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2016 Workshop Gen Info, Pictures & More

Workshop hotel

CPPC 2016 Workshop


April 22nd & 23rd

The CPPC 2016 Workshop was another success!  
Thank you to all our members
that participated and shared in the success of the event. 
Select the link below the pictures to see a full album of Photos.  
wksp1  board 1  wksp2


See Summary Write-ups by the CPPC Board on the various sessions of the Workshop: 

CPPC 2016 Workshop Session Summations

In hopes of giving those that could not attend this year’s event, a glimpse of what they missed; the CPPC Board members will share their summaries of the various sessions.  Those presenters that had Power Point Presentations, that can be shared, will be available on the CPPC web site for your viewing option.

Military Round Table – Kathy Kendall

Virginia Eilmus-US Navy; Brenda McCord, US Army; Danny Martinez, SDDC lead the discussion with the CPPC members in attendance. There were several others from SDDC in attendance to assist with questions.

Discovery of Mold/Water damage.

The last handler (TSP) has the duty to mitigate the loss and to notify the PPSO and MCO about the water/mold damage.  If at origin the TSP will notify the PPSO and they will be required to assign a QA inspector to inspect, note on the inventory and to determine if the shipment can continue to destination. All proper notifications must be made and this is an urgent situation.  We all agree that the shipment must never be offloaded into the residence or attached garage. A qualified mold remediation company must be assigned to determine the extent of the damage. If a TSP is having issues with an NTS agent it might be necessary for them to contact SDDC to assist.

The services indicated that there will be more QA training, they will talk to the driver, identify what type of mold in order to proceed.

The slides will be available on the CPPC website. The slides outline the responsibility of each party involved with the move when there is mold/water damage discovered.


There was a discussion about some trends that the MCO’s and SDDC are seeing with the TSP’s handling of claims. There are TSPs that are making decisions without any involvement of the MCO. There are TSPs that are wiping down the items to remove the visible mold then proceeding with shipping the items then while in transit the mold reappears.

TSPs are not performing joint inspections when picking up from the NTS facilities. Then the driver accepts contaminated items and they are leaving them at the residence because of being in a hurry to get them off their trucks and onto the next shipment.

A mold specialist must determine if items can be properly cleaned so as not to leave any mold that could cause health issues.

TSPs not notifying the PPSO when mold is discovered.  Both origin and destination PPSO must be notified. There are also some

TSPs refusing to remediate the mold since it was the NTS liability.  The last handled is responsible for taking the initiative to

mitigate and then can work with the PPSO and MCO to get the claim paid.

Notification of loss/damage.

There are some TSPs that are denying claims because the member signed the inventory at delivery. Some TSPs are denying the claim because it was not signed at delivery but the Loss or Damage After Delivery form was completed and filed within 75 days.  The industry members in attendance all agreed that they are not doing this.  A question was asked about the inventory at delivery being noted with the damage but the customer did not file the proper notifications. The military representatives stated that noting on the inventory is the same as making the notification on the proper forms. They stated that the TSP cannot deny the claim though if the customer does not note it on the inventory.

Real Property Damage.

Per the services some TSPs are denying the customer ’s claim for residential or real property claims even when noted at delivery or they are ignoring the real property damage claim when filed. DPS claims and liability rules will soon be revised to include time lines and potential penalties. Some suggested time lines are as follows:

•     The TSP and customer will jointly inspect the property and if there is any damage that will be noted on the At Delivery Form or the origin inventory

•     IF real property is not noted at pick up or delivery the customer will notify the TSP within 10 calendar days of the pick up or delivery. The TSP shall provide written notice to the customer of the requirement either by phone, email, fax or US Postal service or via the servicing MCO

•     The TSP shall inspect within 2 business days of the notification from the customer or MCO

•     The TSP will be responsible for repair estimates and will make arrangements for a qualified home repair firm or contractor that is willing and able to make repairs within a reasonable time.  The repair firm must be reputable and provide timely and satisfactory service.

•     The TSP will issue payment, deny make an offer or ensure repairs are complete within 30 days of receipt of a complete and substantiated claim

•     Real property claims are not filed in DPS

•     If there is a dispute the customer can contact either the MCO or the local Transportation Office or SDDC/QA for assistance.

•     Failure of the TSP to provide the customer with written notice of the 10 day notice requirement, to respond within 2 business days by either the MCO or customer or failure to settle the claim within 30 days may constitute reasons for convening a TSP review Board. Action may be taken against the TSP up to and including disqualification from the DOD

Personal Property Program.

Discussion ensued since the industry is concerned about legal ramifications and implications with real property since this is governed by state law not contractual law.  It was mentioned that this will be worked out with the industry and military service claims working group prior to implementation.


Many TSPs are updating the system and the first offer is the final offer this does not allow the customer to counter that offer and they have no choice but to proceed to the MCO for negotiation of the settlement. There are TSPs that are not paying claims within the Liability Business Rule time lines. Claims must be paid, denied or settled within 60 days and once agreed a check must be issued within 30 days.  It was suggested to exceed the customer ’s expectation and to contact them immediately after receiving the claim since many customers are reporting that the TSP is waiting 50+ days for the initial contact.

SDDC Discussion: 

Timeliness of offer, payment, inspection, etc., make sure you are contacting the customer and updating DPS. No later than 30 days to contact initially once the claim is filed and once the settlement is agreed no later than 30 days to make payment. All inspection fees must be paid by the TSP and not by the customer. It is OK to ask the customer to assist with obtaining them in some areas but the TSP must reimburse for that fee.

They indicated that some TSPs are providing false or misleading information to the customers such as only offering depreciated coverage, or making the customer think that appearance offers are allowed when the rules state replacement or repair only.

Placing the initial offer as the final offer in DPS frequently requires help desk ticket to revise after negotiations between the TSP and customer change that final offer.

There was further discussion about the surveys and the claims data.  It was mentioned that there might need to be a 7th question added to the survey to determine the customer ’s satisfaction with the claims process.  Peg Wilkens mentioned that the survey already reflects the customer ’s satisfaction or lack of satisfaction since that plays into the question about the overall satisfaction with the move. John Becker, AMSA indicated that he had several military moves that were very good moves but he still had a claim and that just having to file a claim does not mean it was a bad move and the TSP should not be dinged for that.

Letters of Warning have been issued for non-payment of claims within 60 days even when they have been paid within that time frame and TSPs are having to appeal those letters.

Partial settlements were discussed and many TSPs are waiting until the entire claim is settled before issuing payment even when the customer has agreed to some of the items and a partial check for those items only should be issued within 30 days of their acceptance of the offer even if other items are sent to the MCO.

Overall it was a great meeting with a lot of good discussion among the group.  The consensus is that this is a great format for the services and the industry to discuss ongoing issues and to work out those issues.  We all agreed this should continue and Danny Martinez agreed that SDDC will try to keep the participating in the future.

Repair Only Segment – Tom Kuhns

This segment was organized and presented by two CPPC board members, Mark Weathersby and Chris Armes.  They opened the session by thanking everyone in the room for being in attendance and they would do everything they could to make the session worth everyone being there.

Mark called to everyone’s attention that the technology in our industry is constantly changing.   He asked the attendees for information on any new products or new technology.  There was a discussion in the room amongst several members about new products containing powdered brass and powdered walnut. It was explained that these products could be mixed with epoxy based products to do repairs on brass hardware with the brass powder and to do woodwork repairs with the powdered walnut.

The next discussion centered around Mohawk aerosol products. The consensus in the room was that most members preferred the Mohawk Perfect Blend aerosol spray. They also said that the Mohawk black aerosol tips are the best. Another attendee suggested using Mohawk Finish Up when repairing hardwood floors.  They said they had experimented with several different products on hardwood floors and Mohawk Finish Up was the best. There was also discussion about the Mohawk short handle butane burn in knife.  They said the short handle knife was a newer product and they liked working with it better than the standard long handle knife.

The problem with "halos" around a completed burn in got much discussion from the group. One repair service suggested "dusting" the burn in several times with dead flat lacquer.  After that he would work the area to the desired sheen and rarely had a halo problem.  Another repair service said they have less halo problems when spraying the final coats of finish using a pre-catalyzed lacquer.

The conversation then shifted to several general claims handling issues.  One person asked if the other repair services charge for research time when preparing a report.  Most of the responses were no, unless it involved a very abnormal claim requiring a lot of excessive research time.  The subject of inspection assignments versus repair assignments also was a hot topic.  The shift in a lot of the moving industry towards more inspection assignments and less repair assignments seems to be very prevalent with most everyone in the room.  Most acknowledged that sometimes the inspection assignment is required because of circumstances out of the control of the adjuster, such as charges not paid or a large deductible on the claim.  Most of the services requested that claims management in these offices instruct their adjusters to always try to make an attempt to help us get the repairs. Applying the deductible against cash-outs was suggested. Keeping the repair service copied in on correspondence to the shipper regarding settlement being made, based on our repair estimate report, would be helpful so that we could then contact the shipper and request the opportunity to do the repairs.  In general, the repair services in the room appreciate any and all work we receive from the moving/insurance company clients, that we are all part of a "partnership" in the claims handling process and the repair services just want the adjusters to understand that repairs are the most important part of our business.  Without repairs, most of us could not stay in business.

A discussion regarding the word "denial" in our reports resulted in a very lengthy discussion amongst all attendees. There was a time when most services would put the statement "recommend denial" in their report based on things they would see during the inspection such as obvious pre-existing damage, climatic damage, etc.  Now, because movers and adjusters have to handle many claims differently because of the sales or contractual demands placed upon them, most services will no longer use the statement of "recommend denial".  They all felt that we should just give you very detailed information, along with detailed photographs, and then let the adjuster/customer service representative make a determination.

Lastly, this session generated a large amount of source information. Names were given out for hardware and other general supplies. It was mostly the names that were given and it was suggested you could do a google search to find their web site.  It included Prisma, Anasaldi & Son, Minks, Vaportek and Smoothcast.

Opening Session – Brenda McCandless

Speaker: John Coleman – Coleman American/Eagle Adjusting

Topic: What is happening in the industry and how do we get to know each other better?

John grew up in the industry. Along the way he attended law school and then seminary. When he got out of school he joined the

family business.  To help him gain more knowledge on the problems that come up when household goods are moved from state-

to-state he went on jobs with Mark Weathersby and he only lasted about two days doing this type of work.  He soon found himself

learning more about the industry and the problems that customers face as a result of the relocation.

The industry is facing many changes and challenges today.  Some changes that have a major impact on how things are done are consolidation of smaller agents, closing of the mom & pop agencies, lack of van operators, the new direction being taken on the smaller loads (4000 lbs and under often being sent by freight companies) and so on.  Full-service relocations are becoming few and far between.  The  millennial generation prefer to hire their move participants through eCommerce (Uber movers, Bell Hop, Amazon and there are many other on-line aps for folks to choose from today). Often the move is not handled all the way through by the same party – the customer may select one party to supply packing material, one to pack it, one to haul it and another to store the goods. Every change has a direct impact on all CPPC members in some fashion.

Everything that impacts basic function can make or break an organization.  This is illustrated by a story that John told about Bill Walton and his coach at UCLA, John Wooden.   When Bill joined the team, Coach Wooden told him to sit down and take off his shoes and socks.  He then proceeded to teach Bill how to put on his socks then how to put on his shoes.  He did this to illustrate that if this function is not done correctly it could impact how Bill played and could ultimately cause injury that would take him out of the game. It shows that if enough attention is not given to the basics it can make big things happen in a negative way. Often in the moving and storage industry we get caught up and forget the basics and our service suffers the consequences of this oversight.

John went on to discuss the effects of the Carmack Amendment which is the "Mack Daddy of all regulations on the moving and storage industry". It is a uniform system of carrier liability that pre-empts several items that could increase the carrier ’s exposure (for instance, emotional distress, sentimental value and others). He discussed the different valuations that are available to customers and what is required of the customer/claimant in order to file a claim for both civilian and military relocations. Additionally, he explained many of the requirements placed on the claimant and the carriers that can have direct impact on the amount of business they receive in the future.

Relocating a home is one of the most stressful events that anyone can go through and when there are service failures along the way it increases the stress level of all involved. Good communication from the beginning of the relocation to the end of the claim process will ease the tension that everyone feels when things go wrong.  Communicate openly and honestly at all time.  Be up front with the customer on what you can do for them and alert them to areas that you are not sure about. Open, honest and fair treatment will bring the customer back (hopefully) so everyone benefits – the customer, the carrier and the vendor.

Procedures and Good Practices – Brenda Murray

This interesting panel was called Procedures and Good Practices. The panel included David Glassberg from At The Shop Service,

Claire White from Wheaton-Bekins, Clark & Reid Van Lines and Jane Graybill from Republic Moving & Storage.  The discussion centered around "working together and understanding each other".

Suggestions for the technicians were to:

•     Evaluate the claim

•     Provide a valuation of Repairs and Repair Costs

•     Consider the timelines

•     Have customer awareness.

Repair Firm Needs:

•     Client information,

•     Background

•     Pre-made forms

One resounding plea is for technicians to call the customer on the first day for prompt scheduling and communicate to the adjuster about calls and appointments scheduled.

The adjuster requires that the technician stay in contact, make appointments and convey the dates to the adjuster.  The adjusters want technicians to let them know if there are any unresponsive shippers, have a prompt turnaround for reports and please remember that you can never send too many photos!!  The reports should include repair costs, deposits, weights (where needed) and replacement values.  The adjusters requested that if third parties are used please set this up at the beginning of the claim and never at the end.  If the technician does not have a third party for the claim they should convey this to the adjuster as quickly as possible so that the adjuster can handle it. This will allow the adjuster to close the claim as the technician finishes up his repairs.

Communication between the adjuster, the shipper and the technician are vital to the claims process. It is advised that the technician stay calm with the client no matter what. It is best if they guide the client towards a solution. Empathy and a listening ear go a long way when a client is angry and complaining. Just take a moment to "let them tell their story" and explain how you will help them resolve the claim. This sets the tone for a smoother claims handing process for all!

Repair Techniques worth Seeing and Discussing – Denice Valluzzi

PANEL: Sue Harmon, Guardsman FurniturePro – Touch ups and leather

              Todd Marks, Mid-America Full Claims Service – Climatic conditions

              Don Kistner , Kistner ’s Claim Service – Velour and material repairs

This year, the panel chose to do their presentations using Powerpoint and Videos. Sue Harmon began the panel showing many different types of wood damages, showing the different steps and processes necessary to restore the transit related wood damage to pre-move condition. The step by step photos along with her thorough explanation took us thru the preliminary wood preparation, the build –up repair techniques and final processes necessary to insure the correct color, finish and grain to match the remainder of the furniture.

Sue explained the leather repair process, noting, most importantly before determining if a restoration can be done, where, what type of damage and the size of the damaged area. Where the damage is would be "key", as stress areas cannot usually be successfully restored.  She took us through this presentation, similar to the wood repairs, step by step thru the procedures from start to finish. This process is a very tedious and time consuming repair, but can be successfully accomplished.

Todd Marks shared his slideshow presentation regarding different pieces of furniture with climatic condition damage. It was explained what climatic conditions is and how it occurs – "natural damage from changes in temperature and humidity resulting in wood shrinking, swelling/expanding  or drying out, which in turn causes: cracking, splitting, warping, peeling, loosening/ weakening and areas coming unglued." The moisture content of wood can change with increases and decreases in humidity and can cause the wood to be affected and change. With high humidity, the wood absorbs moisture and can swell causing issues like glue and finish failure. With low humidity, the wood loses moisture and can shrink and cause it to split. When handling inspections and repairs, it is important to know the difference between climatic caused damages vs transit caused damages and why these damages happen. This helps moving/insurance companies and makes it easier to explain to the claimant.

Don Kistner played a video showing a step by step demonstration on velour repair and the products that can be used on not only solid colors but patterns as well. The example showed how a material damage can be repaired using the reflocking method by filling the hole, blending in the velour and putting the pattern look back into it. Very safe waterbased products are used.  Don brought with him, samples of the products for everyone to check out.  He also compiled several handouts with additional information for all attending this workshop.

I received positive feedback, especially from the insurance and van line attendees, as we see the "reports" on all these types of repairs but observing the actual damages and repairs assist us all in doing our jobs better and, collectively, I thank you all on our behalf.

Town Hall – Debbie Morales

The entire Board is present during this segment to allow for an open forum for attendees. First element of business was the CPPC Board Elections. Mark Weathersby opted to take the 2 year term that was to be filled, allowing the remaining 3 Board nominees to fill the 3- 3yr terms up for election. As no ballot was needed to determine the outcome, a simple all in favor vote could be conducted.

Denice Valluzzi as chair for the election conducted this business. Alan advised of upcoming events and of a new payment button on the CPPC web page that will allow members to pay for any pending invoices through a secure portal. Pam Fischer advised of plans to launch a CPPC Facebook page. A testing of the page will be activated and shared amongst the Board before opening it up to the entire membership. It will be a closed facebook page by invitation to join in. More details to follow. Debbie Morales shared plans for the CPPC 2017 Workshop which will be our 50th Anniversary. She is seeking old pictures, programs or any other historic documentation to be shared at this event. Also if anyone knows of past members and how to contact, Tom Kuhns will be heading up trying to secure those contacts.

Changes in the Industry – Linda Hamilton

Pete Simonetti of Artisian Restoration/MD conducted this unique session of engaging the attendees in an open forum discussion…..

Pete started off by mentioning the many changes in technology for our industry and how many have had to adapt to these changes.

He also brought up due to the unpredictable volumes in the transit business, many of the repair firms have had to re-invent themselves, and be open to other ways of conducting their business.

A discussion took place of the repair firms seeing more inspections vs repairs on their assignments. An explanation of many of the reasons why this could be the case would be:

•     Unpaid transportation charges

•     Permanent storage

•     3rd party handling of goods

•     Deductibles

It was emphasized by the repair firms that if an adjuster is planning to cash out directly with the customer after an inspection has been completed, if they would copy in the repair firm in the communication with the customer… so the repair firm has the opportunity to reach out to the customer with hopes of getting that job. Of course, making sure you advise customer of the repair firm’s name and contact information as well.

It was also brought up by a repair firm, that it’s a good practice to email the customer (with the techs photo in that email) so they are aware of who they are expecting to be at their residence, reconfirming the appointment date/time as well as contact information. It’s also a good practice to leave your business card with the customer when you’re at their residence, for future reference/business. There was some discussion on communication – picking up the phone vs emailing between the repair firm and adjusters/claim representatives...the email method of communication is good sometimes, but seems a bit impersonal when trying to continue to build the working relationship between repair firms and adjusters/representatives.

Discussion took place about a repair firm that has taken the next step and gone "paperless" in their office as well as with their techs on the road…a question was asked if anyone else is moving forward with this, and if so, they’d like to compare notes on how it’s going.

Questions were asked to the adjusters/representatives if they have options for their customers to upload their own photos when completing an on-line claim form, as well as many in the industry moving forward with electronical inventories which enables the driver to provide photos of the items being inventoried as well.

Final discussion was on "carbon fiber" and the increase of very expensive mountain bikes that are averaging anywhere from $3,000 to $10,000…there were opinions that carbon fiber cannot be repaired but there is possibilities that you can get replacement parts. Overall, the time spent in discussion was well received and very interactive/informative to all attending.

Helpful Information and Tips – Chris Armes

Bill See, from See Restorations Unlimited, led a main session on Saturday morning to talk about some Helpful Information and Tips when handling claims with damaged items that are common, but sometimes take on lives of their own.  Some of these items include Tempurpedic mattresses and sleep number beds, bonded leather, cribs, TVs and stainless steel appliances. As these items have vastly different makes and models, a little bit of information can go a long way in determining transit liability and potential determination of repair options.

Tempurpedic mattresses have several different types or models, but they include flat, Temperhub (where the head elevates), Tempurplus and Tempur-premium (where head and foot will elevate). Regardless of the mattress, the frame for the bed is of critical importance. All the support frames should have at least five (designed for seven) legs and cross members.  The warranty will be void if there are not a minimum of five. The mattresses can be folded for moving them out of and around origin or destination, but the fold must be with the "grain" of the mattress, which typically runs the length of the bed. If it is folded incorrectly, the fibers are highly subject to tearing. However, the mattress should ALWAYS be transported flat, with the bottom side down. NEVER transport on the side and/or upside down.

These mattresses are typically constructed of at least four layers of foam with an adhesive between each layer to bond the foam. Climatic conditions should be taken into account if moving in either high heat or cold temperatures. High heat could cause the adhesive to soften and the foam layers are then prone to delaminating and cold temperatures could harden the foam layers and they become more prone to rips and tears. A good rule of thumb is that a mattress should be allowed to acclimate to the internal temperature of the home for about four hours before attempting to manipulate or handle it outside its carton.  While there are typically handles sewn into the sides of the mattress, these are designed to be used for rotating the mattress, not for carrying the mattress.  If any soiling or staining occurs, it is also recommended that NO dry cleaning products or solvents be used as they can break down the foam and adhesive layers.  The recommended cleaning solution is simply hot, soapy water. Contrary to common belief, stains should not void the warranty.

Sleep number beds typically come with a 20 year warranty if purchased prior to April 28th, 2013.  If purchased after April 28th, 2013, the warranty coverage is not 100% replacement for that 20 years, but rather decreases by a rate of 4% per year after the first year.  Neither carriers, agents, nor repair firms are technically authorized to disassemble or reassemble sleep number beds, else the warranty is at risk of being void. A local sleep number authorized technician should be used to perform any and all work on these beds. The typical charges which have been noted were between $95-150, but can vary based on location of the customer and availability of a local technician who could service the customer ’s area.

Rooms to Go and Ashley Furniture are two manufacturers who have been known to use a lot of bonded leather on their products. These products are everything from sofas, love seats, and recliners, to beds and seat cushions for dining chairs. Bonded leather is at MOST only 14% actual leather. The material is actually formed from a "slush" which is made from that 14% leather material and other additional compounds which are then "bonded", or attached, to a fabric backing or substrate.  Bonded leather is fairly easy to recognize when compared to actual grain leather, as actual grain leather will not be bonded to any type of fabric backing. When bonded leather is damaged, that backing will be very easy to notice.  Regarding packing or wrapping of bonded leather, if any shrink wrap is used directly on the leather and the item sits in a storage facility with even a little bit of moisture present, that bonded leather is practically given a death sentence.  Repair of bonded leather is at the own risk of a repair firm, but is not recommended in most circumstances.

Cribs are typically missing hardware or have some sort of structural and/or  cosmetic damage.  There are many considerations which should be made when attempting to repair or replace damages or missing hardware to a crib.  Of note, all drop-front cribs are on a total recall from their respective manufacturers. It’s also recommended to check a crib’s model number to see if that crib has been recalled as well.  If a crib is on a recall list, the manufacturer should replace that customer ’s crib at no cost, which would obviously release the carrier or agent from any liability and require no further action on the part of a repair firm. If the crib had not been recalled, the model number, and sometimes even an 800 number, can be found on one of the component parts of the crib, on a sticker or placard. This information is useful in finding and/or replacing missing hardware. If the damage is cosmetic, it is a helpful technique to use water based finishes on top of any repair to seal the repairs under a non-toxic finish.

The number of manufacturers of TVs, and the models which they produce is seemingly endless. However, there are a few things to keep in mind when researching potential damage to a TV which could assist in determining the nature and potential cause of the malfunction. It is important to note that most manufacturers produce different product lines which are sold to bargain stores such as Walmart, K-Mart, and Target, than are sold to stores such as Best Buy and H.H. Gregg. The higher end stores typically carry a TV with better internal components and are of higher quality.  Typical claimed damage are things such as vertical and/or  horizontal lines or bars in the picture, spots on the screen or missing pixels or other discolorations in the picture.  A little on line research by model number could reveal that this is a manufacturer ’s recall and is not actually transit related.  Other damages are more obvious, in that if there is some evidence of abuse or neglect, such as a broken screen with a point of impact, that make researching replacement of like kind and quality pretty much the only option as repairs of this nature are almost always not cost effective.

However, there are only a few internal components of the modern generation of TV which is even cost effective to repair if transit damage is proven.  One of which is the TVs internal power supply.  It should be noted that this malfunction is easily preventable if the TV is give at least 20 minutes from powering down to unplugging, so as to allow the cooling fan time to cool the internal components.  If the TV is not cooled down, the internal electrical components are at a high risk of overheating and ruining the power supply and other electrical components.

As with most items which may be damaged which may be beyond the realm of expertise of most repair firms, it is recommended that detailed research be conducted with either the manufacturer or an authorized service provider for the item in question. Even a little bit of information can and does go a long way.

Appraisals – Pam Fischer

Topic of discussion was Persian Rugs and how to identify handmade versus manmade, Styles and Regions where rugs are made.

The Silk Road stretches from China to Egypt which is where most of the rugs are made.

There are several styles of carpets; the most common are Persian, Afghani and Pakistani.  Handmade Carpets are usually named after the place where it was crafted. Iran makes 75% of the handmade carpets.

Most common are Qum, Afshar and Bidjar and are made of five materials: Wool, Cotton, Silk, Lute and Animal hair. Wool is woven on the cotton and most commonly made on a loom.

The warp of a carpet refers to the thread alongside the woven fiber. The wet is the knotting that makes the rug itself.

The 3 types of rugs are the Nomadic, Village, and Workshop carpets.

The Nomadic:  The people travel from place to place and make their rugs with the materials of that region. All patterns are from memory and all the dyes are natural and organic. Flaws are often found and the colors depend on where they travel and can differ depending on where they are.

The Village: They are made by the people of that particular village in their homes. The designs are drawn out on paper first with lots of geometric designs. They can be made with or without fringe and are made of handspun wool. Their size ranges from small to medium and are more geometrical.

Workshop Carpets: These are made in workshops by many people along with a master rug weaver.  They are larger and sturdier and the production is much faster. All natural dyes are used and are much more uniform.

Silk Rugs have a translucent luster and a high tinsel strength. They are made with a silk fiber the diameter of a pencil. Artificial Silk rugs are made from mercerized cotton rayon.

To test for a rug made from real silk: rub it on the back of your hand, the rug will feel warm to the touch.

Burn Test: take a piece of the fringe and burn and it smells like hair---this is real silk. If it smells like paper it is not real. The most accurate is a chemical test using cooper, sulfate and water.

Handmade Rugs: fringe is an extension of the rug itself. They most always have imperfections.

Machine made:  fringe is sewn on, very, even and/or  sewn or folded over.  The edging is really even and the back has knots and weaves even or has a mesh backing.

Antique Rugs----anything over 100 years old

Semi Antique Rugs---anything 50-99 years old

Things to be taken into consideration to determine the value:

Condition, Craftsmanship, Design, Color, Harmony. Age is the most important.

Carpet signatures are usually found in the middle. Some are found at the top center. The signature would be in Arabic of the person who made it.

To determine the knots per square inch…use the quarter test. Lay a quarter down and count the knots in each direction. Each nub represents an individual knot. Multiply the vertical by the horizontal to come up with the knots per square inch.


Items used in cleaning large carpets: Rug Duster, Large Washer, Centrifuge Wringer, Drying Rack. Or brush and scrub lightly with soapy water.  You can also make a mixture of:  1 teaspoon of Vinegar, ½ teaspoon of ammonia, ¾ cup of water.  Mix and put in a foaming spray dispenser.

Rugs should be cleaned every 1-3 years, vacuumed weekly and put in the sun 2 times a year.  You should also use a good quality pad underneath.

To move a rug, the rug should be rolled with the front top side inward, wrap in acid free paper or thick brown paper. They should be stored in a clean dry area, secure out of reach of insects. Do not store on end. If possible roll around a support tube but not PVC.

International Forum – Chuck Russell

The panel included Steve Smetko (Sirva), Dan Manning (Manning Claim Service), Theresa Serrano (Graebel Companies, Inc.), Jim McCue (UNIRISC, Inc.) and Paul Baker (Baker and Company).  The panel discussed concerns regarding climatic damage and how they relate to international moves. It was advised that communication is a must when explaining international moves to customers.

Some van line policies do not cover climatic damages and that needs to be addressed because container moisture can cause mold and mildew but could be viewed as climatic and no coverage would be provided.  As with most situations, you cannot stress enough the importance of communication with all parties involved. Also, a discussion took place regarding the inventories. Many times, inventories are not complete which makes settling any claim difficult. The inventories should be a true representation of an item and provide more detail which would help in eliminating some of the gray area in claims.  As a claims prevention measure,

Dan Manning provided an example of a piano being wrapped correctly with padding and then plastic wrapped versus applying the plastic wrap first which caused major damage to the piano.

Another risk that is associated with international moves would be going thru customs.  It was discussed that South America is a high risk area for missing items and damages.  Unfortunately, the customs exams will handle the items roughly causing unnecessary damages.   There is no prevention for that and it’s a risk that is taken when shipping items internationally. Another unforeseen cause of damages would be the power conversion for electronics. Many times a step up convertor is required but often overlooked before an item is being plugged in.  Lastly, a discussion took place regarding cultural differences.  This included shoe removal, language barriers and examples of common courtesy were discussed such as, it is rude to turn down a drink if one is offered. Overall, we say a claim is a claim, however we need to consider the type of move and customer which will determine how the claim should be treated.

Working with Van Lines vs. Insurance Claims – Bill See

Hosted by Chris Drexler of Unirisc. Along with his panel : Nacona Clowes, All American Moving Group, Joan Smith, UNIRISC, Inc., Mitch Treider, Complete Furniture & Interiors, David Kummerow, Image Restoration Service, Inc.and Lisa Levine-Kummerow, Image Restoration Service, Inc.

The first topic of the segment was a discussion about the differences in "Work Orders". The most noticeable difference seems to be the order format, and specific requests from each industry.

The second topic discussed was the differences in the claim forms, hand written vs. typed forms. Most differences noted were information provided and interpretations of hand written claim forms. Shippers give more detail on a hand written form, which helps all parties involved.

The third topic was difference in coverages. Insurance companies typically have FRV, where carriers can have $.30/lb,  $.60/lb, $1.25/lb, $2.00/lb or FVR.

The next topic was waivers and coverage differences. Insurance companies sometimes include mold/mildew, Parts/Sets. Climatic damages, 3rd parties, electronics, appliances and property damage.

Another topic discussed was repair orders vs. inspection requests, and why they are requested. The discussion included time frames of the industries, insurance companies seldom requesting inspections, except in extenuating circumstances. Where carriers have inspection requests based on military requirements, money owed on moves, deductibles, etc. Why shippers are given options and choices, and the difficulties of repair firms, or Transit Claims Specialists, have proceeding with repairs after shippers have been cashed out. Sometimes the cash out amounts are not full repair estimates, and the shipper makes contact to sometimes proceed with repairs. What carriers can do to help repair firms complete repairs after inspections.

Requirements of background checks, and necessary criteria by each industry was another topic discussed. These demands are usually generated by national accounts and contracts, and are becoming requirements across the board.

Charges for travel, photos, delivery and other added services were discussed. There are no consistent policies from company to company. Each industry has different reasons for either including fees or separating the fees. Reasons included charge backs to agencies, in the moving industry when the charges are separated. Insurance companies typically request including fees in repair costs. It certainly varies. Justifiable travel fees are accepted when a repair firm is asked to provide service in an "outlying" area, not typically covered by a firm. This usually occurs when there are no repair firms in a close proximity, or a firm with specialized skills is needed for a particular repair or expertise.

Fakes and Reals – Dori Bledsoe

Once again Debbie Morales exhibited her collection of real and knock off figurines and purses. Every year she adds new items to her demonstrations and new trends in the knock off world. She demonstrated various ways to detect the tell-tale signs of a clever forger. Every table selected a purse from the exhibit and examined it as a group. We learned how to examine zippers, stitching, and logos for slight imperfections and differences in order to detect the fraudulent piece.

Some of the items are meant to ‘look like the real thing’ while many are sold as "real" to unsuspecting shoppers. This is a growing problem in the relocation business, especially in international markets. Repair venders need to be ever vigilant on high dollar items whether it is women’s purses and shoes or artwork and rugs. Any item that looks out place, usually is. Many items are bought in the market while traveling for a steal and they usually are. Don’t be afraid to pick something up and examine closely. Take good pictures. Be on the look-out.