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Making a Local Move


Regulated Businesses

I'm hiring a mover, what should I know?


All movers performing local moves are required to be licensed by us. To verify whether a mover is licensed and if there are any consumer files about the move, call 954-357-5350.


Once you have narrowed down your search to 2-3 companies, contact each mover for an estimate:

  • The estimate must contain the total cost for all services, including all expected charges related to labor, transportation, preparation of the inventory, packing materials, storage, fuel and additional valuation coverage (insurance). An estimate may be made on a "flat rate" basis with a total cost.

  • It is not permissible to give a per hour estimate with only a minimum number of hours stated and a per hour charge thereafter. A total cost must be stated and adhered to; it cannot change even if the actual number of hours that the move takes is more or less than the estimated number.

  • Movers can charge to prepare an estimate; however, the charge must be disclosed and approved by you.

  • You should insist an on-site inspection of your household goods; not an estimate by fax or e-mail based on an oral conversation or filling out a questionnaire online.


What happens on moving day?

  • You must be presented with a written contract to sign prior to any work being performed.

  • The moving contract must be signed by you and the mover's representative.

  • The moving contract must contain the total dollar cost of the move as reflected on the written estimate unless additional items were added and agreed to prior to the signing of the written contract.

  • Consumer Disclosure Form must be signed and dated (with the time noted) by you and a mover's representative stating the cost of the move before the work begins.


What if my items are lost or damaged?

  • If the loss/damage is known on the day of the move, you should notate this on the written contract. Otherwise, you have up to 60 days to submit a written claim for the loss or damage. This time period cannot be waived or shortened. The mover then has 30 days to satisfy or deny the claim or notify you of the status of the claim along with the cause for any delayed response in which case the mover has an additional 60 days to either satisfy or deny the claim.

  • Be sure to indicate on the contract whether or not you want the standard 60 cents per pound valuation coverage for lost or damaged items or if you are purchasing additional coverage. A mover's maximum responsibility for lost or damaged items is 60 cents per pound/article unless additional coverage protection is purcased for a fee.


Remember:

  • Do not sign the written contract on moving day unless the total cost of the move is clearly shown.

  • Do not allow packing, wrapping or loading of your household goods unless you have first signed a fully filled in contract.

  • Always get copies of the estimate, written contract, consumer disclosure form and inventory (if applicable) upon signing them.

  • Do not be pressured into paying cash as the mover must accept multiple forms of payment; at least 2 of the following: cash, check or credit card.



Consumer Resources

Broward County Consumer Protection Code: Movers
Consumer Complaint Forms
PDF icon Consumer Disclosure and Moving Bill of Rights
Consumer Financial Protection Bureau
Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration
Federal Trade Commission
Florida Department of Business & Professional Regulation (DBPR)
Florida Division of Consumer Services


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