On December 29th, 2007 I put down a deposit with a moving company called Top Notch Van Lines. Little did I know that this company was going to be our biggest nightmare. I am writing to you to let you know about the conniving, deceitful, lying, and unimaginable service that I received from this company.
When I contacted Top Notch Van Lines in regards to a moving quote from Lansdale, Pennsylvania to Houston, Texas, I was asked to describe all the items that were going to be going on the truck. I made sure to tell them about every piece of furniture and its size. I was given a quote of $4700 for ten thousand pounds. They also offered me a 10% discount to convince me to go with their company, as well as 10 garment boxes. When I gave the deposit, the sales person, Michelle, told me that our furniture would arrive by that Friday March 7th. That sounded great! We gave the deposit and hoped that everything would go as smoothly. To our dismay, it was anything but smooth.
On Saturday, March 1st, the moving company had not yet called to confirm our pick up. I called and they told me that our moving truck was coming the following week, when in fact, I had changed that date several weeks before with Michelle. It was not changed on the system. Thankfully, they were able to get a truck for us to come the next day. I also made sure to ask them about the 60% payment and if it was okay to pay by credit card. I was told yes of course, since that was on the original contract emailed to me.
On Sunday, March 2nd, I received a call from the truck driver saying that he was running late because he was waiting to for someone from the office to tell him which weight station he should go to. Needless to say, they arrived at the house at almost 1:45pm. I was originally told they would be there between 8-10am. However, I must say that when he did call, we were nice and told him it was okay.
Upon arriving at our house, "Eddie" whose real name is Emad, took a tour of the house, came down stairs, sat on our kitchen table, and immediately crossed out the estimate that Michelle had given me back in December. He told us that she was wrong and that there is twenty thousand pounds in this house therefore causing the price to double! My parents and I were furious and shocked. He saw how angry my father was and he called his boss "Sharon" and he told us he was giving us a deal and that he would do it for a flat price of $7700 if everything fit in the truck. If everything did not fit, we would have to pay an extra $500 for another truck. He honestly scared us and we didn't really have any other option. We had to move. We gave him the go ahead.
He made me sign several papers. One of which stated, "I have received a copy of arbitration regulations." I asked him where this paper was and what it was. He told me that it was just the papers talking about what items were being packed on the truck and the contract. I am not sure why I believed him, but I said okay and I signed the papers. We did not receive the rights and responsibility sheet as required by the federal government.
In the midst of the packing, Eddie asked me for the 60% payment. I told him we were paying by credit card. He told me that they only take that when the people give them advance notice of 10 days and that they wanted cash. I told him that is not what I was told when I called yesterday. My mom became upset and started telling him that if they don't take it by credit card, then they can take all the stuff off the truck. He called his boss, and his boss said "Can you at least get $1000 from them cash?" Eddie told him no, and they let us pay the 60% by credit card after an unnecessary argument.
As they were wrapping up with putting the furniture on the truck, "Eddie" told my parents that the company will contact us by Tuesday to let us know when the furniture should be there. He stated that it should be there by Friday, just as Michelle had told us from the beginning. He also stated to us that the furniture was now going to a storage facility and from there, they will pack it into an eighteen wheeler. That was NEVER discussed with us when we hired this company. Having never moved, we assumed that the truck would leave here and head for Texas.
On Monday, I received several calls from Top Notch Van Lines, stating that the credit card we gave them was being declined. We called our credit card company and they showed the charge of $3900 for Top Notch. I called the company back and he told me that he doesn't see it and if the payment is not there by Monday night, they would not be able to send out our truck. After several phone calls back and forth between the credit card company and the moving company, Brody, finally said okay I trust you. Sure enough, the next day he told me that their bank was holding the money and he apologized. He told me the furniture left early Tuesday morning around 4:30am.
Throughout the week, I called the company several times to make sure that everything was on track and that our shipment would be there by Friday. On Wednesday, they told me that it wouldn't get there till Sunday because they have other drop offs. I became upset because they originally told me Friday. The gave me the truck drivers name and they then told me that they were going to get it on a different truck so that it could get there sooner. Every time I called to find out what was going on, they kept telling me that they would call me right back and an hour would go by with no response. So I proceeded to call them back.
On Friday, the day the furniture was supposed to get there, Brody the dispatcher, promised me that he would call me in the morning to tell me the status. Around 11:45, almost noon, I still hadn't received a call, so I called them. They told me that a gentleman by the name of Coby has my shipment and to call him. They WOULD NOT tell me what was going on. I asked several times if there was something I should know before I called the truck driver. The response from Brody was, "just call the truck driver."
When I called the truck driver, he told me that he had to pick up a shipment in Pennsylvania and he would then be on his way. He would get to Texas on Monday. I then began to cry on the phone. I told him that my furniture was supposed to be there already; if not half way there. He told me he would call the company and call me back. I immediately called the company and I told them what he said and they basically told me there is nothing we can do. I called my fianc and he called the truck driver. The truck driver stated to him that he just refused the shipment because they are lying to us and they want him to lie as well.
My fianc called the moving company and spoke to Brody. He told him that this was ridiculous and that the driver told us that he refused the shipment. Brody told my fianc that Coby didn't have our furniture and that another truck driver had it. However, he had no idea who had it, and told my fianc he would call him back when he found the truck. Again, he did not call back. My fianc had to call him back and he got the number of the 3rd truck driver. This time, Joe, told my fianc that he would be in Texas on Sunday, March 9, between 9-11am and would be in touch. My fianc called me with the number. I called Joe just to make sure we were on the same page.
I did however ask Joe about my order. He contradicted everything that I was told by Brody. He also added in his own lie. He told me the he has had my shipment since Tuesday morning, March 4th, when he picked it up at 11am (NOT 4:30am like I was originally told).
As you can see from what you have read, this has been a huge nightmare. I called Brody back to tell him what his driver said to me, and he had the nerve to start yelling at me. I finally said to him that he better listen up and he better realize that I have everything documented and there will be consequences. I told him that I have no problem with the furniture getting there on Sunday. My problem was with him and this company lying to me from the beginning. Our conversation ended there.
On Saturday evening, my fianc called and they told us that our shipment would be there the following day between 9-11am. Wow! Right? Believe it or not, that was another lie. On Sunday morning, we did not receive a call. We called the truck driver and there was no answer. We called the company and no answer. We tried several times, with no luck. I finally called Coby back, the gentleman who refused our order because they were lying. He was kind enough to give me the owner's cell phone number and Brody's cell phone number. The story does not end there. It only gets better.
When I called the owner and explained the situation, he told me he would call me back. After twenty minutes, I did not receive a call. I called him back. He told me the truck driver is in Tennessee and he has his number! I stated to him that I have his number and he told me that it was another truck driver. There was now a 4th truck driver in this mess! He told me that our stuff wouldn't get there till Tuesday or Wednesday! The owner stated to me that we will get a discount for all the problems. I told him that we have bigger issues here than a discount. We need our furniture. He stated to me that he does have 21 days to deliver. When I originally gave the $846 deposit for the contract, see attached, it does not mention ANYWHERE on there that there is a 21 day window. Also, their wonderful website claims that it will deliver the furniture when we ask for it to be delivered.
When I spoke to the truck driver, he stated the same thing. He said that if he drives straight through, he would get there by Tuesday. He told me that he picked up my furniture on Friday at 12pm. He said to me that he has nothing to do with the company and he doesn't want trouble. He is just a subcontractor. I told him that unfortunately they have put him in a bad spot. He apologized. When my fianc talked to the truck driver, he stated that he has three other drop offs before ours, therefore, that is why it is going to take him so long.
They finally arrived on March 11th, but refused to unload until my parents paid the 20%. After they finished unloading, my parents questioned where the rest of the furniture was. He said that this was all he had. We called the company again and at this point told us that our furniture/ belongings did not fit on the truck, so they have to send it on a different truck. It is now 2 weeks after the intial delivery date and our furniture is still missing. We have called them and they have lied several times when they would deliver the furniture. On March 17, 2008, we called again because they were supposed to deliver, but when we called, they said they would deliver on Friday. We finally gave up and called the local police. On March 19, 2008, they gave us the number of a truck driver named Andre who stated that he will deliver the rest of the furniture on the 20th or the 21st.
We have since learned that the same owners have owned 3 different companies previously (all have multiple complaints against them and now are black listed on movingscam.com). United Moving Systems, North America Moving Systems and Strong Arm Moving, and Atlas moving systems.