BBB Investigates Locksmiths in Texas

The Better Business Bureau in Texas advises caution when dealing with locksmiths. Across the United States, there were over 1000 complaints against members of the locksmith industry. A BBB investigator, however, thinks the number is much higher as it is not always easy to track down a bogus locksmith and lodge a complaint.

With an investigation that spanned multiple months, the BBB came up with a number of common issues found in the industry:

Unlicensed locksmiths. The state of Texas requires a license obtained from the Texas Department of Public Safety. This is not always easy to verify, many locksmiths do not publicly list their license number and many refuse to give out their license number over the phone.

False pricing. This is the most common complaint received. Low prices are listed online or are quoted over the phone. When the locksmith arrives to do the work, it is very common for the price to have doubled or tripled.

False addresses. Less than reputable locksmiths very often use multiple addresses or phone numbers. It is not uncommon for an out of state company to use an in-state address to give the impression of being a local company.

Property damage. The BBB received a number of complaints about locksmiths damaging their vehicle or their home. Locksmiths should generally be able to open a lock without damaging it. Many disreputable locksmiths are untrained and therefore resort to drilling out a lock even in instances where it should not be necessary.

Damage to reputable locksmiths. Those who are scam artists give those who are not a bad name. They often try to steal business from honest, local locksmiths. They overrun the internet with multiple listings making it difficult for the true locksmiths to attract customers. There were even complaints of them stealing license numbers and using them in advertising.

The BBB recommends consumers protect themselves by verifying any locksmith with the BBB.

Posted on June 19, 2014 at 10:00 AM