Seeking feedback on estimates for NJ to IL move

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jvs205
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Dec 22, 2005 3:30 pm

Seeking feedback on estimates for NJ to IL move

Postby jvs205 » Thu Dec 22, 2005 4:17 pm

Based on recommendations from this message board, I recently got two in-home estimates for an upcoming move from Northern New Jersey to Chicago:

University Van Lines, Rahway, NJ (Atlas) (DOT No. 125550): GNTE estimate for $2,600 based on 2,600 lbs

Colonial, Hackensack, NJ (Mayflower) (DOT No. 125563): non-binding estimate for $2,700 based on 3,500 lbs

Packaging, insurance costs, and fees (i.e. pick-up and hold) for the two estimates are essentially the same. My questions are as follows:

1.) How could two estimates differ so significantly on weight? I showed them the exact same items. The table of measurements for both seems to be the same for the furniture items, but different in the number of boxes they estimate I'll need. (Also, the Colonial estimate used some creative math -- by my calculations, it came out to 3,178 lbs on the table, not 3,500.)

2.) Regardless of who is most accurate on weight, the Colonial estimate is only $100 more even though it estimates 900 lbs more in weight. Can I trust this, especially since the estimate is non-binding? In other words, since University gave me a lower estimate that it is guaranteed not to exceed, is there any reason why I would go with Colonial?

3.) Any other thoughts about whether these estimates sound reasonable and in the right range for a move of this size in the off season?

Any feedback or comments are greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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

Re: Seeking feedback on estimates for NJ to IL move

Postby Diane » Thu Dec 22, 2005 4:35 pm

jvs205 wrote:1.) How could two estimates differ so significantly on weight? I showed them the exact same items. The table of measurements for both seems to be the same for the furniture items, but different in the number of boxes they estimate I'll need. (Also, the Colonial estimate used some creative math -- by my calculations, it came out to 3,178 lbs on the table, not 3,500.)

Moverpros have said here that the weight difference in such cases usually lies in the number of boxes estimated and sometimes the weight of each individual box is also estimated differently on the two quotes. In addition, University may be giving you a higher discount level (should be around 62% at this time of year). Frankly, I would regard it as a red flag if the Colonial sales rep added up the weight wrong. There could be sloppiness in other areas too.
. . . since University gave me a lower estimate that it is guaranteed not to exceed, is there any reason why I would go with Colonial?

Not at all, especially since University usually estimates high. You might end up paying less than the estimate.
Any other thoughts about whether these estimates sound reasonable and in the right range for a move of this size in the off season?

I think University sounds a little high but not alarmingly so, unless the rep figured in the cost of a shuttle at the Chicago end (?). The usual rule of thumb for a shipment your size is $1 per pound coast-to-coast without any additional charges such as shuttles, and you're going only halfway across.


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