A cube sheet is what the inventory for a move is recorded on. It has a list of all the items that will be moved or stored, with the cubic feet, or area, that each item takes up. This is important since there is a limited amount of space inside each truck and storage unit.
Items are usually listed by room, in no specific order. The cube sheet lists the item, the quantity, the cubic feet (usually per item), and the total cubic feet that those items occupy. It also lists the overall weight of a shipment, which is estimated using the calculated cubic feet of the inventory.
So if there are five dining chairs that are about seven cubic feet each, the cube sheet would read Dining Chair 5 X 5 cbf. = 25 cbf. The weight is usually estimated by multiplying the cubic feet by seven pounds for each cubic foot. So in the case of the five dining chairs, 25 cubic feet multiplied by seven pounds per cubic foot equals 175 pounds.
The cube sheet lets the moving company determine the number of men to assign to a job, as well as the number of trucks a move requires. If the cube sheet is not accurate, the job could have a shortage of manpower, or not enough trucks. If key items are left off of the cube sheet, like a piano or a safe, the moving crew will have to have the necessary equipment delivered to the job site by someone at the warehouse.
Needless to say, this will add time to the move if the moving crew has to wait for the equipment to arrive. The estimate for any move will only be as accurate as the cube sheet for that move, if there are items that are not listed, then the estimate will not have factored those items into the move. People often forget to mention items, or miscount the number of boxes, and then are surprised that the move takes longer than estimated.
Usually, the more items and boxes there are, the longer the move takes. The cube sheet is mainly for the estimate, but it is also for the movers to know if there are any special materials that they will need for the move. If there are more pictures, mirrors, or pieces of glass that need to be wrapped up, the movers will need to bring extra picture boxes, this is when an accurate cube sheet becomes a critical part of the move.
It contains valuable information that is referred to constantly throughout the move. If the house, apartment, or office needs to be packed up, this information should be on the cube sheet. The dispatcher will see that information when preparing the truck and put the proper materials in the truck for that specific move.