The Campton Hills Police Department would like to remind all residents to be cautious when accepting services for driveway seal-coating. Every year homeowners in the area fall victim to numerous seal-coating scams. Please only use a reputable company and seek out their services. Always be cautious of anyone approaching your property and soliciting seal-coat services. Any company soliciting in the Village of Campton Hills MUST obtain a permit from the Village. Soliciting permits are currently suspended due to COVID-19 safety measures.
There are two types of seal-coating scams that are commonplace and have been used to fraud unsuspecting victims out of money and items.
The first scam involves a company arriving at your residence and stating they are in the area doing work and have extra material in their tanks and can offer you a good price for the service. Many times the subjects will start at a high price and work their way down until the homeowner agrees. This type of haggling is not common with reputable companies. Pricing for seal-coating services is fairly universal depending on the size of the driveway and doesn’t vary much from one company to another. If someone offers you a starting price of $500 and works their way down to an agreed upon price of $200, this should raise concern and is not common in the industry. Many times, the material being used is of poor quality and won’t leave the desired results, which is the reason for the cheaper price. Remember the old saying, if it sounds too good to be true it probably is!
Another seal-coating scam involves theft. Usually, two or three people will show up at a residence unannounced and offer to seal-coat a driveway. Once a price is agreed upon, the subjects will advise the homeowner they need to come outside and look at something. Examples used to lure unsuspecting homeowners out of their residence can include pulling weeds and looking over the driveway prior to service. When the homeowner comes outside the residence and are being distracted by the subject/s, another person enters the residence and steals items, including currency and jewelry. The subjects will usually say they have to go pick something up and will return a short time later, but never come back. By the time the homeowner goes back inside the residence and realizes the items were stolen the subjects are long gone.
How To Prevent Seal-Coat Scams
- If you are planning on seal-coating your driveway, use a reputable company with good reviews.
- Don’t fall victim to drive up solicitation of seal-coating. Be leery of equipment with no company markings, which is required by law.
- Make sure the company can provide a written estimate of the work and the estimate includes all company information.
- If you observe any seal-coating vehicles operating in the area that appear suspicious please contact the Police Department.
- Many criminals involved in seal-coating scams look for residences occupied by the elderly. Please make sure any elderly family members are aware of the scam and don’t fall victim.
Seal-coating Red Flags
Arrives at the residence unannounced and advises they were doing work in the area.
- Haggles on the price. Prices are pretty standard in the industry and reputable companies don’t haggle, especially if there is a significant difference between the initial price and the final agreed-upon price.
- No company markings on the vehicle to identify the company, which is required by law.
- Can’t provide a written estimate or anything with the company name and/or logo.
- Attempts to lure you out of the residence for any reason.
- Wants to seal-coat the driveway with rain in the forecast.