Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

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Gabriel_N
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 6:06 pm
Location: San Diego, Ca

Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Gabriel_N » Mon Jan 03, 2005 6:17 pm

Firstly, I am thrilled to have found this site. Before I stumbled upon here I was debating between three different movers and found all of them were on the black list.

At the end of this month I am planning a move from San Diego, Ca to Decatur, In. After checking out this site I decided to go with a U-pack they drive place and ended up reserving with ABF for my move (I thought about boulevard, but the cost difference was pretty significant and I know people who used ABF and had great things to say).

Now that I am getting closer to moving, I decided to try to get quotes from some other full service movers just to see what the price difference would be, since it is the off season. I have Alex Moving and Storage coming out to do an estimate on Thursday and was wondering if anyone had experience with them. Cost is a factor at this point, but quality and reliability is much more important to me (better to get your stuff to you unbroken and ontime for a little more, then broken and / or late for much less) so any personal experience would be greatly appreciated. Searching the boards I only saw them referenced once and it was very brief, so hopefully someone has some more information. They got a B rating with the BBB, so they have had some complaints in the past 36 months...

Thanks for all your help!!!!

-Gabriel

Nancy
Posts: 2255
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2004 7:24 pm
Location: California

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Nancy » Mon Jan 03, 2005 6:27 pm

You are moving from San Diego, why not find a local mover? If you need boxes, do you have to drive to Alex's office in Santa Ana? There are MANY excellent movers in San Diego, I'd suggest you go local.

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Diane » Mon Jan 03, 2005 7:36 pm

What is Boulevard? I'm not familiar with them.

Don't use Alex Moving. They gave a seriously lowball estimate to someone posting here who was then hit with a large bill on delivery. Two companies in the San Diego area that have good reviews or comments on this website are Atlas, an Allied agent (website www.atlasallied.com) and Eckert's in San Marcos. Atlas Allied has two good reviews (do a search).

As a rule of thumb, I would advise people not to use any Los Angeles-area moving company with a BBB grade lower than A. You might miss out on some good companies that way, but in my opinion you're taking a big chance otherwise . . . unless you come on this website and ask the opinion of people here about the specific company you're considering. This is only my own view and it doesn't represent the official position of this website.

Gabriel_N
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 6:06 pm
Location: San Diego, Ca

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Gabriel_N » Tue Jan 04, 2005 11:28 am

Geesh... I apparently had work on my mind when I wrote my initial post, I meant Broadway Express, not Boulevard as the other U-Pack they Drive moving option... Thanks for the tip on Alex Moving and Storage. I had called North American Van Lines for a quote and they were going to have Alex Moving and Storage do the actual move, which is why I hadn't selected a local mover for the job. I'll go ahead and let them come out on Thursday to do the estimate, but most likely I'll just stick with ABF since they seem pretty reliable, and they are much cheaper than driving the rental truck and towing my car. I'll let you all know what happens...

Michael
Posts: 3255
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2003 7:55 pm
Location: Charlotte, NC

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Michael » Tue Jan 04, 2005 12:46 pm

Why waste your time with NAVL or any company if your mind is made up on using ABF?? If thats the case just have them email you an estimate based on the weight you "think" you have. If their quote comes back in the ball park your looking at then have them out. But dont waste their time if you already have a company lined up and you know you cant afford a mover.
Michael
************************************

Forget yourself for others and the others will never forget

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Diane » Tue Jan 04, 2005 1:11 pm

I agree, Gabriel. If the estimator has to come from Santa Ana, that's a long drive to San Diego.

Nancy
Posts: 2255
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2004 7:24 pm
Location: California

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Nancy » Tue Jan 04, 2005 1:13 pm

You can go onto www.navl.com to get a ballpark of what the estimator from Alex will charge.

Gabriel_N
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 6:06 pm
Location: San Diego, Ca

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Gabriel_N » Thu Jan 06, 2005 2:55 pm

I agree, you all are right. I went ahead and scheduled some estimates with a few local guys (Quicksilver, Bernardo, and I can't think of the third off the top of my head). The ballpark for them isn't that much more than ABF, and by the time I pay for loading labor (or at least pizza and beer) it may be well worth it...

Thanks everyone.

Nancy
Posts: 2255
Joined: Wed Mar 10, 2004 7:24 pm
Location: California

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Nancy » Thu Jan 06, 2005 3:34 pm

Does Quicksilver do long distance? What van lines do they and Bernardo represent?

Gabriel_N
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 6:06 pm
Location: San Diego, Ca

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Gabriel_N » Thu Jan 06, 2005 4:22 pm

Apparantly Quicksilver does do long distance moves ,from their web site it looks like they are local only (http://www.quicksilvermoving.com), but they are affiliated with Paul Arpin (http://www.arpin.com), and they are aware we are going to Indiana.

Bernardo Moving and Storage is affiliated with Wheaton. I'll post the estimates once I get them...

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Diane » Thu Jan 06, 2005 5:13 pm

You might want to send a PM to "sharon123" who is also moving from San Diego and considering Bernardo, so you can compare notes - http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=3194

You are in an area where low-cost labor is available, which sometimes can bring problems in the sense of workers being untrained. I would advise you to be cautious and check out references, especially for Quicksilver. Their BBB report doesn't look so hot (many unresolved complaints) - http://www.sandiego.bbb.org/commonrepor ... d=25000716 Their website is registered to Michael Morisky at Movers Storage Network in Carlsbad. The word "storage" suggests to me that your goods will be transferred along the way, which creates the possibility of damage and delay. Also, their website advertises very low prices. In general, you get what you pay for in the moving business.

Wheaton has a good reputation as a van line. You can always call the California Moving & Storage Association for their take on the two companies.

Gabriel_N
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 6:06 pm
Location: San Diego, Ca

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Gabriel_N » Fri Jan 14, 2005 3:27 pm

Bernardo Moving and Storage (Wheaton) and Quicksilver Moving (Paul Arpin) came out to do estimates, the only problem is that the lady from Bernardo estimated about 2000 lbs less than Quicksilver, and both gave me an estimate within $150 of each other for the total move (Bernardo was $3437, Quicksilver $3454), I definately was not impressed with Quicksilver Moving at all, she was very very vague with her answers to questions, for example we wanted them to pack certain fragile items (e.g. Televisions, some pictures) and she did quote for those, but said they do not use boxes when they pack them, they just wrap it in blankets, but she would go ahead and charge for the boxes and "hopefully" they would use them.

I am going back to my first plan of using ABF and hiring local labor. My apartments that I am in now are not being terribly helpful when it comes to putting the trailer someplace, we asked if we could block of parking spots for the trailer, but they said we could only use the spots that were open already and couldn't block any off in advance, and all of the curb space in the complex is a red zone. What a headache... After all is said and done I'll post my experience!

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Diane » Fri Jan 14, 2005 9:05 pm

Thanks for the report on Quicksilver (more or less what I expected). If you use ABF, see whether you can get some friends to park extra vehicles in the spaces you need and then if you have the keys to their vehicles you can move them when the ABF trailer arrives.

Gabriel_N
Posts: 6
Joined: Mon Jan 03, 2005 6:06 pm
Location: San Diego, Ca

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Gabriel_N » Wed Feb 09, 2005 3:15 pm

Hello all,

We have finally finished our move and got back online so I thought I would post how it all went.

We went with the ABF route, and the San Diego Dispatch office was great, they showed up ten minutes early, dropped the trailer exactly were I wanted it and arranged to pick it back up the same day. I had two guys from Eckarts Moving and Storage come out to load the truck (they are agents for North American). It took them about 3 hours and I paid them for four. All told it was about $160 for loading labor. they did a pretty good job loading everything. We only suffered one casualty as a result of how they loaded the trailer and that was an old coffee table, nothing I was concerned about. We only used 12 of the 14 feet I reserved with ABF so our moving bill was only $1655 (including ramps at both ends). The truck was picked up that afternoon and we left to drive to Indiana.

The first complaint I have about the truck is the amount of water damage to my belongings when I received the trailer. I followed all recomendations, used a tarp, but several boxes were soaked and we had to throw a few things out. The real bummer is that our antique dining set suffered some water damage, we are going to have to refinish it now. Again, we followed all the precautions, wrapped the table in both plastic and bubble wrap from top to bottom, and the same with the chairs, but they were still wet. I'm sure I could have wrapped them better, but it looks like they actually took a bath on the way to Indiana. Also, the insurance I took with ABF wouldn't cover enough of the cost of repair to even make it worth filing the claim.

The second problem I had was the response time of the Fort Wayne ABF Terminal (destination end). The trailer was dropped off on a Friday morning, and we unloaded during the day and finished up that night. I knew that it was too late for them to pick up that day most likely so it would have to sit until Monday. I called ABF just to let them know they could pick up anytime as it was ready. I spoke to a gentleman who said they would get it on Monday. Again, this was not a problem as I expected this to be the case since it was late in the day. Monday morning, I called ABF back just to verify that the trailer would be picked up that day, and they had no record of me called to arrange pickup of the empty trailer. So I arranged pickup that day and the guy told me it would be early afternoon. Please note that this is an apartment complex and my manager was very nice to let me leave a 24 foot trailer in the apartments over the weekend, but she did ask me to have it out on Monday ASAP.
Anyways, I leave to do some shopping and have the cell phone with me in case ABF has questions about pickup. I return home around 5pm and the trailer is still in the parking lot. I promised my manager the trailer would be gone today since ABF had promised me the same thing. So I call ABF, and they were not planning to pick up the trailer until Tuesday but I begged and pleaded and explained my manager would be pretty ticked and I couldn't guarantee the trailer would be there on Tuesday (implying she would have it towed). I also explained that had they called me I could have made arrangements, but since they did not I need the trailer gone. They finally picked it up around seven that night.

Over all feeling on ABF:

They are a very inexpensive option for the budgeted mover. If you move in the winter, prepare for some water damage, perhaps using plastic totes and wrapping the heck out of your furniture. ABF corporate is very pleaseant to deal with, as is the San Diego Terminal. The Fort Wayne Terminal was generally rude and unresponsive. If I was moving again, I probably would not use ABF just because of the people at the Fort Wayne Terminal, I really felt they did not care about me as a customer. Also the water damage was a bit upsetting.

I probably would recommend ABF to the person with few fragile or valuable objects since they can save you a lot of cash, however I wouldn't recommend it to anyone who has very much nice furniture that could be damaged.

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Anyone here ever use Alex Moving and Storage

Postby Diane » Wed Feb 09, 2005 5:43 pm

Gabriel,

I'm really sorry that you had water damage to your antique table and chairs. I've heard of something like this before, where boxes got a little bit soggy, but not to the extent that something would be permanently damaged as you are describing.

My advice would be to not have the furniture refinished right now but instead let ABF know what happened on the survey form they'll ask you to fill out. They might be able to send someone out to look at it, and who knows, they might make a price adjustment on your move. In the past I've known them to do something like that even when a person had only basic valuation coverage at 10 cents a pound. The problem for ABF is that since an inventory isn't done at loading, it's hard for them to know the original condition of people's goods.

In any case, I know that every time someone reports that water has gotten into a particular trailer, that trailer is marked for inspection and replacement of the roof if necessary. So it's important for you to tell ABF that that yours apparently leaked. All of the trailers are numbered and they'll be able to tell which one it was. This will at least protect the next person from water damage.

As for the unresponsive people at the Fort Wayne terminal, my guess is that they weren't used to dealing with moves like yours not involving commercial freight. I know the phone manner you are talking about because I myself experienced it, but I would describe it as more "rushed, no-nonsense, and clueless about household goods" than rude. In my later calls to the terminals, I learned to identify my move as "a U-Pack move, not a freight move" so they would understand where I was coming from.

In general I think it's hard for ABF to get trailers picked up on Friday afternoons because the drivers normally don't work on weekends (union rules?) and are rushing to get their week's pickups finished. Anyway, that part of your move seems to have worked out all right, since they did pick up the trailer on Monday. It was good that your apartment manager was so understanding.

I'm going to wait to post this in our ABF thread until you follow up to let us know what ABF did, if anything, about the water damage.


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