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Avoid scams

Avoid scams and/or upcoming problems

Avoid Scams: A Guide for Consumers

Scams can be a pervasive and costly issue that many individuals encounter in today's renovation market. It is crucial to equip yourself with the necessary knowledge and tools to protect against fraudulent schemes. In this blog post, we will explore effective strategies and best practices to help you avoid scams and safeguard your hard-earned money. Whether you're a seasoned consumer or new to the online world, this guide will provide valuable insights and resources to ensure a secure and scam-free experience. Let's delve into the world of scams and discover how you can protect yourself.

Let's start

It is common in Thailand that the full payment is divided into two or three-part payments. This is fair for both the buyer and the contractor. "Before work starts, midterm, and when finished and approved by the customer is common".

NEVER pay up 100% before work starts. The cheapest offer you get is always suspicious, especially if it is "too" cheap.

Issue # 1

Here is what could happen and often do: You chose the cheapest alternative, being a cheap Charlie. The contractor starts to work. After the contractor worked for a while he/she tells you that money is not enough to complete the work done. You oppose this, of course since you have an agreement. This will end up with the contractor leaving and never coming back. They did work already with a good profit. Nothing you can do about that.
Now you need to get a new contractor which is not easy. Serious contractors do not want to take up a partial job done by someone else, to risky. If you managed to find someone willing to complete the job then do not be a Cheap Charlie again, you could end up with the same problem one more time. In all, you probably by now have to pay more in total than you would have if you chose the more expensive offer at the beginning.

Issue # 2

When choosing the cheapest quotation you can be sure that all the material used will be of the absolute cheapest quality, probably the workers will also be. You will be aware of this later when problems start to occur. It was not cheap after all.

Example: A customer tried to put in an electric plug into the socket. It was not possible. I opened up the socket and this is what came out. No joke, all the content fell out onto the floor. I checked the origin and it was made in China, cheap, but not so cheap after all.

We changed all the sockets in the house to Panasonic, high-quality sockets.

Issue #3

Always ask the contractor how long it will take to finish the work. This will be an estimate that could mean a shorter time or a longer time for work. A longer time could be damaging for you as a customer for many reasons. Make sure the contractor has the manpower available to add extra workers.

Things can go wrong regardless of what contractor you choose. Human errors happen. That is why it is important that the contractor is obliged to fix the problem for free after work is finished. Will the cheapest contractor do that?

Issue #4

Want to install a glass wall and/or a customized shower cabinet? If you choose a cheap contractor chances are that they will install standard glass because it is cheaper. This is potentially life-threatening. You need to install tempered glass. Tempered glass will not produce dangerous pieces of glass that easily cut into your body when things go wrong. All cars have tempered glass for that reason.

Issue #5

If you are a foreigner who speaks English you need to find a contractor that can speak English fluently AND know what he/she is doing. Asking your Thai wife, who probably does not know anything about renovating, to translate, will likely go wrong.  The English-speaking person should be the supervisor or at least a person who knows what renovating is about. Since Thai law forbids foreigners to do renovation work, all laborers will typically speak only Thai. Without a professional supervisor, this will go wrong for sure. If you do not speak understandable English you need a translator and that will likely not work well. An experienced supervisor will be able to give you many advice and options to make your renovation perfect. This could be gold worth.

Issue #6

Most customers want to choose and buy all inventory by themselves. Choose a contractor who is willing to go with you to the shop to give support and advice as well as information on why his choice will not work well or not at all. If contractors do not want to help you with this, they are not interested in your renovation result—red flag.

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