The relocation process is not only about lifting and moving heavy things. Nor is it only about packing and unpacking. Yes, it can get stressful and tiring. There are a million things that you need to figure out and accomplish, both prior and after the move. And with all that in mind, you need to know what the most important moving documents are. After all, you will need these documents, and you will do well if you know what they are beforehand. Before you consider any moving company Los Angeles, you need to know what documents they will provide, which ones will they require, and which ones you will need alongside them. There can be quite a few, so let’s start:
The list of the most important moving documents!
Perhaps the most essential moving document, financially speaking, is the moving estimate. Whether you are preparing for a local move or moving from California to Florida, this document will have all your financial obligations toward the moving company. Another crucial document, perhaps the most important one, is the bill of lading. You will also have an inventory list and a lot of various documentation that was tied to your previous place of residence. Think dental records and the like. So, let’s start by explaining what the moving estimate is.
This moving estimate contains the charges for the services that the moving company will provide. These usually include transportation, packing, storage, insurance, and any other services that your moving company will render. However, there are three types of these estimates, and they are:
- Non-binding estimate
- Binding estimate
- Binding not-to-exceed estimate
A non-binding estimate is not ironclad and represents only the general charges, regardless of the weight involved. That is usually a document that can provide you with a general outline of the services that they offer and how much they cost. If you have mostly light items, this might be enough, but usually, the weight of your items outweighs the non-binding estimates, and you end up paying more money. If you can, always go for the latter options.
A binding estimate is what you will be paying. Simple as that. It is legally binding and cannot be changed in any way. That is your go-to estimate as there will be no more surprises down the road. Worth noting is that these estimates can exceed what you would be paying if you weighted your items. Neither you nor the moving company can change a thing after you both sign the binding estimate.
The binding not-to-exceed estimate is the best form of an estimate for you, the customer. This document will provide you with a price for the move on the estimated weight. If by any chance, the weight exceeds what was predicted, you will still only need to pay the original price. And if the weight was less than initially estimated, you will pay less. Needless to say, always go for this option, if available.
Important moving documents – Bill of Lading
Perhaps the most crucial moving document, the bill of lading, shows every single charge that you will incur, whether you are moving long-distance or locally. It is a contract between you and your moving company, which is legally binding. Another way to think about this document is to think of it as a receipt. This receipt will additionally include every single item that is in the shipment. And not only that, it will consist of the moving rate, insurance information, mover information, as well as destination and origin. It is quite a comprehensive document.
Usually attached to this document is the order for service. This document will include information such as moving estimate details, as well as dates for both delivery and pickup. It will also include any special services. This document will need to be signed by both you and your mover.
Take care of your inventory documentation
An inventory documentation form is a piece of paper that contains all of the items that are loaded in the moving truck. Next to each item, there will be a column that states “original condition.” If your items are in bags or boxes, they will receive a “PBO” mark, which simply means “packed by owner.” Their contents will be unknown. You don’t need to fear that anyone is going to rummage through your boxes.
However, you do need to be aware that you are fully responsible for the items within the bags and boxes.
You need to make sure that what is written down in the inventory list is the same as what is loaded into the truck.
Other important moving documents – School, health and dentist records
If you are moving with children that are going to school, you will need to acquire their school records. The new schools will require these, and you will need to provide them. Of course, it is not the end of the world if you forget, but it will give you some discomfort down the road if you do. Make sure to get all the transcripts, such as various records such as immunization, as well as test scores, and report cards. The best thing to do is to contact your new school and ask them what they need before you start asking for this documentation.
The same procedure goes for health and dentist records, as well. You will definitely need another doctor and a dentist, and they will be able to do a much better job with that documentation.
USPS Change of address
Finally, you will need to change your United States Postal Service mailing address. It is not that difficult, and the process can be started on the USPS website. You will need to enter all of your contact information, the new address, as well as the old one, and finally, the date that you want for transfer to be in effect.
These were the most important documents that you will need for your relocation. It is always good to doublecheck everything and to thoroughly read every piece of paper that you get, and that involves money. You don’t want any nasty surprises down the road, do you?