The Written Moving Estimate: Binding vs. Non-Binding

Canadian_Movers_AMJNo matter how excited you are to move into your new home, the process of looking for reliable moving services  can be difficult.  Whether you need to move an entire house or an apartment, moving can be incredibly overwhelming.  Thankfully, moving doesn’t have to be stressful if you hire some help. However, when it comes to hiring a professional moving service be sure to understand the type of service you are getting by getting a written estimate.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) requires any moving company to provide potential clients with a written estimate. A written estimate has more weight and is more legal compared to a verbal estimate. As required by the FMCSA, a moving company must give the consumer a written estimate of all the possible charges that will be incurred in moving the items. Once you and the company agree on it, the agreement has to be signed and it is just as important that the document be dated.

There are two types of estimates that moving services will offer you: binding and non-binding. What  is the difference between a binding estimate and a non-binding estimate? As defined by the FMCSA, a binding estimate is one where you as the consumer, will not pay the moving company more that what is stated in the estimate. However, if there are any changes to the original agreement, then you and the moving services you have hired can do one of three things:

  1. Both you and the company may agree to proceed with the binding estimate despite the change;
  2. Both you and the company can agree to cancel the old binding estimate and draft a new one; or
  3. Agree to convert the binding estimate into a non-binding one.

If the company does not negotiate a new agreement with you or offer a conversion, then once the goods are loaded, the original binding estimate is considered enforced. Still, even with this provision, there remain special situations wherein the company can charge you for additional expenses.

A non-binding estimate on the other hand is done to give you an idea of how much you will spend to move your stuff. Though it may not be the final amount, a non-binding estimate will give you a price that is close to the actual one. The good thing about a non-binding estimate is that the moving services will not require you to pay more than 110% of what was originally estimated at the time of the delivery.

To know more about estimates, visit as they will be able to answer any additional questions you may have and more.


Packing tips to make your move go smoothly

market-photo_default-movers-directoryWhen you are preparing for a move, you might not know the best ways to set yourself and your family up for an easy moving experience. For example, if you have never moved before, you might find yourself in a tricky situation. What if you unknowingly end up hiring a moving company that does not take your needs seriously? What if you end up packing your things inefficiently or poorly, leaving you with damaged possessions or excess money spent on moving when doing so was unnecessary?   Which is why proper packing is the key to moving success.  Here are some tips for packing your possessions that will help you achieve the simplest move possible.

  1. Never pack boxes of breakable items too heavily: It can be tempting to try to fit as much stuff as possible into each box you pack, but this trap often leads to damaged goods instead of more efficient packing. For example, if you pack a box of china so that it is filled to the brim with breakable pieces, you are likely to drop this item at some point in your moving process. This simply will not do, and taking this risk seriously can prevent you from over packing and therefore breaking your most breakable possessions.
  2. Always use specialty boxes: If you have wardrobe specific boxes available to you, pack your clothes in these boxes. If you have dish boxes available, pack your dishes in these boxes. It is critical to pack in item-specific boxes when you can because these boxes are designed to protect your possessions in a way that other non-specific boxes just cannot.
  3. Use the proper sized boxes: Packing things in boxes that are too small or too large will result in damage to your possessions because items will move around too much or become so dense that damage is inevitable. These are real issues to bear in mind, and being thoughtful about packing your possessions up will make the biggest difference when you finally begin to unpack.
  4. Hire a moving company that has Liability Coverage: This may seem like an unnecessary step, but if you are hiring a moving company, you want to know that no matter what items are getting moved, they will be well protected from outside damage. This is perhaps the best thing that you can do to protect yourself against damages, especially if you are not going to pack and move your items yourself.