Friday, July 27, 2012

New Times Moving and Statewide Relocation Review

Alright, Inklingers, I told you all I would be posting a review post about my moving experience, and here it is, in all it's glory!

For those who find this review through a search engine, here's a quick snapshot of my moving experience with New Times Moving and Statewide Relocation: On a scale of 1 to 10 of my happiness with the move (1 being not happy at all, 10 being ecstatic), I'd give them a -523. Yeah, that's a negative 523. From start to finish, it was a horrible experience, and I wouldn't recommend this company to my worst enemy. For more details, continue to read below, and trust me, it's worth it.

Hubby called New Times Moving Company to get a price quote for moving us from Virginia to Arizona. This company, unlike other moving companies, estimates your move by cubic feet of household goods instead of weight. Hubby gave them a pretty detailed list of what we were bringing, and the representative at New Times Moving said he was putting it into his little moving calculator, and it spit out 400 cubic feet at $4 a cubic foot, for a total move of $1600.

We'll pause right there. Go and google '2 bedroom apartment cubic feet' and see what you get. Hell, I'll make it easy on you. The estimate of how much space the contents of a 2 bedroom apartment take up is 875 cubic feet. 400 cubic feet is a small 1 bedroom apartment with hardly any furniture. So right there, the company underestimated our move by half; keep that in mind, it will come up later. Yes, we should have done our research beforehand a little more into this, but the representative made it sound like we really had 400 cubic feet of household goods.

Hubby and I talked about it, decided this company must be awesome, googled some reviews and made our decision. We put down our deposit, scheduled a date for pickup, and started the saving money and waiting game.

After receiving our confirmation email, we get a call from Statewide Relocation saying that New Times Moving had contacted them about our move and they would be handling it from here on out. Hmph, a red flag was raised, but whatever, this must be how things are done. Spoiler alert: New Times Moving IS Statewide Relocation. Google Statewide Relocation's reviews and you'll start to put the puzzle together. Same company, same address (I kid you not- look at the 'Contact Us' sections of the websites- they moved a '1' over to make it look like it's not the same address) 2 different websites, 2 different phone numbers, 2 different sets of reviews so you are thankful, when you do your research like we did, that you are getting a company with amazing reviews. After you pay your money, you find out that Statewide Relocation, who has horrible reviews, is the actual company moving your goods. Yeah, no lube, no loving, you just got screwed big time.

What can I say about Statewide Relocation? They hardly ever answer their phone. When you actually do get
in touch with someone, they barely speak English. They set up a pickup date for us, called 24 hours in advance to say that the driver would be there between 4pm and 7pm the next day. The driver never showed. At 7 I called them (about 30 times, I kid you not, before someone answered), and they told me the driver was still 45 minutes away and we needed to just schedule for 7am the next morning. Great.

Around 7:45 the next morning the movers show up. We had the apartment to pack up and the storage unit right down the road. Now, the apartment had a set of bunk beds, a dresser, a curio cabinet, a dining room table, a TV and some boxes. After packing up the truck with our apartment stuff, the driver comes and tells me that we're already at 400 cubic feet and the $1600 the company estimated us. If we wanted to continue to the storage unit, we'd be charged over the $1600 estimate we had received. Then he looked at me as if I had a decision to make. It's my stuff, of course we are loading it onto the truck.

We got to the storage unit, and get this... we had exactly 400 cubic feet of stuff there, too. What a coincidence, right? I'll give you a visual of what the movers were telling me about the size of my stuff...

1 bunk bed with 2 twin mattresses, 1 dresser, 1 curio cabinet, 1 small dining room table with 4 chairs, 1 32" TV, 4 plastic Rubbermaid bins, about 10 liquor store boxes, 3 large boxes
is equal to
2 double beds with mattresses, box springs and headboards/footboards, 3 small cabinets, 6 plastic Rubbermaid bins, 1 large plastic trunk, 10 liquor store boxes, 10 large boxes.

That math totally adds up, right? It's not like they just doubled my original estimate in their head and decided to charge me that at all, is it?

After pitching a huge fit about the new bill handed to me after my stuff was loaded on a truck, I signed the paperwork. I had to board a plane the next day; I didn't have time to tell them to unpack it and kiss my ass, we'd be going with another company. The original estimate was $1600, this new bill was for $3300. They ended up charging me $158 for tape and boxes, even though my stuff was already boxed up and taped. As I was arguing with the moving guy about how something wasn't right here, that's when he calmly told me (my mom as a witness, standing right there next to us)...

The company does this on purpose. Every pickup he does for the company is double what the estimate is. The company underestimates the quote on purpose to get the business, then on pick up day, after the truck is loaded, the customer finds out they really have double the stuff that the company said they did. It's how the company makes money. And, the customer ends up feeling like the mistake is their fault, that they didn't inform the company of how much stuff they really had, when in reality, they were underestimated on purpose.

I was shocked, but now everything made sense. A 2 bedroom apartment really is 800 cubic feet, not the 400 cubic feet the company leads you to believe. I had done nothing wrong here. Every part of me wanted to tell them to unload the truck, that I wouldn't be falling victim to New Times Moving and Statewide Relocation's practices, but like I said, I was boarding a plane the next day. I had to let them do this.

Because of the doubled estimate, we were forced to put our stuff into their storage for 30 days, which was included free in our contract. At first, Statewide Relocation called us every other day to ask us when we'd be having our stuff delivered. Most of the calls were around 6 or 7 in the morning, so finally I got testy with them one day, explained they were calling Arizona, that we'd call them when we wanted it delivered, but because they had screwed us on the move, we were taking full advantage of the 30 free days of storage.

After a payday or two, we had the money to pay them, so we called and scheduled our delivery. The customer service rep told me that I needed to email her the information because I had changed our delivery date several times. That was hogwash right there, I had never scheduled a delivery date. To prove this point, after she was extremely rude and told me I needed to email her, I agreed, and hung up the phone, knowing they didn't even have a delivery address. She called me back a minute and a half later and said, 'Ma'am, we don't seem to have a delivery address for you.' My reply? 'Yeah, I know. It's kind of hard for me to have scheduled a delivery with no delivery address, huh?' I sat there, silent. A few seconds went by. 'Yes, ma'am. Can we have that delivery address, please?' I emailed the information, too, because I had quickly learned I needed to cover my ass every step of the way with this company.

I was surprised when we got the call a few days later saying the truck had been loaded the day after I emailed them my request, and we'd have our things that weekend. Pretty awesome... until delivery day came.

The driver called to say he was an hour away on the morning of the delivery. Over 2 hours later, he showed up. We had them deliver to our storage unit, because if we would have opted for apartment delivery, the company would have charged an extra $100 for having to carry our stuff over 100 feet from the truck, and $150 for the two flights of stairs they would have gone up. I kid you not, this crap is real. So, when we rented a storage unit, we had to get a bigger one, up front, with direct transfer truck access so the driver couldn't stick us with the $100 carry fee. He showed up, over an hour late, with no help. Just him, no one to unload the truck. That's when he told us, in very broken English, that he called some guys to come help out, but it looked like he wasn't going to show, so was there a chance we had any friends that would come help unload the truck.

Get the f*ck out of town. Our contract stated, and I quote, "Full service move, A-Z, loading, transporting and unloading of your belongings." Hmmm.... if we're having to unload the truck at delivery, that's not a full service move. Hubby immediately got on the phone with the moving company, who was, lo and behold, closed on Sundays (our delivery date). That's when the driver tells us that he'll pay us to help unload the truck. Considering we were just raped of almost $1600 and were now broke, and it was 110 degrees outside in Arizona, we agreed.

2 hours later, Hubby was handed $20 by the driver. Then he told us, 'Is very important you no call company about this' and handed Hubby an extra $10...

  1. Aren't people in movies paid way more than $10 to keep their mouth shut?
  2. There were supposed to be 3 people coming to help. Were 3 people going to get paid the $20 total he handed Hubby? I think not. Hubby should have gotten way more than $20 as he was the only help the guy had.
  3. We didn't call the company. I have a blog and internet access to the Better Business Bureau's complaint department and moving review sites. That's way more effective than calling a company that knows exactly what they are doing to people, and we kept our word to the driver.
No, we haven't called the company (remember, they are the same company) to complain; it wouldn't do a damn thing. These people know exactly what they are doing, and have a mastermind behind it, enough to have planned out separate sites, separate companies (supposedly), one with amazing reviews, one with horrible reviews. Word is getting around, though. I filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau, who had tagged New Times Moving together with Statewide Relocation, and they have had 16 complaints in the last month alone. I've requested our delivery fee back as a refund through the BBB, the $1600 we were overcharged on purpose. We'll see how that goes. 

The purpose of this post as to get out my frustrations, yes, but to hope that Google or other search engines pick it up when someone goes to research either of these companies in the future... a warning, per say. This company was horrible, has no respect for the customer's belongings, is shady and knows they are shady, and swindles people out of money on purpose.

To sum it up, if this moving company was the last moving company on earth, and we had to move cross country and could only use them, I would sell most of my belongings and load up what little bit I had left onto the back of blind donkeys and trust these donkeys to move my stuff cross country rather than to allow New Times Moving or Statewide Relocation to move my household goods again. 

Blind donkeys, people, blind donkeys. 

*Please note that this review is my own opinion and experience with New Times Moving and Statewide Relocation. No one has paid me for this review or has influenced my opinion one way or another. Other customers may have had different opinions or experiences with this company, but this is 100% truthful of my personal experience.

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  1. I'm so sorry this happened - moving isn't stress enough?!?!?! Good for you to put it out there and help someone else from getting screwed.

    I love how he tried to slip your hubby a $10 to keep quiet about the $20.....

  2. Sounds like an awful moving experience. We were on the verge of going with this group and your comments and others warnings have given us pause - if not full stoppage.
    Many thanks - W&E

  3. Crisis avertered thanks to your review!!! You really drove the point home with the "blind donkeys" too! : ) Looks like we may opt to just do it ourselves with a POD - very difficult to find any reputable moving companies it seems... Thank you for sharing your experience!

  4. Used these jokers in the past and had problems with them as well. It's good that this blog entry ranks so high on the google results, since new times moving puts lots of fake reviews on the moving sites to try and push down the negative reviews written by customers.