weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

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catperson
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:04 pm

weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby catperson » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:13 pm

Hi, all. I just got 2 written estimates for a move from NW Indiana to The Jersey Shore. One is a Northwestern agent and the other is Allied. Both came to my condo and we went through each room. I pointed out what was going and what was not.

I was stunned at the different weight calculations these guys came up with. One is a "guaranteed not to exceed" estimate to move 5,900 lbs. The other is a non-binding estimate that lists the weight as over 9,600 lbs.

I have perused this forum and haven't seen any messages that refer to such huge discrepancies in weight estimates. I suppose I should call a third (at least) company but I am hoping to move in a few weeks and really wanted to get a mover lined up quickly.

What do you all think?

Thanks in advance for any comments.

catperson
Kathy

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

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby Diane » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:20 pm

Hi - first of all, I don't think there is a Northwestern Van Lines. Could you be more specific about which companies you are dealing with? How far are you from Chicago - could you use a Chicago mover?

Allied agents usually give Total Price Guarantee estimates, which are Binding estimates.

The most common reason for a huge discrepancy in estimated weight is that one rep included all the things you might POSSIBLY move (i.e. all the items he/she could see in the residence) while the other rep included only the things that you indicated that you WOULD move. In other words, the first rep could have been protecting himself with a high estimate.

Another common reason is that one rep estimated many more boxes and/or calculated the weight per box higher than the other rep did. For example, a filled carton the size of a wine-box carton (1.5 cubic feet) weighs around 10 pounds on average, but if it is filled with books it could weigh as much as 45 pounds. If you are a student or teacher this could have been a factor.

A third possibility is that one of the reps was simply incompetent.
Diane
Check out domestic companies on this thread. Click here for a detailed, authoritative article on international moving.

BigLeeCalif
Posts: 4669
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 5:59 pm
Location: Escondido, California

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby BigLeeCalif » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:37 pm

Well even additional boxes shouldn't result in that big of a variance, and if you showed each estimator the idental items the variance should only be a few hundred pounds.

Did you tell one that you had a car maybe? That weight difference is about the size of an SUV.

You didn't mention which agent was the high.

And Diane is right. The only Northwestern in transportation that I know of flies planes. A google search came up no match.

Lee
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

catperson
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:04 pm

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby catperson » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:40 pm

Hi, Diane. Thanks for the prompt reply.

You are right. It isn't NORTHWESTERN. DUH It is North American (Ferree Movers in Crown Point) and Allied (Haviland-Callan in Michigan City).

I just took a look at the higher (Allied) estimate, which was done by computer and includes a very detailed print-out of my possessions. This list looks like he merged my stuff with some else's! There are things listed that I said I was not taking. There are also things listed that I do not even own!

He says my porch includes a barbeque, a table, 4 metal chairs, and an umbrella. In fact, the only things on my porch are two chaise lounges.

He also lists a bunch of stuff that is supposed to be in my garage, but I don't own these things!

sigh ....

I guess that means if I go with him, the actual cost will be much lower. But does it also mean he is incompetent?

catperson
Kathy

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

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby Diane » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:42 pm

Incompetent, yes, and I would rule him out. How far are you from Chicago?

catperson
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:04 pm

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby catperson » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:43 pm

Lee: Thanks for the info.

I have a Scion (small car) and I definitely told him I was driving it out to NJ with my three cats. (I know, you envy me, don't you! HA!)

His itemized list (which was created by zapping a printed, plasticized, double-sided card with a computer wand) is WAY OFF.

I SO HATE MOVING!!

catperson
Kathy

catperson
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:04 pm

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby catperson » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:44 pm

Diane wrote:Incompetent, yes, and I would rule him out. How far are you from Chicago?


Depending on what part of Chicago you measure from, 40 miles or so. (I'm in Valparaiso.)

catperson
Kathy

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

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby BigLeeCalif » Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:48 pm

I agree with Diane.

If this person couldn't keep your estimate separate from someone else's I wonder how many other times this has happened.

And hey, yes I envy you your little Scion. I am driving an Acura, and it's nickname is gurgles.... (gas consumption is high) lol

If you can get another estimate, I would recommend doing so. If you feel comfortable with Allied, you should be ok.

Lee
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

macd
Posts: 24
Joined: Sun Apr 23, 2006 6:32 pm

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby macd » Fri Jun 23, 2006 8:50 pm

catperson wrote:I guess that means if I go with him, the actual cost will be much lower. But does it also mean he is incompetent?

It means the salesman made a mistake. Give him a chance to correct to it. Call him and ask him to try again. It will give you a chance to see their customer service in action. Show him your other estimate. When moving companies compete, you win. :D

catperson
Posts: 5
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2006 4:04 pm

follow-up to post: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby catperson » Wed Aug 30, 2006 12:06 pm

Hi. My move was completed about six weeks ago. I had posted a message asking for advice after I received two estimates that were quite far apart. (One estimated my belongings at 5900 lbs, the other at 9500!) The higher estimate was created by computer and included lots of things that I didn't even own. Although I am a computer/gadget freak myself, I decided to go with the low tech company that came up with an estimate by hand (and calculator) rather than by computer.

I was very nervous about the move because of all the horror stories one hears, but I must say the experience was as smooth and problem-free as it could possibly be.

My movers were Ferree Movers and Storage in Crown Point, Indiana, a North American Van Lines agent. They arranged for someone to come over the day before the move to pack up some glass items. On moving day three guys (the estimator and two helpers) showed up when scheduled and they handled my things as if they were their own. At the other end, a father-son duo unloaded everything and they were just as careful with my stuff.

Not ONE thing was broken in the move. The guys at both ends complimented me on my packing (I have had LOTS of experience with moving and have packing down to a science :) ) but it also helps to have movers who care about your stuff. I think I got lucky in both cities.

The actual weight turned out to be 5,580 lbs. (estimate was 5,900) and the distance was 769 miles. I paid a tad over $4,000 initially and got almost $300 back on my credit card after the move. The final cost of $3,700 included $35,000 of insurance.

I HIGHLY recommend the folks at Ferree Movers in Crown Point for anyone who is moving in or from northwest Indiana.

catperson
Kathy

Carmel
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Joined: Thu Oct 01, 2009 9:40 am

Re: weight estimates vary by 50% or more!

Postby Carmel » Wed May 04, 2011 10:57 am

Diane wrote:Incompetent, yes, and I would rule him out. How far are you from Chicago?


You were asking how far is she from Chicago. I'm asking cause I'm getting ready to find a moving comp. I live in Carmel, IN. Are there moving comps in Chicago that are better than the moving comps in IN? I need the moving comp to have a top of the line storage. My belongings fill a large semi and will be in storage for up to a year. I have no problem using a Chicago moving comp, as long as they're really good.


Right now I'm looking at North American (University) - Graebel - Atlas (Guardian) and after reading the post here I'll check out Ferree Mover & Storage.

If anyone can help point me in the right direction, I would be grateful.


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