HUNTSVILLE, Ala. — It's moving season for many this time of year and you may be looking for a moving company to help you transport heavy and large items.
But it's also a time to be on the lookout for potential moving scams. A trusted moving company tells us some of the ways you can avoid becoming a victim.
TWO MEN AND A TRUCK, a national full-service moving company, has had a franchise here in Huntsville for 26 years.
The company is accredited by the Better Business Bureau, which is something to research when finding the right moving company for you.
Andrew Moore, the operations manager, says a big sign of a scam could be the hidden fees or estimates that are not provided to you up front.
"Any hidden charges that are just kind of thrown upon anyone at the end of the the move or before the move starts is kind of a red flag," Moore said.
According to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, another red flag would be a moving company demanding cash or a large deposit before the move or if a mover asks you to sign blank or incomplete forms.
Moore says their company starts the free quote process with getting basic estimate information.
"Address, phone numbers, email addresses where we're going to, where we're taking everything to, an inventory. That way we'll set up an estimate based on how far we're moving, everything, whether it's an in-state move or an out-of-state move," Moore said.
Then their team can determine if an in-home estimate is needed to ensure a more accurate moving quote.
"We'll send over a pre-move letter and just all the information that needs to go to the customers email so that they know exactly what we're about, what they need to do beforehand before we get there," Moore said.
On the actual moving day, it's important to see what kind of truck arrives, as they're required to have a DOT number.
"That is any company using commercial motor vehicles over 10,001 pounds, they're required to have the DOT number. So if a company is not willing or unable to give you a DOT number, then that's a pretty good sign that they're not legitimate," Moore said.
It's also important to do research about a company online, look at their website, find out where they are located, and about their registration.
Online reviews and word of mouth can also be good to factor in, "asking around about us kind of get to know us by our reputation that's out there, I think is a good way to, to legitimize a company is just word of mouth," Moore said.