Has this ever happened to you? You’re locked out of your house, you find a locksmith in the Yellow Pages or online, you call. “No problem,” they say, “we come right over and unlock the door for you. And all that for $35!”
Oh, they do come right over. That’s not the issue. The locked out homeowner is relieved. But that feeling soon changes when the locksmith demands payment up front, in cash, and by the way, it’s triple or quadruple of what was quoted on the phone.
The first clue that something is not right, the “locksmiths” almost always arrive in an unmarked, personal vehicle. They don’t wear uniforms, have a company ID or business card. And when asked to show their license (if this happens in a state where licensing is required), they come up with all kinds of excuses why they can’t show it to you. Or, they produce a fake license. Once they start working it’s also apparent that they’re not trained locksmiths.
Fifteen states require locksmiths to be licensed: Alabama, California, Connecticut, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia.
Continue reading Consumers beware… locksmith scams still going strong
Well over a year ago we wrote about phony locksmiths ripping off consumers. Unfortunately these scams continue to happen every day all across the US. The signs to spot these rogue locksmiths are still the same: no business cards, no marked car, no uniform. The locksmith, often unlicensed and untrained, plays a bait and switch game with the consumer that really is nothing but a scam.
These shady characters take advantage of a bad situation when a person finds themselves locked out of their home or car. In desperate need they call a locksmith that hooks them with a low-ball quote which suddenly doubles, triples or sometimes even quadruples. If the consumer refuses to pay the inflated price, the deceptive locksmith holds the keys hostage until they get paid in cash. Continue reading Locksmith bait and switch scams
Fake locksmiths have gone online and use the power of search engine giant Google to steal a business’ identity and rip off consumers. They manage to access the Google listing of a legitimate locksmith, change the phone number and other contact info and with that little trick successfully redirect consumers’ calls to their own phone.
Most of the time the phone calls go to a call center often several states away that then sends a local accomplice to handle the service call. The phony locksmith shows up, takes your money, maybe even makes a duplicate of your keys – and for all that you will be overcharged. Continue reading Identity theft and phony locksmiths
According to the Better Business Bureau untrustworthy locksmiths are “ripping off consumers” across the country.
The BBB says unhappy customers complain that these locksmiths significantly overcharge, charge for unnecessary services, and use intimidation tactics. In some cases, the final bill is four times as much as the quoted price. They have made taking advantage of people who are locked out of their house or car part of their business model. Continue reading Don’t fall for locksmith scams