It’s bad enough to have a busted lock, be locked outside your home, business, vehicle, but to have locksmith Scams companies try to run scams on you during these dramatic moments just adds to the problem.
It’s not that all locksmiths engage in such unscrupulous deeds, but according to the Better Business Bureau there is a rise in this kind of scam and citizens have to be on their guard to make sure they don’t fall victim to them.
The first thing to watch out for is the estimate. You’re on the phone or on the web and a locksmith gives you an estimate for the job. The honorable locksmith will include all fees and so on just to make sure you’re aware of the costs so that when the locksmith arrives and gives the on-sight estimate you’re aware the cost may rise a wee bit or decrease depending on the complexity of the job. Make sure you give as much clear data, perhaps a pic or two of the lock so that the locksmith can give you the best estimate on the phone as possible before inspecting the lock on-sight.
Scammer locksmiths will try to gouge you for a higher price once they’ve given you an estimate on the phone or try to con you into thinking the job is so tough they have to charge much more. The minute the price goes too high, cut them off and tell them you’ll be looking for another locksmith. Don’t lose your temper nor call names, just graciously thank them for appearing and move on.
Lots of locksmith companies that are underhanded will have multiple phone numbers and run a scam where they make you think they’re local when in fact they’re out of state. They’ll then tack on that extra mileage and distance fees on you so you’ll need to be on your toes and make sure they provide the right documentation to back up their claims. Ask for recommendations and check with the BBB to see if the company is indeed honorable. You’ll have to call the BBB because some locksmith companies will change their name to one that is similar to an honorable one just to fool consumers.
The bottom line here is that you’ll need to take just as much care with locksmiths as you would with any other service that is essential. The authorities are catching up on the scammers but in the meantime a little due diligence on your part can make the difference between spending the right amount of money to get your locks fixed or being taken advantage of.
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