Moving Season! - Tips for avoiding scams and hiring right!
1. Do your research.
Get more than one written, in home estimates so you can make an
informed decision. Show the mover everything that needs to be moved, from the
attic to the basement and including any sheds, garages and storage areas. Avoid
any unusually high or low estimates. If someone says they can give you an
estimate over the phone or by email, it's possible they're trying to scam you.
2. Know your rights.
Reputable interstate movers must, by law, provide you with the
federal publications that explain the moving process, as well as the cost of
value insurance and your rights and responsibilities during and after the
process. If a mover asks for a large down payment or full payment in advance,
that may be a warning sign. And if a company says it won't return your items to
you without more money than you agreed to pay, contact the Better Business
Bureau or local law enforcement for help.
3. Get all agreements in writing.
Read everything carefully and make sure you have it all in
writing, along with copies of everything you sign especially the most important
document -- the bill of lading, which is the receipt for your goods and the
contract for their transportation. Never sign any blank forms!
4. Take your valuables with you.
Cash, coins, jewelry, photographs and important papers should be
taken with you or shipped separately. Use a shipping service with tracking
numbers, such as FedEx or UPS.
5. Ask Questions.
Don't be afraid to ask questions about anything you don't
understand. If the moving company can't or won't answer your questions, you
might want to look for another mover.