Don’t be the victim of moving company fraud

Tens of millions of Americans pick up stakes and move elsewhere every year, whether it’s for a new job or just want to live somewhere else. It’s well known that moving is one of the most stressful life events because of all the money and emotion humans attach to a residence. In short, when you move, you’re vulnerable. It’s also a time when  unscrupulous people prey on people who are in a vulnarable position. To avoid this you have to be aware and educated.

First off, most movers are legitimate. They want to do a good job because they want good referrals. However there has been a dramatic rise in complaints against movers who have indulged in fraudulent practices.  So if you are in the market for a mover, learn about the company you are planning on hiring. Look them up 0nline, check out their reviews, look up their business license if it’s available online. Make sure you get the owner’s name when inquiring.

Here are a few other thing you will find useful to know:

  • Make sure you know exactly what you will be paying up front, and get it in writing. It’s been known for unscrupulous movers to demand extra “service charges” or “assembly fees”.  On your side, always make sure you tell you tell your mover if you need boxes or you need something to be disassembled etc. so there are no surprises for either of you.
  • Make sure your mover gives you a phone number of address where you can file complaints. It must also have a clear description of the complaint process.
  • Anyone is entitled to an arbitration process by law. They should be able to provide you information on that process.
  • Make sure that your provider informs you of your rights and responsibilities under Federal Law

While it would be great if everyone were on the up and up, it’s your responsibility to make sure you hire the right people.


What stuff should you allow movers to pack?

Moving is the third stressful thing after death in the family and divorce, so it’s no coincidence that a lot of people freak out over what to do when packing for their next move.

  1. Some people like to do everything themselves, by packing everything including the kitchen sink.
  2. Some people don’t want to have anything too do with it and have the movers pack EVERYTHING.
  3. The third is between the two, pack most yourself and let the movers do the rest.

Type 1’s are either control freaks or trying to save money.  These are laudable aims, but not always the smartest. First off you tend to take way too much stuff. Second the things you do not pack correctly cannot be claimed for damage by movers, even if the DID drop the box of dishes.

Type 2’s don’t have the time to be bothered and want someone else to do everything. That’s ok too, but some things cannot be transported like any accelerants or explosive things like gasoline cans, propane tanks, etc. Another problem is that there is some stuff that you really SHOULD handle yourself, like keepsakes, jewelry, family photos, important paperwork, and anything else that cannot be replaced and has real value to you.

Type 3’s are usually the most prudent, especially if they take the time and do the packing right.  You should first have the packers pack stuff that is not really important, like the kitchen. A kitchen can be effective packed by three guys working at one time faster than one person by 3 times becuase they work together. But you should pack your own fine china. Some kinds of electronics can be a problem, like big tv sets, and don’t forget how much of a pain it is to keep track of the cords. Finally bulky things that need to be disassembled before moving should be  done by packers, because, well, they are bulky and heave and can’t pack them anyway.

How to cut moving costs

It hard enough moving, but not doing the most you can do to save money is ever worse. By following a few simple tips, you will not only save money, but a lot of hassles as well.

As someone who is about to move, your top priority should be to not move as much stuff as possible. There are two main factors to consider: weight, and handling service issues.  (Since we do only moves in the Phoenix and Chandler AZ area, we won’t worry about weight. ) Handling deals taking like furniture apart, putting all your belongings in the truck, and taking it back out and reassembly. So in order to keep things under control, think about these things:

  • Don’t think of it as moving, think of it as streamlining. Keep an eye towards throwing out as much stuff as you can possibly tolerate. You wouldn’t believe how much you have collected over the years that you really don’t need. This means taking a hard line on saying to yourself: “I’ll use this one of these days” syndrome;
  • Consider the comparative price of mailing heavy things you don’t need right away–bulky things like books.
  • If you think you’ll be buying new furniture  or redecorating soon after you move into your new place, think about just trashing some of the furniture. Sofas take up lot of room, and the fewer bulky items the better.
  • Make sure you know where most of your belongings will go in your  new place, and that means getting a floor plan. If you can’t find a place for any of the stuff you have, just ditch it.
  • Above all, don’t ship your stuff with an eye that you will decide on what to do with it when you get there. It will result in a disaster.