The Better Business Bureau (BBB)?is warning consumers of a seasonal door-to-door scam that tends to pop up in warmer months – asphalt paving and sealcoating scam.
The setup is often the same, someone driving by in a truck stops at your home and offers you cheap asphalt paving or sealcoating. Consumers are told the cost is low because the materials are left over from a job the workers just completed nearby and they just want to get rid of the materials. This is a case where low price does not equal a good deal, seldom do you get what you pay for in a situation like this. Consumers report that the materials are very low quality with the asphalt being very thin or crumbly. Some sealcoating applications actually wash away during the first rain.
Consumers often report that they are asked to pay much more once the job is completed. There are also times when the paver/sealcoater says they have run out of material and will return the next day to complete the job, but they never return.
To avoid being tricked by asphalt/sealcoating scams, always know whom you’re dealing with and research the business 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.
BBB offers the following tips when dealing with an asphalt paver/sealcoating offer:
Be wary of paving companies stating they have extra asphalt/sealcoat 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 business you’re not interested.
Do your homework. Get at least three estimates before hiring anyone. Make sure the estimates are descriptive as to what work will be done and what materials will be used.
Don’t pay with cash. Credit cards are always best as there are options for recovering your lost funds. If you pay by check, make it out to the business, never an individual.
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 317.488.2222.
If you have been scammed, you can help other consumers avoid the same problems by reporting your experience to?BBB’s?Scam Tracker.