With the huge amount of moving companies offering their services on the market, finding the right one can sometimes feel like a pretty daunting task. Luckily, doing a little research will pay off and with a few simple tricks and tactics, you’ll be able to position yourself to find a reliable company that you trust.

1. Be wary of the lowest ticket price

There is no shortage of stories where unlucky customers lament having been lured in by the cheapest moving option. Sometimes they will ask for a large deposit up front or propose a lowball price in advance, only to increase prices once the move is underway. It is not unheard of for companies to hold their clients’ property hostage or even fail to show up after accepting the initial deposit payment.

2. Try to keep it local

That being said, there are definitely lots of reliable companies out there to whom you can feel good about giving your business. One of the easiest ways to feel secure in your choice of movers is to enlist the help of the locally based movers. Going with a business with local visibility and credentials will help you avoid being taking advantage of by an unscrupulous mover operating exclusively over the internet. Going local also means that you can visit the company’s office in person and even take a look at the sort of the equipment they will be using when they complete your move.

3. Get estimates, more than one

Although it might seem like a lot of work, experts generally advise that you should get at least three written in-home estimates before making your final decision. Of course there are lots of factors that impact the price of the move, and most of these can only be properly assessed on-site. Be highly suspicions of anyone offering to make an estimate over the phone or online. A company that is serious about proving you with an accurate estimate will be adamant about sending out a representative to evaluate the job before giving you a quote.

4. Read reviews

There is one part of the process for which you can rely on the web though, and that is when it comes to reading reviews and complaints. Unless they are absolutely brand new, you should be able to trace a company online and see what other customers are saying about their services. Depending on where you live, there might even be a directory which keeps track of local businesses and their ratings and ranking. A good company will be happy to make all this information readily available and should facilitate the process of you learning as much about their company history as possible.

5. Let credentials and verifications help guide you

Like other professions, there do exist certain barriers and credential requirements in order to be a licensed moving company. Take some time to figure out how these regulations work in your location and make sure you’re going with someone who has all their paperwork in order.

6. There is no reason for a large deposit

Generally speaking, there is no reason for a company to require any more than 20 percent prior to the move. Also keep in mind that that is 20 percent of a thoroughly researched estimate which was conducted in person and in which the company assessed all items that require transportation. In fact, many companies won’t require any payment at all until the good have been delivered, so make sure you put any pre-emptive payments on your credit card. This way, you will have evidence in case you suspect there has been any wrong doing.