BBB Warns of Asphalt Scam
Myah Christenson | Jul 11, 2019 AT 4:20 pm
(KNSI) - The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota is warning consumers of a seasonal asphalt paving scam.
Scamming asphalt companies often place ads or go door-to-door claiming to have extra asphalt from a near-by project, allowing them to give you a discounted rate. Unfortunately, the jobs usually end in sub-par work that costs much more than originally quoted.
"Don't let them pressure-talk you into doing something fast. It should take time to put the whole bid and process together," explained Jeff Hanson, owner of Minnesota Blacktopping in Sauk Rapids.
A Grand-Rapids woman told the BBB she lost $50,000 to one of these low-grade asphalt companies.
The company was first advertised as Convenient Paving, but the following year a company with the same phone number was advertised as Convenience Driveways.
The woman received low-end quality on her driveway from the company and demanded it be fixed. After following up with several phone calls she never heard from the company again.
An easy way to tell if a company is local and legit is by their license plates.
"You can look at if they have out-of-state plates, not Minnesota plates... and they're not local, don't use them," said Hanson.
To avoid being scammed by unethical asphalt companies follow these steps:
1. Be wary of paving companies with "extra asphalt." Professional contractors know with great accuracy how much paving material is needed to complete a project.
2. Never hire someone on the spot. Trustworthy contractors provide written estimates valid for many days.
3. If the quoted price seems low, chances are the quality of work will also be.
4. Get multiple estimates before hiring.
5. Don't pay with cash. Credit cards are always best for recovering your lost funds.
6. Go local. Customers are often safer dealing with a contractor with local roots.
Research the asphalt company beforehand at bbb.org.