May 2, 2016

Rogue Movers

Finding a good long-distance mover can be very hard in this day and age. There are lots of good movers out there, but there are lots of scams and “rogue movers”.

The internet makes it difficult to distinguish a legitimate moving company from a scam. This is because it is really easy to run a nice website, but there is not an easy way for a consumer to tell who is really behind that site.

So, how do you tell a real mover from a rogue mover? Here are some tips:

  • Get an in-home estimate. Rogue movers often ask a customer to walk them through the house on the phone and list items and boxes; these estimates are notoriously inaccurate. Chances are, there is a real mover within 50 miles of your home who is willing to come to give you an estimate and discuss your move in detail.
  • Do not pay a deposit before the move. Many rogue movers or brokers will charge a deposit to “reserve a truck”. They are likely securing their own payment before they subcontract the move to another company. A real mover will not require a deposit for a long-distance move.
  • Check to see how long a mover has been in business. Most have been in business for over 10 years; and some over 100.
  • Check to see how many trucks the company operates. A rogue mover or broker may only operate one or two, which probably won’t allow them to adequately handle a cross-country move efficiently. A real mover could have hundreds or thousands of trucks across the country.
  • Make sure the company’s website and advertising lists their license number and physical address. You may even want to search the address to be sure it is an office or warehouse and not a house or apartment.

You can investigate an interstate mover at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) website This will show you the number of trucks they operate and history of complaints.

Another good reference is, which has more tips on finding a good mover and what to do if you think you’ve been scammed.

Of course, no mover is perfect, but by following these tips and researching these websites, you can minimize your chances for problems.


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