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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

I was recently contacted to complete a Preservation job in my area and was really excited. The initial requests were change the locks, interior and exterior debris removal and rebuilding the outside steps.

I accepted even though I never posted on any website that my company provides lock changes or wood working. I gave the quote over the phone and he accepted. Seems good so far, right?

The sketchiness follows:

The number and company that contacted me was out of state preservation company that I have never been in contact with.

I asked for proof that they have the right to work or hire to perform work on the property and never got it.

They said it had a lockbox at the home but it did not.

Incorrect address.

When I brought up sending an official quote to be signed he states that we already have an agreement.

Kept adding services- pressure washing, lawn maintenance etc.

After all this, I decided to give the benefit of a doubt and still check the exterior of the house and ready to perform work if/when he sends some type of proof that we can start working.

Atleast an hour and a half passed by so we decide he no longer wants us to work on the house or he is fabricating proof lol.

When I got home, I called and told him that unless he can get a locksmith or someone to change the locks and provide a lock set we will refuse the job.

He angrily states that I am wasting his time and I keep trying to explain the red flags that he raised through the process and I’m trying to protect myself.

My questions:

Am I being overly cautious?

Not wanting to sign the quote/contract was a huge red flag to us. We also didn’t want to change locks on a home that we do not know who owns it.

What is the normal process for obtaining proof and coming to an agreement?

It seems standard that someone wanting a preservation service would know who owns the home and can easily give that information out.

Any information would be greatly appreciated and maybe I won’t have a second disaster anytime soon.

Thanks.
 

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I verify ownership of every property I get an order on through the states GIS website before I ever leave the house. You're right in requesting proof of permission to complete the work- It's ultimately your responsibility if you complete any work and anything goes wrong at the property, or if the mortgagor is just PO'd and decides to sue. You're also right in wanting a signed contract before any work begins.

Who was the preservation company requesting the work?
 

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Likely he was a sub of a sub.
Likely that he was supposed to have you backround checked before giving you work.
Likely he was supposed to have your insurance in hand before giving work. Did ask for that?
Likely, you were going to get ripped off.

Pressure washing? That sounds a bit like Safeguard/Fannie Mae which is one of the biggest ripoff/PITA combos on the frieking planet!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I verify ownership of every property I get an order on through the states GIS website before I ever leave the house. You're right in requesting proof of permission to complete the work- It's ultimately your responsibility if you complete any work and anything goes wrong at the property, or if the mortgagor is just PO'd and decides to sue. You're also right in wanting a signed contract before any work begins.

Who was the preservation company requesting the work?

Ok thank you for the clarifications. I really didn’t want to be over cautious and see how these problems are normally addressed.

They were Junkboyz Preservation Corp in New York. And this job was in Louisiana in my service area.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Likely he was a sub of a sub.
Likely that he was supposed to have you backround checked before giving you work.
Likely he was supposed to have your insurance in hand before giving work. Did ask for that?
Likely, you were going to get ripped off.

Pressure washing? That sounds a bit like Safeguard/Fannie Mae which is one of the biggest ripoff/PITA combos on the frieking planet!
Hey, yes I did suspect this from the start. The owner never mentioned being contracted out or sub contracted to do the work, he really just wanted to get me in and out of there as fast as possible.

He did ask for proof of insurance and w-9 but even still, that could just be to not seem so sketchy.

Ha yes there are a lot of crooks in the game and I felt I would never get paid for this job.

In your opinion, is this the right business to be in?
 

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In your opinion, is this the right business to be in?
I have a love/hate relationship with this business. Started in 2007 and rode the wave through the whole recession. This work kept me from having to move away from my family over to the oil fields of North Dakota like 90% of my friends and colleagues did.

As a result of 11+ years of targeted marketing and networking, I still have enough work to make a living at it today, but not near what it was 5 years ago. Knowing what I know now, I would not enter into this business today based on the lack of volume and the greed of the national/regional service companies that are still a necessity if you want work. The time & effort you'll spend in building this business will be so much better spent in pursuing work from private customers. And those customers will almost never come back to you in 12 months and demand their money back like the clients in this business WILL!
 

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Spelling company name with a "Z" immediately disqualifies them. lol!


Yeah, they were going to totally stiff you. Good job sticking to your processes.
 

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What do you guys think of this business today? Is it worth it to enter this business now?
It is a good opportunity for a student to make some additional money but nothing more. I know some people have worked in this business for a long time, but they have a large client base and usually have a niche they work in. for example, one of my old friends works for Sparkle Wash Nashville. They do steam cleaning for residential and business properties. They are making some good money because they have lots of orders. But they do have a niche – they don’t do everything at once.
And I think that if you want to be successful in this area, you need to choose a domain and become a professional there, like a plumber or a gardener.
 
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