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Deplorable Business - Refuses to Pay for Extensive Damage to Furniture

Submitted this review about AAA Big Student Movers
Review made Live: 6/21/2008 3:52:00 PM
In April 2008 I contacted AAA Big Student Movers and spoke with Don Holleman. I told him that I had just purchased expensive furniture. Mr. Holleman promised me that he specializes in moving expensive furniture; that he has a perfect BBB record; and that all of his movers have at least 3-5 years of experience. Based on his assurances, I scheduled my move with AAA. On April 18th his movers arrived. I watched as they crammed my furniture through my doorway and knocked expensive furniture against the outside brick walls. Specifically, the damage included: 1) about 15 scratches and gouges on a brand-new armoire; 2) a major gouge and numerous scratches on the headboard and legs of my brand-new bed; and (3) several large scratches on my brand-new dresser. To see pictures of the damage to my furniture, go to: http://local.yahoo.com/details?id=18835703. When I arrived at my new place, the movers asked me sign the paperwork saying that they had delivered my furniture. I was intimidated. The furniture hadn't been unloaded. I certainly wasn’t going to choose that moment to complain. So, I signed for the delivery. Mr. Holleman later tried to use this against me. I contacted Mr. Holleman on May 3rd regarding the damage. During this phone call, and in a follow-up phone call on May 5th, he steadfastly promised that he would resolve this issue. He seemed incensed at the manner in which his movers handled my furniture and stated that this is a matter that I should not “let go.” Specifically, in the May 3rd phone call, we discussed reimbursement for the expenses that I incurred. I sent photos photos of the damage to him immediately at the email address he gave me (bigstudentmovers@sbcglobal.net). The photos showed the extensive damage that his movers had caused to my bed, my dresser, and my armoire. I ultimately paid Bassett Furniture $216 to repair the damage. I believed Mr. Holleman when he assured me that he would resolve this matter. Yet, despite my phone calls to him on May 3rd, May 5th, and May 14th; despite the emails that I sent to him on May 3rd, May 6th, May 9th, and May 13th; and despite the demand letter that I sent to him on May 13th, he has yet to respond to my request for a resolution. The only response that I received was a phone call in which he said that he would send a cheaper repair person out to look at my furniture. I told him that I did not want another repair person to touch my furnitureXXXthat I would rather take a lesser monetary amount and be able to choose who repaired my furniture. He refused to do this. I have other concerns about Mr. Holleman’s business practices. First, I find it appalling this Mr. Holleman represented that his business is a member of the BBB and that his company has a perfect rating. In fact he is not a BBB member and he has had 2 complaints filed against him- one that he never responded to. Second, while Mr. Holleman promised me that he only hires movers with 3-5 years of experience, he blamed damage on a mover that only had 2 years of experience—a fact Mr. Holleman, himself, disclosed. Third, the TxDot website states that movers are required to give consumers a pamphlet about their rights. I was never given this pamphlet. Fourth, I am troubled at the way that his movers pressured me to sign paperwork before my furniture had been unloaded. Mr. Holleman’s movers’ conduct was nothing short of negligent. The pictures prove that his workers grossly mishandled my property. Mr. Holleman’s promises about the quality of service that I would receive from his company were shallow; and now he has proven that his promises to make this matter right were disingenuous. Hopefully he will at least attempt to resolve this matter for the sake of his reputation.