Professional Movers in San Diego & Orange County
I put this website together to help you understand why my moving company is one of the best moving companies that you can hire. I realize that many people who visit this website will decide to hire a moving company other than All Star Moving. So I’d like to demystify the moving industry so that you, the person hiring a moving company, better understand how the moving industry operates.
It may be helpful to you to understand how I came to start my own moving company. After high school, I started working for a San Diego mover whose owner happened to live in my neighborhood. I started there as a “pick up guy”, someone who they call if they need extra people to work for the day. I worked as hard as I could and within a few shifts became one of the full time employees. The owner had a “one off” attitude towards the customers meaning that he didn’t expect to hear from the customers after the move. Of course this filtered down to the employees. I dreaded working with the pick up guys. Sure some of the guys were decent but most weren’t. Today they were working on a moving truck, tomorrow they might be working as a laborer for a construction company. I had to work even harder to make up for their lagging attitude. My boss didn’t really care because the longer a move took the higher the moving bill would be. It wasn’t unusual for my foreman to tell me to slow down. To me, it’s much easier and less tiring to work hard than to work at half pace. Customers weren’t happy and I didn’t blame them. It was not a good feeling for me at the end of a lot of the days. As fast as I could, I saved my paycheck and tips until I could afford to lease my own moving truck. 20 years ago All Star Moving was born.
What Makes One Moving Company Better Than Another?
Start with the movers doing the work. I never use day laborers. As I covered temporary workers above, there’s no need to rehash it here. All of our movers are full time employees. All are covered under workers compensation insurance. It may surprise you to know that California doesn’t require all movers to be covered under workers compensation. Many moving companies only insure a portion of their workers to satisfy the moving license requirements due to the high premiums involved.
‘Workers comp’ as it is known in the trade is broken down by categories. The more a job lends itself to injury, the higher the premium. For example; someone who sits a desk has a less expensive premium than say a fire fighter. Movers are in the most expensive bracket, hence many moving companies cut corners on this. Should someone get hurt on your job and they aren’t covered under workers comp, there’s a good chance you’re going to be speaking with a lawyer. I never put our clients at this unnecessary risk.
Movers San Diego And Orange County With A Lot Of Experience
I believe that in order to get really good at any job you have to do it for at least two years to become proficient. The average length of time of my employees have with our company is over five years. Some have been with me since day one. Team work plays a huge part in moving. They’ve worked with each other on every conceivable kind of moving job you can think and are efficient. I get compliments on them all the time. When they get to a home they can look around and after speaking with the owner for just a few minutes, they get to work and start packing and loading. Hard work and happy customers make for great morale. We also offer our employees a 401k profit sharing to help them and their families succeed later in life. It’s these reasons that keep them from drifting off to other moving companies.
You Have To Be In Shape To Be A Good Mover
Because all of my movers are full time, they work 4-5 days a week. As a result they are in ‘moving shape’. There’s no way a pick up person or day laborer who works as a mover once a week would be able to keep up with them. There just isn’t any way. Picking up couches, beds, armoires, etc. places unusual demands on a person’s muscles and if you’re not in shape for it, you’ll tire quickly. As you are essentially buying time from a moving company, it’s in your best interest that the movers are in great shape. If you think that moving companies would get rid of staff members who aren’t in shape, you’d be wrong. Remember you’re purchasing time and if the job takes longer, that’s more money for the moving company. It’s a system that rewards inefficiency. If you google “moving fraud” you’ll get good picture of just how pervasive this problem is. There are dozens of moving complaints filed in San Diego every year. For each one filed, there’s probably 3 that don’t get reported.
All Moving Trucks Are Not Created Equally
If you’re like most people, you probably think there isn’t much difference from one moving truck to another. It’s big and you can fit a lot of stuff inside. How can one moving truck be better than another? Let me start with the simple fact that most moving companies use trucks that have a walk up ramp. These walk up ramps are less than 3 feet wide. They are small because it has to be stored on the truck and it’s made from expensive aluminum. Moving something very heavy, like a couch, bureau, etc. you need 3 movers. One mover in the front and one on each side. You can’t move very fast because it’s an awkward process.
What’s A Better Moving Truck?
Our moving trucks. Each one is equipped with a large 6 foot wide lift gate. This is a hydraulic lift system that rises from ground level up to the truck bay. With this system, 1 of my movers with a moving dolly can load a heavy couch by himself and faster than 3 movers using a walk up ramp. The more San Diego movers you have on a job the more your move will cost. Same thing with Orange County movers. If you’re wondering, ‘if these trucks are so much better why don’t more moving companies use them’, remember you’re buying time.
Our moving trucks also have a separate compartment behind the driver for storing electronics and other priceless items. In small pick up trucks, this is called a “crew cab”. When you’re driving on the 5 freeway and see a moving truck, look to see if has a crew cab. Nine times out of ten it won’t. Our moving trucks do have this extra compartment that allows us to segment the more fragile household goods.
Our moving trucks are also voluntarily enrolled in the California Highway Patrol safety inspection program. Every 90 days the CHP conducts a 17 point safety inspection of each truck. The fees for this program are steep and no other San Diego movers or Orange County movers that I’m aware of, utilize this very effective program for the simple reason that if the CHP finds something that they feel needs to be fixed or adjusted on our moving trucks, I’m bound by the program to fix it or possibly face a fine at the next inspection. The advantage of having our moving trucks inspected is that they don’t drop an axle while fully loaded with someone’s home contents. I’m Personally Involved With Every Move
When you call, I’m the one who answers the phone. Every time. Never a secretary or a sales person. From every inquiry or request for a moving quote, it’s handled by me. I supervise every move. I’m involved before your move, during your move and after your move. At all times, you have direct access to me, the decision maker.
What Happens If Something Does Go Wrong On My Move Like If My Antique Desk Gets Scratched?
Great questions. No one is perfect and things can and do go wrong when you perform a few hundred moves a year. I will go out of my way to rectify the situation. I even keep a professional furniture restorer on retainer will go to your home and remove the scratch. I will pay 100% of his bill for this. He does amazing work and you can see him in action if you watch the video on this website.
What About Moving Brokers?
Many, many, people never realize that when they call a “moving company” they’re actually speaking with a broker. The broker gets your information and then calls several moving companies to get the cheapest price. They book your move. The next thing you know, you’re dealing with someone else and a moving company that you may never have even heard of and you won’t know any of this until they show up at your door on the day of the move.
At that point, what are you going to do? Most people have to move that day so they take the plunge. Here is where many of the moving shenanigans start. Moving estimates are not honored and exceeded for a wide variety of made up reasons. If you really get raked this way, my advice is to call the police. They might not be able to do much as it is a civil matter and not a criminal matter but you can get a report and many times get better treatment from the movers. The friendly sales person you spoke to on the phone to book your move? When you call them, they’ll tell you that they are sorry but they don’t work for that moving company and there isn’t anything they can do to get your belongings off of the moving truck.
Are All Brokers Like This?
Certainly not. But it happens enough that you should keep it in the back of your mind.
What About Flat Rate Movers?
Flat rate movers sounds great. They agree to move you from, say, your old home in San Diego to a new home in San Diego 10 miles away. You, as the moving client, and they as the moving company, agree to a set price for the cost of the move. Once your belongings are on the truck and they feel that the amount of work exceeded the rate, You’ll be told you need to sign an “additional work order” or they won’t unload your belongings or even let you unload them. You have no choice but to sign. Even if you take them to court later they’ll produce the signed additional work order and you’ll get no joy. Again, not always the case but be very aware.
The Cost of Moving – How is it that the hourly rates for All Star Moving are higher than other Orange County and San Diego moving companies but you say your prices are very competitive?
Two reasons. The first is efficiency which I’ve explained above. The short answer here is that my men can get the moving truck loaded and unloaded quicker than most other companies. So what takes us 3 hours, other moving companies require 3.5 or four hours.
The second reason is hidden charges that you are not aware of when the movers start packing you up. Some moving companies purposely bid artificially low in order to win the job. They then make up for it by taking longer than they should or working slow so that your bill is much higher that what they said it was going to cost.
We are a bit more than other companies due to insuring everyone under workers comp and because of our newer moving trucks. But it’s not the differential you may think by comparing hourly rates alone.
Scheduling Of a Move
Another dirty little secret of the moving industry is that if you book a move with a moving company and it’s a small move, say a 1 bedroom apartment, or even a 3 bedroom house, if they get a call for a bigger, more lucrative move for the same day/time, some companies will reschedule your move or drop you completely if they can’t reschedule. They will probably tell you their truck has broken down and they can’t make it that day. Or they may not even bother to call you. Since there is no signed contract, they have no legal obligation to you. Then, you’re left scrambling on your moving day to try and find another San Diego moving company.
Every month I get calls from someone who has been stranded like this. It’s almost always on the busiest days such as weekends or the end of the month.
When you book a move with All Star Moving we always honor the reservation and never leave a client for a bigger job. It’s first come first served, with integrity.
This next information I’ve split into regions because my web guys tells me that the search engines want it this way. If you read one section, you’ll pretty much have the gist of it.
We do quite a bit of commercial moves throughout San Diego. A lot of it takes place in Sorrento Valley and Downtown San Diego. To keep disruption to a business to a minimum we often work nights. In office buildings this is very important because there are often other businesses on the same floor. Cubicles and work station may all look pretty much the same but they don’t all disassemble the same way. The variety of screws, bolts, fasteners, and locking systems are different between the manufacturers. Quite often companies buy work stations from suppliers at different times and even some from the same manufacturer can have different systems. Different buildings have different bonding requirements for movers,. You’ll want to be sure of this because facility managers will turn away, and even go so far to halt a move in progress moving companies that don’t have the required threshold bond. All Star Moving carries a bond high enough to allow access to even the largest high rises. We communicate with facility mangers prior to the move in ensure they have all the necessary documentation prior to moving your offices.
Commercial Orange County Movers
Traffic in Orange County is really tough. In San Diego, you can predict it. But Orange County has some many freeways that you never know. We always recommend moving at night versus doing it on the weekends for just this reason. Most of our commercial moves happen in the office dense area of Irvine.
Areas Served by All Star Moving
- San Diego City as well as surrounding San Diego County
- Orange County, CA.
- Inland Empire.
Are You Telling Me That All Star Moving Is The Only Good Moving Company in Southern California?
No, of course we’re not the only reputable moving company in San Diego and Orange County and I apologize if I’ve given you this impression. But of these reputable companies, I really do believe that All Star Moving is the best moving company in San Diego and Orange County.
I’m Not Going To Hire All Star Moving, But What’s The Best Way To Choose A Moving Company?
Here are a few questions you should ask before hiring any moving company in California
- Are you licensed, bonded, and insured?
- Will every worker performing the move be covered under workers comp or only a portion?
- Tell me about your moving trucks. How old are they? Do they use a walk up ramp?
- Tell me about the last time one of your movers scratched a piece of furniture. How did you handle it? Was the owner satisfied?
- Asking this question might just get you their best movers if you are calling far enough in advance- What are the names of the moving crew who will be performing my move?