If you’re getting ready to move. BEWARE! Most – yes I said MOST – movers you encounter online will rip you off! That’s because MOST movers on the internet are NOT movers at all. They are simply people who pose as movers!
Because I am in a unique position, I get to hear the latest trends in rip-offs. My radio show (the longest running radio show in America) takes calls from people with consumer problems, questions and complaints. And I can tell you, moving problems are plentiful. In fact, I can almost assure you, if you use the internet as your sole source for finding a mover, you will most likely be cheated.
Here is a typical scenario happening everywhere: You find a mover on the internet. You call for an estimate. You get an estimate on the phone – or a “representative” pays you a visit. You sign a contract. Then you wait for your stuff on the other end. When the movers get there, they tell you that you’re going to owe way more than the original estimate. At times, they charge three-times the am0unt quoted. You get upset and threaten to call authorities. But there are no authorities who care. There is no one who really enforces any “moving laws”. Police don’t want to hear about it – they tell you it’s a civil matter. And if you call an attorney, they tell you it’ll cost more to sue than it’s worth. Meanwhile, your moving bill gets higher each day you delay delivery. Eventually you pay the inflated price. To make matters worse, the clowns who moved you probably damaged much of your stuff!
I HEAR THIS KIND OF STORY ALL THE TIME!
Here is the real problem: Most moving companies on the internet are not really moving companies at all! They are simply “lead generators” who gather as many customers as they can and sell the contracts to independent movers. So, you can’t rely on reviews or ads or people on the phone. Because the “lead-generators” are not the people who will move you. They are not the ones who will pick up your stuff; they are not the ones who will deliver it. In fact, most “lead-generators” don’t even know who will be doing the actual move. They simply sell it to whoever will buy it. There are no background checks, no quality control procedures or anything to protect you!
Once the contract is sold, the “lead-generator” washes their hands of you. You are at the mercy of whoever bought the deal. And in most cases, the people who bought your contract don’t even honor the deal. They know once they have your stuff, they can charge you more that the estimate because they can hold the load hostage until you pay!
TRUST ME! THIS HAPPENS ALL THE TIME – Unless you deal with reputable movers!
SO HOW DO YOU CHOOSE A MOVER?
Here are some general rules:
- Do not depend solely on the internet. If you find a moving company, make sure it’s a real company, with a building, real trucks and real references who used them for a move. Then, CHECK REFERENCES WITH PERSONAL PHONE CALLS!
- Find local moving agents of the major carriers like Allied, Graebel, Mayflower, North American and United. Make sure the local agents have stellar reputations. They can arrange the move to wherever you’re going.
- Only use agents who will take credit cards.
- NEVER GET A PHONE ESTIMATE, unless that estimate is verified on the day of the move! If they feel the original estimate was low, make them amend it and sign it – on the spot.
- Insist on written guaranteed contracts, or “not to exceed” contracts.
- Rent a scale! Yes, you can actual rent a large flat scale to weigh every item that goes onto their truck. So, if they claim you had more weight, you can dispute it! Popping stuff onto a scale before loading it only takes a few more minutes.
- ANY COMPANY THAT OPPOSES ANY OF THESE PROCEDURES SHOULD BE AVOIDED!
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