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How to Avoid Moving Scams

Have you heard of the term "moving scam expert"? In general, any time we hear the term expert, we think someone is knowledgeable about their work, and these persons are in their dishonest work. Hopefully, you did not have any closer experience with this kind, but unfortunately, this can happen to everyone at some moment. So, the best way will be to protect yourself and your belongings on time. Thus, grab a few moments to familiarize yourself more with moving scams and which way to avoid them.

Do your research before selecting a moving company

Researching Moving Companies in Order to Avoid Moving Scams

Nowadays, at the time of the internet era, you may find needed information about moving companies, but are they trustworthy enough? The best option will be to ask your family, friends, or relatives if they know some moving company and make a choice based on their experience. Many fraudulent companies can provide quite simple false referrals written by their employees or engage writers to leave comments and references on their website. Luckily there are some trusted websites where you may check moving companies like Better Business Bureau (BBB) or The American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA), where you can find licensed moving companies.

Do not make any deals without a contract

The most effective way to protect your belongings and yourself will be an agreement between you and the moving company. There are types of estimates: binding and non-binding.

  • • Non-binding estimates are common types of moving these days, especially on long-distance, but this is not a safe option at all. The valuation of your property is based on the size and weight, together with the assistance of a moving company. The backside of this option is not enjoyable when you find yourself in the middle of a scam. When discovering the higher cost of your shipment and that you cannot take belongings back before pay an entirely new price, this may be one of the worst situations during your relocation.
  • • Binding estimates are a written agreement between your moving company and you- made in advance. This agreement is a guarantee about the total cost of your move based on quantity, service, and conditions. The binding estimate must specify what is shipped and all provided services during a move. With binding estimates moving companies cannot charge you more instead of the agreement price, but they can hold your property if you fail to pay for it.

Choosing a company because of the low price

The first big mistake that you can make is choosing a company based on its low estimate. Some movers will give an unrealistic estimate, which will be too good to refuse but you should think twice before accepting it. Collaboration with this kind of people may be very tricky. After giving them a deposit, they may never show up again, or in another scenario, they will come to the agreed date and place to pack your belongings in a truck and vanish with them.

Pay with cash or credit card?

According to some research, paying with a credit card is a better option. That’s because in case of any fraud the payment can be canceled or refunded to you. Using cash for payment is not a good option because there is no possibility to prove the payment in case of irregularity.

Before your move, make an inventory list with your belongings

The purpose of having an inventory list is to confirm your possessions for insurance claims in case of any fraud, damage, or loss. For that reason, every inventory list should have details like:

  • • item name (and description of the item too)
  • • the item number (SKU number or serial number)
  • • item cost (approximate value of item or receipt)
  • • quantity (how many pieces you have in total of that item)
  • • photos of your high-value items

If you have some high-value items, do not pack them with other stuff and label them on the box. Instead, keep them near you or store them in a safety deposit box. Otherwise, there is a risk of getting stolen. If you have some heavy antique furniture, artwork, or expensive electronic devices in your possession, always take insurance for them before you begin with the moving process.

How to recognize fraudulent movers?

The difference between legitimate moving companies and fraudulent companies is that legitimate moving companies are always professional in their work. For example, when calling a professional moving company, they will be very polite and attempting to leave a good impression on you. On the contrary, when you hear they are using generic greetings without mentioning the company name in the conversation, you should consider hiring another company.

Holding your goods

The number one scam on the dishonest mover's list is to keep your possessions until you pay them extra money. Worried to get your belongings back, you can agree to their terms and pay off an even higher price. To avoid such a disturbing situation, protect yourself and your family from fraudulent movers, you need to react very fast, contact the police, and call the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) hotline and inform them about fraud. Moreover, the US Department of Transportation (DOT) has initiated a partnership with other Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies and licensed moving companies to fight against fraudulent movers.

Moving scams are hard to avoid because there is a lot of them. The only way to protect you is to be aware of potential fraud and informed about their dishonest work. Like we said before, the golden rule is good research about the moving companies before you hire them. If you are looking for reliable professionals, our moving company Movit Movit is here to help you with exceptional customer service and professional staff.

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