If you’re planning your relocation, choosing one among the many moving companies out there isn’t the easiest job ever.  Once you begin searching for the best company for yourself, you’ll find that there is one important choice to make: moving companies vs. moving brokers. With that in mind, we’ll take a look at some of the pros and cons of both!

Moving Companies vs. Moving Brokers – main differences

When it comes to moving brokers, we’re not talking about movers per se. These companies don’t hire any staff that performs the actual relocation; nor do they own and maintain any trucks. Instead, their business derives from coordination with other moving companies. In essence, moving brokers are there to help you find the right moving company; they obtain quotes from different moving companies.

On the other hand, relocation industry statistics show that you aren’t necessarily guaranteed to get a better deal if you go through a broker. There are quite a few shady brokers too.

Conversely, moving companies – or carriers, as they’re alternatively referred to – are full-fledged movers. Indeed, these companies have their moving staff, as well as truck fleets. Of course, hiring a moving company directly may be more expensive; but it’s more transparent, even if you have to do some legwork on your own to find the right company.

Moving Brokers

As we’ve already established, moving brokers don’t operate a relocation business. Instead, their job is to act as a middleman between a moving company and a customer. Now that you know this, it may not be immediately obvious why you need a broker, to begin with. However, just like moving companies; these also have their benefits and drawbacks.

A truck going down a desert highway.
Moving brokers are sometimes a good choice; but not always!

Why Choose Brokers

There’s one tangible benefit of going through moving brokers – convenience. 

Depending on what moving services you need, for instance; you may need to hire more than a single moving company, seeing as they have different services in their portfolios. And doing that on your own would be quite a nuisance. However, if you were to go through a broker, they could deal with the logistics for you through multiple moving companies.

Plus, another advantage with moving brokers is that they contact competing moving companies that try to land you as a client. For moving companies that are looking for methods on how to increase customer base, this is a win as well. However, from the client perspective; that approach can net you a sizable discount compared to dealing with movers directly.

While all of this sounds great, it’s only like that in theory; in practice, moving brokers have their drawbacks as well.

Why Avoid Brokers

The “moving brokers vs. moving companies” situation isn’t exactly clear cut. While brokers are great for customers in theory, the implementation of their business model leaves a lot to be desired in practice.

Unfortunately, there are far too many irresponsible or fraudulent brokers; companies, and individuals that simply don’t do business in good faith. They simply want to earn a quick buck by scamming honest customers like yourself; or they just don’t do a good enough job finding you the best possible deal.

Drone shot of moving trucks on a parking lot.
Moving brokers cooperate with different movers, but not all of them are bona fide companies!

Many moving scams are conducted on the part of moving brokers; from taking your goods hostage to advertising different prices than they actually charge, there are plenty of issues surrounding fraudulent brokers. That’s why you need to make sure that you’re not dealing with a dishonest company. Luckily, you can do this by checking your brokers in the FMCSA website database.

Moving Companies

Now we’ll take a look at the latter option in the choice of moving brokers vs. moving companies. Indeed, moving companies are the traditional movers you imagine when you talk about movers. As we’ve previously talked about, these companies have their trucks, their movers, and their online moving quote calculator. Due to all of this, dealing with them is a more straightforward process compared to going through a broker. Of course, they have their ups and downs as well.

Why Choose Moving Companies

In the context of moving brokers vs. moving companies, the latter offers a far more streamlined experience. From the first person who will answer your phone call to the last mover that handles your stuff; everyone is working in the same company. Thus, you know who to turn to if something goes wrong.

All in all, directly hiring a moving company means a more consistent experience all around. Also, there’s a far lesser risk of miscommunication, seeing as you’re not coordinating between different moving companies that offer varied services.

Why Avoid Moving Companies

Of course, if moving companies only offered upsides; there’d be no reason to think about hiring a moving broker in the first place. We’ve already gone over the fact that moving brokers are sometimes able to get you a better deal.

Clothes in storage areas.
Individual moving companies don’t always have storage services!

Also, individual moving companies tend to offer a service portfolio that’s more limited than that of moving brokers. This is because brokers can get you individual services from a variety of moving companies. So, if you’re dealing with a local moving company, you may not be able to find in-house cleaning services or car shipping.

Conclusion

There are plenty of reasons for you to think about moving brokers vs. moving companies. And the choice you make in the end will mostly depend on your specific circumstances. However, we hope that we’ve helped you see all of the aspects that need to be taken into consideration first!