Protect Your Move

Spot the Red Flags

Not all movers are reliable, and that is a sad fact. Some are scoundrels and they would not think twice about taking your money without delivering the service that you paid for. They don’t do on-site inspection, so without seeing setting foot in your home and seeing your belongings, they will give estimates. People usually fall for that scheme because they trust that getting quotes online or through phone calls is a safe way to go. Rogue movers will go to your house only on the day of the move. They will load your stuff into their trucks and then ask for payment prior to delivery and unloading. That is not how it’s supposed to go, but that is not all you can suffer from those rascals. They will ask you to pay more – more than what was first agreed upon. If you refuse to pay, then your belongings are going to be held hostage until you are willing to pay.

How do you prevent this from happening to you? By being able to identify the rogue service provider before they can touch your stuff.

You have to look out for the red flags, such as the following:

The moving company does not send someone to inspect the place and the items to be moved. They would rather just give estimates over the phone or online. They usually give estimates which are cheaper than what you would normally expect.

The mover demands a large deposit or cash payment prior to the move.

The moving company gives you incomplete or blank documents to sign.

There is no written contract estimate provided.

You are not given copies of booklets that would be useful for you, such as “Ready to Move” (from FMCSA) and “Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move”. Federal regulations require the movers to provide these brochures to their clients during the planning stages of any interstate relocation.

The mover’s website does not provide information for local physical address and for insurance or registration.

The moving company claims that their insurance covers all goods.

The person who answers the calls does not provide a specific company name, but rather answers with “Moving Company” or “Movers” as a greeting.

A non-existent warehouse or office, or if one exists, it is in bad condition.

The moving company promises to give estimates once the loading is done.

The truck which arrives on your moving day has no marking of the company’s name.

The moving company claims that you are transporting more items than first agreed upon and estimated. If this happens, the mover should provide you with a revised estimate with the additional services and/or items listed. Both parties should agree on the contents of the new estimate and you must be provided with a copy.