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What is the difference between moving companies and brokers?

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You have just begun to prepare for your long-distance move, and you are shopping around for movers. You are overwhelmed with all the movers calling you. How do you determine which one is the best for you? What is the primary difference between a moving company and a broker?

It cannot be very clear when trying to figure out the difference between moving companies and brokers. After all, they both have the word “moving” in their title! And it’s not always clear which services are being offered to you and by whom.

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The best way to detect the difference is to think about what each company does.

The main difference between moving companies and brokers is that moving companies are direct providers of moving services, while brokers are intermediaries that connect customers with moving companies. Brokers seldom offer additional services such as planning and packing, while some moving companies may offer these services.

Another key difference is that moving companies are typically more expensive than brokers. This is because brokers usually don’t own any trucks or equipment and instead simply connect customers with providers. However, it’s important to take note that the prices vary significantly between brokers and moving companies, so it’s essential to compare quotes before deciding on a provider.

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What Do You Need?

Ultimately, the final decision of whether to use a broker or a moving company depends on the customer’s specific needs. If someone is looking for convenience and doesn’t mind paying a bit more, then a moving company is probably the best option. However, if the price is a major consideration, using a broker may be better.

Whatever the decision, it’s important to do some research to find the best provider for the job. There are many different options out there, so it’s important to compare quotes and read reviews before making a final decision.

moving broker


How to spot if you are dealing with a broker or a moving company

When you are looking for a moving company, it is important to make sure that you are working with a broker and not an actual moving company.

There are a few ways to tell if the moving company you are working with is actually a broker.



The first way to tell is by their pricing. Brokers will usually have much lower rates than moving companies. This is because they are not actually doing the moving themselves and are just connecting you with a company that can do it for you.

Brokers may offer you a quote that is half the cost of the exact quote that a moving company will provide you. This is how they lure you in. By promising to save you money, they make it seem like it’s worth your time to go through them. However, before choosing a broker, be sure to compare their price with the moving company’s price and look at the fine print in the broker’s contract.

You may be surprised to find that the broker’s quote is more expensive should your shipment be larger than the broker estimated.


Another aspect you ought to take into consideration is that a broker typically does not have any affiliation with a specific moving company. This means that they cannot offer you any discounts or special deals that a moving company might be able to.

This is because a broker is essentially just a middle man and does not have any control over the rates that the moving companies are charging.

Moving companies can be more expensive than brokers, but the prices they charge usually remain reasonably consistent. This is because the moving company has to pay for the cost of the move upfront, whereas a broker can simply increase their prices if there is a higher demand for their services.

moving brokers scam


Many people wrongfully assume that the cheapest option is always the best when it comes to moving. This is not always the case, as choosing a lower-priced broker can often lead to disaster.

Overall, it’s important to remember that you get what you pay for. If you’re looking for a cheap move, a broker is probably your best bet. But if you want your belongings to arrive safe and sound, then you should definitely hire a moving company.


The vast majority of brokers are based in Florida. This is primarily for tax purposes, as Florida has very low corporate taxes. This makes it a more attractive state for businesses to base themselves in.

Be wary if you live in Texas and get calls from Florida area code numbers. The callers are likely brokers trying to get your business. Moving companies don’t typically solicit customers in other states unless they reside in the adjacent state. On the other hand, Brokers make a commission by finding and contracting with movers on behalf of their clients.

long distance moving location

To locate the brokers’ addresses, review the quote you receive from them. The quote will likely include contact information for the broker, including their mailing address.

When you are looking to move, you will want to find a moving company that is located in your state. This is because you will be dealing with a local mover familiar with your area. There should be enough moving companies located in your state for you to choose from.

DOT Registered?

If you choose a moving provider that does not have a DOT license number, your move will not be insured. This essentially means that if something happens to your belongings during the move, the moving company will not be responsible. As a consequence, you could very well find yourself losing all of your possessions.

dot truck register fmcsa

It’s more common for brokers rather than carriers to fly under the radar of the Dept of Transportation. So, while this is not a unique offense to brokers, it certainly is more commonplace.

You can find a movers DOT license number in their quote and on their website.

When looking for a moving company, it is vital to ensure that they are licensed and insured. One way to check this is to look for the movers’ DOT license number. If you cannot locate this number, you should ask the company for it. By doing this, you can be sure that the company is legitimate and has met the necessary requirements.

When it comes to relocating, you want to make sure that you are doing everything possible to protect your belongings. This means that you should never take the risk of going with a broker and certainly not one that is not even licensed to move your belongings! By working with a reputable moving company, you can be sure that your belongings will be handled with care.

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Many brokers will try to have a rushed conversation with you about your move and try to get you to sign up with them immediately. However, it is important to do your research and compare different companies before making a decision. Moving can be a stressful process, so it is crucial to find a company that you can trust and that will take the time to discuss your move at your own pace, not theirs.

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Moving companies and brokers both rely on sales representatives to make sales. However, brokers typically have more sales reps who will lean on you to make a quick decision. They will create the illusion that they are offering you a one-time-only special offer.

On the other hand, moving companies may not have as many sales reps, but the ones they do have are more likely to be knowledgeable about the moving process and what is available in the market. They will also be less likely to pressure you into making a hasty decision.

decide about your moving

Sales reps for brokers are not always adequately trained in objection handling and may become hostile if you show any apprehension about selecting them as your mover. Moving companies, however, usually have their own trucks and will be happy to address any questions or concerns their clients have to find the best price and service for their customers. Therefore, they are more inclined to compromise and be able to find a service that meets your specific needs and budget.

Deposit and Cancellation Policy

Brokers are essentially middlemen – they will offer you a lower price for your move, but they will charge a substantially higher deposit to reserve your move. This higher deposit is meant to protect the broker if you cancel your move.

On the other hand, moving companies are directly responsible for your move. They will usually charge a bit more than brokers, but you won’t have to worry about any vast deposits.

A broker may quote you $2,000 for a move and demand a $600 booking deposit. This is because a broker typically marks up the prices of services provided by a moving company. A broker typically does not offer any benefits beyond finding a moving company for you and collecting a deposit.

deposit moving payment

A moving company will provide the same services as a broker but without the markup. You may be able to negotiate a better deposit with a moving company than with a broker. Moving companies typically only charge $100-300 for a booking deposit. This means you are not left out of pocket.

Brokers have very stringent cancellation policies with regards to getting your deposit back. They will oftentimes require that you cancel in writing and require that you return any promotional materials they may have sent to you. If you do not follow their cancellation policy, you may lose your deposit.

Moving companies do not typically have cancellation policies as strict as brokers. In fact, most moving companies will not require that you return any promotional materials, and they will usually allow you to cancel by phone or email. If you have already paid a deposit to a moving company, you may be able to get it back if you cancel your move in a timely manner.

moving payment methods

Moving Day

Brokers are intermediaries, not actual movers. This means that you may have had no prior interaction with the company that shows up at your door on the moving day.

Many people choose to opt for a broker because they offer various services and can often get a good deal for their customers. Regardless, it is paramount to keep in mind that the broker is not actually doing any of the moving – they are simply connecting you with a mover.

On the other hand, Movers are the companies who will be handling your move. You will likely have worked with them directly to schedule the move, and they will be the guys who show up on the big moving day.


If you opt for a broker, you have no say in the quality of the mover whom they are selecting for you. In fact, you may not even meet the mover until they show up at your door.

If you decide to work with a moving company, you will have had direct contact with them and will have been able to assess their quality. You will also know who is coming to your house on moving day. This basically means that you are less susceptible to run into any surprises on moving day.

In the possible event that something goes awry on moving day, you will likely be able to communicate with the moving company more easily than if you were working with a broker. Brokers often have very little contact information for the movers they work with, and you may have difficulty getting in touch with them if something goes wrong.

Let’s assess a worst-case scenario: your broker has quoted X for your upcoming move. However, on the big day, the movers who show up at your door will survey your home and end up charging you Y.

choosing a moving company

The movers will try to explain that there is far more for them to move than what was initially anticipated. This does not mean you are at fault for this, but you are still left with the vast price difference that could leave you out of pocket.

In this scenario, the broker has either been deceptive or incompetent to both you and the moving company they hired for you. You were expecting to pay a particular price, and the movers were expecting to load a specific-sized shipment. Both parties will be ill at ease.

The moving company will be unable to revise their new charge because they have their own overheads to manage. So you will reach out to the broker for an explanation. Whatever the outcome, it is unlikely that you will emerge from this mess without losing money. Your deposit will be forfeit, and if the movers have already loaded your belongings, they may charge a labor fee for offloading them back into your house.

moving companies same day service

Also, it may be impossible to hire another mover at the last minute. None of this is ideal, of course!

If you are working with a dedicated moving company, it is unlikely that this scenario would play out. You would have been quoted a price based on what your move entails, and the movers will not be able to charge you more than what you agreed to.

In-Home Estimations

Having an in-home estimate is key in keeping with the tone of there being no surprises on the day of the move.

An in-home estimation is a service that moving companies provide to their customers. During this process, a representative from the moving company will come to the customer’s home and assess the number of belongings that will need to be moved. This assessment helps the customer to understand the cost of the move and allows them to plan accordingly.


When you are working with a broker, the movers they hire for you may not be able to give you an in-home estimate. This is because the brokers often hire third-party movers who may not have the required proximity from your home to do so.

If you begin working with a reputable moving company, they will be able to provide you with an in-home estimate. This is because they have a physical location within 50 miles from you from which they operate.

Customer Service

When something goes wrong on moving day, it is important to have someone to whom you can reach out for help.

If you are working with a broker, the chances are that you will not be able to reach them quickly should something goes wrong. They often have little contact information for the movers they work with.

movers customer services

If you are working with a reputable moving company, you will be able to reach them quickly if something goes wrong. This is because they have a physical location within 50 miles from you from which they operate.


It is crucial to have insurance for your move, regardless of who you are working with.

If you are working with a broker, the movers they hire for you may not be able to provide you with insurance. This is because the brokers often hire third-party movers who may not have the required insurance paperwork themselves.

ensure your belongings are safe

If you are working with a dedicated moving company, they will be able to provide you with insurance. This is because they have their own insurance policies in place.

Local TLC

There are many moving companies out there, and many of them are locally owned, and family operated. This means they will offer a lot more TLC to their clients. These types of companies often have smaller crews, which can mean a more personalized move for you. They’re also more likely to be flexible with your needs and work with you to find a healthy compromise that fits both your budget and your schedule.

When you work with a moving company, you often get the feeling that the employees genuinely care about your move and are doing everything they can to help. This is not always the case with moving brokers. Brokers are more likely to treat you like numbers on a spreadsheet and do not apply any personal touch that is often required for moving clients.

tlc local movers

Moving companies are also more likely to have their trucks and employees, which means they can often provide a more personalized service. Brokers typically use subcontractors, leading to inconsistent quality of service they receive.

When you work with a broker, you essentially work with an intermediary. It can sometimes be challenging to form a healthy working relationship with your move coordinator. With a moving company, you will be able to work directly with the people who are helping you move. This can make communication easier and help ensure that your move goes smoothly.


If you are looking for a reliable and personal moving experience, it is best to work with a moving company. Brokers can on rare occasions be a good option if you have little to nothing to move and don’t want to spend a lot of money, but you may not receive the same level of service. Always make sure to have insurance in place for your move, no matter who you are working with, broker, or moving company.

moving conclusions

Delta Moving Systems

Delta Moving Systems is not a broker. We are a moving company. We offer full-service moves, from packing to loading to transporting your belongings to your new home. We are fully insured, licensed, and bonded so you can rest assured that your move will be safe and reliable. When you choose Delta Moving Systems, you’re choosing a company that will take care of everything for you.

Delta Moving Systems is a locally based moving company in Houston, TX. We are fully registered with the US Dept of Transportation, so you can be sure that we will handle your move safely and securely. Delta Moving Systems has a wide variety of services available, so they can accommodate any type of relocation service, no matter how big or small.

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At Delta Moving Systems, we never subcontract our moves to third parties. We have a fully dedicated team of seasoned and qualified professionals who will handle your move from start to finish. You can trust that your worldly possessions will be handled with the utmost care and respect.

Our moving coordinators are on standby to assist you and address all of your moving requirements. We will bespoke your move to suit your requirements. If you’re looking for a reliable and personal moving experience, call Delta Moving Systems today! You won’t be disappointed.

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Roger M

Roger is a moving expert with Delta Moving Systems. Roger has a lovely wife, 2 naughty boys and a pitbull who are his life. Roger likes to fish and he’s always planning BarBQue for his friends from Delta Moving System.

He understands that moving is considered one of the most stressful events in a new homeowner's life, so no matter your move size or distance you need, if you have any question call Roger.

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