I have had over 15 years experience within the removals industry. Both running and working for removal companies and for the last 6 years running my own removal marketing and consultancy company, Moving etc… I often get asked “How do I start up a Removal Company?”, “It looks easy and it looks like I can make good money, what do I need for setting up a Removal Firm?”.
Well the answer is yes, it is fairly easy setting up a removal company of your own. All you need is a van big enough to take large pieces of furniture, someone strong who is willing to put in the work and lift heavy items like washing machines, fridge freezers, sofas, double beds and boxes of books and transit insurance in case anything goes wrong.
Easy right? Well, yes.
So why do I only recommend regulated removal companies that belong to a removals Trade Association? Because they have much more experience, they have to have a minimum amount of money in the bank or at least a very large overdraft so they don’t go bust with your deposit before your move and also, they MUST use trained staff and have insurance cover in place in case things go wrong. Plus they offer an independent arbitration or ombudsman service if there is a dispute that you cannot settle directly with the removal company you booked to carry out your move.
But if you’re thinking of starting your own removal company, then you might as well do it right in the first place so that you do a good job for your customers and run a successful business.
First of all, if you don’t own your own removal lorry, you can hire one. But make sure it has wooden “Raves” or rails down the inside of the truck so you can secure the furniture and boxes inside. Good removal truck hire companies make sure you have all the equipment needed in them when you collect them. If the truck doesn’t have raves, it is very likely that everything inside the lorry will move about and get damaged as soon as you drive off and go over the first speed bump and round the corner!
You can contact most van hire companies, but 2 very good removal van hire companies are
Make sure when you are hiring a removal lorry that your driver has the right kind of licence. Anything over 3.5T he will need a heavy goods license because the vehicles have tachographs in the (digital or manual) and he will need to know how to use them. He must also abide by set driving hours and rest periods, so he needs to know the drivers hours and working time directives.
Anything over 7.5T and the driver now needs to get his Driver CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence)
For good training courses, for both manual drivers and porters and office based sales and operational staff, please contact the British Association of Removers for a schedule of their Training courses.
You could also contact the National Guild of Removers and Storers who hold taister courses around the country. However, the courses run by the BAR are currently more intense and Moving etc… highly recommend to Removal Companies that you enter your staff onto a BAR recognised training course.
For more information and an insight into the removal industry, you could subscribe to the industry Trade magazine called En Route which gives helpful tips and articles on how to run a professional removal company. Please contact me directly at email@example.com if you would like to get a copy of this magazine as they do not currently have a website.
If you are an already established removal company, you can join the Moving etc… Network where movers can network and find trade partners, look for backloads, advertise your empty truck or container space, hire out staff, learn from each other and discuss industry issues securely online.
There are also specialist Removal Truck makers, which I will update this article soon.
You will also need an infinite supply of removal boxes and packing materials. Removal boxes can be bought at good prices on the internet, but the best boxes to use are supplied by specialist removal box suppliers. As a removal company you can contact them directly, but as an individual customer, they will probably not sell you any as they work with bulk orders which makes them more cost effective.
Next you need to contact one of the industry insurance companies who specialise in transit insurance for the removals industry. There are several to choose from but the most well known and experienced are:
They will give you a quotation based on your projected yearly revenue and how many moves you intend to carry out. This is quite hard to work out at first, but they will help you come to a good guesstimate to base the cost on. Then they will give you a cost for your bulk insurance policy per year or if you’re lucky per month. If you are serious about starting a removal company you should then choose the insurer and take out the insurance. This will then cover you and your company if something goes wrong and you cause damage to your client’s furniture and household effects. Just to note: most items that are packed by the customer are NOT insurable. This is because they have not been professionally packed and you cannot prove to the insurer that the items damaged were broken during the removal if you did not see them. Please make sure that you get clear on the terms of your insurance policy before you sell the insurance cover to your customer.
Next if you are serious about starting a removal company, hire some removal men with experience and very good references. Due to the current economic climate, there are quite a few experienced removal men who have been made redundant. However, not all of them are trustworthy and reliable. Make sure that you ALWAYS get references for your removal staff because moving people’s personal belongings and valuables can tempt even the strongest of men and test their integrity. Believe it of not, most removal men are very trustworthy, because of the situations they find themselves in everyday. Untrustworthy and unreliable people do not remain in the removal industry for very long if they do not do a good job, steal from their customers and have no integrity. So always check their references.
There are several good removal recruitment companies around including
Next, work out your costs and know how much you need to charge for your services. Most smaller removal companies charge an hourly fee, with a minimum of 2-3 hours. The larger companies charge a daily fee, if the move is going to take more than 4-5 hours to complete.
Obviously to work out your costs, you need to know how long the move will take for your removal men to do from start to finish. If you are not that experienced in working out how many packing boxes your customer is going to need and how long it will take to pack up and move everything safely, Moving etc… offer a removal consultancy service where we can visit your clients for you and help you work out the cost and logistics of the move. We charge a small fee for this service, but it means that you get an experienced Move Coordinator visiting your customers. Once we have seen what needs to be moved, we then send you a list of what needs moving with the total volume and the estimated number of packing boxes required. We also let you know the access details and any other information the client has given about their collection and delivery address. If your expertise is on the removal lorry and not out with the customers, selling your company, at least you know that you have experts on your side who can help and make sure your customers are looked after. For more information on our removal consultancy services, please visit our website or our blogor email us directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Last but not least, don’t forget to register as self employed and VAT registered with HMRC. You are then ready to start your own removal company.
Recommending accredited Removal Companies, Storage and Shipping Companies
And Providing Move Management Services
Filed under: Accredited Removal Companies, Removal Insurance, Removal Man Etiquette, Removal Marketing, Removal Men, Removal Men, Using Trained Removal Men | Tagged: movingetc, Professional Business Movers, removal companies, setting up a removal company, start up | Leave a Comment »