Losing or breaking your keys while you’re out on the road is a stroke of bad luck. Don’t make that two strokes by falling victim to a car locksmith scam!
Whether you need an auto locksmith to replace a damaged key or cut a new one when you’ve lost all copies, it’s critical to stay vigilant.
And that starts with successfully identifying locksmith scammers that are prevalent nowadays.
Scammers have only one goal in mind: to get your money. Remember, these scammers are not even locksmiths at all, so it’s important you do your research and trust your gut when searching for a local car locksmith.
Here are some of the ways to identify how these auto locksmith scammers operate.
Scam #1: “locksmiths” who aren’t licensed
There’s nothing wrong with asking up-front for your auto locksmith’s credentials. We’re happy to present our licenses - it’s the ones that refuse who you should be looking out for.
We’ve talked at length before about the different locksmith certifications and how they affect you, our valued customers.
Asking for their licenses or proof of certification proves that they are a legitimate locksmith connected to a certified locksmith body. You wouldn’t want to entrust your car to someone who isn’t!
Auto locksmiths who show up without anything to back their identity (or even their company!) are questionable. Any locksmith worth their salt can produce these upon request.
Better yet, don’t let a locksmith or any tradesman without ID start working, end of story!
Scam #2: The no accountability scam
One of the tricks that scammers use is to take you around in circles.
This strategy is employed by scammers of all stripes, not just car locksmith scammers.
Scammers use this trick a lot when irritated customers try chasing them up to repair or follow up on a poor job.
Say you call the original number you used to reach your auto locksmith. Instead of answering upfront, they pass you on to other numbers. These people keep kicking the can down the road, until you eventually give up.
This is a common strategy of scammers that don’t want to be found.
After being scammed, someone might tell you the owner is “unavailable” or that you “have the wrong number”.
These are just some of the ways dodgy locksmiths will avoid follow-up conversations. After all, once they get your money, their work is done.
Scam #3: the bait-and-switch
Who wouldn’t want auto locksmith services with affordable rate?
We all like getting a good deal. However, if you choose a car locksmith who quotes far below what everybody else is, be wary.
For starters, they might be cutting corners. Always make sure that the rate you’re paying for equals the quality of service that you expect.
More importantly however, they might be trying to scam you!
Scammers use the allure of low quotes to sucker you in, before hitting you with the scam. It’s not uncommon for these scammers to quote an attractive dollar value, only to “discover” further problems that need fixing, thus bumping your price beyond what you had originally been quoted.
Another common variation is where you locksmith announces that the low fee they quoted was the callout fee, and that work is going to be extra.
Either way, that “cheap” quote can easily come out to even higher than the “expensive” option!
Join us next week for part 2 of our car locksmith scam blog series
We’re leaving it there for now but be sure to join us again next week. We’ll continue sharing two more scams dodgy locksmiths are using to try and take your hard-earned money!
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Need a car locksmith today? Call Alex now on 0407 022 234.