Common Moving Scams
Worried about getting ripped off while moving?
Moving is ripe with scams. This is because it’s such a new, foreign concept to most. People don’t move every week, and when they do move, they often don’t understand the intricacies of the industry. They are primed for being taken advantage of.
Unfortunately, there are many common moving scams. Most of them relate to finding a new apartment and moving help. In this article, we will outline the basics of common moving scams. Click on the link to learn more about a particular scam.
The Most C0mmon Moving Scams:
Stolen Deposit – This is a common apartment scam. A person portrays himself or herself as a landlord, asks for a deposit to “hold” the place, then takes it and never calls back.
Identity Theft – Another common apartment scam. Fake landlords, or even real ones, take your personal information, most notably your social security number, and either sell it or try to use it for their own benefit.
Mortgage Fraud – There are so many different types of mortgage fraud, it’s impossible to cover them all. However, usually a person or entity offers a home buyer a loan that is next to impossible to pay back. After making some payments, often including a sizable down payment, the buyer will inevitably fail, and the lender takes title to the property, leaving the buyer on the street.
Hidden Charges – Shady moving companies might stay mum about additional fees, like packing fees, stairs fees, and even fees for parking on skinny streets. These fees can tack on hundreds, if not thousands of dollars onto a total bill, and you won’t learn about them until the very end. Worse, the moving company can hold onto your stuff until you pay it…
Baiting Estimates – Some moving companies will offer an estimate without really knowing anything about the job you need done. In most cases, these estimates are designed to get you in so they can hit you with hidden charges.
Blank Contracts – Never sign a blank contract. Ideally, your moving contract will address every potential cost — stairs, gas, mileage, weight, time, lunch breaks, skinny hallways, parking, packing and floors.
Stolen Goods – Legitimate moving companies might still have a bad seed in their crews who is looking for a new iPod. Illegitimate companies might be looking to steal everything you own.
Uninsured or Poor Insurance – Moving companies are required to have insurance. Make sure your company does, but also make sure you know what it is. The basic amount is roughly $0.60 per pound, making your LCD TV about as valuable as a sandwich. If you want good insurance, make sure you get it, and make sure you understand what its protections are. READ THE CONTRACT.
Unlicensed Movers – Moving companies need to be licensed. Never hire one that isn’t. It’s a sign that they aren’t playing by the rules.
Indebted Movers – Shady businesses don’t change their ways after getting busted; they change their names. There are many moving companies out there who have screwed up many moves. If they screw up yours, good luck getting repaid.
How to Avoid Moving Scams
It’s really quite simple. First, make sure you hire a reputable moving company. Click the link to learn how.
Second, make sure you have a solid moving contract. Learn about how to make a good moving contract.
CHECK OUT OUR SAMPLE MOVING CONTRACTS