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Brother Movers is a full-service moving company based in Santa Clara, California. It provides moving services in the Bay Area, as well as junk removal and climate-controlled storage. Brother Movers also offers long-distance moving services to other major cities within about a 1,000-mile radius, including Los Angeles, Seattle, Salt Lake City, and Las Vegas.
Brother Movers has solid customer reviews and some of the lowest rates around. In addition to our extensive online research, we spoke to the company and former customers to assess the value, potential risks, and how Brother Movers stacks up against the competition.
Locations | Pricing | Service Options | Contact Info | Methodology
Bottom Line: Great for People on a Budget
|Our Rating: Brothers Moving|
|Cost and value||5|
Our take: Brother Movers may be a good choice if you want the lowest possible rate. It has a solid reputation for a budget mover.
Good things: Brother Movers is affordable. The quote the company gave us was significantly below the regional average. Past customers and hundreds of reviewers said they loved the savings and the speedy and reliable service. These customers also said Brother Movers was easy to book and the team was punctual and fast.
Minor concerns: Several Brother Movers customers noted that the movers packed items quickly but not carefully, which led to damage. We analyzed hundreds of reviews and damage didn’t seem like a major or widespread issue. But we still recommend transporting more expensive and fragile items, like laptops or family heirlooms, in your car. Or you could pay a little more for a carrier that prioritizes careful handling over efficiency.
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Brother Movers: Full Review and Rating
Cost and Value
📊 Our rating: 5/5
- Some of the lowest rates in the region
- Packing and furniture disassembly and reassembly included
- No extra fee for stairs until 3+ flights
- Gas and tolls included in flat truck fee
Brother Movers is one of the most affordable California moving companies we’ve seen. It charges about $120 per hour for two movers. That’s well below the state-wide average of $172 per hour. And the hourly rate includes packing and furniture disassembly and reassembly.
Brother Movers also charges a flat $60 fee per truck, which includes gas and tolls. Most full-service moving companies charge extra for all of the above.
We requested a quote from Brother Movers to move the contents of a two-bedroom (1,800 sq. ft.) house around 50 miles, from Fremont to San Francisco.
Based on the pricing and five-hour estimated move time the company provided, we calculated a total cost of $660. That’s a pretty great price for a full-service move, especially considering it includes gas and packing. And this estimate also includes Brother’s (very reasonable) additional fee for the extra 50 miles to get to us in Fremont.
If you have a larger home, you’ll probably need more movers for all your things. Each additional mover is an extra $60 per hour. And if you need another truck, it’s another $60 flat fee.
⚡️ FYI: Brother Movers has a mandatory tipping policy of $10 per hour for each mover. We included that additional $10 per hour, per mover in our hourly rate and estimated total move cost above. Most moving companies charge a higher base rate per mover (and still expect tips). So Brother is still one of the cheapest options in town despite the required tips.
How much does Brother Movers cost?
|Brother Movers: Cost Breakdown|
|2 movers||$100/hr.* ($50/mover)|
|1 truck||$60 flat fee|
|Tips (required)||$10/hr. ✕ 2|
|Total (5-hour move)||$660|
- Flights of stairs (extra charge for 3+)
- Packing materials
- Furniture assembly & disassembly
- Liability coverage ($0.60 per lb)
⚠️ Moving insurance FYI: Federal law requires all move carriers to offer free basic liability coverage. It’s also sometimes called released value coverage or basic carrier liability. This coverage doesn’t offer much protection — only up to $0.60 per pound for a damaged or lost item. So if your $1,300, three-pound Macbook Pro gets smashed, you can expect about $1.80 in recompensation.
If you want more protection for your belongings, you have a few options:
- Purchasing additional third-party insurance — This insurance will give you good coverage, but it can be pretty expensive. (Unlike many other moving companies, Brother doesn’t offer full value coverage, which is usually cheaper.)
- Transporting valuable items yourself — If your items are small enough, pack them well and bring them with you on the plane or in the car.
- Using special moving boxes, blankets, or crates — These tools can better protect your belongings for a pretty cheap price. But they still don’t guarantee safety, and they don’t prevent loss.
Brother Movers provides packing materials for free. And you can rent or purchase boxes, moving blankets, and wardrobes from Brothers. But you can get some of these things for a much cheaper price from stores like Home Depot Lowes. And you can even get them for free from large retailers like Costco and Sam’s Club, or online on Facebook Marketplace or Freecycle.
Packing Materials Prices from Brothers Movers
|Moving blankets||$25 each ($5 to rent)|
|Wardrobe||$25 each (free to rent)|
📊 Our rating: 4/5
- 1,600+ positive reviews from real customers
- Fast and polite team, low rates
- Small handful of “damaged cargo” complaints
- Movers speak only Chinese (most customers said this wasn’t a big issue)
Most customers loved their experience with Brother Movers. It gets an almost perfect 5-star average rating across over 1,600 customer reviews.
For a small company, Brother had a ton of online reviews — over 1,600 total. This actually made us a little skeptical, especially because so many of the reviews were perfect scores. Even larger moving companies don’t usually have this many reviews, and they certainly don’t have a 4.9 average rating. So we decided to see if anything fishy was going on.
We read the reviews in depth, analyzed the details and writing style, and looked at the reviewers’ profiles on Google and Yelp. Based on all that research, we think the reviews are legit. There are even a fair number of reviews with actual pictures from the move.
We also reached out to a number of the reviewers themselves. Several of them got back to us and confirmed) that they’re legit customers that really liked Brother Movers. All of the former customers we spoke to said they had a good experience for the cheapest price around, and that they’d recommend Brother to anyone.
Common Review Themes
The most common positive themes in the reviews were:
A small handful of reviews complained about minorly damaged items due to poor packing, because the team worked so quickly. Many of these reviews weren’t actually negative and still gave a four- or five-star rating overall because of the low rates and speedy service. But if you’re worried about damage, Brother Movers suggests you move more fragile or valuable items yourself in your car.
Reviewers also said that the movers speak Chinese, not English, but the language barrier wasn’t a major issue and didn’t affect the quality of the service.
📊 Our rating: 3/5
- Mixed credibility signals
- Ongoing federal licensing issues
- Lots of driver violations
- Solid online reputation
- Straightforward pricing
Brother Movers has some credibility issues, but we don’t think they’re deal breakers. Here’s what we saw when we looked for any red flags.
Earlier this year, Brother Movers’ license to move in California lapsed, but it was renewed in early February. Brother Movers had been consistently licensed in CA up to that point. So the lapse may have just been a delay or a clerical error.
Brother Movers doesn’t have the proper license from the U.S. Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT) to legally transport goods across state lines. We’ll be keeping an eye on its license status and will update this page if anything changes. (You can check, too. Search using Brother’s DOT ID number (#2712606). (CA license | DOT license)
Brother drivers do get U.S. DOT violations relatively frequently. The drivers have gotten six violations for operating without a commercial license over the past two years. These are “out-of-service” (OOS) violations, which means the driver isn’t allowed to continue the move.
But even though Brother Movers has more violations than most comparable moving companies — and an OOS violation could potentially delay your move — we didn’t feel it was a major risk factor.
In our analysis of 1,600+ customer reviews, we didn’t find evidence of delays or derailments. It seems like Brother Movers does a good job of troubleshooting and keeping everything on track when one of these violations does occur (which isn’t often).
📊 Our rating: 4/5
- High number of moves
- Relatively small fleet and driver count
- Responsive and accommodating customer support
- Advanced scheduling recommended (2–3 weeks)
Even though Brother Movers has a small fleet, it’s still likely to be available for your move no matter when it is. And many customer reviews said that Brother Movers was flexible and accommodated their move date and time.
Brother only has three trucks and four drivers, which would suggest low “bookability,” this doesn’t actually seem to be a major issue for the company or customers.
Our mystery shopping experience backed this up. When we requested a quote, Brother got back to us that same day and was available for our desired date and time.
Brother Movers’ customer reviews didn’t mention delays, no-shows, or other issues that might slow down or derail a move. Quite the opposite, actually: a huge number of customer reviews pointed to the company’s punctuality, speed, and efficiency.
According to DOT records, Brother Movers covered 15,000 miles during moves in 2020. That’s a lot of miles for a mostly local, independent moving company.
About Brother Movers
Brother Movers is located in Santa Clara, California. The company can move you to/from locations in Southern California, including:
- Los Angeles
- San Francisco
- San Diego
Brother Movers is also available for long distance moves on the West Coast to destinations as far north as Seattle.
Est. cost of five-hour move: $660
- $60 per hour per mover
- (2-hour minimum)
- $60 flat fee per truck
- Charge extra for 3+ flights of stairs with no elevator
- Full-service local and limited-long-distance (up to ~1,000 miles)
- Packing, loading, unloading included
- Furniture disassembly and reassembly included
- Boxes, blankets, wardrobes, and packing material available for extra per-item fee
- Gas and tolls included with flat truck fee
- Climate-controlled storage
- Piano moving
- Junk removal
- Look for the right fit: Check out our Best San Francisco Moving Companies Guide and Best Santa Cruz Movers Guide to see how Brother Movers stacks up against the local competition. Moving out of state? We’ve got you covered with our list of the top long-distance moving companies.
- Shop around for the best rate: Contact a few companies for multiple quotes to make sure you’re getting the best rate. Requesting quotes from movers is fast and easy, and there’s no obligation to go with that mover.
- Find moving supplies: You’ll want to get boxes and other supplies in advance. Some movers will provide packing materials, but it’s usually far more expensive than finding or purchasing them yourself. Check out our Guide to Moving Boxes to learn more.
Why Trust Us
About the Author
Jamie Ayers has been a professional writer and researcher for more than a decade. He writes about how technology is changing real estate, homeownership, property development, and construction. He spends most of his work time digging into products and services to help people find the best fit and value (and avoid the bad deals and scams).
Jamie has moved many times. He’s done local moves within cities like Philadelphia, PA, and Brooklyn, NY. And he’s moved long distances, from New York City to Houston, TX — then back to New York. In other words, he understands the struggle of finding the least sketchy, stressful, and strenuous option without paying an arm and a leg.
Our question: Is this moving company worth it?
We start assessing value by requesting a quote from the mover. A quote gives us a breakdown of the company’s fees (hourly rates, truck fees, etc.) and tells us how costs compare to the local and national average.
If a company’s costs are drastically higher than these averages, we can recommend more affordable movers that we’ve also thoroughly vetted. A detailed quote also gives us insight into any additional fees. For example, is packing included, or do you have to pay extra?
Our question: What’s the common user experience for this service?
We look up the mover’s average rating on popular review sites like Yelp, Trustpilot, and Google. Then we read as many reviews as possible to verify the rating and see if any positive or negative themes stand out.
If we notice potential red flags, like lots of damage complaints, we reach out to the customers to see if there’s a cause for concern.
There are also companies who pay people to leave positive reviews. So, if the reviews are glowing, we reach out to reviewers to see if they’re real customers.
Our question: Is this company a legitimate business?
Unfortunately, moving scams are fairly common. Lots of people have experienced losing their deposit, movers never showing up, and companies outright stealing their personal items.
To check a company’s credibility, we look for things like Department of Transportation registration, active insurance, and licensing with the appropriate state authorities.
Then we look at sites like the Better Business Bureau (BBB) to check the mover’s accreditation, rating, and any unresolved formal complaints against them.
If all the credibility signals check out, then we give the business a high credibility rating. If something seems off, we reach out to the company and former customers for comment.
Our question: How bookable is this moving service?
To check if the company can typically accommodate a customer’s desired moving date, we ask the company how soon we’d be able to move. Then we ask if the date is flexible.
We also comb Department of Transportation records to see how many trucks and drivers the mover has. A small fleet is a sign that the mover has limited capacity. The company might not be able to handle lots of moves during a busy season.