Choose the right movers and packers team

Choosing a good movers and packers service can make all the difference to your moving experience. Get the right team behind you and you can really reduce the stress associated with a house move. Getting a good quality of service, and an experienced team, also helps things run smoothly and reduces breakages.

But how do you pick the right movers and packers for your relocation? There are a few things to look out for that will indicate quality and help set your mind at rest when you're choosing a removals service.

Cheapest isn't always best. Beware companies that offer a quote that seems too good to be true. These companies may cause you aggravation in the long run and it may be a false economy if your things get lost or broken or if the team are harder to manage. Unscrupulous companies will sometimes underestimate the total weight of your goods for removal, give you a falsely low quote and then inflate it at the end when they 'realise' that the weight is actually higher. Beware of this practice. Movers that give a higher estimate of the weight of your goods may be more honest.

Shop around. It's worthwhile getting several quotes - and make sure these are written down.

Seek help and advice. Word of mouth recommendations can often help identify good companies in your area, and you'll find that online reviews can be very helpful too. It's also an excellent idea to ask your removal company for references from previous clients.

How big are they? Some larger firms of movers and packers will have branches at both your departure and destination points. This can help ensure a smooth journey.

Check their experience. It's usually best to use a company with the longest experience in the business. It's also worthwhile checking if they have experience in your kind of removal. For example, if you're packing up an especially huge house, moving to a storage facility or packing unusual items such as antique furniture or fragile china, then it's worthwhile checking whether they have experience with this kind of job.

Ask for their loss rate. Some companies will publish their loss rate - the percentage of items that get lost or broken. It's always worth seeing what this is if the information is available.

Are they accredited? Depending on where you are in the world, there are various accreditation schemes and professional bodies for movers and packers. Find out which ones are relevant in your market and see if you can find movers and packers that are professionally accredited.

Finally, it's a good idea to check how comprehensive their insurance coverage is and whether your goods will be covered to their full value in the event of a major incident such as the removal lorry crashing.

There are many excellent movers and packers and many people safely relocate every day without incident but it's worth doing your checks before you engage your team. It'll make for a smoother move.