I had a verbal job offer through an outside IT recruiter after having an initial, very short phone interview with a company located out of state. I am very interested in the job because it is with a fantastic company but I was told to accept the terms of the verbal job offer quite fast. The company wants me to start next week, according to the recruiter. I said I was interested but wanted everything in writing. He sent me an email that contained the interest the company had in "seeing me" not hiring me, the date they want to "see me", and the salary/travel expenses (not moving expenses). I am a bit confused as to what this means. Is the company asking for an interview but the recruiter is taking liberties by offering me a job?
The recruiter is telling me to move there and be ready to work on Monday. To clarify: I will not have to move out of my house, but I will have to take the things I will need to the new city % find an apartment etc... Basically, he's asking me to move before I have even had a second interview and without a formal offer letter stating I have been hired by the company. I told him I accept the offer as outlined but that I will need the contract for the job before I leave. If he does not send me the contract, I will go for the face-to-face interview and plan to return home afterward.
My questions are:
Is this normal practice for an IT related (contractor) job offer?
What exactly should I expect in the job contract?
Has anyone experienced something like this before and how have they dealt with it?