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Dishonest management, OK service

Submitted this review about A One Moving & Storage Inc
Review made Live: 4/15/2007 1:11:00 PM
A One Moving and Storage helped me relocate from NY to VA following reassignment at my work. To summarize my experience - these guys seemed to do good-as-any job packing and moving and did it on time; however, the dishonesty of their management was shocking and caused tons of bitter experiences. Unless you enjoy been cheated at every turn and then spending hours yelling at your phone - stay as far from these guys as possible. I moved about six month ago. The story begins with moving estimate. I did get estimate over the phone by listing to the woman on the other end all my furniture, which produced a whopping $1400 for moving and packing. That didn't surprise me much because I was renting a really tiny place in Long Island and all I had was a loveseat, four chairs and bookcases, couple of drawers, TV and a matress. Still, taking into account all the stories about the movers I've heard, I was ready to expect something like a double of the original estimate - something like $2500. Bah, when the time came and the moving crew arrived to pack and load my stuff on the truck, the price suddenly became $4000. That's almost tripple of the original estimate! Needless to say this landed heavily on my budget - I couldn't even find enough cash to give a full tip to the moving crew - at which they got quite a bit upset, which I believe might have caused some broken furniture, see below. It was really not my fault failing to mention some of the furniture or such - I managed to grab the guy's order printout with the $1300 number, and to my dismay it had completely different list of items from that I received in a email estimate shortly after my phone interview, and, naturally, from that I actually gave over the phone. I don't know how it is possible to make a "mistake" and produce two completely different inventories: one for email customer gets, and one for the moving crew. My bet is that these guys intentionally mess around with inventories to produce outrageously low estimates. Well, it was the evening of the day I was supposed to vacate the appartment and my stuff was already on the truck, so I had to pay. I then spent hours discussing "little inconsistency" in the estimate with the management over the phone, occasionally yelling at each other. To make long story short, after this discussion culminated in threats to write this whole thing to BBB and DOT they lowered the price by droping storage charges which made the total $3600. As a reasonable guy, I said OK to that - I understand that if the stuff takes this much space on the truck, then there is nothing really that can be done about it. The next twist to the story comes on the date when my things were supposed to get out of the storage and on their way to VA. As such, I called to let A One Moving and Storage know the moving date and have final payment imprinted in the lading bil. This happened couple of month after the pick up date; the guy on the phone easily came up with $2000 figure - remember I paid $2000 by credit at the time of pick up plus storage and deposit. I was not sure at the time whether I just remembered the figure wrong or the guy really tried to pull it off, so I had to go home and dig in the papers to find that all I owed was just about $1100. So there came the phone calls with attempts to refresh A One Moving and Storage's memory. Anyway, the things arrived to VA on schedule and couple of guys promptly and without dropping unloaded everything. Once the blankets were removed, I found my TV stand broken in halfs. The impression was that a heavy hammer landed just in the middle simply making one TV stand into two. I don't know how this at all could happen, but the fact is - it did. One of the bookcases was also torn apart etc. Besides, I found in inventory two chairs missing. The crew of the truck promptly written me a 100 of pounds for each broken item, thus making A One Moving and Storage "pay" effectively $50 for each, which I can easily understand since these guys couldn't care less about this; unfortunately, they managed to mislead me about missing chairs and make it look like the item was mislabeled and was actually in the pile of delivered things. I bought it, my bad. After moving truck left, there came long phone calls trying to make A One Moving and Storage pay for the broken furniture. They told me that broken stuff was pressed wood, which according to their definition was any furniture which is assembled, which makes it practically any furniture around, and thus they wouldn't pay. Moreover, they told me, they already gave me $400 discount [see, this time their memory served fine], and thus I shouldn't be a wussy and just shut up. This pretty much set me off, and I said that if they raise the things which had been "settled", then so I will do and will write the whole thing to DOT beginning with their $2500-short estimate. That made the point, and after consulting with the "owner" some money were eventually paid, in exchange for "no further claims" signature. So the bottom line is this: even though the crews on the ground seem to do adequate job, or at least as-good-as-any, the management of A One Moving and Storage is extremely dishonest and utilizes all kind of dirty practices. Unless things are heading toward a letter to DOT, nothing seems to have effect on them. Dishonesty permeates their bussiness from "fictitious" estimates to trying to cheat you with your delivery bill, to furniture "accidentally" broken in halfs, to the "ease" with which delivery crew signs off on the damages. I really feel that, had I found a review like this at the time I was deciding on the company to handle my move, I would never go along with A One Moving and Storage, and so is my advise to anyone reading this.