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How to Avoid Moving Scams

How to Avoid Moving Scams

Fraud can be found in any industry, including moving. The Better Business Bureau reports that 230 moving scams were reported last year, a record 91% higher than the previous year.

Getting the right mover can be challenging when you hire a mover only a few times in your life, so you become a perfect target for scammers. Approximately 13,000 complaints and negative reviews about movers are received by the Better Business Bureau each year.

Usually, people start their search for a mover online, where they are likely to find ads by dishonest movers, known as”rogue operators” in the moving industry. Usually, the bad actor offers a low-ball estimate over the phone or via email. Often, the website appears to be legitimate, with fake reviews from happy customers, a claim that they have been around for many years, and knowledgeable employees. Some moving scammers may use independent review sites to post fake positive reviews of their scams.

Moving scams commonly occur when moving companies:

  • Keep your possessions until you’ve paid a considerable sum of money
  • Change company names so that you are not associated with prior scams
  • Fees aren’t mentioned and are charged after service
  • Insurance premiums are charged by default
  • Loss of valuable items without explanation or refusal to investigate
  • After receiving a deposit, they are a no show
  • Provide an estimate without determining how big the move is

Initial phone calls from fraudulent moving companies seem friendly and helpful. But later, when problems arise, employees are unable to be reached. A dishonest moving company uses temporary, unskilled workers to load customer belongings after they receive a deposit of hundreds to thousands of dollars from the customer. When the goods are in the truck, the driver claims there is more stuff to move than originally estimated. More money is usually demanded, and it is generally paid.

Overcharging is part of the scam. To get the business, they quote a low-ball price estimate, but the actual cost will be much higher. They typically cannot offer in-person estimates, which can be a big red flag. Potential victims typically talk with these scammers over the phone to get information on the items they need moved and are then given a written estimate, which acts as a contract. Typically, these contracts are emailed and signed electronically, so many people don’t bother to print or read them. If a problem becomes apparent later, the links may no longer function.

A genuine mover usually conducts an in-person that includes charges for the equipment and services they provide, such as tape and blankets. Some Hamilton Movers use cameras and computer programs to perform a virtual estimate. Payment may be taken upfront as a deposit, followed by the final payment after the goods have been delivered and unloaded.

How can you avoid crooked movers?

Doing thorough research before hiring a mover is the best way to avoid a bad one. Scammers put a lot of effort into appearing reliable. You can detect shady movers by searching for their names and the word”scam” on the internet. When moving reviews describe movers demanding more money, it may be shady.


Morrison Moving is a five-staff moving company that has over 30 years of experience helping families move in the Hamilton and Niagara regions. We are fully insured and have the best overall customer service and support. Our moving crew has the skills to make your move stress-free. We recommend that you call us today for first-class customer service and support.


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