"Fat Chance" Scam Lines
Submitted this review about Flatrate Van Lines
Review made Live: 5/14/2011 6:53:00 PM
NOTE: THE "POOR" RATING FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE REFERS TO EVERYONE BUT THE GUYS WHO ACTUALLY PACKED THE STUFF AT OUR OLD HOUSE. (Except that one jerk who rolled my desk down the stairs.)
If you like deceitful business practices, last-minute overcharges, broken furniture and having the kitchen garbage packed up and moved to your new home, hire these guys.
James, the guy who "took care of me" from the quote to the order, was as nice and helpful as possible. He assured me that the company NEVER used casual labor and the guys who show up at your door to do the move will be uniformed, permanent employees. He also assured me that on the day of the move, the only work my wife and I would need to do would be "opening the front door to let my guys in". He then assured me that the entire move would cost no more than $5,000, based on my inventory. He also assured me that "we'll send two trucks, in case there's any overflow". He also assured me that "yours is a dedicated move. That means that nobody else's stuff will be in that truck all the way to Louisiana." Let me tell you about moving day:
1. If those guys were wearing uniforms, then they were the strangest ones I'd ever seen. Blue jeans and different tee shirts, none of which had the moving company's name or logo is an odd sort of uniform, no?
2. This part was true. Those guys went through my house like a tornado, packing up everything in sight, even (as we found while unpacking) the kitchen garbage!
3. Well, my inventory was off by about 30 boxes, since these guys aren't shy about using packing material, increasing the number of boxes, and therefore, the number of cubic yardage. I was presented with a bill of over $8,000 when they were done, but I was able to talk the guy in the office down to $7,000 even. If I had stuck to my guns about the five grand, they would've put my worldly possessions in the parking lot and left them there.
4. Only one truck arrived, and when it was full, my wife and I were told we'd have to throw the rest out, sell it, or give it away, 'cause it "ain't gonna fit in that truck." We ended up giving away quite a bit to our neighbors because we couldn't fit it into our car.
5. If our stuff was all that was in the truck that brought it to Louisiana, a couple boxes had offspring, filled with things that weren't ours.
I'm at my job, and I get a call from my wife, who tells me, "These guys are putting the boxes wherever they can! They aren't even in the right rooms! Our bed's headboard and the electric piano stand are broken, and they even broke the bed frame!" When I got home, I had discovered that the headboard was demolished, there were boxes upon boxes everywhere, without regard as to how they were labeled, the electric piano stand was broken, but could be repaired, and the bed frame had a broken caster. The unloading crew consisted of 2 guys, who even left us the garbage from their lunch in our brand new trash can. (It didn't have a liner in it yet, of course, and you know how barbecue sauce attracts those ants!) I had tipped the loading crew $50 apiece when we left, and the driver got $100. After my wife called me at work, I thought she was over-reacting by the tone of her voice, and asked to speak to the driver for the unloading crew. (The "crew" consisted of only two men.) I offered to tip them both $100 if they'd stick around for the 15 minutes it'd take me to get home and straighten things out, but I guess he didn't need it, because he refused. I then offered to send it to him and his co-worker, but that was met with a flat refusal. (I guess they didn't want us to know their names.)
After weeks of unpacking boxes and discovering broken items, spilled foodstuffs (like baking soda, flour, sugar, and bread crumbs), and some mysteriously wet things, we bought a new bed frame, chalked it up to experience, and decided to get on with the business of living. This review has been a catharsis, and if even one person out there is spared the ordeal of hiring who I shall ever refer to as "FAT CHANCE SCAM LINES", I'll feel as though I've performed a public service.
Good night and good luck!