Hiring moving professionals is always a good idea as you know that they will make your move easier and more efficient. However, this is only true when you hire the right moving company. What does that mean? Well, unfortunately, there are some fraudulent companies trying to scam people and get their money. That’s why you need to hire reliable Southern California movers and avoid any uncomfortable situations. One of the things that can help you spot a fraudulent company is getting moving estimates. Namely, some movers will give you lowball moving estimates in hope of persuading you to hire them. So, in order to help you avoid making that mistake, we’ll tell you how you can recognize these lowball quotes and hire a legit company instead. Let’s dig in, shall we?
What are lowball moving estimates?
First things first, you need to know what it means to get lowball estimates from movers. There are certain companies that are extremely unethical and that want to scam you out of your money. These movers will offer you their services at prices that are so low that it seems too good to be true. Well, it is too good to be true.
There are two scenarios you can expect if you accept this offer and hire fraudulent movers. Scenario number one: the movers will add extra charges after the move. They will charge you for things like unexpected complications during the move, alleged special services, and so on. And because you’ve already signed the contract, you’ll have no choice but to pay them. The second scenario includes the movers disappearing after getting your deposit. Once you pay the deposit, you won’t hear from them again. To avoid both these scenarios, you have to be very careful when choosing movers and not accepting their lowball moving quotes.
Signs of a lowball moving estimate
1. Moving estimates that are non-binding
Something you have to know when you’re asking for moving estimates is that there are different types of estimates. You can get binding or non-binding ones. What’s the difference between them? Well, when you get binding estimates it means you’ll pay exactly the amount given to you in the quote. On the other hand, non-binding estimates give movers the wiggle room to add extra charges later on. So, when you’re requesting quotes, make sure you get non-binding ones to avoid getting scammed by low-ball estimates from moving companies.
2. The movers don’t look at your items
Another way to spot suspicious moving companies is if the movers give you estimates without seeing your items. Namely, in order to give you a precise quote, the residential movers should request to look at the things you’re moving in-person or via photos and videos. If they just give you a random price without taking a look at your belongings, it’s a red flag. After all, the weight of your things determine the price, so they need to see what they’re dealing with.
Other than that, the movers are likely to ask you about the staircases, elevators and parking, which are a few other factors that determine the price of the move. So, if the movers give you a price without asking for any of this information, it’s likely a sign of a lowball moving quote.
3. Estimates don’t include extra fees and add-ons
If a moving quote doesn’t state the prices of some additional services and feels, it’s probably a sign of lowball estimates from movers. These extra costs usually include things like packing/unpacking services, storage services, transportation and gas, labor expenses, packing supplies, etc. The moving estimates should include all the services you’re getting from the moving company. From packing materials to piano movers Orage County CA – it should all be listed on the quote.
4. You only get quotes over the phone
Yet another way to stay away from lowball moving estimates is by steer clear of companies that only give you estimates over the phone. This is another thing that the movers can do in order to get the wiggle room to charge you more later. On the other hand, if you get written estimates, you can have more certainty that the estimated price is the one you’ll be paying. If you only get quotes over the phone, you won’t have any proof if things go south. Therefore, you won’t be able to file a complaint or anything of that sort because it will be your work against the movers’.
How to avoid lowball moving quotes and fraudulent movers
Now that you know some of the biggest red flags when it comes to low-ball quotes from movers, we’ll give you a few extra tips to help you stay away from fraudulent movers and their lowball rates. So, here’s what you should do.
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions. A good way to check if the movers are trying to scam you is by asking them a bunch of questions. If they’re hesitant to answer or they’re changing the subject, it is probably a red flag. Reliable movers will happily tell you everything you want to know,
- Check out the reviews of the movers. Nothing tells you more about a company than their customers’ reviews. See if the clients are happy with their experience with the company or if you should look for other movers.
- Do a background check of the moving company. It’s crucial to get all the key information about a company before hiring it. So, do diligent research and find out as much as possible. Among other things, see if it’s licensed and insured.
- Get moving estimates from different companies. It’s important not to settle for the first company you come across. Instead, compare a few different companies and see which one is the best. This involves asking for moving estimates from different movers and checking out their rates. Also, this will help you spot lowball moving estimates!