Moving to France: your questions answered
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Once you’ve signed for your dream French home, it’s time to start thinking about transporting all your precious belongings
Ben Franklin of Franklins Removals Ltd answers some of the most common questions about transporting your belongings across the Channel when you make the move to France.
When should we hire a removals firm? Start looking for a removals
company at least three months before you hope to move. This will give you time to get quotes from various removal companies for comparison. It’s also a good idea to get your dates booked up with your chosen removal company at least two months before your chosen date.
How do we choose and compare firms? Get at least three quotes so you can compare prices. Different companies offer different levels of service, so it depends how much you’re willing to pay. I would also most definitely check over each company’s reviews on independent websites and Google. You’re no tlimited to local firms, there are a number of removal firms all over the UK who can transport your belongings to France.
What questions should we ask them? Are there any hidden charges? What if you need to push the date back? Do they offer storage last minute if needed? Spend 10 minutes writing a list of questions that apply to you and then ask each company you are enquiring with.
How are removal costs calculated, and what is it likely to cost us? They are based on several factors,including the total volume of goods to be moved, the ease of access at both collection and delivery for a removal vehicle, the distance the goods will travel and whether you want packing services or any other additional extras. The ballpark figure for the removal of a three-bedroom house from the UK to France is between £2,500 and £3,000, plus VAT.
What information should we provide? You need to supply a list of the goods to be moved, the addresses at both ends and details of any precious or out of the ordinary belongings that you want to take with you.
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Are we protected against damage? Yes, with some companies, but maybe not with others. Check with each company what their insurance procedure is before making your final decision.
What packing options do we have? You can source your own packing materials and pack all of your goods ready for removal yourselves. Or you can buy packing materials from the removal company and complete the packing yourselves. Alternatively, the removal company will come in and pack all or some of the goods for you.
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Can part-loads be moved to France? Yes. Most companies offer part-load moves. This can be a very cost-effective way of moving your goods, especially if you are flexible on collection and delivery dates.
What if our property is tricky to access? Access is always an important aspect of any removal. Make sure you make the removal company fully aware of any possible access issues or you may be charged additional costs. Most companies have different-sized vehicles to deal with all types of access, and will cover the whole of France whether it be an Alpine ski resort or the narrow streets of Cannes.
What about our antique furnitire, ornaments and breakables? Let your removal company know of any valuable antique furniture and they will advise you. There are extra special packing services they can provide for items like this. If you are packing yourselves then use plenty of protection for your precious ornaments and breakables. Bubble wrap each item well and carefully place it into a box. Make a bed of bubble wrap or paper at the bottom of the box before putting any items in; this will act as an extra cushion.
Can we move our vintage vehicles? Many removal companies move classic cars. They are loaded on and off by driving the car up or down specialist car ramps. Once on the lorry, they are secured to the floor using ratchet straps.
Can we take lots of garden plants? Most removal companies will move garden plants even if the plants are left in the plant pots themselves. If your goods are being stored for any period, however, then plants cannot be put into storage.
Is there anything we can’t take with us? Most removal companies cannot carry gas canisters, petrol or paint as these flammable goods are not covered on their insurance.