Tips on Hiring a Reputable Locksmith in San Antonio
Don’t Be a Victim
Avoid falling victim to individuals posing as legitimate locksmiths. The scammers generally overcharge for services, perform unskilled work and prey on people in vulnerable emergency lock-out situations.
Locked out of your house or car? Need locks rekeyed? Purchased a new home? Security work needed? Know who to trust!
Educate yourself before you are in an emergency situation. When using the phone book or internet, consider these things before making that call. Look closely at the ad to see that the business name is clearly identified. A warning sign to look for is the statement "Under Same Ownership" (usually found in small print on a large ad). This statement could mean the "company" may operate under several names.
Before Giving Your Address or Location, Ask the Company for Theirs
- How long have you been in business?
- How long have you been operating in this location?
- Is the locksmith insured? It is important for the locksmith to have insurance in case your property is damaged during a repair.
- Is the locksmith licensed?
- Locksmiths are required to be licensed by the state of Texas.
Ask for an Estimate
Include all work, replacement parts and any additional fees, including a service call or mileage/trip charge. Most legitimate locksmiths will give you an estimate on the phone if you are in a lock-out situation.
Ask for Identification
- Driver’s license.
- Business card.
- Locksmith pocket license.
- If a driver’s license is shown, check the picture, state and expiration date.
- Ask to see an invoice. Check to see if the name and information match the business card and vehicle.
- Ask to see their locksmith pocket license
Has the Estimate Changed?
- Never sign a blank form authorizing work.
- Do not pay for service in advance.
- Always ask that parts to be replaced are returned to you.
- If you are in a lock-out situation, be cautious if you are told that the lock needs to be drilled and replaced. Experienced, legitimate locksmiths have the education and necessary tools that enable them to unlock almost any door.
When the Work Is Completed
Make sure you receive an itemized invoice listing parts, labor and cost of the service call. If you need to dispute a charge, you will need this itemized invoice as proof of how much was paid and exactly what the payment was for.
If you think you were a victim of a locksmith scam, contact your local consumer protection agency for information and assistance. www.consumeraction.gov
You can also contact the state of Texas for any complaints. Texas locksmiths are licensed and regulated by the Texas Department of Public Safety Private Security Bureau. Complaints may be directed to:
P.O. Box 4087
Austin, TX 78773-0001