Originally posted by jaeme911
One little trick I use to avoid this type of gouging is to pay for a service call written diagnostic estimate with a credit card if the remedy seems too expensive. I'll let the service person know that I will be obtaining other diagnostic estimates. Most will take a second look and find a more minor problem (surprise,). If not and the next service person finds a more minor problem then I dispute the fraudulent service person's charge with my credit card company. I've never had to use it with an HVAC person since I've handled my own repairs.
This is another topic we discuss all the time. My best friend is the vice president of a major computer credit card terminal company. I asked him about your post. He says, and I quote : "If the customer received a service, he has the right to dispute the charges if he believes there is a problem with the service. But, if the customer uses this service knowingly trying to get a cheaper price on a repair it is A fraudulent act, and is against federal banking laws. If the credit card company finds that this is true, they will prosecute to the fullest extent of the law." Now, people call us "hacks" and put down our trade. I can assure you that there are just as many consumers trying to cheat us. In HVAC school, many years ago, we took an ethics class. The first words out of the professors mouth were "customers will do their very best to defraud you anyway they can." This happened to me yesterday. Customer called for a repair. I went to his million dollar home with an esclade in the drive, two harlies, a four wheeler and many other nice toys. He seemed to be a nice enough guy, so I gave him a really good break on the repair. Wouldn't you know, he wrote me a hot check!
[Edited by ravenx on 08-25-2005 at 10:11 AM]