The Campton Hill Police Department is alerting area homeowners to seal-coating scams.
According to a post in the village’s Community Counts e-newsletter, homeowners should use caution if a seal-coat company comes to your residence and offers to seal-coat your driveway.
Police say there are two types of seal-coat scams that are commonplace and have been occurring in the area recently.
The first scam involves a seal-coat company arriving at your residence and stating that they were 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 seal-coating companies,” officials said. “Seal-coat pricing 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.
Police say that, many times, the material being used is of poor quality and won’t leave the desired results, which is the reason the cheaper price is being offered.
“Remember the old saying, if it sounds too good to be true it probably is!” the newsletter said.
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 that they need to come outside and look at something.
“Most recently an elderly lady in unincorporated Kane County was asked to come outside and pull some weeds from the driveway before the seal-coating job could be completed,” officials said.
As the victim was outside pulling weeds from the driveway with one of the subjects, another subject enered the residence and stole items, including currency.
In this type of scam, 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
Campton Hills police offer the following advice.
If you are planning on seal-coating your driveway, use a reputable company that has good reviews.
Don’t fall victim to drive up solicitation of seal-coating. Be leery of equipment that has no company markings, which is required by law.
Make sure that the company can provide a written estimate of the work and the estimate includes all the company information.
The village of Campton Hills requires any solicitation within the Village to obtain a permit, which solicitation of any kind is currently suspended in the village because of COVID-19. If someone attempts to solicit in the village and can’t provide a permit please contact the Police Department.
If you observe any seal-coating vehicles operating in the area that appear suspicious please contact the Police Department.
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.