Aug 09, 2022

Elderly couple’s ‘tree-change’ turns into moving nightmare

Elderly couple's 'tree-change' turns into moving nightmare

An elderly couple have been left without a huge portion of their furniture and possessions for nearly a year after a move from Queensland to New South Wales went horrible wrong due to their removalist accidentally selling $120,000 of their belongings.

While the removalist company, Kent Removals & Storage, has apologised for the mix-up, Gary and Lorraine Taylor have, unfortunately, lost some of their furniture and possessions for good.

The pair have been unable to unpack and settle into their new home for the last year because of the missing furniture and other belongings.

Mr and Mrs Taylor wanted to move from Queensland’s Bribie Island to NSW’s Bega, but ended up experiencing the full force of “human error” by the removalist.

The couple is demanding compensation from the removalist, who enabled possessions that they had owned for nearly 60 years to be sold.

Mr Taylor told 7News, “We’ve been married for 60 years, and 60 years of our bloody furniture has just gone down the tube and nobody cares.”

During the move, the couple packed away their furniture and priceless possessions into two removalist trucks.

Mr and Mrs Taylor had originally hired a removalist, WridgWays, that went into liquidation last year, and all the clients were moved over to Kent Removals & Storage.

Since the removalist is assisting liquidators, one of the containers holding the Taylor’s possessions was mistaken for office supplies and assets for the former WridgWays removalist company that was set to be sold off.

One of the items owned by the elderly couple that was sold at auction, a rug worth $28,000, was sold for nearly $200.

The couple are currently consulting with lawyers about taking legal action against the removalist to recoup some of the costs of the loss of possessions, however, it is going to cost the retirees around $50,000 out of their retirement savings.

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Kent Removals and Storage, Steve Alves, told 7News, that he only found out about the incident last week and that human error was the reason behind a container of Mr and Mrs Taylor’s belongings being sent to an online auction company.

This issue has been passed on to the organisation’s insurance provider and Mr Alves said that the company should have “taken a lead role in the process and did not”.

“In terms of the missing items, given the quantum of the potential claim, the matter has been referred to Kent’s insurers along with an instruction to ensure that the matter is expedited in a prompt, efficient and reasonable manner for Mr and Mrs Taylor.”

So far, the removalist has only refunded the couple 40% of the moving charges, however, the organisation has indicated that they intend to refund 100% of the moving costs. But this will not cover the cost of the lost furniture. 

The Taylors are waiting to hear back from the removalist’s insurance provider to see if they will be reimbursed for the $120,000 loss in possessions.

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