I orginially made my moving arrangements thru Prime Van Lines. I sent them an inventory of all items to be moved and they gave me what I thought was a fair quote. When we were one week out from the mover, I received a call from Advantage Van Lines. This started to confuse me as I was dealing with Prime Van Lines, I call my sales rep and he assured me that i was dispatch. First Advatnage called me several times with incorrect dates and tried to move up 4 days. Then when the date was finally correct they confirmed a time of noon, then 1-4, and 4-6 pm. These times were all acceptable and not a big deal, but they arrived after 8 pm and did not complete loading the truck until 1:00 am. As a single woman, I'm always leery about being alone in with 2 complete strangers. I called a friend to come sit with me during this as I was starting to become uncomfortable with the situation.
When the movers arrived arrived "Mike" (as he called himself) went over some paperwork. His English was not very good and was often difficult to understand. He told me he would go over the rest when we were done packing. He began packing boxes with items thay did not need to be packed; such as garden tools, brooms, large rod iron brackets for my bookshelf, etc. I told him they didn't need to boxed and I was concerned with the amount of packing materials he was using. He kept saying the "boxes were strong" and would protect my stuff. He also kept saying "you'll take good care of us if you know what I mean" and we take care of your stuff. I was growing increasingly uncomfortable and suspicious.
After they were done loading the truck, he had me take a look at it. The way the truck was packed, it appeared to be fuller than the amount of space the items were taking up in my house. I started to grow even more concerned. He convinced that I had more belongings than I did, even though there were less items on the original quote list (no tvs, no computer monitor, no sofa, no armoire, no cd holders) I sold many things before the move. I packed my boxes securely. I bubble wrapped all my artwork and mirrors and he still insisted on boxing them. When all is said and done he told me with he would "work with me on price". He first quoted me $1900 on top of the original price, but if I gave him $400 for him and the other mover he could knock it down to $1000. If I gave him $500 he would make it $800. Because of the late hour, I was not thinking clearly and agreed to the $800/$500. He wanted cash, but I didn't have it. I did give him a personal check - which he did cash immediately the next day. I also gave him my credit card number for the remaining $800 and I mistakenly signed the binding amount on the final sheet.
I know that when I made the arrangements, I informed my rep that my items were going into a storage unit. I again reminded the movers that the items were going into storage and that access was limited after 8:00 pm and the gates locked at 9:00 pm. I also told them I would not be there for the delivery, but arranged to have my sister there. They were to arrive around 6:30. They didn't arrive until 8:00 pm again. They didn't want to unload the truck until my sister gave them the money order. Because of my distrust of them, I instructed her not give them money order until my belongings were off their truck. I started receiving calls from them and the office. I got into a yelling match with their dispatch office regarding the situation and my displeasure with their services. She also gave me a hard time about my credit card authorization for the original amount. She wanted an imprint of the card and for me to fax her an authorization with my signature. I didn't do it, but they still charged my credit card for the additional charges and got $500 cash out of me.
As often reported on the news, this experience was a nightmare. Prime did a great job of selling, but Advantage/Precision did a better job of hustling me. Precision Movers were not that at all - they are a scam! Make sure that you are not getting moving quotes over the firm and internet. No matter how much you research companies can still scam you. I wish I had know that I would be dealing with 3 different companies than the one I originally signed the agreement with.