Finding a reputable locksmith is harder than you may think, there have been headlines splashed around the news recently that are warning consumers about ‘rip-off’locksmiths, locksmiths without a license and locksmith scams.
We know how difficult it can be when you’re in an emergency lockout situation and you immediately click the first company that appears on Google, but this is why we recommend you to do your research now for when that situation may come, as not even the intelligence of search engines can detect whether a company is legitimate.
Signs for whether a locksmith is legitimate
If you have found a locksmith online, there are immediate indications that may imply that this particular locksmith may not have the best intentions, some of them being:
- No physical address listed.
- No registered business name.
- No About Us page.
- No testimonials or customer reviews.
- Immediately quoting a lower price than the average.
- No logo or information provided to say they are a member of the Master Locksmith Association.
If you come across a site that flags all the warnings above, then the best result is to leave this site and find another trustworthy locksmith. Also, whether it’s via the phone or email, always ask for a quote beforehand, unscrupulous locksmiths may initially quote a low price to entice customers and increase the price later on; so make sure you ask for an estimate for the total cost of the job.
However, if they’ve passed all the above and you’ve arranged a call-out or an appointment, then it is still completely necessary to ask a few questions when someone shows up and things to look out for, particularly if they’re in an unmarked vehicle and unbranded uniform:
- Ask for ID as it’s important you know the person’s name who is undertaking the work for you.
- Ask again, how much will it cost and how will it be invoiced?
- Do they look like they have all the standard parts and equipment in their vehicles? As unless it’s out of the ordinary, they shouldn’t leave the property for parts.
- Lastly, a good locksmith should be able to answer all related questions.
If you feel like you’ve been a subject of fraud during a locksmith callout, then you should call the Federal Trade Commission or fill out an online complaint to at www.ftc.gov
Ross Galt Ltd having been helping locals throughout Canterbury for over 40 years’, and our locksmith business has always held a good reputation. We have had several calls from people who have realised they have been duped and we fear ourselves that more and more people will be taken advantage of. Stay safe out there Christchurch, and make sure you do your research.