mattress and that he’d have them boxed at the warehouse. And he said it would be too difficult for the men to maneuver the twin boxes out of the apartment if they were themselves in boxes.)

After everything was packed and loaded Andy and I did a “walk through” of the apartment to ensure all items that needed to be packed and loaded were. He then gave me all the paperwork, including the bill of lading and inventory sheets – which totaled about 4 1/2 pages. I read through each sheet carefully. Andy was patient with me and didn’t rush me when I was reading the paperwork.
I had several questions and Andy patiently answered each of them, even when I asked twice. The men didn’t cause any damage to the apartment walls or carpeting. The men didn’t take any breaks and I supplied them with Gatorade and donuts. The men finished at about 2:15pm.

At about 2:30p, the truck and I arrived back at the weigh station so that I can again witness the weighing of the truck. But this time my things were on it.
The gross weight of the truck at this time was 22040 lbs. A difference of 4100 lbs. Although I gave them Gatorade and donuts, I also gave each man a $25 tip. I also gave the Andy the directions to my new place in Virginia.

After leaving the weigh station, I called University Van Lines to say how pleased I was with the men and the work they did. I also put in a request to have the same men deliver my things to my new place in Virginia.

DAY BEFORE MOVE-IN DAY – MONDAY
As I requested on my order of service, Monica at University contacted me with the final charges of my move 24 hours before the delivery.
My initial estimate was 5860 lbs at a cost of $3232.00. The final weight was less 1760 lbs of 4100 lbs. Because I got a binding-not-to-exceed estimate (or Atlas Van Lines’ Assure Price Protection or APP) my final cost was $2418.19 for a savings of a little over $800.

Monica also gave me an approximate time of when the truck will be arriving to deliver my things.

Monica told me that it would only be Andy and Danny who would be making the delivery. I told Monica that I was moving into a house “with lots of steps” and that two men would not be enough manpower to deliver my things in a timely manner. She assured me that Andy and Danny were qualified and that it would be fine.

MOVING IN DAY – TUESDAY
Andy gave me a wake up call around 730a. He told me where he was and I told him it would take him about 2 more hours to get to me. When the arrived around 930a, I noticed that instead of two men (Andy and Danny), there were three men (Andy, Danny and Caesar). I was pleased. I guess Monica took my advice about having more than two men move me in.
The men came in and once again asked for a tour of the premises. The men backed the truck up to my front door and got to work immediately. By all accounts the men moved quickly. Things they disassembled in NJ, they reassembled in Va., including our bed, daughter’s bed and couch. They placed all of my furniture exactly how I wanted it arranged in every room in the house. I was extremely pleased when they were able to get our armoire up two flights of narrow stairs into our bedroom. Caesar was pulling the armoire, while Danny and Andy were at the bottom pushing it up. I was impressed with how the men worked together at getting my armoire up the last flight of stairs where at the top the ceiling slants. Andy realized that he needed to at the top where Caesar was to help pull the armoire, so he literally climbed up the railing of the stairs. (I was worried for their well being at that time, because he could fall down one flight). They threw padding over the banister and laid the armoire on it and slid it up into the loft; then they took the armoire through the loft, into a connecting bathroom into our bedroom. AMAZING! They even gave me some decorating tips, suggesting I set my armoire in the corner of my bedroom instead of in front of my bed to allot for more room. It works!

Toward the end of the move, Andy called me to the truck because he discovered a few problems! Our daughter’s floor lamp was broken and our king mattress (the one which Andy shrink wrapped and said he’d have boxed at the warehouse) was ripped at each of the four corners and dirty and the shrink wrap had been removed. After a seemingly smooth move, this discovery obviously angered me. Andy said he had already called his boss (Jim at University) to inform him and that Jim was sending me a claim form in the mail. Andy said the mattress rip must have occurred in the warehouse when the warehouse workers were boxing our mattress.

Despite the damage, the men were awesome! Again Andy, Danny and now Caesar were professional, personable and very funny.
I ordered two large pizzas and drinks for them and gave each man a $40 tip. I would have given them about $60 each, but I did suffer some damage.

A WEEK LATER…
A week later when I was putting my computer together, I noticed the keyboard stand, which is metal, was extremely broken. I could not put my keyboard on it without it sliding down. My assumption is that during the move, the men loaded up boxes on top of the keyboard stand (the top of the desk had been removed and crated.).

CLAIMS:
I put in a claim for the broken floor lamp, ripped mattress, and the broken keyboard stand. I sent the claim form return receipt, although Atlas provided me postage. I have an appointment with the adjuster at the end of February so he/she can access my claims. I will report back when my claims are complete and closed.

If you have any questions leave me a message.


=============================================
ELLETROD’s ADVICE:
READ AND UNDERSTAND the movers’ rights and responsibilities handbook BEFORE YOUR MOVE. You can obtain a copy from any mover who comes for a free in-home estimate or you can get it online at www.protectyourmove.gov. The booklet gives you a lot of important and detailed information about what can and can’t happen during a move and most importantly your rights.

PUT A LOCATION ON ALL BOXES: If you’re moving boxes, mark on the box where each item needs to go. This will enable the movers to place each box where it needs to be and will save you a lot of trouble from moving boxes up and downstairs when you’re unpacking.

TAKE AS MUCH TIME AS NEEDED TO READ AND UNDERSTAND all the paperwork that you get from your mover – from the estimate to the order of service to the bill of lading to your inventory sheets. ASK A LOT OF QUESTIONS AND THEN ASK MORE QUESTIONS!

HAVE SOMEONE PRESENT WITH YOU DURING LOADING AND UNLOADING DAY. I had my sister with me on both occasions so when I was dealing with one person, she had her eye out on the other guys in the house. We also occasionally took turns to head outside to make sure that everything they were taking out was being loaded onto the truck. MAKE SURE: Make sure you add the person who will be there with you during the unloading of your things to the order of service.

TIPPING: Give each individual person their own tip. DO NOT give it to the ‘head’ person. My opinion: You don’t have to provide food and drink for your movers AND give them a tip. You can do either or OR both. I did both because I thought my movers were excellent.

WALKTHROUGHS: Make sure you and the head mover complete a walkthrough of your home after the men have packed and loaded the truck. This should ensure that all of the items that needed to packed and loaded were done so.

DIRECTIONS & PHONE NUMBER TO NEW PLACE: Before they drive off, give the movers your address and phone number to your new place, include a cell number. Also give the mover directions how to get to your new address.

WORKMAN’S COMPENSATION: Make sure you get a copy of your mover’s workman’s comp insurance card.

CLAIM FORMS: Most companies should have their claims forms accessible online. Atlas does. When you return your claim form to your mover, send it return receipt, even if the movers provide postage.

EXAMINE YOUR DELIVERED GOODS: I believe you have 90 days to be put in a claim for any damaged items during your move; therefore, take a few hours to examine all of your goods to make sure that nothing was damaged.

IN-HOME ESTIMATES: Invite no more than 4 potential movers for an in-home estimate. I had 7 in-home estimates and at the end, I was more confused than when I started.

BIND OR NOT TO BIND: Do your research and find out what type of estimate is best for you. If a company does not offer the type you are asking for, choose another.

BE AT WEIGHING OF TRUCK BEFORE AND AFTER
If at all possible, you should witness the weighing of the truck before and after weighing. If you can't have a friend go.
"We are our worst critics...so listen and take heed!"

MusicMom
Posts: 19323
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 11:51 am
Location: DC Metro

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby MusicMom » Thu Feb 08, 2007 2:11 pm

Thank you, Elle. Good advice!

farrah7031
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Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:08 am
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby farrah7031 » Thu Feb 08, 2007 2:22 pm

Wow, what a great step by step review of the process. It helped me understand even more what's "supposed" to happen with a good move. :) Let us know how the claim process goes.

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

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby Diane » Thu Feb 08, 2007 10:36 pm

Thanks so much, Elle, for taking the time to post all this. It's disappointing that after all that, the warehouse workers didn't adequately protect your king mattress, but we've heard this many, many times. At least the damage will be easily covered with a mattress pad and fitted sheet. All in all, it sounds as if University did a great job and I'll add your favorable review to their review thread.

Michael
Posts: 3255
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2003 7:55 pm
Location: Charlotte, NC

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby Michael » Sun Feb 11, 2007 3:11 pm

Great info Elle, just one correction;

Legally you have 9 months to file a claim. Not 90 days. But of course the sooner you file the more favorable the outcome.

Enjoy your new home.
Michael
************************************

Forget yourself for others and the others will never forget

Elletrod
Posts: 52
Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2006 2:13 am
Location: VIRGINIA (moving from NJ)

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby Elletrod » Mon Feb 12, 2007 6:15 am

Oops!!! Michael, thanks for correcting me.

And thank you so much for your help!



-Elletrod
"We are our worst critics...so listen and take heed!"

/dev/toaster
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Feb 06, 2007 5:04 pm

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby /dev/toaster » Tue Feb 13, 2007 1:23 pm

Do you have a contact number for them ? I want to give them a call for an estimate, but can't find their number.

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

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby Diane » Tue Feb 13, 2007 1:53 pm

732-882-1060

/dev/toaster
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Feb 06, 2007 5:04 pm

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby /dev/toaster » Tue Feb 13, 2007 2:03 pm

Perfect thanks much, got an appointment setup for Thursday :D

Elletrod
Posts: 52
Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2006 2:13 am
Location: VIRGINIA (moving from NJ)

Elletrod - MOVING AGAIN!!!!

Postby Elletrod » Mon Feb 25, 2008 5:22 pm

Hello MovingScam!

I'm back and after only a year since my last move from Edgewater, NJ to Fairfax, VA, I'm moving again....
We purchased a house and it will be in April/May timeframe...

Sorry I never got back with a review on my claims process on University Van Lines (NJ), but let's put this way....

I'm going to be calling University Van Lines (though, they are in NJ) to see if they could move me again. It was GREAT!
The claims process was a breeze...and I got fully compensated for my loss/damages.

I'm moving from Fairfax, VA to Aldie, VA...about a 12-mile hike.

Hey Michael...hope you're well.


How
"We are our worst critics...so listen and take heed!"

joesgarage39
Posts: 137
Joined: Tue Feb 12, 2008 10:32 am
Location: Austin,Tx

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby joesgarage39 » Mon Feb 25, 2008 7:37 pm

Unless they have a truck available in the area the day of the move they will probably not do your local move. Also I am not sure of commonwealth transportation regualtions and it may be that they cannot perform the service. If you are looking for a quality mover in the NorVa area to perform the service call Hilldrup. You are not going to find anyone better to handle your goods in that area. They are highly recognized for their level of customer service worldwide.

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

Re: MOVING REVIEW OF UNIVERSITY VAN LINES NJ (ATLAS VAN LINES).

Postby Diane » Tue Feb 26, 2008 4:56 pm

Thanks, Elle, for updating us on the claims outcome with University.

Besides the suggestion of Hilldrup, which I agree with, you might want to take a look at the reviews of VA companies in the Superlist linked to below my name (there are two parts). Standouts there include Victory Van, Von Paris, Hilldrup, and - among the independents - JK and Beltway.
Diane
Check out domestic companies on this thread. Click here for a detailed, authoritative article on international moving.


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