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Tips For Hiring a Locksmith


A number of locksmith scams have cropped up over the years involving emergency lockout services. Often flooding Internet search engines with fraudulent local listings, these sham locksmiths often don't carry the licensing or credentials required.

The emergency locksmith scam often involves a locksmith insisting that a home's lock needs to be drilled out, rather than spending the time to open the lock without damaging it. Fraudulent locksmiths will also inflate the final bill and insist the customer pay in cash.


Follow these seven tips to help avoid a locksmith scam:


• Be wary of locksmith companies that answer calls with generic phrases like “locksmith services,” rather than a specific name. If a locksmith cannot or will not provide the business’ legal name, find another locksmith.


• When the locksmith arrives, ask for identification, including a locksmith license where applicable. Alabama, California, Illinois, Louisiana, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas all require locksmiths to be licensed.


• Get an estimate before any work begins, including emergency service.


• Ask about extra charges for things like emergency hours, mileage or service call minimums before you agree to have the work performed.


• If the locksmith’s on-site price doesn’t match the phone estimate, don’t allow the work to be performed.


• Most legitimate locksmiths will arrive in a clearly marked vehicle.


• If you’re locked out, be cautious of companies that recommend or insist on drilling or replacing the lock upfront. Most experienced locksmiths have the skills and tools to unlock almost any door

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