Moving Company Documents You Need to Know moving company documents

Moving your belongings from your current home to another one can be extremely stressful, regardless of whether the move is across town or cross country. There is so much to concern yourself with, everything from selecting a moving company with a proven reputation to packing your belongings. On top of all this there is a considerable amount of moving company documents which you will need to review and sign.

Becoming familiar with all of this paperwork begins with understanding what each document represents. It is something you should not take lightly as it is meant to protect your possessions and your pocketbook. The temptation will likely be to not bother with reading the fine print. But this is one of those situations where you should read as much of it as you can prior to signing anything.

Let’s take a closer look at each of the documents listed below your moving company will expect you to read and sign:
• The Moving Estimate
• The Order of Service
• The Bill of Lading
• The Home Inventory Sheet
• The High Value Inventory Sheet

The Moving Estimate

After the moving company has performed a thorough survey of the possessions in your home they will present you with a moving estimate. This should be in writing. On it, you’ll find the type of estimate, either binding or non-binding, the amount of the final price, and any of the services the mover provides that are considered additional and the extra charge for each one. After reviewing this estimate, if you find you do not agree with or understand how they arrived at the price, you should request that the figure be explained in detail. At this point if you are feeling at all uncomfortable with fully trusting the moving company it may be time to bow out and contact another.

The Order of Service

Let’s suppose that you are comfortable with the estimate you have been presented with and wish to accept it. This means you are ready to hire the services of the moving company and proceed on to the next document -- the Order of Service. This is the moving contract executed between you and the moving company. The contract should be exact in specifying all that you have agreed to as it pertains to the move. This should include the day your belongings will be picked up, the estimated delivery date (it may be within one or two days of the day written, depending on the length of the move), the price from the moving estimate, insurance options, cancellation terms if applicable, accessorial services, and anything else you have agreed upon with the mover. Remember: If anything is not as you expected, do not sign this contract until you are completely satisfied it has been explained and/or rectified.

The Bill of Laden

On the day of the move the moving company is required, by law, to present you with a Bill of Laden. This, the most essential and consequential of the moving documents, should be an exact match of the Order of Service. It is the official document and permanent record of all of the details of your move. You will be required to sign it before the move can transpire. It’s a good idea to review this document with the contract to make sure that everything matches. Be especially aware if there are any discrepancies in the price between the two documents. After you sign it the mover will sign and give you a copy. You should keep it in a safe place for as long as you find it necessary to keep it.

The Home Inventory List

Next, you’ll receive a Home Inventory List. It should contain each and every item your movers will be transporting. As each piece of furniture or box is carried from your home to the moving truck it is noted on this inventory list. It’s a great way to make sure that nothing gets left behind and serves as a checklist for both yourself and the movers.

The High Value Inventory Sheet

the rule of thumb here is to list on this form any of your possessions that has a value greater than $100 per pound. Most moving companies will insist that they pack these valuables themselves. And don’t forget that you should consider purchasing additional insurance from a third party vendor for your most valuable possessions.

Here at we have years of successful service in helping to alleviate much of the worry and stress that is often associated with moving. Our aim is to help you to simplify this process and to arrange for each and every one of the moving services you require whether it is a long distance or a short distance move. Be sure and contact us so that we might provide you with not just one, but multiple quotes.

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