CT to CA

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ct_to_ca
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2006 1:04 pm
Location: west hartford, ct

CT to CA

Postby ct_to_ca » Thu Mar 30, 2006 2:41 pm

We are planning a move from Connecticut to California (LA area). I have in-home estimates from Joyce, Braun Moving (Allied agent), and A Better Way Salka & Sons (North American agent). [WB Meyer never called to schedule the visit, despite two requests by me.] I am deciding between Joyce and Braun as I think Salka did a low ball estimate. Both check out ok with respect to license and insurance. However, Joyce has a 13.8% out of service number for drivers (national average is 6.8%). Is this something to worry about? Also, Connecticut BBB shows 9 complaints against Joyce in the last 36 months. I would appreciate any feedback as to whether this is high or acceptable for a company of that size.

I am open to any and all suggestions. Thanks so much.

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby Diane » Thu Mar 30, 2006 3:04 pm

Hi - I don't know anything about Braun. Can you post your three estimates so I can see why you think the one from Salka might be low-ball? Also, is their name A Better Way? I'm going to add your report on Meyer not responding to my summary post. I think they do a lot of commercial account moves and that could be why they ignored you.

This is what I have in my summary post about Joyce (what has been said on this website about them):

--Joyce Van Lines (independent) in Oxford.
This company is HQd in Indianapolis and has 9 locations throughout the U.S. Moving professionals posting here have spoken of it very highly, saying that it can self-haul shipments using its own trucks and drivers (desirable). A couple of competitors told me that they had lost moves to Joyce because of its sharp pricing.
A driver for NAVL ("East Coast Mover") posted that "the reason joyce can discount a little higher is that they are not connected with a major vanline and dont lose a chunk to them..will joyce runs a real tight ship and they are a very good company..a close friend of mine went to work for them in dispatch 2 years ago after 20 years with another mover and has nothing but good things to say... " - http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 0643#50643.
On the same thread, another long-haul driver (ECM, now posting as "I-95") added that one of his friends had left Clark & Reid (a very high-end company) to drive for Joyce.
"Alba" posted in 2003 that she was going to use Joyce for a local move because they seemed professional and added that they were asking for a $100 deposit, which Tim said was normal in the busy season, but she never came back to report:
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=411 (local)
We have one bad report on Joyce by "mike in columbia" for a within-state move where there was storage and damage to items; he said that he was trying to negotiate a settlement but never came back to report:
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 7813#37813 (within-state)
As of 2/06, a couple of people ("CTmove" and "LDM509") were poised to use Joyce for interstate moves. The second one told me in a Private Message that the Joyce estimator (Bill Adams) made a very good impression and that Joyce even offers "recycled" boxes from corporate moves for free if people can pick them up in Oxford. A district manager for Joyce (John Adams) came on MovingScam to offer assistance as needed:
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 2463#52463


As for the BBB report, Joyce Van Lines in CT has 9 complaints while Joyce Moving & Storage has zero. You should ask the sales rep about this discrepancy. 9 isn't great but not a deal-breaker in my opinion. A lot depends on how many moves it does, as you say. I wouldn't worry about the driver out of service being a little high.

You might want to consider calling the full-service company Moovers, Inc. (based in Concord, CA) to see whether they'll have a truck in your area when you want to move. They have 24 rave reviews on their review thread and no BBB complaints - http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=4655

ct_to_ca
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2006 1:04 pm
Location: west hartford, ct

Re: CT to CA

Postby ct_to_ca » Thu Mar 30, 2006 8:56 pm

Thanks, Diane.

At your suggestion, I just sent an email inquiry to Moovers.

1. Salka (full name: A Better Way Salka & Sons, Inc.) estimated 7,700 lbs with a guaranteed not to exceed price of $7,250.89 (pack & move). I referred to this as low-ball because I think the estimator was a bit careless. For example, his inventory missed two of the six pieces of furniture in our living room -- both large armoires! I called him this week and asked for a guaranteed not to exceed price for 9,000 lbs, but have not yet gotten it.

2. Braun's inventory seems the most accurate, they estimated 8,082 lbs and gave me a not-to-exceed cost of $8,392 (pack and move).

3. Joyce estimated 10,200 lbs with a non binding estimate of $9,168 (pack and move). The representative said to add 10% to get a guaranteed not to exceed price. I told him that his estimate for weight was considerably higher than any of the others. He then ran the numbers for 9,000 lbs ($8,389) and 8,000 lbs ($7,739).

My own estimate for weight is 8,000 - 8,500. We moved here two years ago with 7,300 lbs. We have added two pieces of furniture, ten boxes of books and a few tools.

I appreciate any thoughts or advice. Thank you.

Also, FYI, we need to move at the end of May. Thanks!

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby Diane » Thu Mar 30, 2006 9:07 pm

Thanks for the additional info. Braun seems the best to me, too. There is a volunteer here ("PMueller") who works for Allied and if you send her a Private Message I feel sure she can look up their quality scores for you when she gets back from vacation in a week or so. I'm adding some of your preliminary remarks to my summary post on CT movers.

You shouldn't have to accept a Nonbinding estimate, especially since you moved so recently and you know more or less what you have. I think I would tend to rule out Joyce and Salka. Let's see what Moovers says. They run one or two trucks from the East Coast to the West Coast every month.

By "pack and move" I assume you mean "load/unload and move" and the companies aren't going to put things in boxes for you, right?

ct_to_ca
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2006 1:04 pm
Location: west hartford, ct

Re: CT to CA

Postby ct_to_ca » Thu Mar 30, 2006 9:14 pm

"pack and move" = pack the boxes, load the truck, drive to CA, unload.

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby Diane » Thu Mar 30, 2006 9:17 pm

Oh, OK - that's important to know. Is this a company-paid move?

ct_to_ca
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2006 1:04 pm
Location: west hartford, ct

Re: CT to CA

Postby ct_to_ca » Thu Mar 30, 2006 9:26 pm

No, although we will be reimbursed for some portion of our expenses. I will probably end up packing clothes, books and toys myself. I want the movers to do all breakables to ensure that they can be insured.

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby Diane » Thu Mar 30, 2006 9:35 pm

Good idea. There has been some discussion here of "partial pack" and "full pack" moves. People in the industry have said that it's important to tell the companies what you want because if they quote on a full pack move and then you pack some of the stuff yourself, you don't get any money back. (Or something.) I don't know much about this packing business but as you get closer to your move date maybe you should send a PM to "Michael" or "PMueller" because they would know about it. Was the Salka rep from the New Haven office, do you know?

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby EastCoastMover » Fri Mar 31, 2006 1:07 pm

custom packing is by the unit...full pack is by the cwt...meaning if you are planning to do any packing at all ask for the custom packing option because the more you pack the more you save....and salka's "office"in new haven doesnt exsist...its just a phone number that rings in wallingford....

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby Diane » Fri Mar 31, 2006 3:32 pm

Wow, thanks for the info, ECM! I actually thought Salka was in Cromwell, though.

ct_to_ca
Posts: 5
Joined: Tue Mar 28, 2006 1:04 pm
Location: west hartford, ct

Re: CT to CA

Postby ct_to_ca » Sun Apr 02, 2006 10:55 am

Diane,

Thanks so much for pointing me in the direction of Moovers. I emailed them on Thursday night, Matt called me Friday morning, I faxed him a fairly detailed inventory Friday afternoon, he called back with a few follow-up questions and then emailed a contract to me late in the day. Super efficient.

Moovers gave me a Guaranteed not to exceed price for 8,500 lbs, which is what I requested. The contract also says they will charge for a minimum of 7,000 lbs - regardless of the actual weight. Seems fine to me and the price for packing and moving is in the middle of the pack of the estimates that I have. They are, however, considerably less expensive than anyone else for storage.

I wanted to ask you if you have been to their storage facility. It looks like we will need them to store our stuff for 4-6 weeks. I saw one reference to someone using Moovers' storage on the review thread, but wondered if you have any more info.

Thanks so much for your help.

:)

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby Diane » Sun Apr 02, 2006 11:26 am

Hi - that's good; I know you are in safe hands with Moovers.

Regarding the storage, they are using a mini-storage facility near their office. I believe it is in Benicia. I haven't seen it because they are in Northern California and I am in Los Angeles, but I know that they would never store anybody's belongings in an unsafe place. The cost is less because they are basically charging people only what their own cost is, plus maybe a small add-on fee. I think you will be fine with it. You could call Matt and ask him how your things will be stored--whether they will be wrapped in paper pads and so on.

Please do come back and let us know how your move goes so we can keep the reviews current. So far (knock on wood) they are 24 for 24.

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby EastCoastMover » Mon Apr 03, 2006 2:09 pm

diane,my bad, i keep living in the past..i forgot they moved to cromwell a few years ago.....sorry

ceili

CT to GA

Postby ceili » Wed Nov 15, 2006 4:43 pm

This is a brilliant site. I've been lurking for weeks and have learned so much. So much, in fact, that I narrowed my search for movers to Joyce and Kaster. (I emailed Moovers, but never heard back.)

We're moving from Milford CT to Savannah GA next month with a "partial pack." We do all the nonbreakables; the mover does the breakables. Joyce came in with 11,500 pounds and a non binding estimate of $5600. Kaster estimates 14,500 pounds and offers a Not to Exceed of $6400. The "captive" drivers of Joyce is a plus, but Kaster assured us that the driver who does the pick up will also do the delivery.

We're talking a difference of only $800 here. (Neither includes full value insurance as yet. We'll get to that later. ) But there have been so many decisions since we decided to make this move that I must have burned out the decision-making brain cells.

Any opinions, suggestions, idle thoughts would be a huge help.

Thank you one and all!

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

Re: CT to CA

Postby farrah7031 » Wed Nov 15, 2006 5:00 pm

I would call Moovers.


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