There are plenty of things you need to keep track of when moving. You are, after all, relocating your whole life and everything you own. And it is, of course, important to be sure all your possessions are safely packed and transported. But have you stopped to think about all the important moving documents you need? Here’s a useful little list to help you out with that!
Important moving documents to obtain and keep
Moving is more than just packing up and transporting everything you own. There are many items specifically related to moving that you will need to get your hands on. You should, for example, budget to buy moving boxes Brooklyn even if you already have some lying around because you will quickly find that there’s never enough boxes when moving. Bubble wrap, packing peanuts, binders – these are just some of the things you might not have readily available, but will definitely need when relocating.
Similarly, there are documents uniquely related to moving that you will need for your relocation. These are important moving documents and forms that you will obtain immediately before, during and shortly after the move. If you haven’t moved before, you are likely not to have encountered them until now. Following is a list of the most important ones.
A moving estimate is a written up calculation of your moving costs. Moving companies will provide you with one after assessing your belongings (in person or through a video) and the services you want from them. Most companies will provide you with an estimate for free. So if you have the time, get estimates from a few different movers to find the best option for you. Just be careful what you are agreeing to. There are three different types of estimates and not all are equal:
- non-binding estimate: this is just an approximation of your costs – the actual bill may end up much higher if your items end up weighing more than estimated (and they usually do)
- binding estimate: this is the exact amount you will pay regardless of whether the weight of your move ends up higher or lower than estimated
- binding not-to-exceed estimate: this is the highest price you can possibly pay (even if the weight of the move exceeds the estimate), but you will be charged less if the items moved end up lighter than expected
A printed copy of your moving estimate with you during and after the move will help you keep track of your spending and can be useful for your personal recording keeping.
Bill of landing
This is arguably the most important document you will get during your relocation. It includes a list of items in your shipment, moving rate, important dates, insurance details and other important information about the services your movers are providing. These are formed into a legally binding contract between you and the company. Think of it as a movers’ receipt. You will find this document especially valuable if you end up filing a complaint against the moving company you hired.
Attached to your bill of landing will usually be an order for service. This should contain similar pertinent information including relevant dates, agreed-upon prices, and services provided. Both you and your movers will sign an order for service.
An inventory of items loaded for transport will be provided to you by the movers. While this is certainly an important moving document, it is less relevant if you plan on packing house yourself. This is because all items will be marked as “packed by owner” and their condition prior to moving will be listed as “unknown”. You may want to keep your own inventory list in these cases. However, many local moving companies Brooklyn provide packing services too. If you choose to take advantage of that, an inventory list will be useful because it shows what was packed, when, by whom and what condition it was in when packed. So make sure to thoroughly review the inventory documents you get.
Documents about liabilities
According to the FMCSA, movers should at the very least provide you with a copy of “Your Rights and Responsibilities” and the official Ready to Move Brochure (they may also include additional documents on liabilities). If they do not, consider this a red flag and look closer into the company.
Copies of your lease or homeowners insurance policy
You will need to transfer your utilities after you move. For this and many other things you will have to set up, you will need proof of residency. So make sure to keep a copy of your lease or homeowners insurance policy handy.
Important personal documents to have while moving
In addition to important moving documents, you will want to keep track of important personal documents you may need during or after the move.
Keep all identifications and related documents (such as passports, driving licenses, social security cards, birth certificates, and even marriage licenses) on you while moving. These are important documents you will certainly need at some point. And they can be a huge hassle to replace. So you don’t want to lose them.
Medical and veterinary records
You will be seeing a different doctor after you move so make sure you have your medical records to show them. Be especially mindful of medical documents if you suffer a chronic condition you take medication for. And if you are moving with pets, don’t forget about their veterinary records too.
School transcripts and professional licenses
Whether you are moving for further education or are looking for a job, school transcripts and any licenses you need for your work will be vital after you move.
Vehicle registration records and the title for your car
Are you moving across state lines? You may need to update your registration and change your car’s title so keep your vehicle documentation safe!
IRS tax documents
Important receipts, transactional records, and taxes from previous years will all be helpful when filing taxes after your move. But did you know that your moving costs may be eligible for tax deductions? If you’re moving for a job or donating a lot of your things while packing, keep all the relevant documentation for it. You can later use it for tax deductions.
Keeping your documents organized
Most movers prefer not to move valuable documents. This means you will probably need to move them yourself. So keep your important moving documents organized. Use binders to file them and mark them clearly so they’re easier to find and use.