Update: Today Newton did come to our home and repair the piano. The Mr. Newton who came, Joe, was incredibly personable and professional. He found the problem with the piano, fixed that and we then hired him to tune it. He stayed for several hours and did a damned fine job.
When browsing through the directory for piano movers, there was only one company that dealt exclusively with pianos among the plethora of multi-purpose moving companies. It seemed to be very simple to choose Newton. After all, they appeared to be the professionals.
I called, booked the move tentatively based on having my call returned and pick up confirmed by X, the person who deals with booking moves. I very specifically left instructions that I be contacted at my home telephone number because cell phone service at our rural NC home is undependable. I never received a call at our home but when I left to go out a few days later and got service on my cell, I noticed that I had missed a couple of calls from Newton. I called back and spoke with X who said something about how I need to answer my phone. I then re-explained the situation with cell -vs- home telephones but in the end, X never contacted me at my home number. He was also patronizing and insistent, for a short time, that my piano is not a baby grand but probably a small grand piano which would cost more to move. Not that he had seen the piano.
X told me that he contracts the moves out to another company, which should have sent my alarms to ringing but it didn’t. He told me that the movers generally come and pick up the truck at 8:00 am on Saturdays and they would come to my house immediately after that. I asked if I could then plan on the piano movers arriving between 9:00 and 9:30 am and was told that no, he couldn’t say that. I asked what time I should expect them and X told me that sometime before 10:30 am on Saturday would be reasonable.
On the day of the scheduled move all was quiet. No telephone ringing. No movers arriving. Nothing. Finally, at approximately 11:45 am, I called Newton Piano and was told that the movers would not be in that day. They had made other plans. XX told me, “I should have called.” No kidding. He said they would be at my home the following morning and proceeded to tell me how dependable the men are. I told him that my experience told me different but that I would be there and to please call if they couldn’t be there.
Following morning the movers came. They moved the piano. It now has a dead key and rings (I am not certain of the proper term here) as if one of the pedals were pushed down all of the time. We called and Newton said someone would come out to repair the piano. Nothing so far. The piano has been here for a week. They want us to pay them $85.00 to tune it but we paid them $395.00 to move it and they damaged it during the move and are, as seems to be their wont, neglecting to do their professional duty by staying in touch or showing up to fix the antique baby grand in my living room.
Based on my experience with Newton I cannot recommend them for their quality of service, pricing or customer relations. All-in-all my experience with Newton was a huge disappointment.