While dealing with a moving company for an interstate move, you should receive a copy of rules and terms namely “Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move” in the form of a pamphlet from Federal Law. You may read this pamphlet but reading and understanding two different things. For the purpose of elaboration, you can refer to the following mentioned points.
A written estimate is your right
Before you enter into a deal with the moving company, you need to ask for the written estimate of the total cost of moving. Now, the FMCSA generally recommends contacting at least three moving companies in order to get the best estimate. In case you are going for interstate move, the estimate you will get is going to base on total weight of the shipment and total distance to be covered by the movers. Keep in mind that written estimate is your right. A verbal estimate is never an official one.
Estimate can be both binding and non-binding
While making a deal, you and you mover may decide whether the estimate is going to be binding or non-binding. In case of binding estimate, the written price estimate is going to be the final price that you will pay in the end. Now, if you decide about adding more items in the shipment after the binding estimate has been written, your mover will have every right to provide you with the updated estimate which is also going to be the binding one. One thing worth mentioning is that some movers offer the writing of binding agreement for a price.
The non-binding agreement is not a guaranteed price. It is the predictor of price or a price range. Nevertheless, this estimate involves analysis of everything which is analyzed for writing a binding agreement. So you can expect this estimate pretty close to the price that you are going to pay in the end. The reason you still need to get non-binding agreement in written form is that it outlines the services that you should get from your mover.
Order of service
Order of service refers to the information about everything. For instance, it should have your mover’s information like name, address, telephone number, and USDOT number. Then it should mention your own name and address. It should also have information about names and addresses of any other motor carriers participating in the transport of your shipment. This document also needs to have information regarding whether your estimate is binding or non-binding. You can see the page 9 of “Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move” in order to fully understand about Order of Service.
Inventory of your shipment
Your mover needs to develop an inventory of everything included in the shipment. This inventory is made while the items are loaded into the truck. This inventory also mentions the condition of every item while being loaded into the truck. You should get a copy of this inventory.