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MOVING SCAM DIAGRAM

January 24, 2012

Diagram on how to scam customers

Well it is getting close to moving season again and time to start planning your move.  I titled this post so that you, the customer can understand the reason for delays.  Is the delay honest?  No.  Is the delay manufactured?  You bet.  Delayed pickup of your household good is well thought out plan on how to get more money from you and also create a sense of anxiety to make you deal with the company.

This is evidenced by recent indictments in Colorado on some of the same companies out there.  I have inserted some of the excerpts from the indictment
 

 

As you can see from this it is a well-planned and orchestrated event that is created.  This either places you in a time crunch or you are not there to look over the contracts when they finally do arrive. 

MOVING SCAM INDICTMENT

Copied from Indictment

 It is called being under duress.  You have no choice but to negotiate with them.

Moving Scam Indictment Colorado

Copy from Indictment

Again, this is a well thought out plan to facilitate their criminal enterprise.  When the mover does not show up you are left with power turned off, people planning on moving into your residence, having to pay more for another month rent or negotiate for the new owner to allow you to stay.  It also can delay your travel for a new job, or taking possession at the next residence on time.
To top it all of you will end up paying more for the load and further increasing your stress.  It can also reduce the amount of money you have for deposits on the destination end.

Moving Scam Indictment

Copy from Indictment

For more information on how to protect yourselves you can go to http://www.protectyourmove.gov

Also never pay a mover a deposit.

Require an in home visit for an honest estimate.

Cheapest Price is Not Always Your Best!

April 13, 2011

I was recently going through some of the recent scam reports that have been coming in lately.  People are using the internet a lot more to get moving quotes so they can pay less for their move.

What is funny and sad is that it is as far as they go.  Let’s get the cheapest price.

They do not use the same tool to research the company they are getting the quotes from.  When all you do is rely on the internet for price and not do your homework in finding out about the company you are setting yourself up for a failed or troubled move.

Would you give all of your personal information, social security number, bank account number, family heirlooms, and family photos to a complete stranger for safe keeping?  Probably not.

When you are going with a moving broker and many of the moving quote sites out there you never really know what you are going to get.  Most of them will not do an in home estimate as recommended by all of the industry trade groups and governments.  Most of them will want money up-front.  Most of them you have no idea who will be at your house come moving day.  Is this what you want?

Here are some excerpts of some recent scam reports.  Let me know if this is what you expected.

Moving direct van lines aka Red Gold Logistics Posted 4/12/11.. Charged by weight, also said that overweight by over 500 lbs., was actually underweight. Josh Wiley said items would arrivein 4-7 days, when Russian guy showed up, he then acted like he spoke little English and had a contract that said up to 45 days, but he said that they had items to drop in Georgia, then would go to Florida. I started making calls in 3 days, no one returned calls. Evan Gold stated that furniture would was in Illinois, next day in Georgia, then in Florida, finally it was in Indianapolis. Asked to have the furniture delivered back home, I could not wait in Florida any longer at vacation home, in 2 weeks, it was further from Florida. Terrible experience, lots of lies, no service at all.

moving direct van lines Posted 3/29/11…worse company ever!!! First, they underestimated me for about$2500.00 the day of the pickup they sent the rudest and nastiest persons to my house who were not careful at all with my belongings. Then, after we agreed that i would notify when i was going to be ready for delivery one of their employees decided to send my belongings to florida anyway. the agreement was that my stuff would be kept in a month free storage until i gave them an adress. finnally, their customer sevice is horrible i spoke with everybody in this company and none were helpful at all they all ended up not answering my phone calls also i ended up paying another company a $600 delivery charge so i could receive my belongings.

American Van Lines – Furniture Movers Posted 4/12/11…What a mess. This company has the poorest customer service I have ever experienced. They lie and do not give a dam about the customer. They will not escalate any problem to anyone in authority and will not give a specific answer to any question! Read the following to learn what kind of service they provide. We were quoted 4-10 days delivery after pickup. After 8 days and no calls except about final payment, I called to find out when our shipment would arrive. THEY DID NOT KNOW!! Finally got a guarantee that it the delivery would be made in three or four days. I had to call again to see what day and time the truck would arrive. Was told that truck was going to be here in two days (Friday) and they would call with the time. I had to call again (Thursday)because had not received a call from American Van and found out less than 24 hours to the scheduled delivery that they would not deliver until Monday. Started calling all the companies involved (found out that there are at least three separate companies handling my move) and finally got ahold of the driver. He said he would deliver on Monday. Called the driver on Sunday to get a time for the delivery on Monday and he said he would be arriving between noon and 3pm on Monday. At 12:30pm on Monday I again called the driver and asked him how close he was and he said that the company (American Van Lines) was supposed to call me and tell me it would be Tuesday. American Van Lines picked up my furniture on March 23 and today is April 12. Still no furniture!!! Supposedly they are on their way right now – we will see if they lied again. DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH THIS COMPANY!!

Now looking at just a few of these complaints I did some research on them just to see what comes up for complaints.

One from a customer who was scammed and wished she did the research prior to selecting the mover.

“The following is a complaint against Moving Direct LLC of Long Branch, NJ and its affiliate, Trans-American Van Lines.”

“After the move we investigated Trans-American Van Lines and found complaints against them on Ripoff Report.. Further investigation reveals that Moving Direct was not immune from complaints to the NJ Better Business Bureau and that it is not a mover but uses third parties. It appears that ther sales agent (Socher) operates out of an apartment In Hallandale, Fl.”

 This person could have saved themselves a lot of money and also a lot of stress and anguish had they done the research up front.  I feel very sorry for her and her husband, both seniors and if it were not for them packing the medicine, she would have let the stuff go.  She was missing a lot anyway

This is a typical scam that happens all of the time and law enforcement will not do anything to stop them.

When you look into them  using their DOT number you find that they have 3 trucks.
The statement on their webpage says the following:

“We have a large fleet of tractor trailers throughout the country at all times.”

The FMCSA shows no tractors registered to them and no trailers  But it does show three trucks.  Proper research on the company at http://www.protectyourmove.gov will show you everything for an interstate mover.  How long they have been in service, ratings and also the number of federal complaints filed against them.

Even the federal government does not have the manpower to handle the complains against moving scams that go on daily,

Another area of the country where a lot of complaints come from are companies operating out of Florida.  Recently legislation is pending to even relax the laws more in that state to attract more business.

Some companies seem to generate a lot of complaints.  So much, that some of the complaint websites have been sued to remove bad reviews from their site. Here are some complaints for you to look at:
http://www.complaintsboard.com/bycompany/american-van-lines-a72947.html
http://www.complaintsboard.com/bycompany/nationwide-relocation-services-a3432.html
http://www.complaintsboard.com/bycompany/world-moving-services-a60308.html

These are just a few of many companies out there.  Do not fall for the selling point of “Do you realize that we do thousands of moves a year” So do most of the big movers.  Matter of fact hundreds of thousands with many more trucks and less than 1/1 of 1% file a complaint against them.  So beware of the sales pitch and beware of the promises.  It is tough to take them to court, and will only cost you more money in the long run.

PLEASE DO YOUR RESEARCH BEFORE YOUR MOVE.  STAY AWAY FROM MOVE BROKERS AND SITE THAT PROMISE YOU QUOTES FROM REPUTABLE COMPANIES.  THEY DON’T” ALL CHECK THEM OUT, THEY JUST SELL YOUR INFORMATION TO THEIR NETWORK OF MOVERS AND WHO PAY FOR THE LEADS.

Remember cheapest will not be the best, try to go with a company that offers you the best value.  Price alone is not a deciding factor when all of your worldly belongings are in one truck.

AND NEVER PAY A MOVER UP FRONT.  CLEAR SIGN THAT YOU ARE IN FOR THE RIDE OF YOUR LIFE!

FLORIDA: Bronson Announces Legal Action Against Unregistered Moving Companies

April 8, 2010

This is an article from the State of Florida:  http://www.doacs.state.fl.us/press/2010/04022010.html

TALLAHASSEE – Florida Agriculture and Consumer Services Commissioner Charles H. Bronson announced today that he has taken legal action against numerous unregistered moving companies following a statewide sweep that concluded late Thursday night.

Florida law requires intrastate moving companies and moving brokers to be registered with the department prior to conducting business. The registration requirements include proof of liability insurance for cargo hauled as well as the vehicle being used. Failure to register is a misdemeanor violation, punishable by up to one year in jail and up to a thousand dollar fine.

Bronson’s Division of Consumer Services had identified several businesses operating throughout the state that were not properly registered. The businesses were identified based upon complaints from citizens and the industry.

Bronson’s Division of Consumer Services and his Office of Agricultural Law Enforcement set up multiple operations where officers portrayed citizens who needed to move. After the deal was completed, the movers were criminally charged with operating an unregistered moving company.

The companies involved were:

  • 54 year old Randy Stokes, the owner of Good Moves Moving Company in Ft. Walton Beach, Florida. Mr. Stokes was previously issued a written notification by the Division of Consumer Services telling him that the company must be registered.
  • 27 year old Denzel Lockley, the owner of Red Truck Moving in Tallahassee
  • 33 year old Modestus Germain Fevrier, the owner of Express Moving Solutions out of Jacksonville.
  • 31 year old Azad Basar Sahbudak, owner of Atlantis Moving & Storage in Jacksonville Beach. The department is pursuing other legal action against this moving company because they were notified on two previous occasions that they needed to register with the Department. They were also previously fines $1000.00 and $5000.00 which they have failed to pay.
  • 41 year old Derrick Maurice Wilhite, who worked with Sahbudak was arrested by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office on a local warrant charging him with felony criminal mischief. He was taken to the Duval County Pre-Trial Detention Facility in lieu of a total bond of $5,003.00.
  • 28 year old Jordan Seth Speisman, owner of UF Mover Guys in Gainesville.
  • 33 year old Fredrick Williams Pohl, owner of GatorSaver Movers also in Gainesville.
  • 55 year old Geary S Adams, co owner of Furniture World Moving Service in Okeechobee.
  • 33 year old David Dawson, owner of Urban Movers in Sarasota
  • 38 year old Kevin B. Pierre, owner of Pierre Byers Moving in Pembroke Pines.

With the exception of Sahbudak all of the businesses were issued an administrative complaint which may result in fines not to exceed $5,000.

Bronson says he appreciates the cooperation and help from all of the sheriff’s offices and police departments that assisted in the sweep.

Bronson says he will continue to vigorously enforce the state’s household moving services laws in order to protect consumers from unregistered and fly-by-night moving companies. By requiring moving companies to register, the Department ensures the company is operating with the proper liability and valuation insurance so that any property lost or damage during a move is covered.

“Consumers whose goods are damaged by moving companies without insurance can end up paying several thousand dollars to replace destroyed household items, or suffer the loss of coveted family heirlooms” Bronson said.

Bronson urges consumers to call 1-800 HELPFLA to make sure the mover is properly licensed and insured before they sign a contract.

3 Arrested in Alleged Moving Scam

April 8, 2010

Yes, moving time is coming upon everyone soon.  Please do your homework prior to moving.  Not taking the time out in advance could cause you a lot of stress, and cost you a lot of money.  I have been moved 10 times by moving companies and 3 by myself.  Please go the link and see if this could happen to you.  Do you also have the ability to say no like this lady did.

http://www.ksl.com/index.php?nid=148&sid=10218299

Military DITY Moves are now Personal Procured Moves (PPM)

March 27, 2010

The Personally Procured Move Program is designed to provide you an alternative to move your household goods (HHG). You may move your HHG yourself using rental equipment / POV or by hiring a commercial mover.  Under this program you can receive reimbursement up to 100% of the Government Constructive Cost (GCC) or an incentive payment of 95% of the GCC. An advance operating allowance can be authorized to defray out of pocket moving expense (rental equipment, HHG mover charges, packing material, etc.).

The Government Constructed Cost (GCC) is defined as the amount it would have cost the government to move your personal property during a government procured move up to but not exceeding your authorized weight allowance. Your GCC during initial counseling will be based on an estimated weight of your household goods, so be careful not to over-estimate the weight you are moving. Over-estimating may result in a lower reimbursement or incentive payment. To help you estimate your HHG weight as accurately as possible, you can contact me. Individual situations may vary widely so prior to making a personally procured move, it is recommended that you be counseled and get approval by a personal property office. Failure to get approval from the personal property office MAY result in non-payment of your reimbursement claim or incentive payment.

Contact your local office to help you determine the most cost-effective method of moving your household goods. If you have any questions regarding the advisability of doing a personally procured move, you can ask for an estimate from myself or another company.   Before your counseling appointment, estimate your HHG total weight.  Estimates also may result in the member having to pay back money because they estimated more weight than actually shipped.

Above all else go with a reputable company.  There are many ways to check them out.  Please feel free to contact me for more information at tstoll@vistamoving.com

NOTE: Personally procured moves to overseas areas are not recommended.  Participation in the Personally Procured Move Program is voluntary. You may choose a Personally Procured Move, a Government Move, or a combination of the two methods, subject to entitlement limitations.

 

For more information you can contact us at http://www.yumamoving.com

Red Flags for Spotting Rogue Movers

March 16, 2010

Rogue movers typically work like this: Without ever visiting your home or seeing the goods you want moved, they give a low-ball estimate over the phone or Internet. Once your goods are on their truck, they demand more money before they’ll deliver or unload them. They hold your goods hostage and force you to pay more—sometimes much more than you thought you had agreed to—if you want your possessions back.

Your best defense is to recognize a rogue mover before they have your goods. Here are the “red flags” to look out for:

  • The mover doesn’t offer or agree to an on-site inspection of your household goods and gives an estimate over the phone or Internet—sight-unseen. These estimates often sound too good-to-be-true. They usually are.
  • The moving company demands cash or a large deposit before the move.
  • The mover doesn’t provide you with a copy of “Your Rights and Responsibilities When You Move,” a booklet movers are required by Federal regulations to supply to their customers in the planning stages of interstate moves.
  • The company’s Web site has no local address and no information about licensing or insurance.
  • The mover claims all goods are covered by their insurance.
  • When you call the mover, the telephone is answered with a generic “Movers” or “Moving company,” rather than the company’s name.
  • Offices and warehouse are in poor condition or nonexistent.
  • On moving day, a rental truck arrives rather than a company-owned and marked fleet truck.
  • A reputable mover will not ask for any money up front.  Always pay with a traceable document at the end of the move
  • You may be asked for a credit card 24 hours in advance of the move to pre-authorize the payment come moving day.
  • Always use a reputable mover
  • You can find all of the Consumer Protection Regulations at http://www.yumamoving.com