While there are many people that choose to move on their own and get friends or family to help out, offering snacks and beverages as payment, many choose to make things easier and hire a professional moving company. Whether you’re moving within the state or clear across the country, there are still plenty of things to consider regarding your move – even if you do have professional movers to rely on.
Moving etiquette isn’t something that everyone just knows right away. Some common questions revolve around tipping, how much to help movers, whether or not to provide snacks, etc. Knowing what to do before your cross country movers arrive, while they’re packing and loading items, and when they’re done can make your move much smoother.
Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do to make moving day easier on your movers as well as some general rules on tipping etiquette.
Prepare for Moving Day
You should begin preparing for the day of your move as soon as possible, getting all the detailed organized before the arrival of the moving crew. Without preparation, it could take longer to get your items loaded and you may end up paying extra fees.
When it comes to moving, time is a very important factor that many homeowners tend to overlook. Often, moving companies charge based on how long the move will take, so you can save money by speeding up the process. Some of the ways you can speed up your move include:
Inventory the home
By taking inventory of the items in your home, you can determine what items you have and what items you no longer need or want.
Get rid of items you don’t want by selling them, gifting them, donating them, or throwing them away so that when movers arrive, they know exactly what gets packed and moved.
Pack easy items
Even if you get full packing services, you can save time on your move by packing up easy items like clothing, books, bedding, etc.
Pack a box of essentials
Before your moving crew arrives, be sure to have a box set aside filled with necessities you may need until you get to your new home and keep it separate from the boxes being loaded onto the truck.
Before unplugging electronics, take a picture of how the cords were set up so that you know how to reconnect all electronic items in your new residence.
By taking the time to prepare for the day of your move, your moving experience can be dramatically improved.
Eliminate Safety Hazards
Even though you’re using professional movers, you play a role in making your home safe for moving crews to get in and out without problems. The moving company you choose will be careful not to damage items in the home or areas of the home, but there are some things you should keep an eye on when the moving crew arrives.
If you have children or pets, keep them out of the most active parts of the home so that they do not get in the way of movers. Moving professionals, pets, and children can be put in danger when there are heavy items being moved around the home. Put pets and children in a safe room or have someone else watch them during your move to avoid issues.
Another thing you can do to the home is to clear out all obstacles in the path that movers will take to get your items into the moving truck. Make sure hallways are clear and any outdoor steps are free of ice, debris, and other hazards. Your movers are trained to spot danger, but you can play a role in ensuring their safety as well.
With all of the costs incurred during a move, one thing many people don’t consider until the last minute is tipping movers. Once you realize just how much goes into packing and moving your items, even if you’ve only packed up smaller items in the home, it’s only natural to wonder how much you should tip movers.
You’re not required to tip movers, though, so don’t feel as if you need to do so out of obligation. Although you may not end up tipping each crew member, you should prepare a tip just in case you’re satisfied with their handling of your move.
Movers will be moving heavy items, bulky items, and fragile items, packing these belongings safely onto a truck and transporting them to your new home. If you want to show your appreciation, tipping is the best way. However, it can be difficult to know who to tip, when to tip, and how much to give.
Who Do You Tip?
When tipping, etiquette is that each mover should be tipped individually for their services. However, some individuals tip the supervisor instead. Tipping the supervisor works, but you won’t be able to show your appreciation to each worker for help during your move.
By tipping each mover, you can give what you believe is fair to each team member. If you feel as though some of the moving team worked hard, or if they made a lasting impression, you can give them a higher tip. If movers haven’t done as much, you may opt to give them a lower tip. When tipping a supervisor, each individual may get the same tip no matter who did what.
When Should You Tip?
Tipping isn’t required, as you have paid for the services of your movers. However, a tip is a sign of gratitude and thanks for professionals that do a good job. If you feel as though your moving team has done an amazing job with your move, going beyond your expectations, you should give them a tip. Some of the situations in which you can feel confident giving a tip include:
- When the team has completed the move before the estimated time frame.
- All items fit into the truck securely, though it may have seemed impossible.
- Large, bulky, awkward, or heavy furniture is being moved.
- Movers must go up or downstairs or maneuver through obstacles.
- Movers must climb several flights of stairs.
How Much Should You Tip?
As stated above, a tip is not a standard requirement. In some cases, you may give movers generous tips while in other cases they may not receive a tip at all. If you’re not sure how much to tip, one of the general rules is that each crew member receives $5 per hour. However, amounts can vary greatly depending on how satisfied you are with the move from start to finish.
- No tip: If you aren’t satisfied with how your movers handled the move, you don’t have to provide a tip. Some movers don’t handle items with care, or they cause damage to important personal belongings and furniture. In some cases, movers may simply be rude or unprofessional.
- Standard tip: If you’re pretty happy with the results of your move, a standard tip is fine. As stated above, a generally accepted standard is about $5 per hour for each member of the moving crew. However, since you’re paying movers individually, you can adjust this amount accordingly.
- Generous tip: If the members of your moving crew did an amazing job getting your items on the truck and to their destination, feel free to leave a larger tip than usual. A generous tip is about $3 more per hour than a standard tip, though what you consider generous may vary.
Typically, you should expect to spend about $40 per crew member. If that seems a bit on the expensive side, you can tip without adding more to your moving expenses.
Alternatives to Cash Tips
Tips aren’t limited to cash – you can show your appreciation in several other ways that your movers will love. Some of the ways you can tip your moving team includes:
- Providing beverages to the crew
- Treating the team to lunch
- Allowing movers to take furniture and items that you are not keeping
There are no rules set in stone when it comes to tips, so feel free to find ways to give back to your movers and thank them for their help and hard work. However, when in doubt you can always count on cash to get your point across.
Moving etiquette isn’t as difficult as it may seem, especially if you want to make sure that your move goes without any delays or problems. Making your movers more comfortable and helping in any area you can without getting in the way can make moving day a breeze.
When it comes to tipping, it depends on the experience you’ve had – you’re not obligated to tip bad service, but it is courteous to tip if your movers have done well.
Now that you know what to do on the day of your move, you can relax and get things ready for the arrival of the moving company you’ve chosen. If the thought of tipping has been stressing you out, use this information to take the awkwardness out of giving tips to your moving crew.