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Moving companies provide active support during your relocation. If you consider hiring movers, there are a few things you need to watch out for.
How do I find the right moving company?
Tip 1: Ask around among your friends and colleagues or search the Internet. If you want to play safe, you can also check whether the company is listed in the Commercial Register. The online register is available at zefix.admin.ch.
Tip 2: Invite the companies to have a look at your old flat. Ask them to estimate the time, number of men and van size needed for the removal – and to give you a cost estimate.
Tip 3: Request quotations from several moving companies and compare their offers.
Tip 4: Save time by submitting your information only once to our comparison platform and obtaining quotes from several tested moving companies. The price can vary considerably depending on how far away the company is located from your home. For example, if you live in Zurich, but the moving firm of your choice is from Bern and needs to transport your furniture to St. Gallen. On a comparison platform you can carry out a quick comparison and check out the pre-selected best options.
Example: Moving the contents of a 3-room flat usually requires three removal men and a van with a shipping volume of 30 cubic metres. If the crew or van are too small, this does not save you money because it may take quite a bit longer to move all the furniture and boxes.
What should be specified in a quotation?
The costs should be calculated on the basis of an hourly rate, but with a cost ceiling. We advise against negotiating an all-inclusive price.
Example: The moving company estimates the time needed for the removal at 4 to 5 hours and the cost ceiling is set at 8 hours. This means that the company may not charge you for more than 8 hours even if they end up needing 9 hours for the removal.
- Date and time of removal
- Old and new address
- Number of removal men, size of van
- Estimated time needed for removal (from departure until return to the company's location)
- Hourly rate per removal man
- Charging of breaks (ex.: 20 minutes every four hours). The lunch break is not considered labour time, but the mid-morning break is
- Additional costs, for instance for garbage disposal, floor surcharge, meals and VAT
- Extra costs for heavy objects such as a piano or a safe
Will the moving firm compensate for damage caused during transport?
Make sure that the company has a transport and business liability insurance. The premium is usually already included in the relocation costs.
Important: Do not pay the deductible if a company requests this of you.
If you have expensive goods you need to move, you may want to consider taking out cargo insurance. This insurance will pay regardless of who caused the damage or whether it was a matter of gross negligence. It may be advisable especially if you ask friends to help you, so as to avoid potential arguments. However, the insurance only covers the current value, not the original value of your possessions.
Will a cleaning company do the final clean-up?
It may be all new and exciting to move into one's new flat, but before handing one's old home over to the new tenant, the final clean-up needs to be taken care of. If you would rather not scrub floors and clean windows yourself, you can leave this arduous task to a professional cleaning company. Some moving companies also offer final clean-up services at an extra charge. We recommend comparing offers for this, too.
What is the payment method?
It is still very common to pay movers in cash right after the work is done. If you explicitly ask to pay by bank transfer early enough, most movers will also agree to issuing an invoice.
However, do not pay in advance. Reliable companies will not ask you to make an advance payment. Our tip in such cases: go for a different company!
What do I do if there are problems with the moving company?
If the move does not go according to plan or the way you imagined it, for example if too many things got damaged, you should under no circumstances pay directly on site.
The same applies if the company suddenly asks for more money than agreed. Depending on the situation, you can make a partial payment of the agreed amount. We strongly recommend that you ask for a receipt on which you can note details and objections.
In case of minor damage, it may be a good idea to negotiate a discount on the spot.
Am I expected to tip the removal men?
We recommend 10 francs per person for half a day's work. Tips are not part of the additional costs listed in a quotation.