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How to Choose a Reliable Locksmith: Avoiding Scams and Ensuring Security

Updated: Jan 10

Encountering a lockout situation or needing to upgrade your property's security unexpectedly can be stressful. The locksmith industry, unfortunately, has its share of scams and unskilled workers. This guide provides crucial tips on selecting a trustworthy locksmith, ensuring you receive the service you need without falling prey to scams.

1. Research Local Locksmiths: Start by researching locksmiths in your local area. Utilize online and community platforms. Take note of locksmiths with positive reviews and a solid reputation for reliability and expertise. 

2. Verify ALOA Registration: In New York State, where licensing isn't mandatory, checking a locksmith's registration with the  Associated Locksmiths of America (ALOA) is essential. This ensures they meet industry standards and are skilled enough for your needs. 

3. Check for Insurance Coverage: Locksmith work can come with risks. Confirm that your chosen locksmith has adequate insurance, including liability coverage, to protect against any potential damages during service.

4. Get Recommendations: Word-of-mouth remains a powerful tool. Ask friends or family about their experiences with locksmiths. Positive personal experiences increase the likelihood of satisfactory service.

5. Ask for an Estimate: A trustworthy locksmith will provide a detailed estimate before starting work. Be cautious of vague or suspiciously low quotes, as they might indicate scams.

6. Inquire About Additional Fees: Be aware of extra charges like emergency service fees or mileage. A reputable locksmith will be transparent about all costs.

7. Check Their Website: A professional locksmith's website should offer authenticity with real images of their team and projects. A local contact number instead of a generic toll-free line shows community commitment.

8. Look for Reviews and Ratings: Read reviews and ratings on various platforms such as Google, Yelp, or the Better Business Bureau. Customer reviews can provide insights into their professionalism and work quality.

9. Evaluate Professionalism: Notice their communication style, toolset, and approach to the job. Trust your instincts; if something seems off, it's wise to look elsewhere.

10. Ask for Identification: When the locksmith arrives, ask for identification. A reputable professional will willingly provide identification to reassure you of their legitimacy. Additionally, their vehicle should clearly display the company name, contact information and logo. 

Bonus Tip: Be cautious of Destructive Entry Methods. Proficient locksmiths rarely need to use destructive methods like drilling. A skilled professional should offer non-invasive solutions first.

Taking the time to research and select a reputable locksmith is an investment in your safety and peace of mind.  For help finding a reliable, local locksmith, use ALOA’s Find A Locksmith tool. 

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