Respecting these simple rules will prevent you from being scammed for sure, and even if I am talking about locksmiths, these rules apply very well to all trades in the building industry. You have to understand that the techniques used by scammers are known, nothing new, no magic, and nothing unstoppable.
Before detailing these techniques, it is essential to understand one thing familiar to anyone looking for a locksmith: the state of stress you are in. The scammer will use this state using these techniques to trick you into doing something that you wouldn’t normally do. So before reading on, if you are looking for a locksmith, I beg you to close your eyes, take three deep breaths and tell yourself that even if on your way you will come across scammers, there are also honest artisans ready to serve you at a fair price. Your goal is to find this craftsman.
No order in this list.
Forget the Internet
The web is not a reliable base. Comments from companies? How to check if they are true? Type in locksmith at 8 pm on Google, take the first 3 results and look at their comments. To be among the first on Google at 8 pm you have to be prepared to pay more than $ 30 per click (yes, yes, each click on the ad costs the company no less than $ 30). So, at what price to expect from a company that disburses a loan of $ 300 to have you as a client? (conversion of 1 customer out of 10 clicks). The Internet is only a corporate database, you can use it to find out who is around you, but not rely on it to form an opinion.
Forget the shoemaker
A shoemaker (in the feminine a shoemaker; alteration of cordouanier , “craftsman working the leather of Cordoba”) is a person who makes or repairs shoes. He is not a person who fixes locks. So yes it’s true, it’s not expensive, it just gave you a quick price. For 100 $ he opens your door or replaces your cylinder. Yes, but according to the latest news, you don’t buy your baguette from the mechanic? He is a shoemaker. Stop stinging 5 minutes and call a professional. Your shoemaker is not insured against damage to your lock, damn it, he is not trained (except on the job and often late) to do the job correctly.
Make sure you’re dealing with a real business.
Ask for the K-BIS of the company. On the K-bis, you will have the name of the manager/president, the unique identification number of the company (Siret / Siren), the registered office’s address, and the NAF / APE code. For example, a locksmith Tampa company will have the APE / NAF 4332B (Metal carpentry and locksmith work). If something else is written, then go your way. I can already hear the yeses, but a company can have two activities… Yes, but there are safe cheeks and we are not breaking our heads… If you are not 4332B you will not come home tonight…
Request a quote
A quote is free (and its rhyme) so asking for a quote is free. The estimate should, per article L.221-5 of the Consumer Code, include some important information:
- the date of the quote
- the name and address of the company
- the name of the client
- the start date and the estimated duration of the work
- the detailed account of each service in quantity and unit price
- the price of labor
- travel expenses
- the total amount to be paid HT and TTC
Two scenarios for a quote. Either your door is slammed, the estimate will then have to include only the opening of the door (no breakage during a slammed door so no repair so no replacement). On the other hand, either your door is locked, then it will be necessary to break at least the cylinder, and the craftsman will have to make you another estimate, apart, at the same time as the first to give you the amount of the repairs. Like that, no surprise, the craftsman will not be able to make you an attractive offer with an opening at 50 $ and a repair at 3000 $! (It is important to note that it is still difficult to assess the damage before opening a door and closing properly, the craftsman can review the copy of his estimate …)
If the business does not have an on-street store, which is open and accessible every day of the week, then go your way. Again, too many con artists rent businesses, set up an office there, and open and close their metal curtains from a distance. No one there. This is just a showcase. An absolute craftsman can welcome you to his workshop/shop, he can show you products and take the time to explain the work to be done. The storefront does not necessarily mean no scam or cheap, but, if your craftsman is installed on the street, then there is a good chance that he is honest and that his prices are correct.
It’s not once we shit on each other that we drop our pants
Or that it is necessary to tighten the buttocks. You can now search for a locksmith in your neighborhood without having to open a door. See your craftsmen, ask your questions, ask for the door opening prices and get an idea of his professionalism. Take a picture of your lock and ask how much it could cost to extend or replace a cylinder if you were to be locked in.
Basically, build a relationship with your locksmith. I find it easier to give a commercial discount to an excellent customer, who will have taken the time to get to know me or who will have made keys in my shop than a simple stranger who asks me for an intervention at the other end USA. This is not to say that if you are far away I will not give you a gift … no, I have offered many, many, many interventions to many, many, many customers far from my store but, when same.
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