How To

Here’s what you need to know about how dishonest moving companies dupe unsuspecting customers

August 25th, 2020

When you’re moving home, you’re putting all your valuables in the hands of others. You can never be too careful.

Yes, most movers are honest, hardworking people. But a small minority are out for themselves.

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Carriedawaymoving/Instagram Source: Carriedawaymoving/Instagram

Moving home is almost always a hectic experience. And it’s easy for a rogue mover to con their customers, unless you know what to look out for.

Here are many of the most common moving company scams and how you can stop them before they happen:

1. Surprise extra charges on the day

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CBC News/YouTube Source: CBC News/YouTube

When most people hire movers, they ask for the prices beforehand. Some movers will give clients a rate and assure them that that’s all they will charge. But then come things like “stair charges,” where they try and charge extra for having to walk up and down stairs. Another one is the “heavy item” charge, where say that moving an item that weighs more than 100 pounds comes with an extra charge. To avoid this, be detailed about the move with the movers when you’re first contacting them. If there are stairs they’ll have to climb, specify it. If they have to pick up heavy items, specify it.

2. More extra charges at the destination

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CBC News/YouTube Source: CBC News/YouTube

If the place you’re moving to has stairs, you bet that a rogue mover will add the “stair charge” all over again. Ensure that they won’t do this beforehand.

3. The moving day contract

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CBC News/YouTube Source: CBC News/YouTube

DO NOT BOOK MOVERS WITHOUT SIGNING A CONTRACT! If you don’t get one signed beforehand with clear instructions, they can present a surprise one on moving day. And it’ll almost definitely have the extra charges mentioned in the above two points on it. Then, on moving day, you won’t be able to find any other movers, so you’ll be forced to sign it! (Naturally, get a signed copy for your own records before the moving day.)

4. The moving day deposit

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CBC News/YouTube Source: CBC News/YouTube

So you’ve signed the last minute, extra fees contract. Now you can start moving, right? Wrong. The movers will want a huge deposit upfront. Again, to avoid this, ask about a deposit before moving day, and definitely get the deposit mentioned IN WRITING!

5. Ensure that they protect your stuff

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CBC News/YouTube Source: CBC News/YouTube

If you can put plastic around your mattress, for example, do it. If not, ensure that they’ll do this before they start hauling it into their truck.

6. Ensure that their moving truck has a ramp

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CBC News/YouTube Source: CBC News/YouTube

Loading furniture and other items onto a moving truck can be tricky without a ramp. If the truck has a ramp, then it’s more likely that the items will make it to their destination unscathed! (Also, ask for a copy of their insurance. This’ll help cover any potential damages.)

7. Holding goods for ransom without paying extra

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CBC News/YouTube Source: CBC News/YouTube

Once the movers have loaded your belongings onto their truck, they could then bring out a new contract with extra charges. If you refuse to pay the extra charges, they’ve already got your stuff. (Instead of holding your items hostage, they may threaten to unload them on the lawn of the place you’re moving out of.) Has the importance of getting a crystal clear contract sorted out before the move resonated yet?

8. Be on the lookout for unusually low prices

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CBC News/YouTube Source: CBC News/YouTube

If a moving company quote seems like it’s too little for the time and labor, then it’s probably a trick. On the day, they’ll surprise you with extra fees. To avoid this, calculate how much the move should be worth and get a couple of quotes!

By being cautious of the above, then you can ensure that your move will go well!

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Mountain Home Air Force Base Source: Mountain Home Air Force Base

And one final tip: check for reviews!

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Source: CBC News

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