ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) - A couple of Albuquerque's newest residents are quickly learning just what a pain moving can be. They're still feeling the sting from a moving company they say pulled a fast one.
The couple claims the company quadrupled their original cost estimate and is now holding their possessions, including their parent's remains, hostage until they're paid the inflated bill.
"Everything basically that is our lives, they have," said Carla Solomon-Turner.
She and her husband just moved from Castaic, Calif., to a now-empty apartment in Albuquerque. It was an especially hard trip for her husband, a disabled Vietnam veteran.
"He was a submarine sailor. A bubble head as they call them," laughed Solomon-Turner.
The couple says the moving company "Royal Relocation" is taking them for a real ride. Their original estimate shows they were initially quoted $954 for the move, which sounded like a good deal.
But Solomon-Turner said when the movers go there, the quote turned into $2,400 and just got worse.
"My husband looked at me and said, 'It's going to be $4,200,' and I said, 'What?!'"
Solomon-Turner said their stuff was already on the truck when the estimate quadrupled. She claims it would have cost them more than $2,000 just to unload it all. Now she adds the company is holding their stuff hostage.
It's not just their furniture either.
"They have my parent's remains," she said. "They died about nine years ago, 27 days apart. My mom had lung cancer."
The movers also have all of their family pictures and most of their clothes. Now they're trying to come up with the money, and they have this advice for anyone considering a move.
"Be real careful," said Solomon-Turner. "If it sounds too good to be true, it is."
The moving company says it is looking into the situation, but can't talk about it. An employee also says it's not company policy to load a truck without giving an exact quote.
The couple have contacted the California Attorney General's Office but haven't heard back yet.
This sort of situation turns out to be fairly common. A federal report says there were about 3,000 similar complaints nationwide last year.
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