jonm,

I agree that the BBB is not the holy grail of finding reputable companies, just one more tool to use.

Our local chapter has a few criteria to give a business a satisfactory rating. They have to be in business at least 3 years, have no or few complaints, and the complaints they had must be resolved. I looked for more information than just being a member.

When I did the research, I made sure the companies I picked had no or few complaints, and if they had any that they were resolved in a timely manner and to the customer's satisfaction. Not sure about other BBB chapters, but a company in our area has to do a little more than pay a fee to be rated satisfactorally.

At any rate, it helped to make my initial list a little smaller by reviewing each company online with the BBB.