August 23, 2022

In-Home Estimate or Virtual Survey: Which is best for you?

Whether you are moving in-town or cross-country, having a detailed documenting of your stuff is critical for a successful relocation. Over the past few years, some Flint moving companies have augmented their up-front estimate process to also include virtual visits. That said, did you know that Corrigan has been a leader in virtual surveys for more than four years? We have integrated technology and best practices since 2018 to perfect the digital estimation process. When other moving companies were learning best practices, Corrigan didn’t miss a beat regarding serving our customers and providing a simple, safe option for the initial move consultation. Although many customers are more comfortable welcoming us into their homes, the option of having a survey done virtually is the new normal. So, which survey type is best for you?

What is a Virtual Survey, anyway?

Prior to scheduling a move with any moving company, ’ll want to have a move consultation so you can find out their pricing and services offered. It is common that many moving companies offer the option of doing your initial consultation in your home or virtually. While other movers have different ways of performing their surveys, here is what to expect when scheduling a virtual survey with Corrigan Moving.

United Van Lines (who we’re a leading agent for), built their own proprietary virtual platform that pairs with Amazon’s cloud platform. United Van Line’s platform is so secure it’s used by many government agencies! All must do prior to your appointment is download the unique Virtual Survey App from your device’s app store. After you download it, you are set for your appointment!

When your appointment time comes, you’ll get a text and an email from your move consultant to start your survey. This message contains a link, which opens the Virtual Survey App. Voila – you have a move consultant in your home! They will spend as much time as is necessary to talk with you about the specifics of your move and finding out what is most important to you when it comes to your relocation. Next, we’ll have you hold your phone as you walk through your home, talking and showing the consultant what items you’d like to move, the details of your home, walkways, driveway, etc. When you’ve completed logging all of your belongings, your consultant will use that video to create a detailed inventory and move plan, just for you.

Fact vs. Fiction

Are Virtual Surveys Accurate?

It takes time to learn new technologies and new ways of doing things. But a lot of moving companies have decided to integrate virtual surveys. Why? Because it works!

“When a move consultant is in a customer’s home, they’re talking with the customer along with creating the inventory. Virtual surveys allow our consultants the chance to review survey videos, think through the best solutions, ensuring accuracy. Being able to rely on that video throughout the move process, to allow the move coordinator to see it, sharing images from the videos with crew members and drivers can really eliminate surprises on the day of the move,” said Ashley Walsh, Head of the Virtual Survey Team for Corrigan.

“I worked exclusively in-home for about 7 years before transitioning to virtual surveys 100%,” Walsh continued. “I personally feel I am more accurate and thorough when working with a customer virtually. It allows me to focus on one thing at a time, which also allows the customer to focus on one thing at a time. They’re more likely to slow down, remember and relay all the details that are important to them, so nothing gets missed.”

People unfamiliar with virtual surveys also fear that important details, like whether a semi-truck can access the home, may be missed when doing a survey virtually.

“This really isn’t the case,” responded Walsh. “When a move consultant drives to a customer’s home, they’re making notes before they knock on the door. How long the driveway is, where the truck should park, the best access into a neighborhood, are all things that are important for a moving company. When doing a survey virtually, we have several tools we use to get the same information. We most commonly use Google Maps, Zillow and Google Street View before starting the appointment. We can even measure the exact length of a road or driveway from satellite images. That allows us to know what we’re about to see, and tailor our questions and dialogue accordingly. Essentially, we’re capturing the exact same information as in-home consultants.”

Are virtual surveys faster?

We often hear customers chose a virtual survey appointment “because it’s faster”. This isn’t technically true! Our move consultants perform both in-home and virtual appointments during business hours, so scheduling a virtual appointment does not change their availability for them to see you any sooner. If you require an after-hours appointment, a virtual survey offers more flexibility with what appointment times may be available.

When is an in-home survey better?

There are some occasions when having a consultant come to your home is preferred. Here are some situations to lean towards an in-home relocation consultation:


  • You have poor, spotty or unreliable Wi-Fi or mobile data connection
  • If you own multiple fragile pieces of artwork, collectibles, statues, or glass tops that must have exact measurements for crating (this can be done virtually, but you’d be the one responsible for taking these measurements)
  • If you do not own a smartphone or tablet device


Which survey is best for me?

At the end of the day, the debate of an in-home or virtual survey when scheduling with a Flint moving company is all about personal preference. All of our consultants offer the option between the two and have been very successful with both methods.

“Virtual surveys are an accurate, convenient option that we’re happy to permanently offer. Allowing our customers to choose which consultation method fits their needs is just another demonstration of how Corrigan Moving Systems prioritizes the customer experience,” said Walsh.

So, which one is right for you? Contact Corrigan Moving today for your free, no-obligation, in-home or virtual estimate!
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