pile of filesHere at Moveline, we get a lot of questions about a lot of things when it comes from moving from one place to another. A few include, “What’s a delivery spread?” “It’s cheaper to move myself instead of hire someone, right?” and “What in the world is valuation?” Here, we’ll tackle that last one to help you wade through the maze of moving industry terminology.

So, what is valuation? While it can feel confusing and complicated, it’s a fairly simple concept at heart. Let’s break it down.

Valuation = protection

The crew up on Capitol Hill requires that all Household Goods moves (that is, any move of household stuff, handled by a business) have a declared value attached to them. Now, declared value isn’t necessarily what these items are actually worth if they were sold. Some items would be tough to price accurately, and others have non-monetary value (heirlooms, for example). So the easier way to think about valuation or declared value is to think of it as a level of insurance or protection. If damage to the goods occurs, how much should the owners be reimbursed?

Because the value of many of our things is subjective, this declared valuation must be set prior to the move. After all, nobody wants to argue whether that busted lamp was “old” or “vintage” after the fact. So how do we develop an agreed-to declared value for an entire shipment? We’re glad you asked.

Released Value: $0.60 per pound

All shipments are required to be covered at a rate called “Released Value,” at no additional cost to you. That sounds good, except that this option gives new meaning to “minimum coverage.” Paying at a flat-rate of just $0.60 per pound, per item, if something breaks (unless it’s a cinder block) you’re not likely to get enough back to replace it. That three-pound, framed, limited-edition, signed print that got crushed? Here’s $1.80. That fifty-pound vintage guitar amplifier? If you can replace it for $30, you’re all set. What about the beautiful 200-pound leather couch you just bought for $1600? Under Released Value, you get a whopping $120. To us, that’s not sufficient.

Full Value Protection

This is exactly what you think it is: full-value coverage that costs more, but actually gives you a fair level of reimbursement should something happen to your things during shipping.

Moveline currently offers three options for Full Value Protection, based on the deductible amount–$250, $500, and $1000. In each plan, you get full replacement value of your things minus the selected deductible. So looking at that 200-pound leather couch again, that’s $1600 minus the deductible. Way better than $0.60 per pound.

It’s your choice (but it’s an easy one)

Obviously, since we work with only the best moving companies in the industry, every attempt is made to deliver your things safe and sound to your new home. But in reality, from time to time, life happens and damage or loss occurs.

Nobody likes it (least of all us), and that’s why we highly…HIGHLY recommend Full Value Protection for your move. In fact, for full-service moves, we include it by default in our pricing. You can choose to remove it, accepting only the free released value coverage, but unless you just enjoy taking unnecessary risks with your things, we strongly recommend against doing that.

Ultimately, it’s your property. And it’s your choice as to how to protect it, and at what level. If you have any questions, we’ll be happy to walk you through your options and help you make the best choice for you and your budget. Bottom line: if you’re planning a move, let Moveline help. It’s exactly what we’re here for.