General Moving Questions

How much will my move cost?

Every home is different, and there are a number of factors that determine the cost of a move. This is why it’s extremely important to get several (at least three) visual estimates before selecting a mover. We offer free on-site estimates (and video estimates for homes with three bedrooms or less). Be wary of any quotes you receive where a professional mover never visually inspects your belongings.

When is the best time to move?

If there is a choice, it is best to avoid the summer months, the end of the month or the end of the year. Those are the busiest times for a moving company when the heaviest demands are placed on our trucks and our personnel. However, Hilldrup will make every effort to schedule your move when it is most convenient for you.

When should I call a moving company?

The earlier, the better! We recommend at least four to six weeks’ notice, if possible. The more lead-time you can give, the more likely we will be able to meet your preferred schedule.

How do you pack/handle my furniture?

We do not pack furniture in boxes, we use moving blankets. These provide excellent protection against potential damage during your move. We also use stretch wrap, a non-adhesive plastic (like saran wrap!), for your cloth furniture like sofas and recliners to give them an extra layer of protection. Finally, we use a combination of blankets and stretch wrap on leather furniture. Curious what all this looks like? You can look at videos on our website that show you how we handle your furniture.

Do you move automobiles?

Absolutely! Especially for families with multiple vehicles, it’s not always feasible for them to move the cars themselves. If you need assistance transporting an automobile, let us know.

What is your weight minimum for moving?

  • If you’re moving across state lines (considered interstate in our business) and looking to move in a traditional moving van, we have a minimum of 3,400 pounds.  However, we have a variety of options to accommodate your various size shipments.  SnapMoves is a container option which we use for smaller shipments, and it comes with great benefits like guaranteed dates and loading/unloading included.
  • Every home is different though, so if you aren’t sure, we’re happy to provide a free estimate.

Can you give me a ball park quote?

  • Every home is different, and it’s impossible to give an accurate estimate without doing a visual inspection. We recommend setting up a free in-home estimate so you have an accurate idea of what your move will cost.
  • If you are ready to do a survey now or in the next few hours, and your house is three bedrooms or less, we can do a video survey through our service called Crater. If you’re interested in doing a video survey, please let us know.

How long will it take to pack and load me?

  • We typically like you to be available for the entire day that we’re assisting with your move in your home. We can give you a more specific timeframe when your move counselor calls to let you what time the crew will be there, based on the crew size and the size of your shipment.
  • Here are some averages for packing and loading times:
    • Packing
      • Up 150 cartons: 1 day (1-3 bedroom home)
      • Between 151 – 300 cartons: 2 days (4 or more bedroom home)
    • Loading
      • Up to 18,000 lbs. – 1 day
      • Between 18,001 -36,000 lbs. – 2 days

Can I pick up boxes for my move?

Once you’ve booked your move, you are welcome to request used boxes, based on availability.

How many crew members should I expect?

Generally, a crew will consist of between 1-4 members, depending on the size of your shipment and order. Your move counselor can tell you the night before your first scheduled move day if you need the specific number.

Will my stuff be sent to a different contractor or third party?

  • We are not a move broker who hands your belongings off to a different moving company. Depending on your destination, we may need to partner with another United Van Lines agent that services your destination city or region. Each of these partners follows the same quality guidelines and procedures as your local Hilldrup branch, so you can trust that your belongings are in good hands.
  • If you have certain unique or specialty items, we may decide it is best to bring in a moving partner with the expertise necessary to move those items safely. This can include assembling/disassembling workout equipment and pool tables, hot tubs, etc.
    • Specialty items include:
      • Washers, dryers
      • Water beds, Select Comfort and Sleep Number beds
      • Swing sets
      • Workout equipment
      • Pool tables
      • Hot tubs

Do I have to be present for all phases of the move process?

  • Yes, because you are the most important participant in the move. You will need to be present during all phases of the move – the pre-move survey, packing, loading, and unloading. This assures that all items you intend to transport are surveyed, packed, loaded, and delivered.
  • You will need to do a final walk-through at both origin and destination in order to:
    • Make sure that everything has been packed at your departing home.
    • Make sure that everything has been loaded at your departing home.
    • Make sure that there is no damage to the residence at both your departing and destination homes.
    • Perform the inventory check-off, which ensures that all items are delivered.
    • If there are missing items, this MUST be noted on the paperwork prior to the packing crew’s or driver’s departure.
    • You will need to sign all paperwork at both origin and destination.

Can I pack my clothes in a chest or dresser drawers?

Lightweight clothing – sweaters, shirts, blouses, and undergarments – may be left in the drawers. Please do not fill drawers with heavy items such as books, table linens or sheets, which can damage the piece of furniture during transit. Also, be careful not to leave fragile items, money, jewelry, watches or other valuables in the drawers, as well as anything that might spill or leak. If your shipment is going into storage, all items must be removed from the drawers.

What is a binding estimate?

  • A binding estimate, or binding cost of service, specifies in advance the precise cost of the move based on the services requested, or deemed necessary, at the time of the estimate. Binding estimates are valid for the time period specified, up to 60 days.
  • If you add items to be moved or require additional services such as packing, between the time of the estimate and the time of your move, there will be additional charges. An addendum specifying these additional charges will be prepared for your signature.

What is a tariff?

This is the list of rules, regulations, available services and resulting charges used by all motor carriers which provide interstate transportation of household goods. The tariffs are published by the Household Goods Motor Carrier Bureau and include various services. The tariffs are available for your inspection upon request. If you move within the same state, that state’s tariff will apply.

How can I obtain a receipt for my payment?

You can contact your move counselor who will be able to mail or email you a receipt.

How and when should I pay?

  • Tariff provisions require that all charges be paid before your shipment is unloaded at your destination, unless prior arrangements have been made for later billing.
  • Payment for your shipment can be made by one of the following methods: cash, traveler’s check, money order or cashier’s check. Most van lines accept all major credit cards. However, if you are moving within the same state, please check with your counselor for acceptable forms of payment. Personal checks are not accepted, so please allow for enough time to get an acceptable form of payment if you’re arriving on a weekend or holiday.
  • All payment forms apply to both binding and non-binding estimates.
  • If you have received a non-binding estimate and your actual moving costs exceed the estimate, you will be required to pay no more than 110% of the estimated cost at delivery. Should your actual costs exceed the estimate, a bill will be sent after 30 days of the delivery for the amount due.
  • Payment of estimated charges plus 10% does not apply if goods are delivered into storage. If storage at destination (storage-in-transit) is necessary, all transportation charges must be paid at time of delivery of the shipment to the warehouse. You will then be assessed storage charges based on the applicable rates set forth in our tariff. Storage charges are due at the time the shipment is delivered.

Do you provide insurance?

  • For domestic moves, we offer “valuation coverage,” which covers your belongings while they are in our care. Valuation coverage level for full value protection is determined by using $6 per pound of the estimated weight of your shipment with a $0 deductible. So if your estimated shipment weighs 4,000 lbs., your coverage is $24,000.
  • For international moving, we offer a Global Protection plan. You can insure your shipment based on the final weight of your items (at $14/hundred weight) or you can insure it based on a valued inventory. If you decide to do valued inventory, you will need to complete the valuation yourself. All forms for either option are due before our crew arrives to pack everything. Both options include a $0 deductible.

Am I protected against loss or damage while my goods are in transit?

  • Yes, but how much protection and its cost to you depend upon the “valuation” program you choose.
  • The valuation option you select determines the basis for your claim, how it will be settled and establishes how much you will be reimbursed. The liability for loss or damage is based upon applicable tariffs, as well as federal laws and regulations, and has certain limitations and exclusions. Valuation is not insurance; it is simply a tariff-based level of motor carrier liability.
  • There are three different valuation options to choose:
    • Released Rate Liability – Basic Coverage
      With this type of valuation, the maximum liability for loss or damage to any of your belongings is 60 cents multiplied by the weight of the article. This is the basic liability level and is provided at no charge to all moves.
    • Full-Value Coverage
      Under this protection plan, if your articles are lost or damaged while in our care, they will either be repaired or replaced with like items, or a cash settlement will be made for the current market replacement value, regardless of the age of the item.
    • Items of “Extraordinary Value”
      “Articles of extraordinary value” refers to items having a value of more than $100 per pound. All “articles of extraordinary value” in your shipment must be listed on the High-Value Inventory form (this form will be given to you by your salesperson). Following is a partial list to help you identify items that might fall under this classification: furs, art collections, crystal, figurines, antiques, Oriental rugs, china and silverware.

How can I track the movement of my shipment?

  • You can track your shipment via our website using either your order number or customer name.
  • You can also track your shipment by contacting your move counselor.

How does the company know where my goods are any time of day or night?

All of our trailers are equipped with a GPS system called Skybitz that allows us to know the position of all our trailers 24 hours a day.

What happens if I lose my paperwork and need copies for my records?

Don’t worry, you have a lot to keep track of during your move. We keep electronic copies of all customers’ paperwork and can either email or fax them to you.

Are your employees and contractors background and drug tested?

Yes, the safety of you and your belongings is our highest priority. That is why 100% of our employees and contractors are both background checked and drug tested.

Will I receive a survey after my move?

Yes, we want to be sure the quality of service you received measures up to the high standards we set for ourselves . You will receive our customer survey up to seven days after your relocation via the email address you provided to your move counselor.

What sets you apart from other movers?

  • We’ve been honored with the United Van Lines Customer Choice Award for 26 years – a record for United Van Lines. This award is given to the United agent with the highest customer satisfaction scores.
  • All of our crew members go through rigorous training and certification programs to ensure the best possible moving experience.
  • We have a fully stocked training house on our facility that we use for training. We want our crew members to be trained in our own home before we send them to yours.
  • Any person that enters your home to assist with your relocation will have a valid background check and will have passed a drug test.