ICC offers tips to avoid being scammed by movers

The Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) recently released a few “smart tips” to help Illinoisans in the process of moving avoid being taken advantage of by dishonest or rogue movers.

These tips include:

  • Get recommendations from friends, relatives, and coworkers.
  • Do not choose a company that only advertises a phone number.
  • Ask the mover to visit your home and to provide a written estimate. If you can, show them the contents of every room, closet, attic, cellar, and garage you want moved, and talk about what they can expect at the new home. A written quote is not a binding quote, but it will give you a reasonable expectation of what you will be required to pay on moving day.
  • Discuss your options for loss and damage protection – get it in writing.
  • Call the ICC at 217-782-6448 to verify rates on file.
  • On moving day, be prepared to pay 110 percent of the written estimate. The mover cannot hold your goods if you pay the amount on the written estimate, plus 10 percent if the estimate was too low. You have 30 days to pay the balance due. Paying with a credit card offers more protection.
  • If a mover offers “freebies” (cartons, tape, etc.), ask questions to avoid surprises later.
  • A legitimate, licensed moving company will not demand cash up front before loading your possessions and tipping is not required. If the crew demands a tip, call the company immediately.
  • Start your search at least six weeks in advance of your move.

Consumers can also check to see if a household goods mover is properly licensed to operate in Illinois as well as the number of complaints filed against each company on the ICC website here. Consumers wishing to file a complaint against a household goods mover may do so here.

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