When shopping around for moving services, you may also come across someone known as the “moving broker”. Since that is how some moving companies get their customers, also knows as leads, it is not uncommon.
But what is a moving broker? As the name so strongly implies, a moving broker is someone who sets up a business relationship between moving companies and potential customer looking for moving services.
It is a third party source that supplies its clients, in this case the movers, with potential leads for moving jobs.
Sounds harmless right? Although such an alliance conceptually makes sense, it can get rather complicated and especially stressful for the person on the receiving end of these services.
If you’re new to the concept of a moving broker and would like to learn what is a moving broker, please continue reading below.
Who or what is a moving broker?
A moving broker is someone that does not employ any packers or movers, own trucks, or perform the actual move. They only book the jobs, collect their fees, and pass the job over to a moving company.
Brokers may appear like an actual moving company via their online presence. They are extremely good sales people with a great online presence and marketing strategies to lure in customers.
That’s why it is always best to ask the representative or an estimator if in fact they are a broker or an actual moving company.
So what’s the problem with moving brokers?
Although moving brokers are legitimately operating business structures, there is potential for several problems to occur when hiring movers through a moving broker. Here are just a few:
A moving broker’s main objective is to make money, by all means necessary. If that means low-balling clients and offering unrealistic incentives, then that is what they will do.
Since brokers are the middlemen and not the actual moving company that will move your stuff, miscommunication is likely to happen. If something goes wrong, they will just blame it on the movers, while the movers will in return blame the broker. It will be very hard to keep anyone accountable.
Moving brokers will for the most part only give estimates over the phone! Since they are not an actual moving company, they do not staff professional estimators. While in-home estimates are not always recommended, sometimes they are necessary!
Over the phone estimates are not always accurate and are prone to low ball quotes. Since the only objective of a broker is to book the move and make money off it, then he is more likely to give a too-good-to-be-true estimate just to lock you in.
The job is then passed onto the movers, whom can lawfully charge you more than what was originally estimated, even if it’s a substantial amount more. In fact, this is the number one complaint consumers have against moving brokers.
Moving Broker Selling Moving Jobs
Moving brokers make money by selling moving jobs and withholding a significant percentage for their services. Because of this a lot of legitimate movers do not associate with moving brokers. Ultimately, when you use a moving broker you are running a higher risk of moving with a rogue moving company.
When you book your move through a broker, you will most likely be in the dark as to who your actual movers are. In fact, you may not
know the name of the company until the actual day of the move when they arrive at your home. How are you supposed to check their credibility if you don’t know who they are?
Some moving brokers will request that you pay a deposit before the actual move. Often times these fees are not credited to your final bill and you’re left paying more for your move.
Professional moving companies that do request an upfront deposit will always credit it toward the cost of the move. This is done to secure your spot and prevent last minute cancellations.
Moving Broker vs Moving Company
There are several contrasts between brokers and movers. Knowing the differences can help guide you in the direction that is right for you.
Moving brokers are the middlemen. They don’t own trucks or equipment, but are mere sales people who auction the move to the right moving company.
Moving broker will typically give an estimate over the phone, never in person. Although you may benefit from a broker by paying less than hiring a professional movers directly, you should be cautious of the several cons listed above.
Moving companies are the professionals that execute the actual move from start to finish. Licensed and professional movers own their trucks, employ professional packers and movers, and have all of the proper equipment to move you safely and efficiently.
Best NYC movers or professional movers in any other state will perform in-home estimates when necessary for a more accurate quote.
They will not lure you with false incentives nor will they give you an unrealistically low-ball rate. You can certainly rely on a local licensed moving company to give you a more accurate estimate than a moving broker.
A fully licensed and insured moving company operate under strict rules and regulations to ensure you get an honest service. In conclusion, you will most likely feel more confident booking professional movers directly than going through a moving broker first.
After all, you will be able to do the research yourself and ultimately hire the moving company that you believe is the best choice for you, instead of leaving it in the hands of someone else to trust that they will have your best interest in mind, chances are they won’t!