As the world becomes a much smaller place, more and more people are moving over longer distances. And while it is much easier today to move from one state to another than it was even fifty years ago, this is still a task that is riddled with the hassle and potential trouble throughout. Thankfully, you don’t have to go through the process alone; from packing to transport, unloading and even setting up your new home, there are professional interstate movers out there that are ready and willing to help you.
Need to Know Info!
Knowing the law and what your rights and responsibilities are will help you avoid costly problems later on in the relocation process. Here are some of the most essential rights you need to be aware of:
- Under Federal law, your mover must inform you of your rights and responsibilities related to your move. Generally, this is accomplished when you are furnished with the ‘Rights and Responsibilities’ booklet published by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
- The law stipulates that all movers must prepare a written quote or cost estimate for every shipment that is transported for a consumer. The free moving quotes that you get are not considered written estimates.
- Written estimates are not always binding. Getting a binding estimate requires that a representative visit the home where the goods are currently located. Furthermore, total costs due at the end of the move cannot exceed 110% of this binding written estimation of charges.
- Brokers are not movers and may not even be affiliated with them. Often, these middlemen can wreck havoc on the moving process. They offer what they call quotes, when the actual cost of moving can far exceed what they tell you. Legally, movers don’t have to abide by the quotes brokers offer either.
- All movers must provide you with the following mandatory documents:
- A Moving Estimation: The estimate has to be in writing and clearly describe all services the mover will perform and charges for the distance services.
- An Order for Service: This document itemizes all the services the mover will perform and shows the dates your household goods will be picked up and delivered.
- A Bill of Lading: This is an official contract between you and the moving company and a receipt of your belongings. The movers should give you a completed copy of the bill of lading before your goods are loaded.
- An Inventory List: The inventory is particularly crucial when moving out of state or in case your items will be stored in the storage. Inventory List shows each item you shipped and its condition. The mover should give you a copy of your inventory list after your household goods are loaded. Go over the list and see that you agree with its description of your household goods’ condition.
The Right Movers
Be careful, not all long distance movers are created equally. When you are creating a list of movers to follow up with or get binding estimates from, be sure that all of them meet the following requirements:
- Make sure that your mover has a current and legal license numbers and registration with the United States Department of Transportation. You can check license numbers at the FMCSA Company Search page.
- Remember that reputation counts; the movers you choose should have a strong reputation. Check online and see if the movers that made it to your shortlist have a good reputation or a line of consumers ready to beat down their door. Read one of the many review sites online, such as the one located at Movingscam.com, and get a good idea of what other’s are saying.
- Be certain that your movers offer arbitration and are willing to tell you about how they handle disputes and other claims. By law, all long distance movers are required to have a method of arbitration, and they have to show it to their customers.
- Similarly, all long distance movers must offer a basic form of liability insurance, called valuation, to consumers who purchase their services.
- Your mover should give you a method of reaching someone to check on the status and location of your shipment at all times. They must also communicate when and where your shipment will be weighed as you are legally permitted to be present for all weighings.
While there are more things to remember, always keep in mind that you need information before choosing a long distance moving company so that you can be certain to choose the one that is best for your move. Ultimately, knowledge is the power that you need to ensure you don’t suffer at the hands of a moving scam, or lose money because of something you didn’t know. Take a look around the MovingCompanies.us site and learn everything you need to know about the moving process, from packing to settling into your new home, before you get started on the complex task of relocation.