If you’ve locked yourself out of your home, your first call for help might be to a local locksmith. But before you make that call, Better Business Bureau (BBB) cautions that some locksmiths may not be the solution you are looking for.
“When you are locked out of your home many people are trying to find the first local locksmith to open the door, but in some cases these locksmiths may not be local, or licensed to be locksmiths.,” says Ron Mycholuk, Public Relations Manager BBB of Central and Northern Alberta. “Consumers take a risk in using an unlicensed locksmith."
BBB has received reports from consumers about so-called “local locksmiths" operating in the Edmonton area. These businesses often have multiple phone numbers, different web addresses and look great at first glance. However, they may not be licensed to operate.
One such company operating locally is Local Edmonton Locksmith. This company has multiple numbers and BBB has recently begun receiving inquiries and complaints about this company and its operations. BBB has received 3 complaints that have all been unanswered as of July 2 that allege poor service and problems after the job is complete.
BBB offers the following advice for hiring a locksmith:
Do your research. Don’t just pick the first “local” company you find online. Check them out first with BBB at edmonton.bbb.org to make sure you are choosing a trustworthy company. You can also ask friends and family for recommendations.
Confirm the address. Some disreputable companies list street addresses to give the impression that they’re local, but the address may belong to someone else, if it exists at all. Check to make sure they are where they claim to be by cross-checking their phone number online.
Play the name game. If a company answers the phone with a generic name rather than a company-specific name, be wary. Ask for the legal name of the business. If the person refuses, call another locksmith.
Check the paperwork. When the locksmith arrives, ask for identification, a business card and their security worker license.
Show your identification. Expect the locksmith to ask you for identification, as well. A legitimate locksmith should confirm your identity and make sure you’re the property owner before doing any work.