Tips for reading a moving contract with caution

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    Hiring a professional moving company is a very good idea to make your move smoother. We’re sure you’ve already researched the many movers you can hire. Now, it’s time to ask them if they can fulfill your needs and sign a contract. If you were to hire one of the many moving companies Northern VA has to offer, you’ll see how your stress drops in half. Doing a DIY move is a commendable job, but not many have the time. It’s much easier leaving the moving to those who know exactly what they’re doing. But, reading a moving contract with caution is key to making sure you will get everything you asked for without any additional, hidden fees.

    A contract is binding

    First off, the local movers VA you want to hire need to be licensed and insured. You can check this easily once you receive the contract and see their credentials. And, if they don’t put this information on the contract, feel free to ask them. All reputable movers love a chance to show you all of their certificates and qualifications. If they’re being shady about it, it’s better to go searching for new movers. The worst thing you can do is hire a scam moving company that will never even arrive at your location. It’s important to stay realistic when picking movers. If you come across movers that are 80% cheaper than the rest, you can almost be sure it is a scam.

    A pair of reading glasses on a moving company contract

    Once you discuss the details of your move, your moving company will provide a contract. If it happens that the company doesn’t offer contracts, run. They are most likely not a licensed company, and they could be scammers. Once you sign a contract, it’s completely binding, so reading a moving contract with caution is necessary. Take some extra time to make sure your move will be worth it.

    Services are described in the contract

    A proper contract will have detailed descriptions of all the services you’re expecting. It needs to include the first and final destination of your move. All the services you’ve asked for the need to be in this contract. If something is missing, do not sign! Ask your movers what is happening. Most likely it’s just a simple mistake that they can easily correct. But, if you were to sign before checking with them, you could end up without certain services you need.

    Before signing, all and any changes can be made. So, take your time, read through the contract, and decide if you need to add anything else to the contract. For instance, you might be interested in packing services Northern Virginia. But, be careful, all additions will bring new costs as well.

    A man reading a contract before signing
    Don’t be shy to take your time and read through the entire contract.

    The scope of the services

    This is another thing that needs to be highlighted in the contract. The company will provide you with the number of employees that will come to your home, and what they will do. It should also say what materials they are bringing and what is covered by the company. This is important to read through because maybe your chosen company won’t bring moving boxes. That means you need to get them, or you need to ask for additional packing services.

    Here are some additional things that should be in this section:

    • Complete timeline – In this section of the document, you should find the complete timeline of your move. When the movers are arriving, when they are leaving, when your items will arrive at your new home, etc. If you think that the plan is not good, be sure to ask for a tighter schedule.
    • What type of move it is – There’s a big difference between local and long distance movers VA. A long-distance move means you’re moving more than 400 miles away. If you’re moving less than 400 miles away and your moving company recommends long-distance movers, they’re trying to scam you and make more money.

    Transparent payment terms

    In this section of the contract, all of the payments will be listed. It will cover all of the services you decided to hire and their exact payments. All of the services should be broken down into what exactly you’re paying for. So, read them through thoroughly. You will also find the complete sum you need to pay, until what date you need to pay, and even what happens if the payment is late. Usually, they will charge an extra fee for late payments, so try to save up the money in advance. No one wants to end up paying more than they have to, which is another reason why reading a moving contract with caution is a must.

    A man looking at graphs
    All of the costs need to be explained in detail in the contract.

    Some more moving terms to pay attention to

    • Non-binding estimate – The moving company will give you an approximate price and later on you can work on it together.
    • Binding estimate – This is the final estimate you will find in the contract that you have to pay.
    • Additional charges – Additional charges include the additional services you’re going to hire, as well as unexpected costs along the road. Discuss them before you sign the contract.
    • Inventory list – Another thing you need to supply is the inventory list. The only way your moving company can enforce their insurance is to know exactly what they are moving to.
    • Bill of lading – A Bill of lading is a copy of the contract you receive and use as a receipt.
    • Valuation – If some of your items are pricier, make sure that you evaluate them proeprly. This will help with insurance.

    Now that you know why reading a moving contract with caution is so important, you’re ready to reach a deal with your movers. Remember to consult the FMCSA website to check if your movers are licensed!

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