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Thread: Choices in receiving your furniture when ordering long distance

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    15,112

    Default Choices in receiving your furniture when ordering long distance

    I have deleted several threads on this topic in order to update into one more relevant for 2022.

    The Pandemic we have all experienced has changed everything in the transport industry and not for the better. Many transportation companies have gone out of business or have consolidated into larger operations, those that have remained has staffing shortages and new help, which is not as experienced as the people working pre-pandemic.

    To be sure, furniture does not transport at the speed, accuracy, or accountability you are used to with Amazon or buying smaller items on-line. It's slow, cumbersome, and instant tracking is not available. Patience is the key word when expecting furniture to arrive, its not coming quickly.

    Let's look over the options you have to get your new pieces:

    * Pickup and Self-Haul at the factories in North Carolina. This is a great option if you are so inclined. You can get your pieces as soon as they are ready (Monday through Friday), get help loading at the dock and bring them home in the factory packing. You save money and usually have no damage issues. I strongly suggest you do not carry in open pickup trucks unless the distance is very short. While it may fit in the bed of a pickup, blowouts out the back are common (your new pieces smashed laying on the Interstate), and Sun and Rain can damage you pieces due to humidity and exposure. Use a trailer or rent a truck that is large enough to carry the pieces in their boxes.

    * Specialized Furniture Carriers. We do not like to haul common carrier freight lines, as they use forklifts to load trucks and damage rates soar when that happens, furniture is not palletized and should not go on any truck line that forks their loads. There is an entire industry of furniture carriers who do nothing but haul new furniture. They are a faster and less costly option than "White Glove" in-home delivery services and damage rates are extremely low. However, they do not go into residential areas, and are Business 2 Business drops only. If you have access to a loading dock, or a business where a 53' 18-wheeler can easily get into and drop off the truck, this is a good choice if you can manage the final mile to your home. You can also contract with a local moving and storage business in your area to accept delivery at their docks, and they can even do the final mile delivery to you for a fee and bring into your home.

    * White Glove Delivery Services. These are companies that pick up your order at the manufacturer and bring them into your home for delivery. Several of these companies went under during the Pandemic and there are only a handful left that offer this service. They are more costly, and slow. In most cases your furniture will be removed from the factory packing and delivered to you wrapped in furniture pads. They do this for a few reasons 1) Inspect before loading to make sure its not broken 2) They can fit more pieces on the truck when out of the box 3) They do not have to backhaul the packing trash which is nearly impossible to work around in the back of a truck. But because they do blanket wrap, there is a increased probability of rub marks during transit. Additionally, some crews on a truck are more experienced than others and know the fine points of big pieces going through small spaces. Only Plycon Van Lines handles your entire order in-house, with their trained crews, all other services will network within a handoff system of operators, so the company that picks up your order many not be the one delivering it. Plycon is nearly double the price, but they have the highest service levels and lowest damage rates.

    For almost all White Glove Delivery Services, it will take weeks to get to you, not days. The further you are from the East Coast hubs in North Carolina, the longer it will take. Remote areas take even longer. Phone calls don't work well with White Glove Services, you will almost always get a voice mail reply. Email works better as most their customer service agents work remotely. Average delivery times we are seeing in 2022 from time of pickup is 4 to 8 weeks, be patient.

    How damages and issues are handled.

    The way the industry operates is "title to the goods transfers when the load is accepted". For example, a sofa that is at Hancock and Moore is H&M's responsibility until it is loaded onto a truck. Once the trucker has it, that company is responsible. Once they deliver it to you - then YOU are responsible. Note that the selling dealer is never in this chain of responsibility because they have never handled the furniture. In the event of damages, or if you are unhappy with the service level, you must contact the shipper for procedures, not the selling dealer. And you must do that before you sign the driver's form transferring liability to you in the chain. To discover minor damages the next day isn't going to work out for you, and you signed for the goods and that has transferred over with that signature.

    There are very few total losses in the industry, where pieces are re-made or new ones shipped. Most damages or minor marks are restored to the existing pieces. The shippers have a right to do that, and demands to the selling merchant to replace an item or refund the purchase price is usually not going to happen. Remember, the carrier is responsible, not the selling dealer.

    Questions? Please ask in this thread.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2021
    Location
    New Jersey
    Posts
    30

    Default Re: Choices in receiving your furniture when ordering long distance

    Just received our sofas (ordered way back in November - but well worth the wait!) and want to give a shout out to all those involved -from Duane and Sarah in assisting us with the order, connecting us with a high quality delivery service and then keeping us informed along the way- to the Taylor King Company for such beautifully constructed furniture that will definitely outlast us, to the team from Sun Delivery who not only communicated clearly about the delivery, but whose delivery team did a top notch job! Thank you all!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    15,112

    Default Re: Choices in receiving your furniture when ordering long distance

    Thank you for the feedback! We get a lot of negative comments on white glove delivery companies mostly based on how long it can take to get items, it goood to see your experience went well.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty-six years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum.

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