What items won’t a moving company move?

What won't most movers move?

When you are making preparations to move, it’s important to understand what kinds of items that most moving companies will not or are reluctant to move.

Reputable moving companies have high standards and prioritize safety for both their employees welfare as well as the safety of their customer’s belongings. For this reason, there are a variety of things that are restricted.

The following is a compilation of the main categories of items that most movers will not agree to move or ship as well as some that can be moved, but often are better off being transported personally.

Remember that these are general guidelines and each individual moving company has their own list of what is allowed and not allowed. If you have any items that you feel might be questionable, and are wondering if they can be moved, it’s always a good idea to talk directly to your moving company BEFORE the job is booked and find out if they will or will not move the item in question. This will eliminate any guesswork and also an unwanted surprise when the movers show up on moving day!

1. Hazardous Materials

Safety is always paramount for a reputable professional moving company and it is necessary to restrict certain items in order to protect their employees as well as the customer’s cargo. There are also often state laws in place that prohibit the transportation of certain types of items too, so be sure to check with your moving company if you have any items that may be considered hazardous.

These items may include:

  • Aerosol Cans
  • Ammonia
  • Ammunition
  • Car Batteries
  • Charcoal/Lighter Fluid
  • Chemistry Sets
  • Cleaning Solvents
  • Darkroom Chemicals
  • Fertilizer
  • Fire Extinguishers
  • Fireworks
  • Fuels/Oils
  • Household Batteries
  • Kerosene
  • Liquid Bleach
  • Loaded Guns
  • Matches
  • Nail Polish
  • Paint Thinners
  • Paints/Varnishes
  • Pesticides
  • Poisons
  • Pool Chemicals
  • Propane Tanks
  • Sterno Fuel
  • Weed Killer
What items won't moving companies move - hazardous materials

2. Perishables

Perishable food can can spoil quickly, exposing everything in the truck to foul odors, mold growth and often a mess when unpacking. People are often surprised that house plants are often found on the “won’t move “list.  If they are allowed it will be for moves 150 miles or less and if moving state-to-state there may be additional restrictions that vary by state depending on the type of plant. Talk to you mover about the specific plants you intend to move.

Perishable items not allowed include:

  • Plants
  • Food without Adequate Preservation
  • Frozen Food
  • Open or Half-Used Foods
  • Produce
  • Refrigerated Foods

3. Live Animals

Thinking about having the movers transport your pet snake?
Sorry, Mr. Slithers will have to travel with you, or have other arrangements made for him. There are professional pet movers that specialize in the safe transportation of live animals if personal vehicle or air travel is not an option.

Moving companies will not move your pets or live animals simply because there is too much risk involved. The interior air conditions of a moving van can be very bad and the temperatures can reach life threatening extremes.

What items won't moving companies move - pets

4. Personal and Important Items and Documents

While these items aren’t a danger like hazardous or perishable items, many moving companies will not move irreplaceable items such as photographs, one-of-a-kind documents, valuables items etc. because the inherent risk is too great. Plan on moving any items that you deem important or irreplaceable yourself and mitigate any doubts with the items in your possession and under your care.

These items may include:

  • Address Books
  • Airline Tickets
  • Car Titles
  • Cash
  • Cell Phones
  • Checkbooks
  • Computer Data Files/Backups
  • Family Photographs/Photo Albums
  • Financial Documents (Stocks, Bonds, CDs, IRAs, Deeds, Tax Records)
  • Home Videos
  • Insurance Policies
  • Jewelry and Furs
  • Keys (Car, Furniture, New Home)
  • Laptop Computers
  • Medical/Dental Records
  • New Home Documents
  • Prescription Medicine
  • Professional Files/Research Projects
  • School Records

Guide to moving smart - All State Movers inc.

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