Moving scam, how to avoid it
There are some unscrupulous moving companies that are simply out to take as much money as possible from the customer. Cutting corners wherever they can, employing one of these operators can have serious financial implications.
Here is a list of 10 questions you can ask to protect yourself from doing business with the wrong people:
1. Are you dealing with a broker, or are you dealing with a mover? Using brokers can be convenient because they can help you to connect with someone who can cater to your exact requirements. Unfortunately, they cannot issue a fixed quote, because they will not be doing the actual work. All they can offer is an estimate. Therefore, sometimes they can raise a price of the estimate by more than 50%. If you encounter such moving scam, contact authorities immediately.
2. Make sure your belongings will be properly insured. Accidents happen, and it makes no sense to risk losing or damaging your material possessions. Ascertain whether the insurance will be adequate to cover the replacement cost of everything in case of a complete loss due to theft, destruction in an accident, or in case of fire. It is worth paying extra for total peace of mind. You need to consider arranging third-party insurance if you feel unhappy with the insurance options provided.
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3. When moving between states in the USA, moving companies need to be registered with the national Department of Transportation. If not, the vehicle may never be allowed to reach its destination, resulting in additional costs to the customer. In addition to that, non-compliance with any law will be used by an insurer to refuse payment in the event of the loss.
4. Does the quote cover everything you asked for, or will there be additional fees? Some movers ask extra for having to haul larger items, and having to deal with stairs at your destination or your point of departure. While the final price might still be within reason, you need to know what to expect. In some cases, unscrupulous companies have been known to offer low quotes to get the job, but then add hefty fees upon delivery to make their money.
5. Will your belongings be transported to their destination in the same vehicle, or will a transfer be required along the way? In the case of long-distance hauls, companies sometimes collaborate on a moving job to reduce the time the vehicle is tied up. Unfortunately for the customer, this means there is an additional element of risk during the transfer.
Additionally, the customer has no control over the conditions under which the belongings are transferred: It could be done in the rain, gusty winds, or even in an unclean environment. Moving scam can be costly.
6. What process do you have to follow in the event of something being broken or missing? Little accidents happen, and things do get lost or misplaced along the way. Where does that leave you? You have to keep in mind that the company cannot be held responsible if something you packed in a poor manner should break.
7. How big is the deposit required beforehand? If a large deposit is required an upfront, it means you have less leverage in case if any disputes or dissatisfaction upon delivery. In some cases, moving companies demand upfront payment in full, which passes all of the risks on to the customer. In cases such as these, it can be extremely difficult to resolve disputes if the mover fails to adhere to the contract stipulations.
8. Check your movers. Can they guarantee that they will collect and deliver on the agreed dates? While the delivery date might not be a problem, the collection date could be crucial if the next occupant needs to move in immediately.
If the mover is a day late, it can cause serious complications not only for yourself but also for the new occupant.
9. Ask about their methods for packing and handling items which require additional care, such as mirrors, glass top tables, musical instruments, larger fragile ornaments, etc.
10. Check if your belongings are transported along with the belongings of someone else? In the case of smaller loads, many moving companies combine loads on the same route to reduce their costs and their quotes.
Unfortunately, it adds an element of risk for items going missing, as well as an additional risk of damage to your belongings during loading and unloading of the additional cargo. Moving scam can be avoided.
Lastly, take care to note the attitude with which these answers are provided. If the attitude is dismissive, as if you have no reason for concern, there is a reason for concern.
On the other hand, if you perceive the person is uncomfortable in any way with any question, find someone else.
Therefore, professional moving companies respect the concerns of the customer and understand the real value of their belongings. Not just the monetary value, but also the personal value attached to items that are often irreplaceable.
At Top Notch Movers, we have your best interest at heart. Get a free quote!