The locksmith industry in Florida was not regulated till early 2010. That means locksmiths were free to practice their craft in the state without having licenses and fulfilling other requirements. This lack of regulation gave way to locksmith scams perpetrated by fraudulent people posing as locksmiths. So, in order to curb these scams, certain authorized organizations such as The United States Federal Trade Commission have come forward. They warn the consumers against locksmith scams and enable them to file complaints through mail or call and give tips on how to avoid falling prey to locksmith scams.
What Makes You Vulnerable– The moment you get locked out of your house, car or office, you obviously feel a kind of helplessness. The urgency of the situation is such that you just want to get in even if it means paying extra money. It makes you vulnerable and clever locksmiths take advantage of it by charging you more than what is reasonable. Locksmiths enjoy the advantage of getting paid immediately unlike other professions which get paid after 30 days or after the customer receive a bill. Locksmiths insist on getting paid in advance in most cases or immediately after the work is done. A fraudulent locksmith will demand only cash so be mindful to steer clear of him.
What are the Most Common Locksmith Scams– The most common locksmith scams take place through call centers. When you search online for locksmith companies, many of them are not legitimate. They are actually call centers located out-of-state which send the work to the highest bidder. What happens is fraudulent locksmiths make a website and spend handsome amount of money to appear on the first page of search results. It is natural for a customer to choose the top listed locksmith company. As the customer connects with the call center, he/she thinks they are communicating with a genuine locksmith company, totally unaware of the fact that this is some call center representative who sends your job to a locksmith in your area. Obviously the locksmiths have already paid the call center for being in their database.
Now the question is how call centers become the medium for these locksmith scams? The lack of regulation in call centers makes their representatives careless who don’t bother if they are sending an unlicensed or uninsured locksmith to serve you. The worst thing about these scams is that some of these locksmiths can also have criminal records and which could prove disastrous for you.
How to Avoid Locksmith Scams– Here are some tips on how to avoid locksmith scams-
- Make Clear that You are Aware of Locksmith Scams– In order to avoid falling prey to a dishonest locksmith, convey to him in the very beginning that you are aware of the locksmith scams and won’t be paying inflated charges. Ask as many questions as you can so that he thinks you are not going to become a victim.
- Keep Knowledge of Reputed Locksmiths– You can best protect you against locksmith scams by having knowledge of legitimate locksmith companies beforehand. So when you need one, you can call him without any worries of being cheated by him.
- Steer Clear of Cheap Prices– While searching for a locksmith in your area online; never be swayed by the ones that claim to charge you unbelievably low prices. The fact is that no legitimate locksmith will come to serve you at an extremely low price. Such locksmiths are mostly frauds. They do so just to get a chance to target a desperate person and charge extra fees from him/her.
- Check the Physical Location of the Locksmith Company-Make sure that the locksmith company you chose to serve you has a physical location and not just a PO Box and that the address is genuine. Some swindler locksmiths use fake addresses to cheat people into thinking that they are local.
- Check the Reviews-In order to check the legitimacy and reputation of a locksmith company; you can go online to see the review that other customers have left about them.
- Make Sure if the Locksmith is insured– Once you have chosen a locksmith to come to serve you, inquire before he comes whether he is insured in case he damages something. The locksmith scammers will never provide you the proof of their insurance.
- Check the Credentials of the Locksmith– When a locksmith arrives, ask him that you want to see his credentials such as his first and last name, the name of the company and the address as well as the expiration dates. Also make a note of the license plate number of the vehicle he came in. Write down all the details and keep them for future reference.
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Contact A1 Locksmith Services of the Palm Beaches, Inc.- the most popular locksmith service- in West Palm Beach. Don’t fall prey to locksmith scams. Trust A1 Locksmith Services of the Palm Beaches, Inc and be sure you have hired the best!