Silver Star Moving Group describes itself as a “fully organized and complete moving company” that will take the stress out of a long-distance move, but my experience was a moving nightmare.
The Florida-based company has plenty of positive Google reviews and a 4-star average. But I wish I had read the reviews from other sources like the Better Business Bureau prior to giving them my money.
In this article, I’ll explain everything you need to know before you consider doing business with Silver Star.
Silver Star Moving Group: How I was ripped off
As a personal finance writer and former network TV journalist, facts matter to me. Everything in this article is true. I have evidence to support the claims that you’re about to read.
Here’s a summary of my experience, followed by a chronological review of everything that went wrong…
Silver Star Moving Group review: Key details
- The initial binding moving estimate was $1,915.30 for 43 total pieces. After minor revisions, it was increased just days before the move to $2,391.68 for 40 total pieces.
- On the day of the move, the movers tried to add additional charges for things the sales staff said would be included: lamps, mirrors and TV sets.
- Silver Star told me to pay the mover the additional charges and they would refund my credit card $100. They didn’t.
- My belongings were supposed to be taken to a storage facility not far from my final destination. Instead, they were stored about 700 miles away.
- The moving company tried to get me to pay $200/month for storage, not the agreed amount of $130/month.
- I was ready to have my furniture delivered to my new home on July 9, 2019. However, the delivery was not completed until August 1.
- Damaged items: Mirror, TV set, multiple pieces of furniture chipped and scratched.
- After the move, Silver Star’s customer service told me someone from billing would reach out to resolve the matter within two days. No one called.
- Total calls to Silver Star Moving Group’s customer service since April 2019: At least 30, according to cell phone records.
Now that you have a snapshot of my move with Silver Star Moving Group, I want to take you through a chronological review of my experience. Names of Silver Star employees are being withheld.
Table of contents
- Moving estimate
- Quality Assurance department
- Moving day
- Delivery of furniture
- After the move
I called Silver Star Moving Group for an estimate on March 6, 2019. I was planning a move from Atlanta to Miami Beach, but I needed several months of storage.
This was my first time hiring movers. I have always done the work myself in the past.
After filling out an inventory list, Silver Star gave me an estimate of $1,915.30. This wasn’t the cheapest quote I got, but the other companies I was considering had worse reviews.
In retrospect, I wish I had spent more time reading reviews of Silver Star. They are plenty of horror stories and people labeling the company a scam or ripoff.
During my time speaking with the sales team, the staff didn’t make it clear that Silver Star wouldn’t be moving my stuff. They are just a broker. The actual carrier assigned to my move was Star USA Moving.
Although Silver Star’s staff wasn’t transparent about what they do, it is stated clearly in the cancellation policy.
I made my first payment to Silver Star for $633. This was the broker fee. The remaining balance would be paid in cash to the moving company in two payments.
Quality Assurance department
Just three days before my move, someone from Silver Star’s Quality Assurance department called me to review my inventory.
I ended up selling a few items on my inventory list, so I expected my estimate to go down. However, it actually increased by nearly $500 to $2,391.68.
The employee said it was because of the changes I made to the boxes I was using.
The lower estimate called for 20 medium boxes, but I only ended up needing 16 boxes shipped. Some of those 16 boxes were large boxes.
The employee was rude and didn’t seem to understand why I was frustrated. I had no choice but to pay up.
After the call, I grew suspicious about Silver Star and began to check out more reviews that I should have read in the first place. Other people complained about similar changes to their binding estimate.
That same night, I emailed the Quality Assurance representative with a question that came up in multiple reviews:
“Will they be charging extra to put the TVs in the box? I was told this would be included if I bought the box.”
I received no response to that email from April 8, 2019, but this would become an issue on moving day.
To be clear, the salesperson said that the moving company would take care of packing my TV if I purchased the box. He advised me to purchase those boxes from The Home Depot for about $20 each.
On the day of my move, the moving company (Star USA Moving, not Silver Star Moving Group) showed up late and the carrier tried to start adding charges almost immediately.
The binding estimate included a $75 charge for stairs, but the moving company wanted me to pay $100. I refused.
Next, the issue of packing TVs, mirrors and lamps. The salesperson indicated that this would be included, but the carrier wanted more money to pack these items.
In fact, my binding estimate notes “Complete packing for mirror.”
I called Silver Star Moving Group’s customer service to ask why these additional fees were being added. They told me to pay the carrier and they’d refund my credit card $100.
I gave the carrier the extra cash, but I’m still waiting for that refund from Silver Star.
The additional charges from the moving company likely would have exceeded $100 had I not chosen to transport the lampshades in my personal vehicle to stop arguing with them.
At this point, we were already behind schedule because the movers were late and I had to call in about the extra fees.
After my items were loaded onto the truck, they were supposed to be taken to a storage facility in West Palm Beach, Florida — at least that’s what the salesperson at Silver Star told me.
As it turned out, the items were being stored about 30 miles from Atlanta, Georgia.
Why does this matter? Since I was moving to Florida, Silver Star said having my belongings in nearby West Palm Beach would ensure quick delivery of my stuff when I was ready for it.
There was also an issue related to the price of the storage, which came with one month free.
As I explained to the salesperson from the start, I needed a few months of storage. He told me it would be $130/month after the free month, but the moving company demanded $200/month.
At this point, I had to call Silver Star again and have them work with Star USA Moving to honor the $130/month price.
Delivery of furniture
After several months in storage, I was ready to have my furniture delivered on July 9, 2019. I informed Silver Star Moving Group and Star USA Moving in advance.
Silver Star told me that items are usually delivered within 3 to 10 days, but mine took much longer.
I spent several weeks sleeping on the floor and wondering if my belongings would ever arrive. Star USA Moving repeatedly told me they were “working on getting my furniture on a truck.”
My condo building only permits weekday deliveries during business hours, which was one excuse I was given for the delay.
Finally, after calling Silver Star Moving Group nearly every day for three weeks, my belongings were loaded on a truck and began the journey from Atlanta.
The moving company was supposed to call 24 hours in advance for me to schedule an elevator. They gave 12 hours notice.
The moving company showed up about an hour late and demanded payment. They unloaded the truck as quickly as they could and dropped everything all over the place, not reassembling any furniture.
According to this email I received from Silver Star, reassembling furniture was part of the deal.
While the movers were still there, I noticed that a mirror was cracked, boxes were crushed and legs to a table were missing. My TV was also damaged.
So glad that I paid extra to move the TV and mirror!
I called the movers a few minutes after they left to ask about the other missing items. They said they would come back that same day after another delivery, but I didn’t hear from them until the next morning.
I waited around a few more hours to receive the missing boxes and even the legs to the kitchen table.
After the move
Once the movers left for the second time, I called Silver Star Moving Group to let them know what happened. I was told someone from billing would reach out to me within two days, but they never called.
That doesn’t really surprise me because I’m still waiting for the $100 refund from the day my furniture was picked up.
Dealing with Silver Star Moving Group was a hassle from start to finish. I made more than 30 calls to their customer service department because many times they don’t call back when they say they will.
This was supposed to be easier than renting a U-Haul and moving my own stuff, but it wasn’t. It was hell.
If Silver Star Moving Group and/or Star USA Moving provide compensation for the trouble that they caused me, I’ll update this review to let you know. To be continued…
Have you had a similar experience with Silver Star Moving Group? Add your review in the comments below!