You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Movers charged 10 times the agreed upon price, Oakville woman says

cbc.ca logo cbc.ca 2018-06-25 Michael Smee
a person posing for the camera: Nadine Natour says the movers held her belongings til she turned over $2,200. © Nadine Natour Nadine Natour says the movers held her belongings til she turned over $2,200.

An Oakville woman's simple $250 move deteriorated into a $2,2000 nightmare earlier this month, she says.

And now, the people she hired to do the move are not returning her calls.

Nadine Natour, a make-up artist, needed a mover in a hurry this month. She had to be out of her Mississauga condo the next day, and into her townhome in Oakville. The mover that she had arranged backed out of the deal at the last minute. So, she says, she turned to the online marketplace Kijiji.

She found an ad for a mover who promised,"No surprises, no time wasting, no hidden cost."

Natour agreed to pay $45 per hour for the move, she says, along with a $200 deposit.

But problems began to develop almost as soon as the crew arrived.

She said they could only load about two-thirds of her belongings into their small truck.

a car parked on the side of a building: Movers charged Natour extra to climb the steps to this townhouse in Oakville, she says. © Nadine Natour Movers charged Natour extra to climb the steps to this townhouse in Oakville, she says.

Before they agreed to drive her things to the new Oakville location, they demanded another $200.

"We said, 'Are you kidding?' And they said absolutely not. They weren't joking, they were not budging. They kept saying call our boss. So I called their boss and said this is ridiculous ... the boss wasn't budging."

Eventually, she relented and paid the second $200 deposit.

a sign on the side of a road: The moving company's address, as listed in its Kijiji ad, is actually the address of this Holiday Inn in Mississauga. © Mike Smee/CBC News The moving company's address, as listed in its Kijiji ad, is actually the address of this Holiday Inn in Mississauga.

And that, she says, is when they began to pile on even more charges.

"Suddenly they're charging me for stairs, telling me it's going to be $35 per step per worker."

When all was said and done, she said the final bill was $2,200 in cash.

a screenshot of a cell phone: A screen grab of the the Kijiji ad that Natour responded to. It was still posted online as of late last week. © Kijiji Canada A screen grab of the the Kijiji ad that Natour responded to. It was still posted online as of late last week.

But there were more surprises to come, she says.

As she was was unpacking her things at her new townhome in Oakville, the movers left — along with a 55-inch TV and several bins of her purses and shoes.

She says she contacted Peel Regional Police, but was told there was nothing they could do, and that Natour should take the matter to small claims court.

Police welcome calls

Peel police Const. Danny Marttini told CBC Toronto that although police cannot always intervene, people should not hesitate to call anyway.

"It really depends on the situation, so I can't say that there's nothing we can do," she said. "It depends on what got them to that point and what transactions have taken place.

"If you think something's happening, or you're concerned that something's happening  it never hurts to call and talk to an officer."

a tall building in a city park: The same ad was listed under a second address, this time in North York, that turned out to be a high-rise residential building. © Mike Smee/CBC News The same ad was listed under a second address, this time in North York, that turned out to be a high-rise residential building.

Moving red flags

The province's Ministry of Government and Consumer Services warns people to be especially vigilant when hiring movers.

"The most important step in a successful move is to find a reputable mover.  Consumers can ask friends and family who have moved recently if they are able to recommend a mover. They can also also check the ministry's online Consumer Beware List to see if a moving company is listed," the ministry said in a statement. 

In its own statement, Kijiji Canada said that Natour should contact the company about her case.

Ad still up

"Regarding general advice for users seeking moving services, it's important to research prospective moving companies before making a final selection," the company said. 

"Users should ask for estimates from at least three reliable movers in their area and check their references, so that one can evaluate options and costs. It's critical to get all promises in writing."

The ad that Natour responded to is still up on Kijiji, under two different addresses.

One of those locations is a Holiday Inn in Mississauga. The other is a high-rise residential building in the Jane and Finch area of Toronto.

Denied he's a mover

When CBC Toronto called the number in the ad, the person who answered the phone said he was simply an agent for moving companies and had no knowledge of Natour's ordeal. He then hung up.

In a brief phone conversation, "Adam," the crew supervisor identified by Natour, denied that he is a mover and said he had no knowledge of Natour before hanging up. She says he has blocked her number.

Natour said she's slowly starting to recover from the ordeal.

"It definitely leaves a bad taste in my mouth," she said.

"Now I understand what they mean by buyer beware."

  • Moving company nightmares: Can you trust your mover?
  • Better Business Bureau warns of moving company scams
  • Belongings held 'hostage': Man pays 2 moving companies to get stuff to new home
  • AdChoices
    AdChoices
    image beaconimage beaconimage beacon