Fraud Recovery Experts – HVAC Restoration Group
The HVAC industry is no stranger to fraud, and the fraud recovery experts of HVAC Restoration Group have been there and done that. From identity theft to scams to high pressure sales tactics, these are just a few of the common warning signs that you need to be aware of.
Identity theft is the No. 1 consumer complaint in 2014
The Federal Trade Commission reports that identity theft was the top consumer complaint in 2014. Identity theft is a form of fraud that occurs when someone uses another person’s identifying information without permission. Typically, victims will lose money to the fraudulent activity. To protect themselves from this type of scam, they should always change their account numbers and passwords. They should also contact their financial institutions to notify them of the fraud.
As identity theft became more prevalent, it has become important to learn how to prevent it. Identity theft has been the top complaint for fifteen consecutive years. This is according to the 2014 FTC Consumer Sentinel Network Data Book. According to the report, identity theft was the most common category of complaints among consumers in both states and federal jurisdictions.
Identity theft is a serious problem that impacts people of all ages. Older Americans are more likely to suffer from this crime. Identity theft can include fraud involving government documents, including taxes and benefits. It is also a very widespread problem for people who use credit accounts. Those who have recently lost or stolen their credit cards should contact all of their financial institutions and ask them to close the account. If you are contacted by a debt collector, you should inform them that you are not the owner of the card and cannot pay it. However, debt collection companies are allowed to pursue old debts, even after statutes of limitations have passed.
In its annual survey of consumer agencies, the Consumer Federation of America asked about the challenges and successes it has experienced in 2014. Its director, Susan Grant, told NerdWallet that the consumer agencies in the states were able to respond to more consumer problems than in previous years. Aside from the usual financial services concerns, the survey also sought to identify new kinds of complaints and challenges that face consumers.
Imposter scams were the third most common complaint category. This type of fraud involves con artists impersonating officials from the government. Other complaint categories include bank and lender complaints, Internet services, and debt collections.
The survey revealed that the number of fraud complaints per capita varies greatly between the states. For example, in Florida, the number of identity theft complaints is 186 per 100,000 residents, compared to only 97 in North Dakota. Also, Washington and Oregon have higher rates of identity theft than most other states.
In addition to credit card fraud, the most common types of ID theft are government documents and benefits fraud, bank fraud, and telephone and utilities fraud. These forms of identity theft can lead to tax refunds if the victim was not the one responsible for acquiring the funds.
The FTC reported that IRS imposter scams accounted for the largest increase in complaints in 2015. Imposter scams involve individuals who are trying to trick people into revealing personal and financial information. Several state and national consumer protection organizations also receive complaints about imposter scams.
Common warning signs of HVAC scams
The HVAC industry is home to some reputable and some rogue professionals. Whether you’re in the market for a new unit or are just looking to get yours repaired, make sure you’re aware of some of the most common scams and gimmicks.
A common scam is to provide a false sense of security. These folks may try to convince you to sign up for maintenance agreements that you don’t actually want. They may also try to pressure you into paying for a tune up that you don’t really need. While you may be tempted to nab that sweet deal, it’s not a good idea.
For many building owners, the obvious solution is to enlist the services of an expert to inspect and repair your HVAC system. Unfortunately, there are still many crooks out there willing to take advantage of their gullible customers.
One of the best ways to detect a ripoff is to look for the little things. Specifically, look for the signs that a shoddy job is about to take place. Some of the more obvious tells include a lack of a company business license and the presence of an unaffiliated HVAC tech. https://experianrecovery.com
The most basic rule of thumb is to always ask to see the broken part. This might sound obvious, but the reputable companies have trained technicians who won’t fix your system with used parts. It’s also a good idea to find out where the broken part came from.
It’s also worth mentioning that some HVAC techs cut corners and leave you with a more expensive bill than you expected. On the plus side, a well-maintained system isn’t nearly as expensive as you might think. Another tip is to avoid paying a service fee until the work is complete. However, that doesn’t mean you won’t need to spend a few extra dollars.
To get the best deal, call around and compare quotes. You may also need to get a second opinion. If you’re having a new unit installed, you might want to ask for a discount.
One of the better ways to detect a shady company is to read their reviews. Check for online reviews, including on social media sites. Many legitimate companies have a presence on Facebook.
Also, check out the best rated HVAC companies in your area. In fact, if you’re able to, ask for referrals. When selecting a professional, make sure you get a quote from a few different firms to make sure you’re getting the most bang for your buck.
The top of the line HVAC systems aren’t cheap. You’ll need to consider the cost of parts and installation before making a final decision. So, the oh so important first step is to determine what type of system will suit your needs and budget.