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When to Book a Removal Company and Other Frequently Asked Questions

Zenyx Griffiths

Written by Reviewed by Dave Sayce

18th Jul 2022 (Last updated on 29th Jul 2022) 6 minute read

Ideally, you should book a removal company 4-6 weeks before your moving date. This is one of the many common questions people ask when moving house.

A successful removal requires planning and organisation. Factors such as when you’ll book the removal company and whether you’ll need additional services must be considered in advance.

To help you prepare, we’ve created a list of frequently asked removal questions, providing you with all the information you need to get started.

This article will cover the following:
  1. 1. When to Book a Removal Company?
  2. 2. Do You Tip Removal Companies in the UK?
  3. 3. How Soon Should You Book a Removal Company?
  4. 4. Do Removal Companies Charge a Deposit and Should You Pay It?
  5. 5. What is a Pre-Move Survey and Do You Need One?
  6. 6. Do Removal Companies Pack for You?
  7. 7. Do You Arrange Parking for the Removal Van or Will They?
  8. 8. How are Removal Teams Trained?
  9. 9. Are Your Items Insured?
  10. 10. What is an Advance Payment Guarantee?
  11. 11. What Happens on Moving Day?
  12. 12. Are There Storage Options?

1. When to Book a Removal Company?

You should book a removal company 4-6 weeks before your completion date.

Whilst this isn’t always possible, especially if it’s a last-minute house move, it’s often the advised timeline. It gives the removals company plenty of time to assess your requirements and create a bespoke and flexible plan that’s tailored to you.

However, this is just a suggestion as not all circumstances allow for such an early booking. If this date doesn’t fit your personal timeline, try to compare removal companies before exchanging contracts.

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2. Do You Tip Removal Companies in the UK?

Whilst tips are appreciated, it is not expected in the UK. It is up to you, the client, as to whether or not you tip the removal company.

If you believe the company provided exceptional service or went beyond expectations, then you may decide to tip the team.

3. How Soon Should You Book a Removal Company?

When booking your removal company, you need to allow time for the following:

  • Comparing quotes
  • Arranging a home removal survey
  • Deciding on additional services
  • Reviewing costs and company information
  • Making final arrangements

If you can’t follow the advised guideline of booking a removal company 4-6 weeks in advance, try to book it early enough to complete the steps outlined above.

4. Do Removal Companies Charge a Deposit and Should You Pay It?

Some removal companies will require a deposit 5-7 days before the moving date. This is fairly standard and you will be expected to pay it.

Every company is different, with their own set of rules and requirements. Some won’t request a deposit, some may request a non-refundable deposit and some a refundable sliding scale deposit.

You should be wary of a moving company requesting full payment upfront as this can come with additional risks.

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5. What is a Pre-Move Survey and Do You Need One?

A pre-move or house removals survey is when someone from the removal company visits the property to assess the requirements for the move. They will assess the volume of goods and ask you questions regarding your specific needs.

A member of the removals team will either physically visit your home or request a video call. They will view each room, ask you questions and make notes of any fragile or difficult items that need to be moved. The entire process should take 20-30 minutes to complete.

This is a great opportunity for you to ask questions and discuss any concerns. It also ensures the quote provided after the survey is accurate and tailored to you and your requests.

6. Do Removal Companies Pack for You?

The majority of removal companies will offer a range of packing services for you to choose from. It’s up to you to decide if you require this service.

The average price for a packing service for a 3-bedroom house is £250.

7. Do You Arrange Parking for the Removal Van or Will They?

Some moving companies can help with arranging parking but you can do it yourself. It’s essential you consider parking in your planning to reduce the risk of delays or extra charges.

You will need to warn the company of any issues with accessibility, such as tight streets or gated premises. You should also consider the size of the removal van and whether you need to speak to your neighbours about reserving space outside the house.

If you think the removal van will need to park on a public road or on yellow lines, you may need to contact your local council to arrange the correct permits. Most removal companies can assist you with this.

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8. How are Removal Teams Trained?

Training will vary depending on the chosen removal company. However, if the business is a member of the British Association of Removers (BAR) or a similar regulatory body, it is guaranteed that its staff will be regularly trained and have the latest qualifications.

If you have particularly fragile or awkward items such as antiques, you should ask whether the team is trained in white glove delivery. Some movers will also be trained in piano removals, should this be something you require.

9. Are Your Items Insured?

The most common insurance policies every company should have is Goods in Transit and Public Liability insurance.

Goods in Transit insurance will cover you from any damage or losses to your personal belongings, whilst Public Liability insurance will cover injury to a member of the public.

All Compare My Move partners must have Goods in Transit and Public Liability insurance before joining the network. This means you and your belongings will be completely protected when moving with one of our trusted partners.

10. What is an Advance Payment Guarantee?

An advanced payment guarantee is used during a commercial contract to guarantee that payment will be made to the company performing the work. It also guarantees the payment is returned to the client should the company not complete their contractual obligations.

A lot of removal firms across the UK will ask for payment or a deposit in advance. It is standard procedure for BAR members as the membership provides an Advance Payment Guarantee (APG). This provides additional safety to both the company and the clients.

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11. What Happens on Moving Day?

The removal team will arrive at your property at the pre-agreed time. They will quickly walk around the house before loading your belongings to confirm your specific requirements.

Fragile and delicate items will be highlighted first as well as the more awkward items that need to be moved. You should also point out which boxes the removals team should not move or should be left until last.

Once everything is loaded, you will take another walk around the premises to ensure nothing has been left behind. You will then begin the journey to your new home where everything will be unloaded.

When the removal van has been emptied, you may be asked to complete the final paperwork to confirm the work has been carried out to your satisfaction.

12. Are There Storage Options?

Some moving companies will offer self-storage solutions or will work alongside storage providers by recommending their services to clients.

If you’re looking for verified and trusted storage companies, Compare My Move can also help you compare storage quotes in your local area. Every partner uses state-of-the-art security systems and alarms to protect their units, with active CCTV monitoring the facilities.

Zenyx Griffiths

Before Compare My Move, Zenyx once wrote lifestyle and entertainment articles for the online magazine, Society19 as well as news articles for Ffotogallery.

Dave Sayce

Reviewed by Dave Sayce

Owner & Managing Director, Compare My Move

Dave Sayce is the owner and managing director of Compare My Move and has over 10 years of experience in the house removals industry.

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