Hidden Moving Fees: Everything You Need to Know

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Moving industry is marked as one of the shadiest ones because of a lot of companies on the market that operate in a bad way. However, the market is huge and there is a little bit for everyone’s taste and needs. For those of you who want to avoid having business with a scam company, it won’t be that hard to recognize them once you read about the red flags.

calculator and dollar bills

One of the red flags are hidden moving fees, for sure. Every company out there has different kinds of fees, but not all of those will inform you about them. Here is where you make a difference between scam companies that shed bad light on the moving industry, and the licensed ones that are putting their effort in helping people in need without telling them half truths and white lies. 

The problem happens when people put budget in front of everything else and hire the company with the cheapest offer that they got. Cheap doesn’t come with quality. Do your research and try to find affordable movers that are not so expensive. It is possible if you are committed and ready to listen and ask the right questions that you will find a place where the grass is greener. Because of the nature of the service, it is hard to list every single situation where some fees can come up, so let’s focus on the most frequent ones.

Fees Related To Mileage

10km sign

The most frequent additional fees with a moving company are those that are related to mileage. You can avoid all of the hassle if you just investigate among the people that moved, investigate online, and figure out what are the mileage charges. How does a moving company charge for the mileage? 

When you are informed as a professional you will be able to recognize a shady offer that doesn’t mention nor include any mileage charges. 

If your residential movers fail to mention this portion of the service, here are the questions that will help in figuring out what are you paying for in reality:

black magnifying glass


  • How do you charge for gas/fuel?
  • When does the clock for the move start/stop?
  • Do you charge for the time that you need from your storage/back to your storage?
  • How do you handle multiple stops?
  • Do you charge for the California Double Drive Time Fee?

When your sales advisor confronts these questions, the first thing that will cross their mind will be: “I am dealing with an informed person that we won’t be able to cross over”.

And that is what you need to be, informed!
If they are straight-forward they will have easy answers to these questions. However, If they have something to hide, they will try to sneak out of the conversation and highlight some other things that fall under their services – RED FLAG!

At this point you can seek justice and get them to admit that they were trying to keep you out of the loop, or you can simply move forward and let them be.

Accessibility fees 


What does this mean? Accessibility during moving processes is related to the position of the house, proximity to the actual place, the nature of the road and its widnes, place for parking etc. 

When we are talking about buildings, among the things that are already mentioned, we can add stairs and elevators to it, as well as the garage clearance.Now that we learned what to pay attention to, let’s mention the fees correlated to each situation that are usually cloudy during the quoting process.

Position of the house/ road quality/ road widnes

staircase with potted flowers

This applies to the homeowners or rentals that are larger in nature, houses and apartment complexes. Furniture movers are the ones that will drive or carry your furniture from the truck and to your place. This leaves room for additional, hidden fees. 


If the street is narrow, the truck won’t be able to park in front of the building. Team of professional movers will need to unload the truck and move furniture piece by piece on dollies. That’s called a long carry. Long carry is something that companies, mostly, don’t include in the price but almost never mention over the phone when you are requesting the quote.They will mention if they include it, but if they don’t- RED FLAG. So, be one step ahead of them and pose a question regarding it if you think that your home is not perfectly accessible

Place for parking

parking lot

This can’t be classified as a hidden moving fee, but for sure it is something that companies reluctantly mention. It is because they don’t provide parking for their vehicle and are not held accountable if they get a parking ticket. They simply add it on top of the bill for the client to take care of it. 

In case you can’t provide clear and free parking in Long Beach for your affordable movers, make sure that you obtained a parking permit, and save yourself a headache.

Stairs fees

woman on railing in staircase

You are moving in, or out of the building that doesn’t have an elevator, and you live at the second, third, forth floor- prepare yourself for the fact that this is something that you will need to pay for additionally.

Your affordable movers should talk you through it, but if they fail to do it, don’t avoid mentioning it in the attempt to lure them in to move you at any cost. In the end you will be the one to pay the cost, because if it’s done it won’t be for free.

a couple carrying boxes down the stairs

This is handled differently from one case to another. Some companies will put an ultimatum of hiring a larger number of movers because of the safet and the efficiency, some will ask for an additional fee per additional flight of stairs, the others will ask for both.So, make sure that your affordable movers will give you affordable options to resolve this situation in a way that both parties are happy.

Elevator fees

Believe it or not, some local movers are charging for the elevator use. As weird as it sounds, it can happen to you. Why charge for the elevators when it’s one means of transportation for people and furniture- we don’t know. But those movers that charge for this, almost never mention the cost, and you find about it when you take a look at your final receipt.


If your move includes elevators at any end, don’t forget to ask your relocation specialist about the possible fees, and of course- don’t forget to reserve the elevator for a certain time frame! 

Talk to your building’s management and find out about the open time frames, and If they request the reservation at all.

Additional services 

boxes on the living room floor

Whenever you hear the words “additional services” during the conversation when you are looking to hire movers near Long Beach, brace yourself. The adjective “additional” always follows the noun “cost”.

What additional services are, completely depends on your company’s set of rules. What are the default services that they include will be a sign of what’s not included and will be additional. 

Let’s just take a look at the list of services that you will encounter because some of those might cause an extra charge.

  • Disassembling/ reassembling 
  • Protective materials
  • Packing services

Disassembling/ Reassembling 

These two are usually included in the standard services and the initial quotes. However, there are movers on the market that are charging for using their power tools and labor in order to disassemble or assemble the furniture. The only way to find out if you mover is hiding the fee from you will be to ask. 

man holding power tool

If they say that they do include it, ask them for a written proof of everything that you will get for the price that you will be paying for. And this is how you are legally covered!

Protective materials

man holding the package

Plastic wraps, moving blankets, wardrobe boxes and similar means of protection are what is included by default, almost always. Some businesses charge for the usage of these materials as well. Those are the businesses that usually present themselves as the most affordable movers on the market. Being that much cheaper than the second most affordable company must raise a RED FLAG.

Here they can leave room for various charges that they don’t intend to mention. In the end you will pay much more than If you simply hired professional movers in Long Beach that are checked out.Human error is the most frequent reason for mistakes. That’s why you shouldn’t satanize your best price movers before you give them the benefit of a doubt! Everyone deserves a second chance and a simple conversation with proper questions can resolve all of your issues.

Packing services

First you will need to determine the difference between packing of the furniture and full packing that includes the packing of all of your personal belongings and furniture as well. Once that line is clear, you will need to check what are the situations where you might be charged for something that they anticipate at the beginning. 

boxes on the table

Let’s make the difference between labor only movers that will pack your items, and packing materials that will be used.


couple posing

If you need affordable movers to provide you with the labor for the packing, find out how they tackle the challenge, with how many people, does the number of movers increase, does the hourly rate change, how much time they will be able to work until they reach after hours etc.

Packing materials 

bubble wrap

Packing materials are almost always an additional cost, but you will need to inform yourself about the exact prices for each If you don’t want to be crossed over. If you decided to completely let go of the packing and have a company do that on your behalf, you will need their materials:

  • Boxes, various sizes
  • Dish-pack boxes
  • Wrapping paper
  • Bubble wrap etc.

It’s not for the worse If you are aware of the pricing sheet from the very beginning.

Rescheduling/ cancellation fees

Rescheduling and canceling are happening for so many reasons, predictable and unpredictable. People simply find a better offer and want to cancel, or their lease fell through and they are not moving anymore, or the moving date needs to change due to private reasons. At the beginning you might be sure that you will be hiring those movers that you booked and that you won’t look anywhere else. But, you can change your mind. Maybe you will be in a situation where you have to postpone or cancel. 

This is why you should ask about their cancellation and rescheduling policy.

cubes with the inscription
  • Is it free?
  • If it’s not free how much does it cost?
  • Are you losing your deposit If you make any change date related?
  • What happens if you cancel on the same day as the move was supposed to happen?

We hope that you will find both affordable and reliable movers to tackle this project for you and make the move go without unnecessary stress! Our team of professionals will make sure that your belongings  are in good hands and well-cared for. What we offer is straight-forwardness and reciprocity in communication. We will hear you out and try our best that all of your inquiries are met without any hidden or extra fees!

board with white we see you inscription

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