Hourly contracts are based upon the time it takes to complete the move, plus materials if packing is requested, or necessary. The customer will initial the start time, and initial the finish time in order to compute the job hours. Then the job hours will be added to what is called travel time. Travel time is industry wide, and this charge compensates moving companies for the time it takes to get to the job, and return back to home base. Job hours plus travel time equals the total job hours. The total job hours are then multipled by the mover's tarrif rates and added to any charges for tolls, materials, and accessorial services. As you can see there are many variables at play, and this can lead to an unhappy customer that is stressed about different charges, and the ultimate cost of the move. We offer hourly rated moves, but strongly recommend a binding price estimate!
When packing is performed for a customer during an hourly contract it takes substantially longer to complete the move. This is a service we happilly provide, but we would like to make customers aware that packing is very time consuming, and adds considerable cost to an hourly contract. In addition to the time it takes to pack, the customer will also be charged for all the boxes utilized during the move. This is another reason we strongly recommend a binding price estimate where all packing is taken into account, and there are no surprises in regards to price.
Phone estimates are to be utilized with caution. If you are a repeat customer of a reputable company with a small job it can be done on an hourly basis. The key is there is no packing of boxes involved, and the company is reputable. For houses it is our policy to always come in person in order to give a binding price estimate. Small jobs with no packing are able to be defined over the phone as long as the customer does not misrepresent the size of the job. Smaller jobs the customer actually comes out ahead when done on the hourly basis. The opposite is true for larger move jobs. It is imperative to get an onsite estimate when moving a house.