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9 Red Flags Your Lawn Treatment Company Is Scamming YouAugust 16th, 2022 by
Whether it’s a matter of pride or keeping the HOA off your back, keeping your lawn in tiptop shape is part of being a homeowner. Great landscaping lets you enjoy your outdoor space. It also makes your home’s exterior more attractive and helps increase curb appeal.
Finding a reputable lawn treatment company, however, is often easier said than done. The lawn care industry is subject to the same issues as any other industry. Scams and fraudulent offers do happen. They aren’t common, but it’s important to be an informed consumer.
In this article, you’ll learn:
- 9 red flags to watch for
- 9 signs you’ve found a great company
- Quick, easy tips for finding great home service providers
Keep reading to learn more!
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9 Signs of a Lawn Treatment Scam
1. The company appeared out of nowhere.
Door-to-door salespeople have a rough job, so don’t paint with a broad brush in this regard. However, excellent lawn treatment services are usually really busy. They don’t need to solicit more jobs, especially by knocking on doors. It pays to be cautious if a stranger comes to your door with a hard sell for lawn care services.
2. You can’t find online reviews – positive or negative – of the company.
Today, social media reviews are the lifeblood of most service businesses. If a quick web search doesn’t immediately pull up at least a few reviews, be on alert. Brand-new companies may not have had a chance to garner many online reviews, but they should at least have a website. If this is the case, they should be forthcoming about it with you.
3. The company displays questionable credentials.
Many scam operators slap a logo on the side of a truck and try to convince you they are a legitimate business. If you aren’t familiar with the branding of a company that wants to access your property, it’s a good idea to confirm who you are dealing with. Your local Chamber of Commerce or consumer protection agencies are good starting points.
4. The company does not have local testimonials or references.
Legitimate lawn pros should be able to give you a list of references to contact. If someone who is asking for your business balks at this request, it could be a warning sign of trouble.
5. The company doesn’t carry enough insurance coverage.
Any time you let someone onto your property to do work, a certain amount of risk is involved. Legitimate lawn care services will happily discuss and verify with you their insurance type and the coverage amount.
A shady character will usually tend to skirt the question or try to move you onto another subject. Do not get fooled. Make sure anyone working on your property is carrying sufficient coverage to compensate you for any possible damages.
6. The representatives use high-pressure sales tactics.
Arm-twisting is a sure sign of a potential scam. Remember that reputable, experienced lawn care companies are usually slammed with business. Even for new companies, word gets around quickly when someone does great quality work. You shouldn’t feel pressured or guilted into signing an agreement. If you do, you may be dealing with a company that cannot get business any other way.
7. The company isn’t licensed or certified (even when it’s required).
In most states, owning a lawn treatment company requires specific licenses and certifications. This is because lawn treatment services often involve fertilizer and insecticide application. These chemicals are tightly regulated because they can be dangerous if they aren’t handled correctly. It’s important to ensure that the people using them around your home are qualified to do so.
8. There isn’t a specific contact person for questions or information.
Legitimate lawn care will have a dedicated number for you to call if you have questions or need information. Be cautious if you can’t get to an actual person or if your messages go unanswered.
9. The contract is really vague.
Not all lawn treatment companies require contracts, but some do. If you decide to work with a company under a contract agreement, the details should be clear. This is for your protection as well as the company’s.
The contract should list the exact services the company will provide as well as the schedule. It should also include information about how to cancel the service, if you need to do that.
9 Green Lights That You’ve Found a Great Company
Now that you know a few of the more common signs of fraud, let’s take a more positive turn. Here are nine signs you’ve found a keeper:
1. The company maintains an excellent safety record.
A good safety history indicates a company that is committed to guarding the wellbeing of both its employees and customers.
2. The crew offers useful advice freely.
Legitimate companies partner with you to build a working relationship. A good service will share information with you to help you make your lawn better.
3. The company provides a complete range of services.
Many companies will offer discounts if you try more than one service. Having a whole lawn service package available is convenient for you and can save you money.
4. Your lawn improves over time.
You should see visible improvements in your yard as you meet your lawn care goals. Good lawn service companies will work with you to set realistic goals that are specific to your yard.
5. The company has a good local reputation.
If your neighbors and people in the community rave about the company, chances are good that you’ll also have a good experience. Everyone has different expectation levels, but a company with a solid reputation is likely to work hard to make you happy.
6. The staff members are knowledgeable.
You should expect to receive accurate and thorough answers to your questions. Expert lawn service technicians have plenty of experience answering questions about lawn care.
7. The company uses high-quality fertilizers and offers organic or green alternatives.
Substandard chemicals and treatments can damage your lawn. Professionals use only the best and respect your right to choose eco-friendly options.
8. Team members have professional demeanors.
Any service professional should treat you and your property with the highest respect at all times.
9. The crew delivers prompt and efficient service.
Make a point to be at home on a day when you have lawn service scheduled. Note the crew’s arrival time and observe them at work. This exercise could be a real eye-opener.
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Finding a Great Lawn Treatment Company
Your newfound knowledge about lawn care services will help you search for lawn care services with greater confidence. Start by asking around for recommendations from friends and neighbors. Then, look online.
Online directories of vetted and researched companies are a great resource. A quick Google search never hurts, either. Be sure to look for legitimate, recent reviews. And when you meet with a service representative, pay attention to your gut feeling. If something feels off, listen to that! It’s OK to keep looking.
Your lawn is one of the first things people notice about your home. It’s well worth the time and effort involved in helping it look its best!