For regulations concerning intrastate (within one state) moves, contact The Georgia Public Service Commission (http://www.psc.state.ga.us/transportation/transportation.asp). The Georgia PCS assumed responsibility for certification and enforcement of regulations for household goods movers, luxury limousine carriers, buses, motor carriers and non-consensual towing effective July 1, 2005. For a list a licensed movers, visit http://www.psc.state.ga.us/transportation/carriersdata.asp
Charges for interstate (state to state) moves are determined by the weight and volume of the load and the distance it is to be shipped. To determine weight, the mover will weigh the van on a certified scale before and after he unloads your shipment. The difference between the two weights is the net weight of your shipment and is the amount on which the final charges are based. You may wish to visit the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration's website at http://www.protectyourmove.gov/interstate.htm for further information.
Companies will offer estimates to help you approximate moving expenses. Such estimates can be binding (the mover guarantees the price prior to the move) or non-binding (the mover estimates the price and provides final charges after the shipment is weighed). To assist movers in calculating the cost of your move, show them every item to be moved, including the contents of your attic, basement and garage. Ask the mover to explain the estimate in detail, and reach a clear understanding about the amount of packing and other services you'll require. Also, be sure you receive a copy of the estimate.
Before packing begins, the mover will make an inventory of your household goods to be shipped. Since the inventory record is one of your most important shipping documents, make sure all copies are legible, and that all items are numbered, listed and described correctly.
To save on packing charges you may want to pack part of your belongings yourself. But keep in mind that movers usually will not accept liability for breakage to "owner-packed" items, or they may require that the driver inspect the cartons. Be sure to ask your moving company about its policy, and ask for advice on packing materials and procedures.
Some consumers mistakenly assume that the moving company is insured to cover the full value of their goods at no extra charge. That is not the case. Unless the consumer makes specific arrangements, the mover generally assumes liability for the shipment at an amount equal to 60 cents per pound, per article.
The consumer may obtain additional liability protection, at an extra charge, from the mover. The levels of liability and charges for each option vary. Consumers should assess the various options, check to see what might already be covered under their homeowner's insurance policy, and then purchase the coverage that best meets their needs. If a specific amount of insurance is requested, that amount should appear on the lading/freight bill and the consumer should obtain a copy of the insurance policy that the moving company obtains.
Be physically present when the mover both loads and unloads your belongings to check that everything has been packed and arrives in good condition.
You may also wish to check with the American Moving and Storage Association (www.moving.org) to see if they have information on the company you are considering using.