According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, termites cost Americans billions of dollars each year. Homeowners spend part of this sum repairing structural damage, but much of it goes toward professional termite services.
In some cases, homeowners have alleged fraudulent activities by termite companies. Several types of termite fraud exist.
Misrepresentation of services
One common claim against termite companies is misrepresentation of services. This situation occurs when a company promises to end an infestation or properly treat to prevent an infestation, but fails to deliver. For instance, a company might claim to use advanced treatments but actually employ ineffective or non existent methods. This misrepresentation can lead to substantial financial losses for homeowners.
Another prevalent type of fraud claim stems from false inspection reports. Termite companies are responsible for conducting thorough inspections before treatment, and in Alabama, on an annual basis thereafter. However, some individuals have accused these businesses of falsifying documents. They may fail to report damage that was seen, or fail to properly inspect in order to provide a thorough and complete report of eh condition of the structure as it relates to termites.
High prices and hidden fees
Excessive charges are another common complaint against termite companies. Some homeowners allege that representatives provide initial cost estimates but later add undisclosed charges, leading to high bills. This practice can strain the financial resources of unsuspecting customers.
Incomplete or shoddy work
Claims of poor workmanship are common in the termite industry. Clients may accuse exterminators of performing subpar treatments or failing to complete agreed-upon services. When the insects persist or return shortly after treatment, these claims gain credibility.
Many termite companies offer warranties on their services to instill confidence in clients. However, some homeowners claim that the companies do not honor their guarantees. If a business fails to address a termite reinfestation or refuses to provide follow-up treatments covered by the repair guarantee, customers may file fraud claims.
Pressure tactics and false urgency
Some people allege that termite companies employ pressure tactics and create a false sense of urgency. This way of doing business may involve aggressive sales pitches, claiming that immediate action is necessary, even when it is not. Such techniques can lead to rushed decisions and unnecessary expenses.
To avoid falling victim to fraudulent business practices, homeowners should select a reputable termite company, read the fine print in contracts and warranties and seek multiple quotes before making a decision.