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Questionable Business Practices, Contract Not Honored, Property Damaged

Submitted this review about America Van Lines
Review made Live: 1/2/2013 7:18:00 PM
The professionalism and lack of professionalism of this company's team who came to my home to pick up my furniture in VA is questionable to say the least. Two members of this company's team were perfect gentlemen and very courteous. The Foreman however kept pushing for favors. For example, "you take care of my team, I'll take care of your items. You know what I mean?" I thought he wanted me to write nice things about the team, which I did as they were very professional during the packing and loading of my things. Boy was I wrong! What he really mean't wasn't realized by me until he came back after reviewing the cubic feet of all the items which he stated was 600 cubic feet, which I couldn't verify since I had another company delivering some items and couldn't leave the apartment. This I find unbelievable, since I didn't have all that much. He even stated he used more materials than was estimated. I disagreed as I counted the number of rolls of tape that was used and boxing material (minimal). He then asked if the destination could receive a 53' foot truck. I said I was told that my items were being delivered on a 26' truck. He stated he knew of no such thing and that I'd be lucky to see my things on September 5th as was promised. I was shocked, but then what could I do? Then after I paid the bill in full the Foreman stated, "okay you take care of my team." I said the best I could do was provide him a check for $50.00 as I only had a $20.00 bill. He was not happy and asked me to go get some cash, more than $50.00, as he didn't have any means of cashing a check. Then he went to get Edward Lamont Jackson, of whom I wrote the check to. As a woman, I felt threatened personally and really concerned that my belongings would be destroyed or damaged because I didn't provide a tip larger than $50.00. Even though the paperwork stated gratuities were not mandatory, I felt seriously threatened to provide one. Prior to consumating the contract with this company I had received a price guarantee which was the main reason for my choosing this company over the others who had submitted bids. When my furniture arrived in San Diego, CA I was charged additional costs of over $500 that was not identified nor suggested at the time that I decided on this company. If I didn't pay these costs my furniture would not be delivered and I'd be responsible for storage costs. I paid the entire contract of $2,733.08 to the company when they picked up my furniture in VA. I contacted Mr. Alan Taylor, Manager at America Van Lines after the movers left regarding how I was treated, how I wanted my $50.00 returned, and to confirm there were no further costs associated with the movement of my furniture. I was advised that the movers would be talked to, the $50.00 would not be refunded, there were no additional costs and that my furniture would be delivered on Sept 5th as promised. Well, I was not satisfied about not getting my $50.00 back, but was highly upset when my furniture did not arrive as promised and when my furniture did arrive on September 11th the unidentified costs were a total surprise. Luckily for me I had the ability to pay. Not many would. My furniture was damaged, which I relayed to the "America Van Lines survey team." Who by the way didn't care. My furniture was damaged by this company during their handling of my items, the company did not honor the contract, misleading customers with false statements such as dates for delivery, all costs not discussed prior to consummation of a contract just to get the deal and the character of the people they hire is questionable. I filed complaints with the Better Business Bureau in Maryland, the Consumer Protection Division in Maryland and the Consumer Complaint Agency. The Consumer Complaint Agency did rate this company as unsatisfactory. I'm still waiting on the results from the BBB in Maryland and the Consumer Protection Division in Maryland.