What is a “rogue” or “bandit” mover, you ask? These are companies that you should stay away from, and look the other way. “Red Flag”, you do not want to hire these companies. They are no action movers that promise people things that they have no intention fulfilling. Some of these companies hold your items hostage and force people to pay more than what was originally quoted, and may not be licensed either. They will give you a quote without getting a list of items or doing an onsite survey. Do your homework, these tips will help you spot a rogue mover, and to hire a reputable company.
With interstate moves, when dealing with movers, they should provide you with a Rights and Regulation Guide for mover (booklet that movers are required to provide the customer for preparing them for their upcoming moves). If they do not, make sure to ask for one, and if they tell you they cannot, you should do your research to make sure they are licensed to perform interstate moves or if they have any records.
LARGE DEPOSITS OR 1/2 THE MONEY UP FRONT. If a company is requiring a large amount of money up front or ½ up front be careful, they may be up to something.
ONSITE ESTIMATE: The Company does not give you a written or onsite estimate. By law if the company is within the same state less than 50 miles away, they are required to provide the customer with an in-home estimate in most states.
WRITTEN ESTIMATE: It is very important that the company gives you a written estimate, if they will not provide you with a written estimate, you may want to check some new mover lists, and find a different company, however some states like Ohio don’t require a written estimate if the move is under $500, or booked within 5 days of the move.
BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU RECORD: This is a good tool to see how many complaints your mover has had in the last 36 months, dont just rely on the letter or rating they have, make sure you check the # of complaints also, you will get a good feel of who you are dealing with.
RATES TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE: If the price seems overly cheap, or on a local move, there stating they are power movers and can get your move done in less time than seems possible, do more research, be careful, because these type of companies are use to taking advantage of the customer.
PHYSICAL ADDRESS: Find out where the company’s home base is, make sure they have a physical address that is legit, phone #’s are working, etc, that way on the day of the move you are able to reach someone whether it is the office or owner, etc. If an office doesn’t exist, this is another warning sign, to have you choose another company.
CASH ONLY: If a company only accepts cash, this should make you wary, there is no paper trail to be left. Most companies will accept certified funds, major credit cards, etc.
BILL OF LADING: When the company is doing your move, they should have you sign the Bill of Lading and go through insurance with you, if they are not giving you a copy of the Bill of Lading, this is another warning sign, because especially for interstate shipments, your contract # is on here, and this is how many companies have you track your shipment.
LICENSE # ON TRUCK/UNMARKED TRUCK: If a truck is unmarked or no license #, you may want to do a little more investigation before having your items loaded onto their vehicle.
GET REFERRALS: Do your homework, there are a lot of ROGUE movers out there, but with the proper research, there are a lot of GOOD MOVING companies out there also.