Buyer Beware – Stanley Movers

Last week we used Stanley Movers to move us from Ra’anana to Ma’ale Adumim and it was without a doubt the WORST experience of our lives. To put this into proper perspective, this was my 20th move since 1987 and I’ve lived on both US coasts as well as in the middle of the country.

Cost:

We verbally contracted with Stanley after he came to our apartment a few weeks before our move and walked through writing down everything he saw – he was the only mover who came to our apartment, everyone else tried to give us telephone quotes and I wasn’t comfortable with that. I wanted a mover who was able to assess with his own eyes the amount and types of items that needed to be moved. He quoted us 2800 NIS for a move from our 4th floor Ra’anana apartment to a 3rd floor apartment in Ma’ale Adumim.

A week before the move I sent him an e-mail telling him that we were not moving to the original address on the 3rd floor, but instead to a duplex on the 2nd and 3rd floor a few blocks away. I provided him with the new address. He said the price would remain the same. A few days before the move I still had not received a written quote from him so I sent him another e-mail. He wrote back acknowledging that he would be moving us for 2800 NIS.

They arrived 30 minutes late with a truck that was too small. My husband told them it was too small and they denied it. Three hours later they broke the bad news that they couldn’t fit everything in their small truck, they needed to get a second truck and that was going to cost us a minimum of 1000 NIS more. Since we did not purchase additional items between the time he did his assessment and the day of the move, we argued that this was his problem and we weren’t willing to pay more. He had his men stop working. He called his office. His office called us… Bottom line, we either agreed to pay or they weren’t going to complete the job.

In the meantime, he had a man with a crane downstairs “on the clock” – at least an hour passed between the time he made his announcement of the truck being too small and the time a second truck arrived. When he mentioned (the day he provided me with an estimate) that he might need a crane, I told him that the company who moved us into that apartment didn’t use a crane, they used the elevator – and whatever didn’t fit in the elevator they carried UP the stairs. He assured me that the crane would be included in his price.

The second truck was unloaded onto the sidewalk and I was told that I must pay that driver 1000 NIS in CASH, he wouldn’t accept a check or give a receipt. I didn’t think I had that much cash on me (because the ATM had been out of cash the night before). He told me if I didn’t have it that I should go to an ATM and get it right away because the driver would begin charging me by the hour while he waited! I managed to scrape it together.

THEN Stanley came in and repeated over and over “this is not good”. What? He didn’t like that we had two floors, carrying our things was going to wear his guys (strapping young Russians in their 20s) out. He wanted more money.

Twelve hours after their arrival, Stanley announced that they were finished and I owed him 4000 NIS for the move + 500 NIS for tips + 750 NIS for the crane!

I argued and wrote checks as had been originally agreed. He refused to give me a receipt and wanted me to leave the “Pay to the Order of” blank.

Rude:

They took coffee and cigarette breaks several times per hour. I told them no smoking IN the apartment, so they stood in the hall with the door open (I kept closing and they kept opening) and we suffered through clouds of smoke rolling in. I told them I have asthma and their smoke made it difficult for me to breathe – they ignored me (and they understood English quite well, but I still told them in Hebrew anyway).

Unprofessional and Careless and Unethical:

Stanley’s men were like bulls in a china shop.

They attempted to remove the legs from our dining table with a power tool – after my husband clearly instructed them that the legs DO NOT come off but the table top does. They didn’t wrap our dining chairs at all because they ran out of wrap and padding! Table and chairs are scratched and they refused to do anything about it – they even denied there were any damages.

We had two IKEA metal wine racks – I say “had” because they ruined them… my husband was about to disassemble them when the mover told him that he moves these things all the time. When he carried it into our new apartment, it was completely mangled and had pieces missing and the guy proceeded to slam it on the floor in an attempt to “fix” it! Again they would take NO responsibility.

I could go on and on with a list of damages but I’m sure you get the idea…

I offered to pay them extra to remove old sofas that had been left on mirpesets by the landlord (sofas that cats had lived in) and they threw them off the third floor mirpeset crashing to the ground and seriously upsetting our new neighbors!

All of our boxes were labeled in Hebrew and English with the room they needed to go into. They repeatedly ignored our directions and put boxes wherever they pleased (often on the wrong floor).

They left everything in chaos – boxes stacked neatly in some places and THROWN (and some broken) haphazardly around making it very difficult to find things. But more importantly, the chaos they created covered up the fact that they had tossed most of our camping gear and several boxes under and on the side of our staircase. These were all things that should have been carried up to the storage room. We won’t know the full extent of all damages and/or losses until we’re able to unpack everything.

When my husband complained that hardware and parts were missing from things, he was told to go out to the truck to inspect and see that everything had been taken out (but not the second truck that had left earlier). When he insisted that they pay for the missing parts, one of the guys reached into the bushes and pulled out the hardware and handed it to him!

Bottom line:
– They didn’t complete the job.
– The work that they did was of very poor quality.
– They refused to take responsibility for damages.
– They don’t provide receipts (which are required by law in this country) so they are not operating legally.

Beware!

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