In recent years, one of the most prevalent risks in the moving industry is the presence of rogue movers. Many innocent families simply looking to find a moving company to help them complete their relocation end up wasting time and money on scams facilitated by rogue movers.
In an effort to decrease the ever-rising number of moving scams, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) announced the launch of Operation Protect Your Move on April 4, 2023, in advance of the peak summer moving season.
How will the FMCSA improve the situation through this new operation? FMCSA will be sending dozens of investigators throughout the United States to complete an enforcement sweep.
These investigators will address both the movers and the brokers that do not comply with the federal safety and consumer protection regulations and statutes necessary for transporting household goods. Operation Protect Your Move will deal with the increasing complaints that have swept the nation regarding companies looking to scam their customers.
More Efforts to Crack Down on Rogue Movers
Many reports have been sent to the FMCSA regarding companies that use deceptive practices causing customers to pay exorbitant fees or delay the amount of time until they receive their belongings. In some circumstances, customers never received their items at all. Operation Protect Your Move and the FMCSA as a whole will document all reported violations and has the jurisdiction to revoke the licenses of movers and brokers upon review.
“FMCSA takes its responsibilities very seriously to help protect consumers when moving their household valuables from one state to another,” says FMCSA Administrator Robin Hutcheson. “Consumers should feel confident they can trust the company hired to transport their possessions.”
Operation Protect Your Move is a top priority for the FMCSA, as the safety and wellbeing of consumers is of the utmost importance. Certain cases with criminal misconduct will be heightened to the U.S. Department of Justice for investigation.
The FMCSA is prepared to work directly with those who have experienced moving scams to assist them in receiving the money and goods that they have lost. By doubling the investigators on these cases, the Operation aims to improve the situation for these consumers. More information regarding how to complete a safe and secure interstate move can be found on http://www.protectyourmove.gov/.
How to Spot a Rogue Mover
With so many risks of being scammed by rogue moving companies, it’s understandable to feel like these issues are unavoidable. However, there are a lot of ways to spot these moving scammers and to be aware of the risks. Interested in knowing the warning signs involved with rogue movers? We’ve compiled a list of some of the most common red flags to look out for as you search for a moving company to rely on.
- Lack of in-home estimate: One of the most important parts of receiving an accurate quote for your move is having an in-home estimate completed by your moving company. If a moving company doesn’t complete this step or does it in a hasty manner, this is amajor warning sign. A thorough assessment is needed to accurately determine how much the move will cost.
- Blank or incomplete contract: Many rogue movers will supply customers with contracts that have blank or incomplete areas. This should cause you to steer clear of a company, as the contract is a necessary part of the process and is the only way to have a reliable source of your services and your payment in writing. Without it, you are much more susceptible to scams.
- Requiring a large down payment upfront: A reputable moving company will not require a large sum of money upfront or even any money at all. For the most part, moving companies will ask you to pay upon delivery, so it should stand out as a red flag if they need a big payment before any services are completed.
- Name changes: If a company has a history of one or more name changes, this should be taken as a red flag. Moving companies who are dishonest and untrustworthy often do this to avoid being followed by negative reviews or bad standing with the Better Business Bureau.
- Difficult to find necessary information: When a moving company doesn’t have an address or phone number listed on their website or their proper certifications readily available (for instance, their registration with the U.S. Department of Transportation), you should avoid that company. Reputable movers will have a physical address where they store their supplies. They should also have a phone number that is manned by an actual human during business hours. Without these elements, you should be wary.
- Suspiciously low rates: Although everyone wants to find a great price for their move, you should definitely steer clear of a moving company that provides you a suspiciously low rate. This often results in undisclosed fees or raised prices at the end that they require you to pay before you can receive your items.
The Sunrise Promise
If you’re searching for a moving company you can actually rely on, Sunrise Moving & Storage has dependable full-service moving solutions our customers can truly trust. Since 1999, we have provided Atlanta and beyond with highly rated moving, packing, and storage.
We are family owned and operated, and we prioritize customer satisfaction above all else. The team at Sunrise is devoted to giving our customers the best of the best each and every time.
Your Trusted Atlanta Movers
When you need local or long-distance movers in the greater Atlanta metropolitan and southeast areas, Sunrise is here for you. We are ready to provide you with premier moving and storage services at an affordable rate. Request a quote online today, and discover what we can do for you!