It’s an unfortunate truth: there are illegitimate or disreputable companies whose only reason to exist is to prey on consumers. One type of “rogue mover” poses as a moving company but actually uses moving scams to extort people out of money or belongings. Other individuals may offer actual moving services, but use predatory pricing while offering little value in return. Fortunately, some telltale signs can help you identify these groups.
If you can’t find any mention of a would-be moving company online, it raises a red flag. Perhaps you can find a website, but it offers little or no information and sketchy contact details. If you cannot clearly understand all of the services the moving company provides and confirm their legitimacy, proceed with extreme caution. The same goes for moving company representatives who don’t wear uniforms, or drive a truck with no logo or identification.
A legitimate moving company should be recognized by associations like the Better Business Bureau or the American Moving & Storage Association, and certified moving companies will have a number assigned by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Individuals perpetrating moving scams will most likely not have any of these credentials, or at least not all three.
One tactic of rogue movers is to offer quotes over the phone, without seeing your belongings. These quotes will often seem low or highly competitive with other moving companies. It’s not possible for moving companies to offer legitimate quotes without getting a sense of the size and number of your belongings, along with the presence of any difficult to transport items. This quoting tactic is often used to extort money from consumers; the rogue mover will claim at the last minute that additional fees are required.
This one is simple: never pay anyone for moving services you haven’t received.
Individuals and families who are moving are in a vulnerable position, and if they haven’t moved before, they may not know the ins and outs of the business enough to avoid moving scams. Making sure a mover has a recognizable presence and is certified by government agencies and consumer protection sites is a good first step to vet potential moving companies.
Feel free to visit our blog for more information on rogue movers, or contact us to find out about our own household goods moving services.