USMPO Headquarters
4315 50th Street NW
Suite 100
Washington, DC 20016
If you are deaf, hard of hearing, or have a speech disability, please dial 7 to access telecommunications relay services.

Our support Agents are always available to assist you

Our free tool provides options, advice, and next steps based on your unique situation.

Are you a Broker? : A Glimpse at a Moving Broker’s Sales Tricks

Moving Brokers guide

Table of Contents

Moving Broker Sales Script
This image above is a screenshot directly taken out of a page from a sales representatives training binder on handling the most common objections.

When Research Isn't Always Enough...

These days, there’s enough resources on the FMCSA’s website to give shippers sufficient information to make an informed decision. Most savvy customers who have done the slightest research know the basic questions to ask in order to make an informed decision. There’s also enough information available to justify that choosing a broker is not the smartest idea. The deceptive part is that sellers are usually trained to avoid or deflect the questions of the savvy consumer. These top sellers are known as sharks, and they’re trained to kill.

The document above was collected from a “sales binder” given to our undercover investigator, at a South Florida based moving brokerage. The following information below is a breakdown of the rebuttals retrieved from the document.  To protect the identity of our investigator, we will not be disclosing the name of the moving brokerage until the termination of our investigation. 

Throughout our investigation, we will be posting a series of articles exposing the most common deceptive practices and sales tactics utilized by rogue moving operators.

In this article, we’ll be covering a section of the sales rep’s training manual. More specifically, the numerous tactics used to overcome the common objection, “Are you a broker?”. When dealing with a mover, make sure to lookout for these common deflections. 

Deflection #1, "It wouldn't make financial sense"

“All long distance moving companies are technically brokers. It doesn’t make sense financially to send your truck across the country for a one bedroom move. So even if they’re registered as a carrier and have a few trucks that they use locally for pick-ups…it doesn’t mean that they use them to deliver.”

A clever way to deflect a customer’s concern, with an agreeable statement, without answering the question. It is true that it doesn’t make financial sense to send an empty truck across country. 

In fact, this is partly why loads are stored in warehouses for prolonged periods awaiting delivery. For this reason, smaller loads are consolidated with multiple shipments onto a larger truck to maximize the efficiency of the available space on a truck. This is the standard operating procedure for brokers. However, carriers also go out of their own fleet to find a truck that’s already headed towards the destination. This is where quality control comes into play, and the challenging task of interstate logistics. 

Although this rebuttal may hold some truth, it is still a deceptive tactic to deflect from the real answer.

Deflection #2, "It Depends on the Route"

“We’re actually both.  Depending on the specific route, we can either send a truck from HQ or use one of our local carrier agents. Usually on common routes between major cities, we send our own trucks. On remote areas away from main highways we can send the carrier agents. This is something that dispatch coordinates once we have the move on our calendar.”

While it is uncommon, a trucking company can broker loads if it possesses both FMSCA motor carrier and property brokerage authority. This can get tricky because a moving broker is not a mover, but a carrier is. A broker does not assume responsibility for, and is not authorized to transport, your household goods. In any case, this answer is grey…when the answer should be black or white. if the representative doesn’t answer you clearly, they’re most likely a broker. 

Deflection #3, "We Operate with a Hybrid Model"

“Actually, we operate with a hybrid model. Even if a mover uses an agent for 1 job in a calendar year, the Department of Transportation, which is our governing body, requires all moving companies to legally register as a broker. So even if we use a carrier agent within our network to facilitate 5-10% of our jobs, we are legally labeled a broker.”

This is false information. There is no such thing as a “hybrid license”.

The Truthful Response Saved for Last...

“Just like most nationwide companies, we do operate with our license registered as a broker. When we have customers in remote areas, uncommon routes far from main highways or in mountainous areas, we can use a local carrier agent to facilitate their move. We are a nationwide company that wont leave a customer without options just because we don’t have a truck in their area. So to answer your question, we do have our license registered as a broker”

This rebuttal is how an honest broker should answer that question. Although the majority of unethical brokers do ruin it for everybody, there are some decent brokers that do exist. The purpose of a moving broker is to find jobs for truck drivers and owner operators that have empty space on their trucks. In theory, they do help fill the gaps and support honest truckers, however, the lack of regulation does lead way for corruption and deception. 

The Bottom Line.

You’ll hear the advice “don’t use a moving broker!” across the internet, and for many people, it’s good advice. With a simple search, you’ll likely discover plenty of horror stories from people who use moving brokers. At the end of the day, you have the freedom of choice to use the entity type that you desire. 

With that being said, some of the largest, most reputable van lines in the country are also licensed moving brokers, which proves that there are legitimate moving brokers out there. The bottom line is that you are responsible for doing your own research, read the fine print, and don’t trust any sales rep pressuring you to make a reservation deposit over the phone. Know your rights and responsibilities and search our database to find verified interstate carriers, and review company profiles before reserving. All carriers approved by the USMPO’s network go through a five point rating process which is displayed on their profile and are held accountable to a strict code of ethics.

There can be several arguments made for both sides, however, the majority of data from bait & switch or low ball estimates come from long distance moving brokers.  Avoid companies that are only licensed to broker moves. Companies licensed as both carrier and broker should be thoroughly evaluated.

Always compare multiple quotes and do thorough research before reserving with any interstate moving company to avoid the laundry list of move day discrepancies that can occur. You can always contact a USMPO representative for questions regarding your interstate move and assistance in making an informed decision. 

Moving Sales Script
An inside look of a rogue moving operation. The photo reveals a printed version of the document posted above. The photo also displays makeshift foam cubicles and an American flag draped behind an office chair.

Share now:

The information provided on this page is intended solely for informational purposes and should not be construed as medical, legal, or financial advice. It does not establish a professional relationship between A Place for Mom and the reader. It is crucial to always seek the guidance of your healthcare provider, attorney, or financial advisor regarding any specific matter. Please refrain from making any decisions or taking any actions solely based on the information presented on this site. Additionally, please note that the inclusion of links to third-party websites is purely for the convenience of the reader, and A Place for Mom does not endorse the content found on those sites.