Better Business Bureau warns against shady paving companies
Published 7:57 am Thursday, July 11, 2019
The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota is warning consumers of a seasonal scam that tends to pop up in warmer months — asphalt paving schemes.
These suspect asphalt companies often place ads or go door-to-door claiming to have extra asphalt from a nearby project, allowing them to give you a discounted rate. Unfortunately, these jobs usually end in sub-par work that costs much more than originally quoted.
A woman from Grand Rapids lost $50,000 to one of these sub-par asphalt companies called Convenience Driveways.
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To avoid being tricked by asphalt schemes, always know whom you’re dealing with and research the company at bbb.org. You can always ask the salesperson if they have a solicitor’s license from the city in which they’re doing business, or you can call your city officials directly to ask if they’ve received any complaints about a certain business.
To avoid an unethical asphalt company, follow these general rules:
• Be wary of paving companies stating they are “in the neighborhood” and have extra asphalt at the ready to repair your driveway for a minimal cost. Professional asphalt contractors know, with great accuracy, how much paving material is needed to complete a project. They will rarely have leftover materials.
• Never hire someone on the spot. Trustworthy contractors provide a written estimate that will be valid for many days. If you feel that you are being subjected to high-pressure sales tactics, BBB advises you to end the conversation and tell the company you’re not interested.
• If the quoted price seems very low, chances are the quality of work will be quite low.
• Get at least two estimates before hiring anyone.
• Don’t pay with cash. Credit cards are always best as there are options for recovering your lost funds.
Consumers are often safer dealing with a contractor who has local roots. Contact BBB for free Business Profiles on any company you are considering doing business with by visiting bbb.org, or by calling — toll-free in Minnesota and North Dakota — 1-800-646-6222.
If you have been scammed, you can help other consumers avoid the same problems by reporting your experience to BBB’s Scam Tracker at bbb.org/scamtracker.