How to Read Your Rental Contract

It’s moving day! Yay, you’re full of excitement and many mixed emotions as the BIG day has arrived! A walk-around  to check your rental truck has been done, papers have been signed but as you leave the center, you look at the contract you just signed and think, ‘How do I read my rental contract?’ Not to worry, this can tend to happen. I admit it’s happened to me too. Once I had the moving truck keys in hand, I was ready to load up and move into my new place not looking twice at my contract. For those of us who need a clarification when it comes to reading your contract, we’ve got you covered!

Papers are signed…now what? When signing your rental contract, you are simply agreeing to use the truck for the allotted time. Depending on the rental contract, your moving truck will be returned to the same location and expected back at a specific drop off location or you will be provided a phone number to contact upon arrival to your destination. Here is one example of an In-Town contract. One important link and number to remember as you review the very top of your rental contract is and the Roadside Assistance number. Although you may not use the link or even call the number anytime during your move it is always good to know that in case there is an emergency, you are aware and can quickly access the contact information.

In-Town Rental Contract
You will find your contact information at the very top left-hand corner.

 How long do I keep my rental truck?  As you load your belongings in your moving truck, one key thing to be mindful of is the time. Whether you’re moving in one day or you have several days to complete your move, make sure you plan ahead and have enough time to load/unload. You can find out how long you are allowed to have the truck by simply looking on your contract:

Contract time allowance
You will find the due date/time in the middle of your rental contract.

What is included in my rental rate?  If you’re moving across the city or across the country, your rate will vary. When you arrive at your pick up location, you will be provided a truck number specifically for your signed rental contract. You will also go through a walk-around with a team member to check the rental truck, prior to departure. Depending on your type of move, you will either be charged per mile or allotted a certain amount of miles. At the beginning of your In-Town move, you will be given an estimate of what the rate will be on an average of X amount of miles, 24.0 miles in this example. Although the move was not completed just yet, the estimated cost for the move will be $59.41 as shown.

Estimated rental rate
A breakdown of the charges can easily be found in the middle of your rental contract.

How much gas needs to be in the tank when I return a truck? When you pick up your rental truck, the truck will need to be returned with the same amount of gas that it had when you picked it up.

Fuel gauge
The fuel gauge reading will be found on the left-hand side of your rental contract.

Will I be charged at the time of pick up for my One-Way Move? Do I pay when I return the truck for my In-Town Move? Depending on what type of move you are doing, a One-Way move will seek a full payment for the truck rental cost. Whereas for an In-Town move, you will be given an estimate, a hold will be placed and you will be charged at the time the truck is returned. The first example shows an approved payment for a One-Way move. The second example shows the estimate of the amount that will be held on the debit/credit card.

Authorized credit card payment
Here is an example of an authorized credit card payment for a One-Way move.
Estimate charge for an In-Town move
Here is an example of the estimated charge for an In-Town move.

Now all that’s left… Now that you have gone over your rental contract, you officially know how to read your rental contract! All that is left is to begin the loading/unloading of your moving day. Check out these great tips on how to load/unload your moving truck.

Have you ever not been familiar with a rental contract? Did you ask for help? How did you become familiar with your contract? Share your comments below.