bristol removals companies

How to choose Bristol Removals Companies?

Reviews

This is a common question that will go through anyone’s mind who is preparing their home or office move and looking to book a reputable removal company. Before calling around random Bristol removals companies, you should create a shortlist of the best-rated companies to narrow down your search. This will help you avoid wasting time with quotes from companies that have a string of bad reviews. The best place to find Bristol removal companies is online. Remember that although search engines target keywords, they also target key phrases so the order you type the words will generate different search results. The best way to deal with this is to open up a few browser tabs, type in the keywords and mix them up into different phrases and cross-reference them. Once you’ve done this and found at least 5 to 10 different removals companies, look for their reviews and you can find them on their website, on dedicated removals or tradesman websites or by typing the company name (not URL) into the search engine and a rectangle box appears on the right with business information (address, contact details etc…) and their reviews should also be there. Don’t expect a 5-star rating from all of the Bristol removals companies’ reviews, no company is perfect and they do make mistakes but don’t dwell on the bad reviews but don’t ignore them either. Look for the company’s response to the bad reviews and see if they have acknowledged their mistake and compensated the customer. However, some customers are just impossible to please and will complain about anything so, with this in mind, analyse what was written and ask yourself if the bad review is actually warranted. Now that you’ve read the reviews, it’s time to choose some Bristol removals companies that you think will best suit your move. It’s always a good idea to choose a local company that knows Bristol and the surrounding areas because they’re best positioned to conduct home and office visits (we’ll get to that later) to offer an accurate quote and won’t charge a call-out fee.

Create a List of belongings

Great! You’ve created a shortlist of which Bristol removals companies you want to conduct your move but before calling them, it’s now time to make a list of what items you need moving. This is good practice because it mentally organises your move, gives you a gauge of the scale and what will be involved. The simplest and quickest method is to go through each room, garage, and garden and write down everything you want to be moved by the removals company, including furniture that needs to be dismantled and reassembled because this process can add on a lot more time to the move as a whole. As for gauging the number of boxes, this is easier said than done but a good rule of thumb is to estimate at least 10 medium-size boxes per bedroom, 15 for a kitchen, 10-15 for a living room and the same again for a dining room. We know this might sound like a lot of boxes but it’s by far better to overestimate than vice versa. Think about moving day and not having enough space in the van for your items, especially if it’s a long-distance national move.

Find Out What They Offer

Now you have the list of furniture and an estimated number of boxes, it’s now time to call your chosen Bristol removals companies. Did you notice we said ‘call’ and not ‘email’? We want to empathise this because it’s very important for you to speak to the removals company and gauge them. After all, you’re entrusting this moving company with your cherished belongings so it’s important to choose well. Answer their questions to the best of your knowledge and clearly explain what you need to move and tell them about any special circumstances such as awkward parking outside your house or office because this could have a huge impact on how the move is executed. Also, it’s always good practice to ask them about the Terms and Conditions of their insurance. Most Bristol Home and Office removals companies will have Goods in Transit insurance but they can vary to some degree. A good way to gauge this is by thinking up some house or office moving scenarios and asking the removals company how they would deal with it and process the claim. Some Bristol removal companies offer loaned boxes as part of their removal package so it’s always a good idea to ask about this because it could save you some money and if you’re strapped for time, ask if they offer a packing service. We recommend choosing a packing service if you have a high demanding job or a family. It will save you a lot of time and stress! During the phone call, try to rate each removal company and create another shortlist. This will help you filter out the better companies. After you’ve done this, the next stage is booking a home or office visit or so the removals company can offer an exact quote but this is only really done for 2 bed or higher properties. Don’t expect the removals company to send out an employee if it’s obvious a 1 bed flat will easily fit into a Luton van. It’s important to note it’s now common to have a Skype or WhatsApp video call instead of a home or office visit and this method can be just as effective for removals companies to assess your items and has the added bonus of convenience. One more thing and this might sound very obvious, make sure your home or office is tidy before the assessment. Speaking from experience, it’s a lot harder to offer a quote for a house or office removals job in a messy property.

Home and Office Visits

During the home visit, the removals company staff member will gauge your items, parking for their removal vans and access to the property and it’s always important to ask the assessor how their pricing structure works. Maybe there’s a way to keep costs down to a minimum by moving some items yourself. Get at least 5 home or office visits from different Bristol removals companies, compare the quotes and service they offer and choose a suitable company.

We hope this guide helps you choose the right removals company for your move and gives you a better understanding of the process involved.

removals company vs man and van

Removals Company Vs Man and Van

When deciding on which option to choose, it’s important to first understand the differences between a Removals Company and a Man and Van Service.

A Removal Company in Bristol will generally provide a service that consists of a 2 or more man or women team who will remove your furniture from a house, flat or office without you needing to help. They will also provide Goods in Transit Insurance, well trained and experienced staff, a home and office visit or Skype or WhatsApp video call to assess your items that need to be moved, furniture protection such as thick blankets and ratchet straps to brace larger items to the interior of the van or truck, take a deposit to confirm the booking whilst providing a receipt and will probably have a fancy website.

A Man and Van service in Bristol, although cheaper (we’ll get to costs later), will also provide a very similar service but, in many cases, it will be a watered-down version in comparison. We’ve found some of the services you might expect such as Goods in Transit insurance and house or office visits will not come as standard. Also, a lot of man and van services in Bristol operate as a one-man team and you’ll be expected to help move the larger items of furniture but it’s possible they can provide extra staff, just make sure you request it and not expect it. Even with this said, it’s easy to think that a cheap man and van will not to a good job compared to a ‘professional’ removals company but what you need to remember it’s essentially the same job – loading and unloading a van to and from a house or office. Some even do a great job. They want to provide a professional service to increase their business organically by increasing ‘word-of-mouth’ clients. You can get some real bargains out there.

So now we’ve covered the differences between a man with a van and a removal company or firm in Bristol, it’s time to decide which option is best for your move. We’ve devised some questions and answers to help you choose.

How to chose a Removals Company or a Man and Van Service in Bristol

1. Do you have a lot of items to move including large furniture items that need dismantling and reassembling? (When we say a lot, we mean 2 bedroom flat or house and above) Yes – Removals Company. Their staff will be experienced to deal with many different types of furniture and also be fit enough for a full day of heavy lifting, especially when there are stairs involved.

2. Do you need goods in transit insurance? Yes – Removals Company. However, some man and van services also provide insurance but you should ask to view their documents to be sure.

3. Regardless of how much there’s to move, are you willing to help move the items with the removals man to save money? Yes – Man and Van. Please note that you should be in good health (think about your back) and be willing to do hard labour. It’s a tough job and carrying heavy items up and downstairs isn’t easy.

4. Do you need a packing service? Yes – Removals Company. Most Removals Companies will offer this service and it’s extremely popular for people with busy schedules. It allows you to get on with your daily tasks and if you have a family, we strongly recommend this option and most of the time this service comes with free or loaned boxes.

5. Are you planning to self-pack your belongings and in need boxes? Yes. Many Removals Companies will offer loaned boxes when selecting certain removal packages. These boxes are loaned to you before the move but you have to give them back within an agreed time frame. This option can save you money and helps the environment by reducing waste.

6. You only have a few items to move within Bristol, will a man and van be enough for your move? Yes – Man and Van Service. If you only the contents of a room to move such as a bed, mattress, desk and a few boxes, a man and van will suit this move but remember you might be asked to help move the heavier items.

By answering these questions yourself, you will now have a better understanding of which option is best for your move and it’s time to figure out the costs.

Costs

By now you’re probably thinking a removals company will charge more than a man with a van in Bristol and that’s correct. From what has been explained earlier in the blog, removals companies in Bristol can provide a more inclusive package compared to a man and van service but that’s not the only reason that makes them more expensive, it’s also their business running costs. These types of companies have overhead costs such as an office, staff on salaries, maintaining a large fleet of vans or trucks and maybe running a storage facility. A man and van, however, doesn’t have all of these extra costs to worry about and is, therefore, able to keep their costs down in comparison.

There’s a classic saying ‘Pay Peanuts and Get Monkeys. This saying can be applied to any industry but it’s definitely a running theme within the man and van and removals industry in Bristol. For example, if you’re offered a ridiculously good quote for moving your house or office you must bear in mind that the person or company offering that quote did so to fill their calendar until a better job comes along and after they’re offered better-paid work, you’re expendable. Trust us, it’s a horrible situation getting a text from whoever you’ve booked giving you a sorry excuse of why they can’t conduct your move, especially if you receive that text the night before or worse, on the day. With this in mind, shop around and don’t always go for the cheapest offer. In the days of digital marketing, reviews are a significant factor in helping people choose who to pick for their move and don’t just look at the Google reviews, you should also search their social media pages and online review websites. Trust the reviews!

As for telling you how much you should pay on average for your move, it’s like telling you how long is a piece of string. To find out costs, search online or in local papers for a man with a van service or removal companies in Bristol and see what they offer and how much they charge.

 

Conclusion

Now that you know the fundamental differences between both options in Bristol, we hope this blog gives you a better understanding of what type of service works best for you. In a nutshell, if you have a bedroom worth of stuff and maybe up to a 1 bed flat, a man and van option is probably your best option (remember you might have to help) but if you have more than that including dismantling and reassembling furniture, we strongly recommend choosing a removals company in Bristol.

Moving Office Hints & Tips

Moving office is a major undertaking that can be expensive and time-consuming. However, we’ve written a guide to help you.

Plan the Move:

This is arguably the most important stage of any move and reduces potential issues on the day. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Choose a relocation date that least interrupts your business.
  • Contact us and arrange a date for one our team to conduct a visit to both locations.

Relocation Preparation:

Inform staff, suppliers, clients, and whoever will need to know about the relocation of the planned move date and new address. Keeping everyone in the loop will reduce disruption to the business. You can also use this opportunity to contact potential clients about the move and maybe this will open lines of communication. Here are some more ideas:

  • Use this opportunity to declutter and decide what you need to take. Any excess items can be sold to help raise money for moving costs.
  • Design a floor plan for the new office so you know exactly where to place the office furniture.
  • Order and update the address marketing materials.

It’s very important that packing isn’t left to the last minute. Buy packaging well in advanced and start packing non-essential items straight away. Also, make an inventory of every item and label each box with a short description such as files, computer etc…and colour code the boxes indicating where they need to be placed in the new office.

Moving Day:

Have at least one member of staff at both locations to direct the removals company (hopefully us!). Here are some more general tips:

  • Similar to moving home, check the inventory of the new office and take note of any damages, including photos. This will save a lot of hassle in the future.
  • Test electrical equipment such as phone lines and broadband.
  • Moving is hard physical work so have plenty of refreshments ready for the staff.

After Moving:

Compare the inventory with everything in the new office, recycle or arrange collection of the packaging materials and enjoy your new premises!

 

Moving House Checklist

Moving house can be a stressful time so we've written a checklist to help you along your journey.

1 - Begin Packing & Sorting

If you're self-packing it can take a very long time to complete, especially if you live in a 2 - 3 bedroom property. Give yourself plenty of time to sort through your belongings and use this opportunity to get rid of unwanted items like that old TV in the loft or the broken gardening tools in the shed.

2 - Change of Address

It's important to notify your banks, insurance companies, energy suppliers, DVLA, Council Tax etc...of your intended move. Inaction could invalidate an insurance claim or sensitive financial documents might fall into the wrong hands.

3 - Get a Babysitter

Kids and moving home doesn't mix well. Trust us! We've seen it many times! We recommend hiring a professional babysitter or calling in a favour from a family member to look after the kids. This alleviates the stress during the move and helps you to focus on the task.

4 - Lable your Boxes

We call this the 'schoolboy error'. Picture this - You've arrived at your new home and open the back of the van to see 50+ boxes of the same colour and size without any labels and all you want is to find the kettle and tea bags. I'll leave the rest to your imagination.

5 - Tell your Broadband/TV provider

We've mentioned notifying companies about your move but this deserves its own category. Once you have a moving date in place, call your broadband/TV provider straight away! It can take up to 2 weeks for them to send a technician to install the service.

Which packaging supplies?

Which packaging supplies?

When it comes to moving house, good quality packaging can seem like an extra expense you really don’t need. But the truth is that skimping on packaging materials can be more hassle than it’s worth. Here are our top tips for making sure your possessions arrive safely.

1. Always use double-walled boxes

Using single walled cardboard boxes is asking for trouble on the day. It doesn’t take much to overload them causing the bottom to fall through, and it’s not possible to safely stack them either. Using strong double-walled boxes is the easiest way to secure your possessions.

2. Invest in good quality tape

Teaming single-walled cardboard with poor quality tape is a disaster waiting to happen and broken goods are the last thing you need on moving day. Broken goods will slow down the process of moving house and make it far more stressful. Good quality tape will ensure your boxes are properly sealed and don’t fall through.

3. Never underestimate the power of bubble wrap!

As well as wrapping crockery and glass, we also recommend wrapping all metals that may scratch easily, plastics such as CDs, sharp objects and paintings, as well as and any precious ornaments. You’ll thank yourself after the move!

So, make sure you invest in quality packaging – it’s a small expense but can make all the difference. Visit our ‘Packaging Supplies’ page for a list of the products we offer. If you’re based within Bristol City, we’ll deliver them for free.