Once something terrible happens during your move, it’s easy to see a fraudulent moving company for what they really are. But, is there any way to prevent being scammed or taken advantage of in the first place?
What if we told you there were several easy ways to identify a moving scam?
Avoid the following warning signs, and you’ll find a great moving company and be moving stress-free in no time!
First and foremost, if you see an overwhelming amount of negative reviews about the company, stop there. This should be a no-brainer, but if the company has mostly negative reviews, it probably means they are not reputable and you should avoid them at all costs. Look at the company’s website, on the Better Business Bureau, and search online for other reviews about the company.
Unprofessional Phone Behavior
When you call a moving company, the person answering the phone should be professional and polite. Pay attention if he uses a common greeting, such as “Movers” or “Moving Company” and not saying the company name. If he doesn’t use the company name, that’s a red flag.
Another sign to look out for is if you cannot get in touch with anyone. If you are transferred to an answering machine each time you call them and the message on the machine is just as vague, this might be a rogue mover. Any reliable moving company would provide its name, phone number, and a professional greeting on their answering machine.
You might’ve received a great price quote on your move – but be careful. This price quote could be too good to be true. Be wary of any moving company that gives a particularly low estimate. There is nothing stopping them from raising the price later on.
Fake Moving Reviews and False Certifications
Some fraudulent moving companies are smarter than others – they know how important research is for some people. In order to give the illusion that they’re a reputable company, they make their own employees leave positive comments about the company. In order to truly assess whether or not a moving company’s reviews are the real deal, you should:
Large Deposit Demands
Most reputable moving companies will not demand cash or large deposits in advance. Be extremely cautious if a mover wants your money before they have delivered your items to your home. And, be wary if a moving company requests cash-only deposits.
However, it’s important to note that during the moving season, even some respectable movers may demand a deposit to reserve the moving date for your move. If you know you can trust this mover, don’t be alarmed.
Personal Possessions Held Hostage
This is the worst case scenario. The moving company will force you to pay to get your belongings back. Things could escalate if some of your items are expensive or valuable. In that case, the movers could disappear without a trace. There are specific steps you should take if you become a victim of a scam like this: