Cons, scams and schemes have been around for as long as humans have been bartering and trading. Hegestratos, a Greek merchant in 300 BC, is one of the first known con men in history. He once tried to defraud an insurance policy by sinking his boat which was supposed to have a load of corn that the policy was for and planned on selling the corn in a distant village. Unfortunately for him, he died whilst sinking his ship.
Its safe to say, conning people Is one of the oldest professions in the world.
With that said, we’re going to do our best to help you avoid those snake oil salesmen and get you on the right path to finding a reputable moving professional.
With the age of the internet in full swing, it’s easier than ever to search for someone to take care of your needs. Multiple companies make it possible to go through an entire process without ever speaking to a real person. While convenient, it also allows for shadow companies to operate and take your money without you being any the wiser.
Do yourself a favor and call any business who you plan on contracting with for their services. It’s not a definitive method, but it’s a great start. Most people are equipped with the ability to determine genuineness if they speak to someone.
While the internet can contribute to a scam’s ability to deceive people, it’s also one of the greatest defenses. Multiple websites are dedicated to customer reviews, and the higher end ones go an extra mile to confirm the reviewer is a real person and not a bot. Google, Yelp, Bing, and Angie’s List are just a few of the well-known outlets. Read reviews, both positive and negative and use that information in your decision making.
Contact the City, County or State
All legitimate businesses must register themselves with either the state, city, or county governments. It’s no secret that this usually only requires a one-page form and a small fee, so it’s not exactly foolproof, but it’s a good place to start.
Contact the Local Association
Many states have some type of association. In New York for instance, the New York State Movers and Warehousemen’s Association is a collective of such businesses within the state. Joining these organizations is much more scrutinous and they can’t be joined on a whim.
Better Business Bureau
Possibly the most rigorous accreditation a business can receive, the BBB has been an industry safeguard for decades. To be admitted to the BBB, a company must display a track record, be free of governmental fines, advertise honestly, address customer satisfaction concerns and so on. They also monitor their businesses, address complaints filed against those businesses and maintain standards in every industry that are geared towards a fair, equal marketplace. A simple phone call or internet search of your local BBB will let you know if a company you intend on using is accredited and show any complaints they have had filed against them.
By being diligent and taking the appropriate time to vet your potential movers, you are doing what is necessary to protect yourself and your family. We hope that this guide will help you traverse a broad marketplace with confidence and ultimately, find the perfect movers for your home.