Movers and Packers – Lessons Learnt

One of the ADDA employees recently moved residence from one city to another, and used a professional Movers & Packers (M&P) company. Here are some observations and lessons learnt.

EVALUATION of M&P COMPANY

  • While evaluating the Packers, ensure they see all articles to be moved, which helps them judge the height of the Truck/Container required.
  • If possible insist on a dedicated truck for your goods, so point-to-point delivery can happen. This reduces delays as well as  mix-up of your goods with other consignments.
  • Typical components of the Cost Sheet:

Packing
Loading
Transportation
Unloading
UnPacking

Insurance (optional)

Service Tax

  • Insurance claims are entertained only in case of extreme unforeseen damages, e.g., the truck getting into an accident. Insurance claims are not entertained in case damage happens during regular loading/unloading. So don’t compromise on the quality of the packer, by buying insurance for the goods.
  • Discuss about how much advance to be paid before delivery. The negotiated split needs to be written down on the Estimate sheet which is the only Document until loading of your goods.
  • If you are moving to Maharashtra get complete clarification about Octroi. If they do not give you Octroi challan good chances they won’t be paying it and will pay a bribe instead. Learn about the Octroi rates here: http://www.lawyersclubindia.com/forum/Octroi-1352.asp  Octroi is not levied on household goods.

BEFORE THE DAY OF PACKING

  • Pack personal articles like Clothes, cosmetics, and other delicate items by yourself.
  • Pack the bag that you would carry with yourself. Consider placing below valuables in the bag that must travel with you:

1. Jewellery

2. Cash

3. Certificates, Passports, Keys, Licenses etc.

4. Any other lightweight material of high value or high cost of replacing.

  • Dispose all items that you wish to discard. Otherwise on the day of frantic packing, they will all get packed.
Flag it off!

ON THE DAY OF PACKING

  • Consider 7-8 hours of total packing and loading time for a typical 3BHK, using 4-5 personnel.
  • The Packers will bring along with them: Boxes, Brownpaper rolls, Bubblewrap rolls, Sticky Tapes, screwdrivers etc.
  • If you have the original box for the TV or the Fridge, they may not be of much use. But if you have the original thermocol packing of these items, they are useful.
  • Designate an area in your house for junk that you want to dispose – Instruct the Packers clearly not to pack articles kept in that area.
  • Designate a separate area for articles that you want to carry along with yourself –  Instruct the Packers clearly not to pack articles kept in that area.
  • Keep colored stickers to be pasted on the boxes. Color code each room in the destination. E.g., all boxes to go into kitchen, to have green sticker.
  • For furniture that are being dissembled, create a single small plastic box to hold all the nuts and bolts. If the packer has a method of storing it (e.g., in the last box that is packed), make note of it.
  • The packers will be very energetic with the first hour of packing, their stamina going down gradually. Plan for some Chai/Snacks/Cool Drinks for them.
  • Towards the end, they may try to load some articles without wrapping them up (e.g., a coffee table). Do not allow this, insist on wrapping or packing everything.

IN TRANSIT

  • Take the phone number of the Trucker. The trucker may not be an employee of the M&P company and may contact you directly for any queries in transit.
  • If you are moving to Maharashtra, you may get a call from the nearest Octroi checkpost that more Octroi is being asked. The personnel from the M&P company would ask you to agree to the higher amount (in thousands) or want you to run down to the naka with the letter declaring the value of goods etc.
  • In case they threaten delaying of delivery, do not succumb. The Mover loses Thousands of rupees each day that he holds a delivery since the truck goes unused or godown space is taken up. They would like to drop the goods at the destination as quickly as possible.

ON DELIVERY

  • If the unpacking of goods, assembling of furniture was included in the Estimate, do not let the Movers go until they do it. Do not agree to “we will come tomorrow and do it”. Give them an espresso shot and get the job done. With Movers, tomorrow never comes.
  • It is possible that the Truck Driver may collect all of the remaining amount. Try to hold some payment until all the unpacking and assembling of furniture is done.
  • Tip reasonably on a job well done.

Packing and Moving is practically an everyday thing today. What is your experience with Moving?

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About the Author: San Banerjee

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