If your home is damaged by a fire, flood, hurricane or other disaster, you may need to have your personal belongings moved and stored while repairs are being performed. In the insurance restoration industry, there are companies that specialize in handling personal property that are known as “pack-out” companies. Your insurance company may recommend a pack-out company to you, or you may be solicited by others who show up off the street who want to clean, deodorize, inventory, pack out, and store your belongings. Although this service may be necessary, you need to be EXTREMELY CAREFUL who you hire to perform this work and be sure to thoroughly research anyone you let in your home.
It is very common for disaster survivors to be scammed or have their items stolen or damaged by moving and pack-out companies (even companies advertised on TV). To protect yourself, here are 14 tips to consider before you allow complete strangers to handle, move or take possession of your property.