What Moving Companies Will and Won’t Pack

Guns. Alcohol. Plants. A Checklist of Things Your Movers Can Pack

From alcohol to guns, cars, and beyond, this guide is to help you determine what moving companies can transport, and how you need to prepare items for your next relocation.

8 Common Questions Asked to Movers Answered

Before You Pack and Move: Common Questions and Answers

Moving to a new home requires a lot of planning. Avoid possible headaches by knowing exactly what moving companies can and cannot pack and move.

Research shows that moving house can be more stressful than divorce. Wow.

To minimize anxiety, one of the most important things to do is to find a good moving company. They’ll look after your stuff, pack and move your precious property with care, and will take over as you get closer to moving day.

But what will your moving company actually move? Is there anything they can’t transport for you?

To help you avoid headaches down the line, here are 8 common questions asked to movers, answered.

1. Will Moving Companies Move Guns?

Yes… But they won’t move your ammo.

By law, moving companies are not allowed to pack and move explosives. That kind of makes sense doesn’t it. After all, who wants their precious cargo to be destroyed by an avoidable accident, not to mention the danger to the movers themselves?

When packing your gun, remove all ammunition, and put the safety on.

You’ll need to write down the make and model of any firearms you’ll be moving in the truck.

You’ll need to give the movers this information, along with the serial numbers for each one.

2. Will Moving Companies Move Alcohol?

It depends.

State laws and individual moving companies differ on whether you can or can’t put your alcohol on the truck.

To find out whether your movers will transport your liquor, you’ll need to ask them specifically. You’ll also need to check out the laws of the state you’re moving to.

If your movers won’t touch your alcohol, but your state allows it to be brought in, it’s probably best for you to pack and move it yourself, in your car if possible.

Of course, if you have an expensive wine collection, for example, you’ll want to get professionals to move that in the right conditions and temperature.

3. Will Moving Companies Transport Cars?


Depending on the company, it’s possible that your movers will pop your car into the truck along with all your furniture. But they might charge you an arm and a leg to do it.

It may seem the most economical thing to do, packing your car in the moving truck when you’ve got space. Cars are heavy, though, and difficult to pack around and protect.

Movers often charge by weight, distance and time, so the weight of a car’s likely not going to be worth transporting in the truck, especially on a short move.

What if you’re organizing a large move, though, for a 4 or 5-bedroom house, and are moving a huge distance? Then, it might be more economical for movers to move your car. Ask your moving company for a quote, and see if it’s worth your while.

4. Will Moving Companies Move Plants?

Possibly… and it depends on the state you’re moving to.

If you’re moving more than 150 miles, you’ll need a special license to bring your plants. But it’ll also depend on state laws and your mover’s rules.

Check state laws well before your move.

Movers often don’t like to transport plants because they’re easy to damage. And if they’re damaged in transit, it’s possible your movers have a liability clause.

The best solution is to lovingly pack your plants yourself, and if you’re taking your car, give them a seat. At least then you’ll be able to give them the care they need along the journey.

5. Will Moving Companies Pack Your Stuff?

Yes! But only the stuff they allow.

Movers often include packing as either part of their service, or an add-on service you can pay for separately. It can cost from $30/hour with materials, or you could be charged per box.

They’ll totally pack your stuff, but they’ll also have a list of things they can’t pack and move in the truck. These items can’t be moved due to safety concerns – safety to their drivers, and safety for your cargo.

Ask your movers for their list of hazardous materials, and don’t be surprised when you see stuff on there like nail polish, hair spray, and batteries. These can all cause irreparable damage, so pack them safely and transport them yourself, if you have to take them along.

6. Will Moving Companies Store Your Stuff?

Very possibly.

It depends on your movers, so ask them first.

Your movers may have their own storage facilities, or they may use third-party facilities, so ask ahead and check out their reputation.

7. How Much Do Moving Companies Charge?

It depends… on your individual move and the services you need.

Movers base their fees on distance, volume, and any additional services you take up.

For a local move, it costs roughly $25-$30 per hour, per mover. Movers work fewer hours when they’re just expected to show up, pack and move the van, then unload at the other end.

If you ask them to pack your boxes, too, and unpack them when at your destination, that’ll mean more hours and more dough.

Long-distance moves are usually 100 miles or more. These are often charged by weight, or per pound. This method is preferable, as it’s accurate and easy to calculate, so you can keep tabs on it.

Other companies charge by cubic feet, but this isn’t advisable. Fees could vary depending on the movers you use, and if you find it tricky to calculate volume on such a large scale (which many of us do), you could get fleeced.

8. Are Moving Companies Responsible for Damages?

Not always.

Reputable moving companies always have insurance that provides for breakages and damage to your goods during a move.

Insurance means that, if there’s a substantial claim made against the company, they won’t go under because of it. And for you, it means you’ll be compensated for any losses.
If there’s damage to your home during a move, it’s probably the mover’s fault. But you’ll have to prove it.

Take photos of your home beforehand, so you can show any discrepancies after the event.

If the damage was unavoidable, though (like if the mover tripped over a turned-up rug and dropped your Dutch oven on your tiled kitchen floor, smashing it), you’ll be liable for that.

Always make sure your movers have insurance. That way, you’ll know you’re covered in case there’s a mishap, which there often is with a move.

The Takeaway on What Movers Will Pack and Move

When you hire a company to pack and move the contents of your home, it can feel like a weight’s been lifted off your shoulders at a very stressful time.

To be forewarned is to be forearmed. Make sure you ask your movers these 8 questions and find out what they’ll move, what they won’t, and how much it’ll cost you. You’ll be grateful you did.

The items in your home are often things you’ve collected throughout your life and are valuable and precious. Pick a reputable moving firm to handle them with care, and make moving a breeze.

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