*Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

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LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

*Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Thu Nov 15, 2007 9:22 pm

First, I want to thank everyone in the forum for all their input. This website/forum has been a godsend.

I am making a move from the bay area to northern VA. My company is covering the cost of the move, within a budget, and I have been looking at 4 companies for a full move. These companies are:

United Van Lines (Chipman Relocations in Concord)
Mayflower (Caton Moving and Storage, which apparently is the sister company of Chipman)
Wheaton (Da Rosa Moving Services, Tracy)
Bekins (Pacific Storage Company, Stockton)

United Van Lines:
The rep that is working we me is Mike. He is a very pleasant guy and has contacted me on more than one occasion since my on-site estimate. Initially, I had asked for two moves, one small partial move (~ 2100lbs) and a second larger move of my 3BR/2.5Ba house. Mike was very thorough in his estimate. The initial estimate was 2100lbs for $2000 and 9000lbs, including a small Audi TT, for $10100. The cost for the auto was approx. $2500 and was included in the $10100 (this was later reduced to $2100 b/c of a $400 add-on for moving after 1/1/08, which was initially my plan).

Since the intial review, I have made a few reductions in what I'll be taking and combined the move into a single move. I'm waiting for the updated estimate to be sent to me.

Mayflower:
The rep's name was Jerry. He was very professional and very thorough as well. At this time, I also asked him to give me a quote for 2 moves . He evaluated my partial move at 2500lbs with a Non-binding estimate of $2500. The second part of the move was quoted at 9900lbs for a total Non-binding estimate of $10600.

Wheaton:
An agent by the name of Alex came by for Wheaton. From her business card, she is the owner of the local agency. Again, she was very pleasant; a common theme for all the agents when they were trying to win my business. She was less detailed than the previous two agents, but more than acceptable from my point of view. I really enjoyed talking with Alex and the initial quote I received from her was the most competitive on a Total Binding Cost basis, but not on a cost per lb basis. Here I was quoted for 9300lbs plus 3600lbs for the Audi, for a total of 12900lbs at $10500. This is much cheaper than the initial cost from the quotes for the two moves.

Bekin:
A Bekin agent named Clint was supposed to come be the afternoon before. However, I received a phone call 20minutes after he was to arrive that he called in sick and would like to reschedule the next day. I had him arrive at 9am, which he did promptly. He definitely looked like he was under the weather, so i gave him the benefit of the doubt. He was a real decent guy and I enjoyed talking with him. He gave me the impression that he really cared about my shipping experience--again, trying to win my business--but it seemed genuine. He ended up quoting me 13300lbs, including 3310lbs for the Audi. For this, I got a binding estimate of $10400, buy far the best on a per lb basis and the best on a binding $ amount. Bekin also gave me 10 free boxes for having someone come out to the house.

So, what does all this mean? Well, I had intended to go with Bekin after meeting with their rep. I had also noted a mistake on Bekin's quote that would have reduced the binding cost, so the agent was quite thankful to me for that. As I told him, better to be upfront and a straight-shooter, than not.

However, after reading much of the reviews here and on Epinions, I am starting to lean towards United VL. The review of Bekin are not very good and there are atleast more positive reviews of United Van Lines. The single move quote for United came in at 11000lbs and $11500, this includes $470 for Full Coverage Insurance with a $250 deductable and 75k of coverage, which none of the other quotes had yet included. This was a "Not-To-Exceed" quote.

Unless something changes between now and tomorrow, I'll most likely be going with United. All in all, the final decision came down to United's rep seeming like a decent rep, the reviews on epionions and on here, and that the rep has stayed in touch with me over the last couple of weeks since the initial quote.

I'll post here as i go thru the process...

BigLeeCalif
Posts: 4659
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 5:59 pm
Location: Escondido, California

Re: Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby BigLeeCalif » Thu Nov 15, 2007 10:39 pm

When are you moving? Did any of the reps explain any of the changes if your move is taking place after the first of January 08.

Chipman Concord, and Caton are in the same building. If I'm thinking of the Jerry I knew, his name was Jerry Robinson. I forget Mike's last name, but they are both capable.

You can beat the van line price of moving an auto if you ship it separately with an auto transporter.
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

Re: Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Thu Nov 15, 2007 11:32 pm

We are moving the last week of November. Mike from United did explain that there was going to be some added charges for moves after January 1st, 2008.

I was hoping to move the Audi in a covered enclosure so I was considering shipping with the house movers, but I think I'm going to try ProStar Auto Transport based on the comments I've seen here. The open dates for shipping didn't match up between my schedule and Golden Key Express.

LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

Re: Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Fri Nov 16, 2007 10:01 am

Anyone have experience with Bekins (Pacific Storage Company, Stockton)?

farrah7031
Posts: 4619
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:08 am
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby farrah7031 » Fri Nov 16, 2007 10:13 am

From our Superlist:

--Pacific Storage (Bekins) in Stockton.
Good comments by industry professionals. It has had 3 complaints with the BBB over the past 36 months as of 10/07. However, "Cyrus" posted that according to the California, PUC, the company had 2 complaints in 2004, 1 in 2003, and 6 in 2002 (i.e. 9 over the past three years):
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 7997#27997
We also have two bad reports on moves booked by Pacific Storage. One bad report by "Steve" on a CA to FL move mentioned an inaccurate estimate and a bad claims experience with Bekins Van Lines:
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 1556#41556 (interstate)
The other bad report is rather vague but it mentions damage and a bad claims experience for an apparently interstate move:
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... =2448#2448
One person ("Wanda") said that she was put on hold forever by their phone system when she tried to get an estimate, so she gave up:
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3143

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

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby Diane » Fri Nov 16, 2007 10:41 am

For enclosed auto transport, based on reviews here and elsewhere, I think DeMoise is very good. See this post -
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 7641#77641
I know that ProStar uses them as a carrier but you can also book them directly.

LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Sat Nov 17, 2007 10:43 am

I have decided to go with United Van Lines (Chipman Relocation, 5060 Forni Drive, Ste.C, Concord, CA 94520 Agent: Mike) for a total "Not-to-Exceed" price of $9500 with the auto not included. This is a full pack.

I certainly hope it goes smoothly. This has been stressful.

As for the auto move, i'm going with ProStar broker, b/c I couldn't match dates for pickup/delivery with Golden Key or Demoines.

Anybody have a suggestion one way or the other for paying by CC in full for the auto at pickup or paying $200deposit/car at pickup and balance at delivery?

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

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby Diane » Sat Nov 17, 2007 11:15 am

Regarding payment, as long as ProStar doesn't care, I don't think it matters. You've made good choices, and thanks for all the detail about the moving companies you considered. Please keep us posted. I'm interested in what company ProStar uses and how much you are paying for the auto move. I notice that (subtracting $9500 from $11500) Chipman was apparently going to charge $2000 to move the car.

LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Sat Nov 17, 2007 11:30 am

I'll keep you posted. The ~ $2000 for the car was only slightly more than some other estimates I received early on for covered transport. In the end, I decided on ProStar, open carrier, for:

F150 Supercrew (no add-ons) $1550
Acura MDX $1450
Audi TT $1350

Sandy at ProStar was very helpful in trying to accommodate my move dates.

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

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby Diane » Sat Nov 17, 2007 12:00 pm

Is the same carrier going to haul all three cars, and do you know its name? Just curious - I am sure they would put you with a good company.

LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Sat Nov 17, 2007 12:39 pm

I don't have the details yet, but the F150 and the Audi are going at the same time, so I am assuming ProStar will put them with the same carrier. The Acura is going later, so it probably won't be the same carrier. I'll let you know the name when i find out.

LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Fri Nov 23, 2007 8:16 pm

Ok, I just received confirmation for the auto move pickup. I was given a window of 11/26-11/28 by ProStar Auto. I just received a call from the carrier today, Pioneer Auto Express, that they will be here Monday morning at 8am to load my F150 and my Audi TT.

I am told that both vehicles will be picked up and transported to LA for loading onto an 18 wheeler. Dispatch name for NorCal to LA is Harry and the driver is Mr. O.

LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Mon Nov 26, 2007 3:21 pm

Pioneer Auto Express came today to pick up the F150 and the Audi TT. Andy Oh was the driver and he showed up at ~ 7:30am for the scheduled 8am pickup.

We both inspected the cars, taking pictures. I had also taken digital and 35mm (the ProStar contract states 35mm film only, so i picked up a disposable 35mm camera) pictures the day before.

Together we noted any paint chips, scratches, etc. and documented them on the bill of lading. He loaded them onto a 3 car carrier. The Bill of Lading did have an incorrect phone number at the destination that i had to correct. Address was correct and the backup number was correct.

Its a bit nerve racking, but at least the cars are on their way and its one less thing that has to get done for the move. I'll keep you posted. Thanks.

LASpirit
Posts: 11
Joined: Thu Nov 15, 2007 6:28 pm
Location: Northern CA

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby LASpirit » Tue Nov 27, 2007 7:52 pm

The driver for United Van Lines is Gary McConnell. Apparently he was named Household Goods Super Van Operator of the Year by AMSA.

farrah7031
Posts: 4619
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:08 am
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Re: *Moving from NorCal to Northern VA

Postby farrah7031 » Tue Nov 27, 2007 8:01 pm

You're getting the rockstar treatment! :thumbsup:


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