Dec
28

Angies List: Naughty and Nice Consumer Reports 2012

(PRWEB) December 21, 2012

How many times have you thought youd heard it all, only to have something even more touching or troubling come along? Imagine if you were Angie Hicks and you collected hundreds of thousands of consumer hiring stories every year.

I know I havent heard it all because the stories just keep coming, said Hicks, founder of Angies List, the national consumer review site that connects local service companies to customers. Its a good thing, too. You can learn a lot from someone elses service experience.

To celebrate the 2012 holiday season, Angies List combed through its collection and offers this glimpse of naughty and nice reports that led members last year to make good hires.

First, the nice:

Happy garbage day! One of our favorite reviews arrived in November from a Maryland member who told us about a local garbage collection company that does a lot more than just pick up trash.

Over the summer my 3-1/2-year-old developed a serious illness, so it was a long summer, she wrote. “One thing that always lifts his spirits is his love of garbage trucks, and he wanted a garbage truck-themed party for his fourth birthday.”

The member called the local refuse company to see if they could help and was blown away by the results. The day of the party they drove up in a shiny clean garbage truck, she says. They allowed all the kids to get on and in the truck, blow the horn and operate the crusher blade.

They weren’t in any rush despite working 12-hour days cleaning up after Hurricane Sandy. On top of all that, they brought gift bags and coloring pages. They truly made my little boy’s 4th birthday the best day ever! – his exact words.

While you were sleeping: In April, we heard from a Phoenix member who had recently moved to a new home only to find dangerous and unwanted house guests.

Within two weeks of being in the home, we found four scorpions including one in my 11-month-old daughters bed.

Lucky for her, she found a great pest control company on Angies List.

“When I called about finding the scorpion on my daughter’s crib, they were out first thing the next morning for a complete interior treatment,” she says.

The monthly service plan included on-demand emergency visits when needed (they were) and the member says the company effectively eradicated the dangerous arachnids.

“Not a single scorpion in several weeks,” she says. “If I see another one, I can just call and they will be there!”

And now the naughty:

A late-night sleigh ride: In October, we heard from a Pittsburgh member who recounted the various reasons why Angies List members should avoid using the auto repair shop he hired. Chief among them: The not-so-professional shop owner who works unusual hours.

When we used his service, my car was in his shop and he was arrested at 2 a.m. while test driving my vehicle, the member said, adding that he hopes no one will ever share a similar fate. I have made sure to tell everyone to stay away.

This is why I dont DIY: DIY disasters are a reoccurring theme with Angie’s List reviews, but if your husband is a professional contractor, a DIY plumbing project should be no problem, right? Not so much for one Virginia member who submitted a review in September about the virtues of hiring a pro to do the job right the first time – and not relying on her electrician husband’s DIY plumbing prowess (or lack thereof).

On a Sunday morning I awoke to water coming from the living room ceilingruining the hardwood floor and ceiling, she says. The hubby was gone camping and here I am stressed to the limits trying to deal with this DIY disaster.

What started as a simple repair job she hired a remodeling contractor from Angies List to accomplish turned into multi-room remodeling project that gave the Virginia member new faith in contractors (but not so much in her husbands DIY abilities). [The contractor] creates a work process that creates results, and the end product was a success, she says.

Looking for love long distance: A Florida member told us, in April, about a cross-country web of deception she avoided thanks to the help of a highly rated private investigator she found on Angies List.

I joined an online dating service and was contacted by a man from Idaho, the member said. Even though I live in Florida, he seemed so perfectly matched to me that we started a correspondence that lasted for about three weeks.

But the member quickly moved from smitten to suspicious when her new beau, a contractor, asked for $ 10,000 to help finish a project. After the members own amateur sleuthing caused her to question the mans purported online identity, she turned to a dedicated Phoenix private investigator highly recommended by other List members to sort out truth from fiction.

I called [the private investigator] and discovered a very caring and concerned man who loves what he does. He cared more about me and what was happening than he cared about getting paid, she says. He listened to my story and told me he was more than 99 percent sure that it was a case of identity theft.

The member says the P.I. helped her verify that her pen pal was using another person’s information in an effort to deceive her and that she promptly contacted the identity theft victim to let him know what had happened.

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Angies List helps consumers have happy transactions with local service professionals in more than 550 categories of service, ranging from home improvement to health care. More than 1.5 million paid households use Angies List to gain unlimited access to local ratings, exclusive discounts, the Angies List magazine, and the Angies List complaint resolution service.