*Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

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treee
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:09 pm

*Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby treee » Thu Jul 12, 2007 4:57 pm

I found this website way too late but I still have 2 weeks until my anticipated relocation to Georgia from NY. I need some help as this is coming out of my own pockets.

Based upon the advice here, I began my search incorrectly when I used the I-net to request moving quotes. A-One of Brooklyn as well as Empire Van Lines both sent reps to my house to give a visual inventory of my 3 bedroom apartment. By my estimates we do not have a lot of things. My wife is the kind of person who would rather throw away or pass along items we dont use regularly or need.

Before deciding upon the two, I did a googling of their company names and didnt find anything significantly worrisome about either. This was at least a month ago that I began my search. I decided to go with A-One because I see them around my neighborhood quite often and the rep was friendly. After telling them about receiving another competitive quote from Empire Van Lines, The rep quickly reduced his original estimate (after the visual) to a lower rate. I was then told that "As long as the inventory list remains the same, I can expect this rate of about $2000 to be firm" Nothing has been signed and nothing states that this is a binding estimate.

I was quoted based upon a visual inspection claiming appx 600cu ft. and 4000lbs. I've since provided them with a $150 deposit to "lock in the rate since gas prices can fluxuate and this is a heavy moving season".

It was only today that I found this forum and have learned about Empire's shady past. For a second I was relieved about my choice in A-One but despite the fact that, I can't find one negative comment about this company on this site, the fact remains that I am being charged based upon volume and NOT weight. As per the advice of this forum, this is enough to cut and run from this "deal".

Armed with the info from this forum, today I called A-One to ask about "Binding-not-to-exceed" garauntees as well as having my inventory reassesed and recharged based upon the actual weight. This same sales rep tried to convince me that being charged by weight was NOT the way to go and that "Flat rate" is better for the client. I insisted. I am awaiting a new price quote from them now since supposedly the rate I was given was lower or different than a "by weight" quote. Sounds a bit odd to me.

Now I am second guessing this decision to go with these guys and its so last minute. My move was scheduled for the last week of July. Just today I've requested that someone from Moovers contact me but that hasnt happened yet.

Pls advise as time is short (2 weeks until my move). I really appreciate any resplies.
>>>

Thanks!
Treee

FYI I once had a auto dealership attempt to burn me from posting a horrible experience I had with them on a similar site reporting fraudulent business practices and they had to nerve to try and sue me. They lost by the way and dropped the claim when I would't pay them to "settle". These sites WORK!!!

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

Re: Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby Diane » Thu Jul 12, 2007 7:04 pm

There is actually quite a bit posted here about A-1 First Class. See this post on the Superlist linked to below my name - http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 1632#61632

It is legal for them to quote by volume on an interstate move if it is a Binding estimate. Probably they won't even weigh your shipment. The Binding estimate ensures that it will be worth it to the company to do your move - they know they will get $4000.

Although I'm not a big fan of A-1, I don't think they will actually scam you. But please read what is said about them in the above post. Keep a sharp eye on the billing to be sure you are being charged the correct amount. Also, people have reported overbooking problems with them.

If you want to get another quote, I recommend calling Maher Van Lines on Long Island to see whether they have availability. They seem to be good people. Contact information and reviews are on the Superlist.
Diane
Check out domestic companies on this thread. Click here for a detailed, authoritative article on international moving.

treee
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:09 pm

Re: Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby treee » Thu Jul 12, 2007 8:36 pm

Thanks for your insight, Diane. Today has been such an unsettling day for me since learning all that can go wrong with this move. I'm closing on our home the same week we plan to move so I dont need anyone trying to scam me from my hard earned $$$ right now.

A-1 First Class Viking Moving & Storage is a different company than A-One. They have different MC & DOT#s, as well as different websites. I made sure to distinguish between the two name spellings while searching for info on A-One. I just hope that other posters did the same so these reviews are as accurate as possible.

A-One Moving
USDOT# 897503
NYSDOT 33508
http://ai.volpe.dot.gov/hhg/SearchDetai ... t%3DSearch

A-1 Viking
USDOT 125550
NYSDOT 11346

If quoting prices for interstate moves based upon cubic ft is ILLEGAL then how do these companies, such as A-One Moving and Storage boldly post and defend this method on their website. as if its a better method to determine price? (see below)

"The final cost of your move will be determined by the total cubic footage of your shipment in addition to any packing materials-services. You will not have to worry about shipping heavy items anymore. No matter how heavy your shipment is, you will not be charge by its weight and there are no charges for tolls, mileage, and gas or travel time."

So then why is there a $90 surcharge on my "Interstate Estimate"? I will ask the rep this question tomorrow. They told me today that they will recalculate my quote based upon weight. Why not base it upon the already supplied weight quote devised form the multiplying the cubic ft by 7lbs estimate? I'm also confused as to why there has been no contract for me to sign. When is a contract required, only on move day?

I'm going to check with Maher tomorrow. Moovers is overbooked.

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

Re: Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby Diane » Thu Jul 12, 2007 10:16 pm

Sorry that I misunderstood what company you were talking about. But A-One looks much worse. It is the one on Ditmas Avenue in Brooklyn, right? It has 10 BBB complaints over the past 36 months (a lot) and its president is listed as Yosef Cohem. Many dubious and scam companies are run by citizens of Israel. I would not use this company.

:arrow: I just found a horrible review of them on the Internet, describing overcharging and severe damage in April 2007:
http://www.moverreviews.com/review/00007718.asp

So drop them, even if you lose your deposit!

Besides Maher, an industry person posting here as "Glad to Help" recommended several other companies on Long Island. Here is the excerpt from the Superlist:
Independent moving companies

--Austin Verity & Son, Inc. (independent) in Seaford and Lindenhurst (also in Palm Beach, FL).
Austin Verity has the website www.verityvanlines.com and it also uses the name Verity Van Lines. It has the phone numbers 516-785-7620 in Seaford and 631-884-8385 in Lindenhurst (in Palm Beach the phone number is 561-845-7753). As of 8/06 it had 3 BBB complaints over the past 36 months. Recommended by "Glad to Help" (industry person) for shipments from NY to FL because the company runs straight trucks, as well as tractor trailers, to FL, so that you avoid a shuttle in NYC:
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 6214#66214
He added that it has very high quality drivers. In 8/06 I saw a positive review of this company on another forum (for an interstate move).
"motleyfan" (real name Jay) moving to NC reported in 3/07 that Austin Verity does not accept credit cards and gave him a Nonbinding estimate:
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=13251

--Joseph Barton (independent) in Farmingdale (also in Delray Beach, FL).
This company has the website www.josephbarton.com and the phone 631-293-2113. As of 8/06 it had no BBB complaints over the past 36 months. Recommended by "Glad to Help" (industry person) for shipments from NY to FL because it runs straight trucks, as opposed to tractor trailers, to FL, so that you avoid a shuttle in NYC. "Joseph Barton is a little elitist and does many high profile local moves on Long Island's Gold Coast, but offers an outstanding service.":
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 9521#69521

--Leonetti Bros. Inc. (independent) in Oceanside.
This company has the phone 516-536-0344. As of 8/06 it had only 1 BBB complaint over the past 36 months. Recommended by "Glad to Help" (industry person) for shipments from NY to FL because it runs straight trucks, as opposed to tractor trailers, to FL, so that you avoid a shuttle in NYC. He says that the company specializes in pianos and packing & crating and has been family owned and operated for 50 years.
http://www.movingscam.com/forum/viewtop ... 6214#66214

If Maher is unavailable, you might consider calling one of these others. I trust "Glad to Help."

Thinking of van line agents, "Glad to Help" also said good things about Hall-Lane (United) in Commack, and it just got an excellent review here. I don't know what borough you are in, but you might even be able to use Wade Odell Wade (United) in NJ. They sometimes have availability at the last minute.

Again, it is legal for companies to quote by volume on interstate moves if the estimate is a Binding estimate. If it is a Binding Not to Exceed or a Nonbinding estimate it is not legal. Some people posting here may not have known this distinction.

MusicMom
Posts: 19323
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 11:51 am
Location: DC Metro

Re: Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby MusicMom » Fri Jul 13, 2007 8:07 am

There are a couple companies that make most of their business doing "flat rate" moves, which are Binding based on volume. however, since the rules changed in August 2005 to make Cubic Feet measurements ONLY allowable on Binding Estimate, we're finding scammers have shifted their methods to fit the rules. Some say it up front, others don't. What they say in the end is that if they did not do a visual estimate, the quote will not be upheld as Binding. They load up your stuff, say you have more stuff than was on the estimate (without even looking at you inventory list, then say you owe twice as much money. You protest, saying you had a Binding Estimate, they say "yeah, but you added more stuff. We had to re-do the estimate, and it's all YOUR fault for trying to screw us.

In general, you should only use a volume-based estimate if you were the one to request it in the first palce, and a company employee has seen everything and made their professionally-trained opinion on how much stuff you have. They can't argue with thier own employee. If the mover's trying to push the volume-based move on you from the getgo despite your wishes not to, have a strong suspicion that the scenario above is what they are planning.

Even with a GNTE, they can still say you added more stuff unless you get their own estimator into your house. Here, if you read over this link, you'll see that they are required to send someone to your house, as you're near them, anyway.

http://www.protectyourmove.gov/consumer ... ightsD.htm

I think by now you should be seeing that his company is really trying to convince you to do things their way, which is not the way a legtimate company works.

treee
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:09 pm

Re: Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby treee » Fri Jul 13, 2007 2:58 pm

THANKS again for the assistance!!!

I've just booked the services of Maher Van Lines of Long Island and felt 100% comfortable on the phone with Pat who answered all of my questions up front. I could easily see the difference in the two companies and even if this trip appears $100 more expensive than A-One, I will KNOW ABSOLUTELY how much its going to cost on pick up day. Piece of Mind is definitely worth the $150 deposit I had to drop on A-One to "reserve my date and lock in the rate".

Treee

MusicMom
Posts: 19323
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 11:51 am
Location: DC Metro

Re: Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby MusicMom » Fri Jul 13, 2007 3:15 pm

Good for you!

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

Re: Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby Diane » Fri Jul 13, 2007 4:26 pm

I'm thrilled that Maher can move you. I started getting really frightened when I saw that terrible recent review of A-One. Please be sure to come back and post a review of Maher after it's over.

For others investigating moving companies:- it can be very informative to Google the name of the company plus the word "complaint" (often turns up a lot of stuff).

sheela
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2007 11:49 pm

Re: *Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby sheela » Sat Jul 14, 2007 12:33 am

Hi! I'm glad you decided not to use A-One Moving - Brooklyn. I used A-One for a move out of a 1bedroom apt in manhattan to their storage unit. I got an in-house estimate, they then tried to triple charge me at the end of a very long night. They were also 7 hours late, the movers were very unprofessional, 1 of them walked out on the job then reappeared 30-40 minutes later (at a price of $99/hr). One of the movers was either high as a kite or off his meds. I refused to pay at the end of the night. Each bill they have sent me has had different numbers, different inventory lists and 2nd grade math errors. The "customer service" rep I was dealing with was worse than a spoiled kid. She was petty, accusatory and rude. I finally filed a formal complaint with the BBB and sent the company my own version of an itemized bill for what I was willing to pay. They have finally agreed to accept my final price.

Please, please, please for anyone who is planning a move... DO NOT USE A-One Moving & Storage-Brooklyn.

treee
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:09 pm

Plans may have to change yet again

Postby treee » Sat Jul 14, 2007 3:09 pm

Tom Maher just called today to get more specifics on my location. But it sounded to me like they may NOT want the job because of my location. This decision is within his right but it passes the hassle right back to me. I must say that all throughout he was very pleasant.

He lead me to believe that they've had issues with Brooklyn pick ups due to the congestion and density of some of the neighborhoods. After telling me this I revealed that there is an elevated train tressle smack dead up against my building. He mentioned something about having to possibly "shuttle" the goods since they have a 13ft, 18 wheeler. There was also some miscommunication regarding my building being a walk up without an elevator. I definitely mentioned this to Pat in my initial discussion but now each flight is going to cost me an additional $100 (x4). With a minimum move of 4000lbs ($2k) this is getting a bit over my budget.

I am now considering ABF U-Pack for this move. The issue here now is that I will have to rent a U-haul, find friends to assist on a weekday with loading my things to the Uhaul, driving the truck down to the ABF terminal , then packing one of their trailers for delivery. Another issue will be finding assistance to unload the truck once I'm in Georgia.

WOW! Still no movers and the move is a little more than 1 week away. Gotta keep trying to find a solution and map this whole ordeal out.

farrah7031
Posts: 4619
Joined: Sun Jun 11, 2006 5:08 am
Location: Tallahassee, FL

Re: *Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby farrah7031 » Sat Jul 14, 2007 4:33 pm

Try www.emove.com for loading/unloading help. Make sure to choose a highly rated company.

treee
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:09 pm

Re: *Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby treee » Sat Jul 14, 2007 7:25 pm

You all are great! Shea's already scheduled an appointment to do a walk through early this week.

THANK YOU!

Treee

treee
Posts: 6
Joined: Thu Jul 12, 2007 3:09 pm

Re: *Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby treee » Sun Jul 15, 2007 9:42 am

I just had to come back on to announce what just happened to me regarding A-One Moving and Storage (Brooklyn, NY).

On Thursday or Friday I called A-One and spoke with Joey (yes, get used to the names so you know who you're dealing with) about my concerns about their estimate based upon cubic feet as well as never having been provided with a signed contract nor a legally a binding estimate.

Despite all the advice out there that speaks to the contrary, he continued by trying to convince me that being charged by weight is not benificial to the client. After visiting this forum, I knew something was wrong and I wanted out. He only wanted to provide me with a verbal assurance of my estimate being a binding one (Huh?). All documents were up to this point provided by email so NOTHING WAS EVER SIGNED nor did these papers include the word "binding".

On Friday I sent a pleasant email to joey requesting my $150 deposit back and included my concerns without being accusatory in any way. I was going to give them until Tuesday to process this refund request so I was maintaining a positive spin on this entire transaction despite my concerns.

Just about 30 minutes ago i received a call from Jerry, the dispatch manager trying to confirm my upcoming move. I politely let him know that on Friday I had sent a request to Joey to cancel. He tried hard to convince me that i was getting the best rate with A-One but I simply told him that I appreciated him coming to my home to do the estimate and that I had already made up my mind. Jerry confirmed that my deposit would be refunded and basically wished me luck with my move and also said that if my move with "the other company" doesn't work out, I should return to use A-One's services.

Well that was nice of Jerry!

5 minutes after that call ended pleasantly, I get an odd call from joey who is the one who I had been dealing with over the phone and via email for the last few weeks - the same guy who made all the verbal assurances and gaurantees to me but couldn't back them up with any signed agreements when I requested them. Remember, he's the one who tried to convince me that cubic ft estimates were the way to go. From the way our conversation ended, I'm sure he'll log on here and reply under an alias denying all of this. Joey wanted me to place my trust in him and take his word that the price will not change unless I add additional items. In a perfectly honest world, perhaps, but in reality, I would be the only FOOL if I didn't CMOA (cover my own *ss).

After the greetings were exchanged, joey began to curtly accuse me of not telling Jerry (his boss?) the truth about our conversation and the quality of service he provided to me. THAT'S WHERE I HAD PUT My FOOT DOWN. I let him know that nothing of the sort had transpired in my earlier discussion with Jerry. I said that my mind was already made up about this and that this converstion wasnt at all necessary. This is when he really lost his cool and continued by telling me that no matter who else I use for the move, I was going to be over charged by "triple. BY TRIPLE" he emphasized. Without a breath, he then said "Goodby" and hung up on me as I was replying.

All this to say that from what I've learned here...

1) Go with your gut. When uncomfortable, back out.

2) Do your research or risk getting scammed (Thanks movingscam.com)

3) Never give a deposit. It's not a necessity and many other honest companies will never ask for one

4) Again, do your research!

5) A-One was probably going to be the ones to "overcharge me by triple" if I hadn't sought other options. I can't say this with 100% cetainty, but since Joey felt the need to be disrespectful, rude and unprofessional by calling me back to berate me for making a wise consumer decision, this is most likely the road we were heading down.

He ruined the little bit of goodness I saw in this company after my conversation with Jerry. Too bad A-One. Now I know you were up to something! If and when I get my deposit back (as promised) I will certainly include that in my next post, just to be fair.

Watch your back if you decide to use A-One moving and Storage in Brooklyn.

Now...on with my move!

Treee
Last edited by treee on Sun Jul 15, 2007 12:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

MusicMom
Posts: 19323
Joined: Wed Feb 25, 2004 11:51 am
Location: DC Metro

Re: *Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby MusicMom » Sun Jul 15, 2007 11:37 am

Goo job on following your gut.

To CYOA, type and sign a letter to A-One putting into writing the verbal conversations that have gone on. Not ethe conversation you had with Joey on Friday in wich you declined the services of A-One and requested your deposit back, and underline that Joey said then and again later that your deposit would be refunded.

After that paragraph, outline why you cancelled with A-One, that you were uncomfortable with the fact that A-One gave you an estimate based on volume, but it was never placed in writing to assure it was a Binding estimate, which you have since come to find out is the only legal way an interstate move can be based on Cubic Feet. You did not feel comfortable with their arguments that weight-based moves were not beneficial to the customer, and this was the eventual reason you decided not to do business with A-One.

Then reiterate that you are expecting your $150 to be refunded to you as A-One employee Joey promised you and A-One employee Jerry confirmed, and you are expecting this money to returned to you immediately.

Sign the letter, and if you want to, copy it to the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

Let us know when and if you get your money back. If not, it's only $150, but you're entitled to it if there's nothing in writing saying the deposit's non-refundable.

sheela
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2007 11:49 pm

Re: *Questions about A-One of Brooklyn and an interstate move

Postby sheela » Sun Jul 15, 2007 12:20 pm

Treee - I agree with Musicmom. Put it all in writing and refer to names when you know them and use quotes to identify verbatim information. They can always play the 'he said, she said' game, but the bottom line is if you are documenting all along, it's hard to fight the truth. Trust me when I say I have dealt with Joey, Joe, Simon, Bill, Josef, Jerry, Susan and they are all rude, unprofessional, accusatory and childish. Each time you call you will get another person on the phone and they will not let you deal with only one person. I think it's their way of confusing the matter and giving them the ability to say, " I never said that, and it's not our policy to refund this, that or the other." In my case they used Bill as the scapegoat and kept telling me that he was new and that he messed up my estimate.

By the way, a normal person just can't make up some of the stuff that comes out of the mouths of these people. I had a rather circuitous and childish discussion with Susan, "Customer Service" representative. When I asked her what her last name was, she said to me, "that's none of your business."

I could spend all day reliving my nightmare in dealing with A-One Moving and Storage, but I'll spare you. I finally sent them a 7 page letter of 55 bullet points including conversations, false promises, points of false advertising, etc. I lodged a formal complaint with the BBB. It's almost resolved.

It's not about the $150. It's really the principle. Fight for it.


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