When somebody stops by your house to solicit business, how do you know they’re legit?
Just yesterday in the Bayview Acres community in Mt. Pleasant, 2 men stopped by the house of Kathy Jordan and one of them offered his company’s services. “We were out working on a little project in the backyard and a guy just came to the door.”
Jordan says the man asked her if she needed tree work. “I’d like to top this tree off for you if you’d like. And I’ve actually been thinking about calling to get someone to come look at another tree.”
But she was suspicious about whether he was legitimate. She asked for, and received, a business card and even insurance paperwork from the man. But the insurance paperwork only says the company is insured in Ohio. So she called the insurance company. “The lady said that insurance is valid but it’s only good for Ohio.”
News 2 called the number listed on the business card, and “Nick” answered. He confirmed that this IS his tree business, but he, and none of his employees have been to Charleston. He said, “This blows my mind. I’m in Ohio. I cut trees in Ohio.”
He said he has had a number of salespeople, and they would carry his insurance paperwork so that customers would know he is insured, but whoever is using his stuff in Charleston is operating a scam.
Kathy is just glad she discovered the scam. “I just think it’s really sad that there are people out there preying on, especially the older people. I just think we all just need to be diligent.”
To make sure you are not taken advantage of, do what Kathy did and ask for paperwork, and then call to verify that paperwork is legitimate.
You can also call your city or county to make sure a company has a business license to legally operate in your community.