Moving Company Life

Discussion in 'Experienced Truckers' Advice' started by Touch Freight Freddy, Nov 20, 2021.

  1. Touch Freight Freddy

    Touch Freight Freddy Light Load Member

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    Bedbuggers unite:

    Household goods, corporate relocation, military, etc. Whatever your specialty, van line drivers post your experiences here.

    I know for me the moving business has been a neverending series of wild episodes. I often say there should be a Netflix series about it... any producers reading please steal my idea.

    It's a tough field for sure, and people underestimate that. The turnover rate is astonishing. Not just movers and drivers, but management also. That being said, there are also many who stick it out and become hooked on the moving buzz for decades.

    Many truckers scoff at bedbuggers since our wheels tend to turn a lot less than typical freight haulers, but the combination of hard manual labor, immediately followed by sitting in a truck for hours (or days) on end is a one-two backbreaker that is nothing to shake a stick at.

    Because of that, many advise against going into this industry, and all the veterans will tell you the profits have been going downhill for a long time. There are a number of factors causing this, but from my perspective it's still pretty lucrative, and the excitement of doing something different and challenging with each job has kept me hooked for the past half decade and change.

    I started with Two Men & A Truck as a mover and 10 months down the road started driving Class C straight trucks. Switched to an Atlas agent this past April and got my Class A permit, then my license in October. Now I'm a local company driver, driving both straight trucks (class B and C) as well as tractor-trailers. Driving a 53-footer through neighborhoods, U-turning in cul-de-sacs, and weaving through construction at new housing developments is a heck of a way to get broken in.

    Next step for me is to get approved for interstate jobs. Planning to do mostly Southeast and Midwest. Hopefully someday I'll be an o/o and have a truck like the one my coworker just got on a lease-purchase:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    So, my questions for fellow bedbuggers:

    1- How far do you go?
    2- What's your road/home time look like?
    3- Toughest item you've ever moved?
    4- What are you driving?
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2021
    Reason for edit: Accidentally published before finishing
    austinmike, dan31186, Badmon and 4 others Thank this.
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  3. roundhouse

    roundhouse Road Train Member

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    I figured that the Pods and other business like it would have taken over from the trailer hauling
     
  4. Touch Freight Freddy

    Touch Freight Freddy Light Load Member

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    That and ABF, OD, etc have started to take up a lot of the market with customer or third-party loaded trailers.

    But United/Mayflower, North American/Allied, Atlas and a few others are still going strong as full-service operations. One of the few fields that actually got busier during lockdown and still hasn't slowed since. It used to be a mostly seasonal job, with families relocating in summer due to their kids' school schedule, but with many classes still on Zoom a lot of people are bouncing around at all times of year.

    The housing market is booming, people are pulling their parents from nursing homes, people who were on nursing home wait lists for years are now finding vacancies... There are a lot of reasons it's a hot industry right now.
     
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  5. reeferwrencher

    reeferwrencher Medium Load Member

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    When I drove I worked for a cartage company for a while and we had to do the odd moving job which I didnt enjoy doing.Now that you are a driver do you think you will get tired of the physical work and eventually move on to something else?Just wondering,thanks.
     
  6. Touch Freight Freddy

    Touch Freight Freddy Light Load Member

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    If I do switch fields it'll probably be a close cousin of HHG, like in-home delivery or LTL. It's not for everyone, but I love the combo of long-distance travel and hard manual labor.
     
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  7. Touch Freight Freddy

    Touch Freight Freddy Light Load Member

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    Answering my own questions here:

    1- How far do you go?

    Agreed to do mostly border states and borders of borders. Southeast region, maybe some midwest. No further north than Pennsylvania.

    2- What's your road/home time look like?

    5 on 2 off, if things go as agreed.

    3- Toughest item you've ever moved?

    Picking up 3 lateral fireproof file cabinets manually (500 lbs apiece) with 1 other guy and stacking them is probably the hardest I've physically exerted myself on individual pieces.

    Taking a $40,000, 700 lbs architectural printer up 3 flights on a fire escape with 5 other guys and hump straps might have been the most nerve-wracking.

    4- What are you driving?

    I've been assigned a company-owned Freightliner Cascadia (10-speed manual).
     
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  8. Dockbumper

    Dockbumper Road Train Member

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    The Bedbugging side of this industry is undoubtedly the underbelly of trucking. Not picking on you personally, but......sleazy "Moving Companies" have by far the most negative reviews from millions of people who have been quoted a "Price" for a "Move", only to be presented with Phony Scale Tickets, their belongings, "lost", damaged, stolen or HELD HOSTAGE by the unscrupulous dirt bags that run the industry. I am 61 years old and have many family members and associates/ friends that have been effed over by " Professional Movers". Their reputation is WORSE than that of Congress and PEDOPHILES!! No wonder PODS and the Wiggle Wagon side of things has gotten a foot hold.
     
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  9. Touch Freight Freddy

    Touch Freight Freddy Light Load Member

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    If you choose PODS, ABF, etc you still have to hire labor that can steal or damage your belongings, albeit with many fewer regulations.

    Or you can attempt to hack it yourself with some buddies and beers, but that's unlikely to save you on damages, lol.

    I once unloaded a "UPack" ABF trailer that a customer had loaded and hired Two Men & A Truck to take out. Half of that junk was lying diagonal when we picked it out, what a slop job. Unloaded a PODS box that had been sitting for a month with a hole in the roof, the bedroom set was soaked.

    Any sort of handling, storage, and transport carries risk. The real question is, however you go about it, do you have coverage and is the company honest enough to pay out?

    Customers do have to be vigilant, and even good companies hire some bad apples, but reputable moving companies do exist.
     
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  10. Dockbumper

    Dockbumper Road Train Member

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    Do I HAVE COVERAGE!! LOL. AND.... NO....80% of "moving companies" will never pay jack s#!t. I'm glad you consider yourself honest. The other 90% in your industry aren't. I have no idea how you do it. I would be cutting myself with razor blades within 2 weeks.
     
  11. Touch Freight Freddy

    Touch Freight Freddy Light Load Member

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    I once moved a shipper from NC to Hampton Roads area. She called back saying her TV was broken. It was loaded in a safe place on the truck, never dropped, and most importantly she packed it in her own box before we ever saw it.

    The office cut her a check for a new TV without even asking the crew what happened.

    At a van line, if the driver doesn't inventory all preexisting damages, claims just come out of their pocket.

    The only outfits that I've heard of never paying out claims don't last long, but that doesn't stop more from popping back up.
     
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