Moving Terminology

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Moving comes with its own host of terms, terminology, and language related to the transport of items.  Although your moving coordinator will be more than happy to answer any questions you have about your agreement and what you can expect from moving day, this list provides a quick and easy way to stay on top the moving process and all its various lingo.

Moving Contract Terminology

Of all the moving language you’ll encounter, the contract terms tend to be the most complex. Before you sign any paperwork, you should know the following.

Binding Estimate: This estimate provides a firm quote for services. If you make no changes to contract or service (and all weights have been appraised accurately), your costs will be no lower and no higher than the figure provided here.

Non-Binding Estimate: This estimate is subject to changes, usually due to the weight of your items on the day of the move.

Not-to-Exceed Estimate: This estimate provides a maximum amount you can expect to pay. If your items weigh less than anticipated, you could end up paying a smaller amount.

Order for Service: This contract notifies the movers that they have a right to perform services in the estimate. Once signed, the wheels are set in motion, so make sure you’re happy with the estimate and company before you put this order through.

Change Order: Sometimes, things change in the process of packing and getting ready. This written agreement covers the costs of additional services you request that weren’t included in the estimate.

Bill of Lading: This official contract contains the terms and conditions of your move, as well as information related to your specific situation. It should include delivery dates, the valuation coverage you selected, and pricing and payment terms.

Inventory Sheet: This is the master list of all items being moved (it also covers the condition of each item, and is filled out during the initial moving stages).

Customer Check-Off Sheet: This sheet is provided for you to check off every item and its condition as it comes off the truck.

Valuation Protection: This refers to the level of insurance or protection for your belongings you receive from your moving company. It sets the available compensation and repairs your mover will provide in the event of damaged or lost items.

Appliance Service: This charge covers the preparation for shipment of appliances (including washing machines, dryers, etc.).

Expedited Service: When you need to move things along quickly, this agreement arranges to ship items by a set date in exchange for a higher fee.

Additional & Accessorial Charges: These charges are incurred in addition to the transport of your items (packing, labor, appliance service, etc.).

Moving and Mover Terms

As the movers head in and get to work, you’ll be less concerned about the contract and more concerned about the actual process. Here are a few words and terms you should know before that happens.

Carrier: Most professional movers who provide the actual transportation of your household goods are known as carriers.

Move Coordinator/Relocation Specialist: Your move coordinator is your point of contact throughout your relocation. He or she is who you’ll turn to for questions, support, and information.

Storage-In-Transit (SIT): If you need some time as you move from one home to another, you may need to opt for temporary storage that keeps your belongings safe for up to 90 days at a time.

Van Operator: This individual will be the one responsible for loading, unloading, and transport.

  Source: NAVL

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