Beware budget price movers!

It’s a pretty common scam, a company will undercut the competition by an attractive margin, and then attempt to coerce more money out of the customer before completing their services by holding goods hostage. But that isn’t the only reason you should watch out when hiring a moving company. In March this year, five Portland moving companies were cited for various offenses, including operating without a license, possession of illegal narcotics and driving under the influence. Portland isn’t the only location – these types of stings happen in countless cities every month.

So how do you find a reputable moving company?

It’s important to note that many scam movers operate online, and don’t have offices. It can be worth your time to do some fact checking.

Your first point of reference is the Better Business Bureau. You can also check the American Moving and Storage Association. These organizations will give moving companies ratings based on their performance, customer service, and business ethics.

Another great government source can be found In the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. They have a number of resources available to help you spot fraud, plan your move, and make complaints if there are any problems.

Next you want to look for “social proof” – testimonials, reviews, and comments from customers. Remember that bogus companies may solicit testimonials by paying for them, or even create fake accounts and leave good reviews themselves. It’s important to check for negative responses and complaints, as those can be more telling. Use customer reviews combined with official sources to start making your decisions.

Checking the details.

* Use the search function on the FMCSA to find a registered interstate mover.

* Alternatively check the Moving Insurance affiliate list. Even after we add affiliates, we consistently check their qualifications, licenses and professionalism to keep the list up to date.

* Get license numbers. Do this while you’re shopping around for estimates, so that you can verify the company’s details for yourself.

* Get / make copies of all documents that you sign. If the moving company resists this, that’s a big red flag.

* Check for other red flags such as unmarked vehicles and incomplete contracts.

Don’t be bullied.

Knowing your rights and responsibilities is an important part of the moving process. Less reputable companies may try and bully you right from the estimate stage.
Are you ready to go estimate hunting? Take our estimate crash course and make sure you know all the details.

Make a checklist. What do you want to see? What don’t you want to see? Write it down and keep it with you when you’re in contact with moving companies. Things can be tough to remember when you’re being pressured by rogue sales forces, a written list can empower you to say no. Check out our 6 step hiring process to help you generate a list.

Always get comprehensive moving insurance.

Check out our full service, all risk insurance services and make sure that your valuables are covered.

For more tips on how to hire the right moving company, check out the infographic below: