If your relocation project is getting closer and you have decided not to handle packing and moving by yourself, there is one more important decision to take. There are two different kinds of companies that you can hire: moving companies and moving brokers, and no, these aren’t the same… With that in mind, we’ll take a look at some differences between both!


A moving broker is a company that serves as a middleman between the customer and a moving company. Moving brokers are not equal to professional movers because moving brokers do not operate a relocation business and they do not own any moving trucks, moving team, moving equipment, or packing supplies. In essence, moving brokers are there to help you find the right moving company by offering your moving project to different movers. Note that, if you choose to go down the route of moving brokers, research online the credibility, reputation, and registration with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMSA) to avoid irresponsible or fraudulent brokers.


Sometimes moving companies offer a limited range of moving-related services, so you need to hire a few different companies. If you need more than just move your belongings from one place to another and require a storage unit, piano moving services, etc. a broker could deal with the logistics for you through multiple moving companies.

When hiring a broker, the biggest disadvantage is the fact that you are not directly dealing with the people who will ultimately move your household items, and you cannot give specific instructions or express your needs. Also, no party will want to claim responsibility in case of problems like damaged belongings and there is a risk that movers who arrive at your home are not experts in their field, because customers do not have the opportunity to research the hired moving company.

In terms of cost, brokers’ estimates for moving might be confusing, because they do not offer an in-home estimate and some moving brokers follow a fraudulent estimation strategy: they will offer a very low moving estimate to win the moving project. Then, before the actual move, they will call the customer with verification that the item count goes up and so does the price. A frustrated customer will have nothing to do, other than paying the difference.


Moving companies are the traditional movers you imagine when you think about relocation help. It is a professional moving team with a license to transport home goods, they have their own branded trucks, experienced moving team, and often provide more services, such as packing and storage.

Unlike the brokers, professional moving companies send an expert to your home to do a visual home inventory and give you an accurate cost estimate for moving services. It also allows you to have a face-to-face interaction and a discussion on important issues with the representative of the moving company. You can ask essential questions directly, unlike while dealing with a moving broker mostly happens via phone or via e-mail. So, it’s more transparent, even if you have to do some research on your own to find the right company.


Moving companies offer a far more consistent experience because everyone is working in the same company, which guarantees a lesser risk of miscommunication and smoother problem-solving. A moving company will also know the area better and be more prepared to deal with emergencies related to moving a household’s worth of items. The best moving companies also have sufficient insurance coverage for every transaction and take responsibility for their work.

It is notable, that small moving companies tend to offer a service portfolio that’s more limited than that of moving brokers. So, if you’re dealing with a small local moving company, you may not be able to get in-house cleaning services, car shipping, piano, or heavy appliances moving services. However, many professional moving companies, like Call the Movers, offer a wide range of moving-related services in one place: from special packaging of valuable items such as paintings, china, and sculptures, to storage units, piano moving, and even senior move management.


Now that you’re familiar with the difference between a moving company and a broker, you can choose which way is better for you depending on your specific circumstances. In both cases, it’s imperative to research the reputation and credibility of the business before you sign any contracts. We advise you to use independent rating systems like “Better Business Bureau” (BBB), “Home Advisor”, “Angie’s List” since these companies do a background check on moving companies to make sure they have all the licenses and insurance updates. They also make sure that reviews are checked, and they are coming from a real client.

If you’re planning to relocate to or from Northern Virginia, Maryland, or Washington D.C, look to Call the Movers! Our experienced moving company provides professional local and long-distance moving and storage services! Call us today to speak with a knowledgeable team member about your household relocation requirements or fill out our quick online form to request a free, in-home estimate right now.