Moving can be an overwhelming period for residents and clients. Knowing the right moving terminology can help make the moving process less confusing and the moving industry more transparent.
The level of accessibility to the home where the moving company is supposed to pick up or deliver household goods. Various factors increase or decrease the accessibility level such as the available infrastructure in the area, the distance from the home to the parked moving van, the number of stairs to be passed, the availability of a freight elevator, etc.
Additional charges from a moving company for services such as packing, unpacking, crating, or appliance disconnection. These fees are added to the baseline moving cost.
Actual Cash Value (A.C.V.)
Money equal to the cost of replacing lost, stolen, or damaged property after depreciation.
The final cost of a move from start to finish including moving cost, warehouse fees, and accessorial charges.
A representative who settles claims against a moving company for damage or loss of household goods during a move.
Additional Services Performed at Origin/Destination of Service and Delivery Report (A.S.P.O.D.)
A form that serves as proof that additional services were performed at origin and/or destination points. The customer’s signature verifies that the services were completed as stated.
Additional Transportation Charges (A.T.C.)
This charge compensates the carrier for services performed in areas where the labor rates are higher than the national average. It also compensates the carrier for additional costs incurred due to traffic congestion and added time traveling to the area for pick up or delivery.
An employee who handles and settles claims against the moving company for damage and/or loss of household goods during transit, property damage, and injuries.
Charges for services performed by a third-party provider contracted by the moving company at the customer’s request. Third-party experts, such as craftsmen and insurance agents, are hired when their advice or services are considered essential for the successful completion of the move. The carrier pays for these extra services and adds the total amount to the Bill of Lading.
A moving company that is represented by a van line. An agent and their van line work together to serve customers.
Agreed Delivery Date (A.D.D.)
Two or more dates mutually agreed upon between the customer and the carrier for the delivery of the shipment.
Agreed Pickup Date (A.P.D.)
The exact time when a shipment is supposed to arrive at the designated destination.
A suspension system made of cylinders filled with compressed air used on trailers and tractors to provide a safer ride than conventional spring suspensions.
Amendment to the Order of Service
A form used to record any changes to the shipment such as additional packing or other services, destination location, valuation, or agreed pickup and delivery dates.
The American Moving & Storage Association is an organization of moving companies dedicated to improving the moving and storage industry for moving companies and their customers, advocating on behalf of moving companies, and promoting ProMovers.
Supplied by self-service movers to help you load and unload large items like appliances and oversized furniture.
A service offered by moving companies or a third-party to prepare appliances like washing machines, dryers, and refrigerators for transportation. This service may not include the disconnection of plumbing or electrical services.
Assembly and Disassembly
The process of taking apart furniture before loading it into the moving truck and reassembling it at the destination.
Assessed Value Coverage
This specifies how much money per $1,000 of assessed value you will need to pay to cover your household items to their fully assessed value. Purchasing this protection requires that a cash value be assigned to the items you will be moving. If a deductible is applied, that value is stated next to the cost-per-$1,000 figure.
Automobile Handling Charge
A charge to the customer, in addition to the weight, for the movement of an automobile.
Bill of Lading
A legally binding document that outlines all of the details of the move from the shipping date to the items loaded on the moving truck. This document serves as a receipt of a customer’s agreement with a moving company.
Net charges billed.
The weight on which all interstate charges are based.
Bulky Article Charge
Large items such as pool tables that require extra handling are subject to an additional charge.
If a customer cancels an already confirmed move, they may be charged a cancellation fee for the inconvenience they have caused the carrier.
A claim filed for damage to household goods being transported by the carrier.
The moving company who transports your belongings.
Cash on delivery (C.O.D.)
When a customer agrees to make a payment to the moving company upon delivery at the destination.
A claim filed for loss, damage, or delay in the delivery of household goods during any stage of the move or during warehousing.
Cost of Move
This addresses how much the specific move will cost, not including the various extra charges and insurance. Although every effort is made to gather the most accurate information, customers should be aware of the fact that many factors affect the cost of a move.
The process of building wooden boxes to protect delicate or valuable items during transit.
Staff in charge of supervising other crew members on the job.
A list of household goods and the amount of space (in cubic feet) they occupy in a truck. This is then converted into weight and used to determine the moving estimate.
A report, signed by the customer, used to verify the delivery of household goods at the destination.
The time in which a moving company is scheduled to deliver a shipment to its final destination. The delivery window will depend on the distance of the move.
The final point of delivery of the goods as specified by the customer.
The agent responsible for coordinating information to the customer and moving company at the moving destination.
Disassembled by Owner (D.B.O.)
Items are disassembled by the owner rather than by the carrier. Carrier is not responsible for the reassembly of these items.
A route change to a shipment’s destination or an additional stop after a moving truck is already en route.
A small platform on rollers or wheels used to handle freight.
A service where household goods are delivered from the origin to the destination directly and without storage.
An additional charge applied when a moving process includes moving items in an elevator.
On the way.
An agreement made between a customer and a moving company that guarantees the total cost of the move based on the weight of household items plus accessorial services.
A non-binding approximation of a moving cost based on the estimated weight of household items and any accessorial services.
A box of essential items that are not packed onto the moving truck. Designed for the individuals who are moving to use during the last days spent in an old home or the first days spent in a new home.
Expedited Service/ Express Delivery
This is an agreement to transport goods by a set date in exchange for a higher rate.
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
The FMCSA, is an agency within the Department of Transportation that regulates the operational requirements for moving companies, trucks, and equipment.
An additional charge for a moving professional to carry items up or down one or multiple flights of stairs.
A service where a moving company completes the moving process from start to finish for the customer. This includes providing materials, packing, loading, transporting, unloading, unpacking, and the clean-up of household goods.
Full-Value Protection Insurance
An insurance policy which covers the current market value of an item, an item’s replacement, or the cost to repair an item if it’s damaged or lost by a moving company during a move.
Soft, sturdy blankets designed to protect household appliances, furniture, banisters, doorways, and walls during the moving process.
Placed under heavy household items, furniture pads help heavy furniture and appliances slide across floors without causing damage.
The combined weight of a moving truck loaded with household goods.
Guaranteed Pickup and Delivery Service
A premium moving service that guarantees specific pickup and delivery dates.
A charge normally applied to cover the physical handling of cargo, at both the port of embarkation and the port of debarkation.
The van operator or agent that actually performs the service of transporting the goods on his or her equipment.
Insurance that protects against damage from fire, floods, wind, and other natural events.
Household items that are valued at more than $100 per pound.
Auxiliary services offered by movers in case that large or heavy items need to be handled in or out of homes through windows. Specialized equipment, such as a hoisting crane and a moving platform, are required to perform such services.
Household Goods (H.H.G.)
Personal goods or property used or to be used in a home.
Conditions that prohibit a moving company from carrying out a pickup or delivery with their standard equipment and require special equipment or additional labor. These terms are defined in a moving company’s tariff.
When the condition of an item prevents a moving company from moving the item without causing it damage, such as fragile antiques.
Interstate Commerce Commission
The Interstate Commerce Commission, or ICC, is the federal agency governing interstate transportation. Their jurisdiction includes moving companies.
Any move that involves crossing a state boundary, regardless of distance.
A move where the origin and destination are located in the same state.
A detailed list of the quantity and condition of household items.
Movers are required by law to obtain certifications necessary to transport household goods within state boundaries (i.e. local/intrastate) or across state lines (i.e. interstate). The license numbers shown are used to identify the status of the mover’s operating authority and insurance coverage. Individual states may require additional license information based on the type of move performed.
Charges calculated by the mileage and weight of a shipment; specifically for long-distance moves.
Goods are removed from the building and placed on a truck.
The date on which the shipment is actually picked up.
Agreed pick-up dates.
The act of taking the household goods of a customer out of his or her old property (origin), placing them into the moving truck, and securing them to ensure their safety during transit.
Provided by self-service movers to help you load your household goods onto the trailer.
A short-distance move, typically 40 miles or less.
Long Carry Charge
A charge applied when a moving company carries items an excessive distance from a home to the moving truck or vice versa. This distance is determined by the moving company.
A shipment that cannot be serviced in one day because of the distance of the move.
Storage of household items in a warehouse for an extended period of time, typically one month or longer.
The cost for a moving company to transport household items to their final destination. This does not include additional services or insurance costs.
All moving-related actions from beginning to end. Divided into pre-move preparations, moving day procedures, and post-relocation tasks.
The weight of a shipment; obtained by subtracting the tare weight (the weight of the moving truck) from the gross weight (the weight of the fully-loaded moving truck).
Non-Allowable List (prohibited items)
A list of items that moving companies will not handle because they may contaminate or damage the moving company’s property or the property of the customer. For example, furniture that will not fit through doorways, items infested with bugs, household chemicals, and propane tanks are subject to this list.
Notification of Delay
Notice to a customer that a delivery will be delayed and includes the reason for the delay, the last known location of the truck, and a new delivery date.
Order for Service
A document authorizing a moving company to move your items.
A number used to identify a customer’s move. This number appears on the Order for Service and the Bill of Lading.
The agent responsible for coordinating information and preparing the necessary documentation for the customer and moving company at the moving origin.
When items are left behind due to insufficient space on the primary moving truck. An additional truck is then utilized to transport the leftover items.
A service offered by moving companies or third-parties where professionals pack items before moving day and unpack them upon delivery.
Also known as packing materials, these are cardboard boxes, stretch wrap, packing paper, bubble wrap, foam sheets, packing peanuts, packing tape, and other equipment used to protect or contain household items.
A portable platform for holding material for storage or transportation.
Stands for packed by the owner. A term used by moving companies to designate when items are packed by a customer.
Peak Season Rates
Prices for moves that take place during the busiest season for moving companies. Typically between May 15 and Sept. 30.
Storing items in a warehouse indefinitely.
Pickup and Delivery Charges
This is an additional charge that is applied when you have to transport your shipment between the Storage in Transit warehouse and your residence.
Existing damage to an item that is not associated with the move.
Preferred Arrival Date (PAD)
The date a customer requests for delivery.
A ProMover is a moving company that is certified by the American Moving and Storage Association as trustworthy, reputable, and professional.
The price of a moving company’s services. Based on a customer’s in-home estimate and their specific moving needs.
A metal slope used to bridge and incline. Usually from the ground to the truck.
Charges applicable to the transportation and services on a shipment.
The performance of transportation on the dates, or during the period of time, agreed upon by you and your mover and shown on the Order for Service/Bill of Lading.
A reweigh of the items on the moving truck may be requested by a customer upon delivery. If a reweigh is requested, charges will be calculated based on the new net weight.
Released Value Insurance
A basic moving insurance policy required by federal law and offered at no additional charge. This policy insures your belongings for 60 cents per pound per item regardless of the item’s value.
Companies in this category will provide a trailer for you at your old home. You load the trailer yourself and the company returns to move the trailer to your new destination. You then unload the trailer yourself and call the mover to remove the empty trailer.
The use of a smaller vehicle to transport items to a location that is not accessible to larger moving trucks.
An extra charge for carrying items up or down flights of stairs.
Movers, by law, are required to provide a minimum amount of free coverage. This number, typically 60 cents, refers to the amount of money you will receive per pound of damaged goods. This coverage is a bare minimum and should not be relied upon to cover you for any significant damage.
A request for temporary storage in a warehouse if the destination is not ready to receive the items. SIT service may not exceed a total of 90 days and the customer is responsible for the cost of the service as well as any warehouse handling fees.
The plan as to how cargo has been placed or positioned within a container, vessel, truck, etc.
A heavy-duty saran wrap, stretch-wrap is wrapped around furniture to protect it from damage.
Also referred to as an in-home estimate, a survey is a process where a moving professional visits a customer’s home and uses a cube sheet to create a list of furniture and estimate its total weight. They will also inquire about additional moving services and then provide a quote for the estimated cost of the move.
The weight of the moving truck, equipment, and packing materials without a customer’s items. This weight helps determine the net weight of a customer’s move.
A comprehensive list of a moving company’s rates, rules, and regulations. There are separate tariffs for different types of moves such as long-distance and short-distance moves.
The time spent in transit between a customer’s old home and their destination.
When a moving professional unloads boxes and crates from the moving truck and unpacks the contents at the destination.
Updater Certified Moving Company
Updater Certified Moving Companies meet a strict set of criteria regarding their reliability and customer service. They are regarded as the best moving companies in the industry.
A USDOT number serves as registration for any vehicle that transports cargo across state lines (which includes moving trucks). This number is regulated by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration under the US Department of Transportation. You can check a moving companies USDOT number here.
A valuation is the estimated value of a customer’s belongings. Before the Bill of Lading is signed, a customer will declare the monetary cost for all of the items included in their move. A moving company will use this number to determine their liability for damage to or loss of an item.
Van lines coordinate teams of local agents across the country to provide moving services for customers. Van lines are national brands and their agents perform household moves on behalf of their van line.
Warehouse handling fees that occur each time a SIT (temporary storage in a warehouse) service is provided. These include temporary warehousing, loading and unloading of items, and the final delivery of items to their destination.
Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move
A government-issued document to help anyone who is moving understand every step of the moving process. Information about moving paperwork, estimates, claims, and insurance are all outlined in this document.