In a world full of information at our fingertips literally every single minute of every single day it still amazes me that we are blinded by the cost of a product or service over its quality.
My favourite analogy on cost versus quality comes from a true story that happened to me years ago. A co-worker came in one day and handed out name brand candy bars of white chocolate with almonds. She had picked up some treats while shopping at a store that sold items for $1 or less and in this case, $0.50 each. Thanking her I tucked mine away to eat on my way home. Many hours later and with a rumbling stomach and great anticipation I took a big bite. Why I looked at the bar as I was enjoying the treat I’m not sure but there, wiggling away from the daylight and millimeters from where my teeth had just been was a maggot hanging out of an almond. I hadn’t read the ingredients and clearly I didn’t check the expiration date either, shame on me. So how does this relate to moving?
Once upon a time the moving industry was quite lucrative, in fact if you believe the rumour that moving was refined during prohibition then of course you can figure out that transporting a hot commodity came at whatever price the mover wanted to charge. It’s also a great reference to the kind of people who worked in this industry and the reputation it still holds.
Today the moving industry is not only highly regulated but the competition is staggering, leaving very little opportunity to make high or even attractive profits. A good and reputable mover cannot hide their history because they are registered with the government for many legal purposes including health and safety; they have a decent website that points you to an actual office/warehouse and are trying to engage you in their social media communities. Simply, they have overhead to maintain and as we know, that comes with a cost.
Everyone knows someone with a whopper of a moving nightmare experience yet somehow we still haven’t been able to convince ourselves that we are getting the same service and guarantees at a lower price without compromising quality in any way. Why is that? Most good movers are affiliated with a Van Line in order to pool their resources to advertise and strengthen their control over long-distance moving but that still doesn’t sway the consumer away from the fly-by-night mover who offer what they claim are the same services at a 30% reduction in price. Everything on the surface looks to be the same, customer has their three quotes and they really want to book with a company they’ve heard of before but the cost saving with the ‘other’ company is just too great to ignore. Thank you reputable mover but that $475 is much more important to me, I’ll take my chances.
It breaks my heart to take the phone calls from customers who are stranded at their house because the cheap mover didn’t show up (but took their deposit), can’t be reached by phone and they need to be off the premises by 4:00PM and it’s now 2:30PM. Sometimes customers actually call back to say how sorry they were to not use us because all of the sudden ‘additional’ charges appeared “we didn’t know you had this many stairs at your new house” or “we weren’t told it was a long walk from the road to the house” which always seems to be more money in extras then it would have been with us in the first place. A good and reputable mover knows that they cannot exceed more than 10% of the original quote so they are vigilant at knowing the access and layout of a customer’s property. The scariest of all are the really bad guys who make you go to the ATM to withdraw more money after they have locked all of your worldly possessions into their truck and again before they unload at your new home. What choice do you have but to pay these guys because they have your stuff and now know exactly where you live.
Every summer the media reminds us to qualify our movers, do your research and look to related associations who can validate reputations yet every summer and year round people are still being sucked into the perceived bargain in pricing and paying a heavy price in the long run. Every bit of who you are is reflected in your possessions, do you really want to hand it over to just anyone?
Buy your products and services like you buy your groceries. Reading the ingredients and checking the expiration date can save you a mouthful of maggots.
Vice President of Premiere Van Lines Inc.
Kirsten Flynn has a passion for what she does and a desire to share her knowledge and experience. Since being featured on Undercover Boss Canada, Kirsten is making it her mission to help people choose the right, reputable moving company. She has been featured in many magazines and is now educating the general public on moving services through social media.
Premiere Van Lines is one of the most diversified moving companies in Canada offering a wide range of moving services nationally, cross-border and internationally for both residential and commercial customers. The extensive experience allows Premiere Van Lines to raise the bar on the Art of Moving™ and offer an uncompromising level of satisfaction. No matter what you need to move, Premiere Van Lines will help make sure your next move is a masterpiece.