What to Consider Before Choosing a Moving Company02/05/2018When looking into hiring a moving company, it will be beneficial to do your homework in order to make sure you get a good value, the service level you expect, protect your stuff, and avoid fraud when moving your household goods in Detroit and throughout southeast Michigan. As Detroit’s oldest and top rated moving company, Palmer Moving Services understands what it takes to provide a great customer experience. There are countless stories of customers hiring a moving company with a seemingly great deal, but after hidden fees and other undisclosed costs, they end up paying way more than they were quoted. For example, many customers will often go with the company that offers the lowest price, sometimes significantly lower than other reputable companies in the local marketplace. A common scam works like this: The moving company quotes a really low rate to rope you in and requires you to pay up to 50% of the move up front. The moving company then moves your household goods only a few miles from your home to an undisclosed storage location.The moving company then informs you that it is going to cost you double or even triple the money to get your belongings to your final destination due to some unforeseen events.The movers hold your belongings hostage until you pay the money they are demanding.Because they are scammers not running a legitimate moving business, they often will cut and run if you try to get the authorities involved, leaving you without your stuff. This is why it is very important to look into the companies you are hiring. Palmer Moving Services has been in business for over 100 years because we treat our clients like family. We don’t want to see anyone fall victim to moving fraud, whether you are moving with us or not. We recommend you follow these steps to help look more into any moving company you are considering hiring for you’re next move. Visit the Location Sometimes the best thing you can do to see if the moving company seems trustworthy is to see it first hand. Visit their location and talk with the office employees and check out things like the equipment and work environment. This is obviously something harder to do if the company isn’t local, however, it is an effective way to ensure trust within a company. Check Reviews As always, it is important to see what previous customers are saying about the company you are looking into. It is always important to look at multiple reviews as some may be biased or an outlier. If most of the reviews are negative, consider choosing a different moving company. Get an In-Home Estimate It is important to get estimates from companies when considering whether or not to hire them. With Palmer Moving Services, we provide a free in-home estimate when you fill out our online quote form. If you have any questions, call us for more information about getting a free in-home estimate. Verify the Movers Credentials When moving across the country, movers are obligated to have a number issued by the Department of Transportation. This number acts as a license allowing a mover company to transport people and items in their commercial vehicles. Typically, moving companies will display this DOT number on their websites or in their advertising to show their credibility. If you cannot find it, consider looking into a different company or calling the company to ask first hand. Movers are also required to get a carrier number from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. Many states, including Michigan, require companies to have DOT numbers when moving locally, as well. Checking to see if companies have both a DOT number and a motor carrier number is a great way to check their legitimacy as a company. Watch Out for Upfront Payments If a company is asking for a deposit of over 20% of the total cost up front, be careful. Companies that are asking for a large deposit could be a red flag for unreliable service and possible fraud. When paying upfront, use a credit card, therefore if anything goes wrong you can potentially protest the charge with your credit card company. Although it is not uncommon for companies to charge a small deposit upfront, many do not charge you until after your items are delivered. If you are in a situation where you are suspicious of a scam and the “movers” are asking for more money, don’t hesitate to get the police involved. If you do end up getting scammed, file complaints to agencies that could help you and warn others about what happened. For more information on moving fraud or to report fraudulent activities, please visit the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s moving fraud website at: https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/protect-your-move/how-to/moving-fraud.