wearemoving.commoving fraud

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I applied at to receive quotes for a move between Ukiah, CA, and Philadelphia, PA in order to ascertain what the cost would be. I received several quotes, and settled on this company( because they were offering to move my single room full of personal belongings for a cost of 898.80, according to the email quote from a salesperson named Jack(I had actually received two quotes for the same amount from this company, from Jack, and another representative). The day before the scheduled move, Jack called me at my cellphone and asked if I would be so kind as to allow for a 2000lb quote, as my home address in California was so far away from their home office in San Jose. Despite our previous agreement, I reluctantly agreed, verbally accepting the 2000lb quote which was slightly more at about $1200. On the day of the move, 3 individuals showed up at my house driving a large tractor trailer. Before the paperwork could even be talked about, the two helpers began wrapping my personal belongings up, and an Israeli gentleman by the name of Isaac asked me to sit down with him and go over the paperwork. I asked the two gentlemen to stop packing my belongings until my paperwork could be sorted out, and they reluctantly agreed. I tried to go over my contract with Isaac to cover all the issues, but he kept pushing me to sign the document without reading it. I noted that a weight entry at the bottom of the page had been left blank, and Isaac reassured me that the entry would be put in when my belongings were weighed in at the scales. He again verbally confirmed the weight quote of 2000lbs to me, reassuring me that there was no way my small room full of belongings could exceed that weight on the scale(heaviest item was a big screen tv at 60lbs). At this point, I signed the contract and the workers began packing up my belongings. I asked them to itemize my belongings, because I had a number of electronic items that needed to be catalogued, to include two video game systems(XBOX360 and PS3) a surround sound system, and my HD camcorder. He stated that they were already packed, but that the box was already sealed and displayed the numbering system on the box that matched the inventory number on the bill of lading. He then stated that my items would not be repacked, and would be delivered in their original boxes. The entire time this packup was taking place, Isaac was pressuring me for time, constantly saying that he had to get on the road, and constantly reassuring me that my belongings would be taken care of. Finally he told me that he could only accept cash, as that was the company rule. I was a little angry at this and had him get a supervisor on the phone. They confirmed this statement, at which point I told them that there was no way I could get the cash on such a short notice. They reluctantly agreed to let me sign a credit card statement for a deposit of $1440. He claimed that he needed 60 percent of the 2000lb quote, which came to $816 for the deposit, plus approximately $530 for packaging materials(I didn't know 22 boxes could cost so damn much) as well as a fuel surcharge and tax. I signed the slip and they were on their way.

Approximately an hour later, I received a call from the moving company stating that I would have to pay for 6500lbs, or they would not move my belongings, which they held in their truck, presumably enroute to a storage facility. I restated the original quote as I remembered it, to which the man on the phone stated that he was holding a contract with my signature on it for 6500lbs, and would not release my belongings for less than teh full sum due. At this point, I threatened legal action...He laughed, said"Fine", and hung up the phone. I called a few lawyers, including a few who were friends. All advised me that the best course of action would be to get my things back in any way possible and file suit afterward in small claims. Some advised the state attorney's office, but all recommended I wait until I had my belongings safely in my possession before doing so. I spent a day wallowing in sheer rage before finally resigning myself to trying to get my things back. I called the company back approximately two days later, explaining that I could not afford the 6500lbs that they were demanding. The man on the phone then stated that in consideration of the situation, he would drop the amount to 4500lbs. When asked why he could not honor the original contract of 1500lbs, he stated that he could not do so for less than 4500lbs, or he would be operating at a loss, which made me wonder why I was quoted 1500lbs in the first place. I reluctantly agreed to the furnish the amount required to get my belongings to philadelphia and back into my possession. Noteably, a $250 storage fee was removed from my account by this company without my permission during this timeframe, presumably because they wanted to charge me for holding my things while I "made up my mind".

The previously established date of arrival (aug 1st 2008) passed, and I called the company wanting to know where my things were. They informed me that the driver would call me when he was in the area. Nearly two weeks later, with no information coming back, and no phone call as was promised, I again called the company(Aug 11th). They stated that my belongings were ready to deliver and would be delivered the next day(12th). They then stated that I would need to provide an additional 1, 707 in cash in order to secure my belongings, and that I would have to pay in advance. I argued about the legitimacy of paying cash for this transaction, and at the same time, I stated that I wanted to see my things, and to make sure that they were all there before I paid. He stated over the phone that the truck would not be opened until payment had been secured in cash. At the time, a friend of mine who was with me made a joke about whether or not they wanted it in a paper bag with a bottle of Hennessey, which I didn't think was too funny at the time(I was obviously too angry).

These people literally held my belongings hostage for ransom. When the movers finally arrived the day of, I had been up all night trying to find a way to secure the money in cash required. Only being able to pull 500 a day out of my account, this was not possible, and to be honest, I truly did not want to pay these people cash with no paper trail anyway. The movers would not open the truck until I finally agreed to sign the inventory sheet, even though I had seen none of my things by this point. Notably, the movers were not from the same company that I had originally contracted with. I tried to get the mover to accept a card for the payment, simply to get my things(and avoid another fee for them leaving and returning later), and at first he was reluctant, but then it was finally agreed that I could use the card, if I was willing to pay an additional 5 percent as a surcharge, bringing my total up to $1800 at the time. The mover also stated that his men expected a 20 percent payment to even move things in, but settled for a little less than that, simply because I was angry, tired, and just wanted my things back. As we were doing an inventory, it was noted that 3 boxes did not have any markings, and that a fourth box, which of course was the one that held all of my electronics, was completely missing. This was of course, after the movers made a big show of unwrapping my flat screen tv and performing a Vanna White impression to show that it had not been damaged on the trip(It had so much padding you probably could have bounced it off the ground 3 times and still not even scratched it). It was suggested that I call the main company and make a claim, and I was told that he would go back to the warehouse and see if he could find the missing box. I called the company and was given the number for the claims company, which had a suspiciously generic name, where I was told that regardless of what was missing, I would only be paid 70 cents a pound for the missing items.

This company is nothing more than a pack of thieves looking for it's next victim...don't fall into their trap...

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  • Ma
      Mar 28, 2009

    BTW, because they took so much money from me, I was forced into poverty in PA, where I had transferred into Temple University, and because I spent most of the semester trying to find a job and get organized(things I had originally planned to have extra money for by working like a slave my last year before transferring), I ended up failing out of most of my classes...I went from a 3.5 average transferring in to a 0.90 for the semester while paying out of state tuition at over 11 grand a semester...

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  • Br
      Aug 20, 2009

    I too, had no idea the moving industry was so full of scam artists! Who ALL seem to be foreigners- I might add. I had a similar situation when I tried to move a 1 bedroom apt from San Diego to Austin. The original quote was for 2000lbs/$1300. The "revised estimate" was for 4500lbs/$3000! I was outraged- but your stuff's already on the truck- what are you going to do? I had arranged to pay the amount up front (thankfully?) because now I'm sure my stuff would have been held hostage if I had not. I have since repeatedly phoned and emailed the company- PRESTIGE MOVING & STORAGE/WESTLAKE VILLAGE, CA. requesting the amount on the weight cert. which nobody can seem to find access to- and which I was told the day of the move after a frantic phone call to them I would receive a refund if the 'revised estimate" were not that much weight. Obviously, they have something to hide because if my items were 4500lbs- why wouldn't they just sent me the certificate? I have filed reports with the BBB, Rip-off, Attorney General of Ca. I'm not sure what my next course of action will be. Just had to vent. Thanks for the forum.

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