Movers Fees Explained
One of the most stressful and often misunderstood aspects of the moving process is how moving companies charge for their services. The two basic methods by which moving companies charge are by hourly rate or by a combination of weight and distance.
If you are moving locally or intrastate you will typically be charged an hourly rate. That hourly rate is set by the marketplace and can change based on the season or the amount of traffic in a given area. Movers that charge by the hour can include many services such as packing, unpacking, art services, and crating. Typically the only additional charges would be for packing materials and liability coverage.
When moving interstate, prices are most often calculated by a combination of weight and distance. The amount a moving company can charge is governed by a tariff. The current tariff was developed and approved by a committee of the Household Goods Carriers’ Bureau; a self-regulating body composed of moving industry executives, and is followed by most interstate movers. The tariff is basically a grid with weight on the vertical axis and distance on the horizontal axis. The intersection of a specific weight and distance determines the price of the transportation component of the move and is referred to as the “line-haul.” While the line haul is usually the largest component of the final bill, it does not include packing materials, packing service, storage, liability coverage or any of a number of accessorial charges.
When getting a bid based on weight make sure you observe the weighing of the truck before and after loading, which is your right. Remember a miscalculation of the total weight by your estimator can result in a final bill that is greater than the estimate. Be sure and go over with the estimator every item that will be moved to avoid any unpleasant surprises.
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