Avoiding Shonky Removalists

The NSW Fair Trading warned customers about Bustamove Removals, an interstate removal company that makes runs to Canberra, Brisbane, Melbourne and within Sydney’s metropolitan area.

It received more than 40 complaints regarding the company, which included breaking and losing items, not arriving at scheduled times, and not arriving at all.

The company also allegedly changed delivery times with no notice, stored items at extra cost, held goods hostage, and asked additional money for storage costs prior to delivering.

The company also did not provide contracts and receipts when asked. The overall financial damage amounted to $69,000.

The Choice listed some tips to avoid being scammed by removalists.

Doing research

  • Searching around by reading customer reviews online.
  • Asking family and friends for recommendations of removalists they have worked with and were satisfied with.
  • Checking the accreditation in the Australian Furniture Removers Association (AFRA).

Asking the proper questions upfront

  • What is the entire cost of a move?
  • What are included in this cost? Is it a flat rate or hourly charge?
  • Are there extra costs that need to be considered?
  • How long is the move going to take?
  • If there are delays, is there an additional cost for storage?

Getting an exact quote

  • Always insisting on written quotes after the detailed information of the move is provided.
  • Making sure that the quote is individually listed and that the removalist accounts for each charge.
  • Asking for more information regarding specific charges, and ensuring everything is clear prior to accepting quotes.

Getting a contract which clearly explains the agreement

Ensuring that it comprises of:

  • all details regarding the service to be provided
  • the pick-up, delivery locations, as well as the move dates and times
  • insurance details for damage or loss.

Submitting a removalist complaint

The Choice also listed the steps to file a complaint. It first involves sorting the problem out with the removalist prior to submitting a complaint with a fair trade industry. If this doesn’t help, check the websites for the particular agencies.

With these tips, home or office removals in Sydney and in Australia can be safer and hassle-free.

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