Local and International Relocations: Top Tips When Hiring a Moving Company in Cape Town
Read a story about a business that paid over 150k to move their entire office from Durbanville to the Atlantic Seaboard? What’s worse is that many of the glass items arrived damaged. On the other hand, what about the story that made headlines last year, where a family hired a truck to move their home from Gauteng to Cape Town. Not only did the 6-tonne truck disappear off the radar, but so did its contents. As one of Cape Town and South Africa’s leading moving companies, moving families and businesses locally, nationally and internationally, nothing surprises us anymore.
At Elliott Mobility, not only do we specialise in local home and office removal project management, but we move hundreds of South African professionals and families each month, to countries like Canada, Europe, New Zealand and Australia. Along the way, we witnessed many nightmare stories of clients being ripped-off, robbed or items mistreated and damaged, only because the client did not do their due diligence on the moving company before hiring them.
Hiring a moving company—whether in Cape Town or Gauteng is frightening, especially when they say you do not need insurance. Can you honestly guarantee that they won’t break your stuff or load your lifelong valuables into a truck and disappear? Although South Africa is one of the most spectacular countries globally, with Cape Town leading the way – crime is high, and you cannot afford to take such a chance with your lifelong household or business furnishings.
Moving home and office represents a transition. The change, lack of order and unfamiliarity, make it one of the most stressful experiences for anyone. Emotions triggered by uncertainty and risks create stress which leads to anxiety. Further, crime on South African roads is a real headache. Although home robbery and invasions lead the way in crime statistics, a hijacking takes place every 32-minutes on South Africa’s busy roads. Have you thought about what would happen if the amateur you hired were to steal your cargo, experience a hijacking, or find themselves in a collision on the route?
The Wrong Movers can even Shut a Business Down
They say that moving home is one of the most stressful ventures for any homeowner. However, if moving household belongings is tough, one can only imagine the type of stress involved with moving an entire office. In business, time is money, and an amateur mover can cost more money than just the moving rates. The wrong hire can shut a business down. For instance, a small computer hardware store closed shop to relocate to Cape Town’s Northern suburbs. Unable to afford their current city rental and the help of an established moving company, the owner hired a guy with a truck from Google Ads. The guy seemed legitimate and even emailed the client with a couple of impressive reviews.
The truck driver walked the talk and offered such an incredible rate, even convincing the client that insurance is unnecessary. Although that should have raised red flags, their offer was so good that it was hard to decline—and the client paid them even before the job was complete. A week later, on the day of the move, the driver and a couple of muscles wearing matching overalls loaded hundreds and thousands of rands worth of computers and hardware into a 6-tonne truck. They drove off—never to be seen again.
Moving home or office are two of the most stressful ventures to endure. With many risks involved, your choice of hire can be the difference between a costly disruption and a seamless moving experience—from collection to delivery to installation. Hiring a professional moving company means, you will never worry about downtime, damage, breakage, hijacking or robbery. Further, the rate they request is the rate you pay, nothing more and nothing less. Because hiring a mover is such a stressful decision, we have put together some tips to ensure you do not become another statistic of a fly-by-night moving scammer.
Experience and Reviews Are Critical
At Elliott Mobility, we have been moving families and businesses locally and internationally for over a decade. With years of experience in local and international relocations, we cannot stress the importance of due diligence enough. While it is not unusual to entrust your life to a truck of strangers, it is critical that moving customers do their homework well on at least three moving companies before signing the dotted line. Start your homework by finding out how long the company has been in business—and listen to what their previous customers say about them.
A lot like searching for a credible plumber, electrician, plastic surgeon or attorney, search Google reviews to learn the truth about a professional or company. However, be careful of website reviews as not all are truthful. There is a trend for companies to reveal only the positive, leaving out the negative. Because you are moving such an enormous investment, take the time to contact their previous customers and ask them questions. If the moving company resists handing over contact information, move on—and thank your lucky stars as they have something to hide.
Certifications and Insurance is a Deal Breaker
Times have changed, and we can no longer trust anyone without the right licensing and certifications. The best way to ensure you are working with professional movers is to shortlist ones with FIDI (Fédération Internationale des Déménageurs Internationaux) and FAIM certifications. That sets the gold standard, which means you are entrusting your belongings with the best. Further, do they have theft, loss and breakage insurance?
Theft, Loss and Breakage Insurance
A moving company that tells you to not bother with insurance, as you will not need it, should raise a big red flag. You would not loan your vehicle to someone without a license or insurance, so why entrust your lifelong valuables or business investment to a random moving company without insurance? They say you do not need insurance, but what happens if the move does not go swimmingly—who covers the damage and loss? Besides having all the certifications and licensing, a professional moving company always provides vehicle cover. That means if something were to go wrong, the removal company’s insurance would pay you out, which is essential in South Africa.
Get Three Cost Estimates
Moving companies base their rates on weight, volume, valuables, distance, and the hire of any sub-contractors like plumbers, IT professionals, electricians, and even hoisters. As a result, the cost of relocating varies from one company to the next. Very much like a second and third medical opinion, get at least three transparent cost estimates. Always read the small print, as this is where you will find hidden costs. From pickup to delivery, you need complete transparency before signing the dotted line. Further, always read the small print as this is where you will find hidden costs, and make sure you understand the cancellation clause.
At Elliott Mobility, we are no strangers to the many nightmare stories of those taken by fly-by-night movers. It is not uncommon for movers to make empty promises, leading to unanticipated costs, loss or damage. You need a moving company that provides end-to-end services—from specialty packing, the survey of items, disassembly and reassembly, customs clearance, land and sea transport, warehouse handling, and freight forwarding to door-to-door delivery. Further, you will need cost transparency, so you know what you’re paying—nothing more and nothing less.
At Elliott Mobility, we are leaders in local and international relocations. Besides our extensive, countrywide network, we bring experience and capability, viewing each move as a project rather than a job—from pickup to delivery. To get a FREE moving quote for your home or business, chat with one of our project managers.