Move It by Bike – Review
Tim and his crew arrived punctually at the scheduled time, which was early in the day since I wanted to avoid the afternoon summer heat. Of all the bids I received, this was the earliest start time I was offered and a big point in Tim’s favor.
Everyone was friendly and ready to work. They were great at loading their own stackable plastic bins, which were brought to me well in advance without an extra charge. Tim made two trips before the move to bring me a total of 20 bins. Packing them was easier and faster than filling cardboard boxes since they’re sturdier and lock in place when stacked. No messing with all that tape either. However, they were quite dirty and tiny roaches were crawling on some of them. They could use a good power-wash.
Tim did not give me a deadline for returning the plastic containers, which was really helpful after many days of packing and a stressful and tiring day of moving. I unpacked and returned the bins within 4 days anyway, which is faster than I would’ve unpacked my own cardboard boxes. The main reason was to help Tim in case he had another customer, but the roaches also motivated me.
I was impressed by Tim’s concern for his crew – belts and straps to help carry the heavy stuff, plus verbal pointers on how to lift. Concern for furniture was not as good. Two fabric chairs were loaded without being wrapped so one of them received a stain I suspect is permanent, probably oil based. Also, wood shelves were loaded without any attempt to prevent scratches.
Before the job, Tim walked through my apartment and came up with an estimate and commented that it was probably too high. In fact, he estimated 4 hours and it took 5. This is probably due to inexperience. I expect he’ll get better at calculating the various factors – how much stuff is there, how far away is the move, how much fits in each wagon, how fast or slow his crew works. He even forgot that there were stairs at my new place, and that’s a major time factor in any move.
Nevertheless, the final cost was less than any of the truck movers that bid on my move since their hourly rates are much higher. They will no doubt move you faster, but the total price will still be more than Tim’s.
The biggest disappointment was Tim’s handling of damage to my TV cabinet. The piece is about 5 ½ feet tall and stands on legs that are 18 inches. He watched his crew trying to carry the cabinet up a flight of stairs UPRIGHT. On the second step, the crew said they were having problems lifting the legs over each step. Clearly, the cabinet should have been on its BACK. The end result was a broken leg. In addition, I have since discovered deep scratches on each side of the cabinet from the lifting straps, which aren’t padded to prevent that sort of thing and which would have been on the back side of the cabinet if carried up properly.
Tim’s reaction to the broken cabinet leg was to imply that the piece was already broken and/or that I should have warned him that it was in poor condition to begin with.
These are issues that only experience will improve. The best position to carry the cabinet should have been discussed beforehand. And despite my attempts to be tactful by saying the piece was cheap, Tim should have taken responsibility for the broken leg which was not broken at the beginning of the trip since it was standing perfectly fine when they took it out of the old apartment. Taking ownership for the breakage and offering a small discount would have gone a long way, although four days later he did offer to locate a replacement part.
In the end, I’m glad I used Move it by Bike for my most recent move and I’d hire Tim again. It’s a new business and he still has many things to learn and improvements to make. But the concept is good in so many ways! Eco-friendly. A small, local enterprise. Innovative. Creative. As fun as working your butt off can be. And funky in a N’Awlins sort of way. I’m pleased that I had the chance to help this new business in its early stages. Best of luck to Tim and Move It by Bike!