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>> Who Can You Trust?
Due Diligence Prevents Headaches
As is common in other industries, the storm shelter business is one that can fill with fly-by-night companies looking for a fast buck following deadly tornadoes. Often these individuals will pop up, purchase shelters from other manufacturers for resale and then disappear when the skies clear and the fear of storms is once again forgotten. Customers unlucky enough to deal with one of these temporary companies often find themselves in a fix when problems arise with their shelters and they realize that the phone number of their installer is no longer in service.
The good news is that it is fairly easy to identify companies that will be there for you long after the sale to honor their warranties. Here are some simple tips to help you find them...
1.) Ask the business if they are an accredited member of the Better Business Bureau. If so, they should tell you which one they are accredited with. For example, U.S. Storm Shelters, LLC is accredited with the Fort Worth, Texas BBB and holds an A+ rating.
2.) Find out how long the company has been in business. If they are less than 3 years old, exercise caution and do additional research to be sure they plan on remaining in business for the long haul. A Google search on a company's name can often give you good additional information. If you search and find no results, be wary.
3.) Look for membership in professional organizations like the American Tornado Shelter Association (ATSA) or the National Storm Shelter Association (NSSA). If the company is a "Producing Member" of either of these organizations, that is a sign that they have invested a significant amount of time, effort and money to verify that their shelters and safe rooms are well engineered and tested. A fly-by-night company will not go to the effort or invest the money required to carry such certifications.
4.) Don't settle for a Texas Tech or FEMA logo on a website. As mentioned in item 3 above, call or visit the website of the ATSA or NSSA and verify with them that the company is indeed a member in good standing of the organization.
5.) Check other sites for reviews and comments on any company you are considering. Facebook, Google and Yelp are all great sources for reviews. Here at U.S. Storm Shelters, we do not filter our customer reviews on Facebook. We want you to see who we are and how we care for our customers without censorship.
6.) After you have done the above, feel free to ask for references of previous customers in your area if you are still unsure.
The bottom line is to do your research. A warranty is only as good as the company offering it. Shysters can promise the world because they have no intention of being there for you once the check clears. Here at U.S. Storm Shelters, we will gladly help you find a shelter that fits your needs even if that means that we must refer you to one of our competitors. Feel free to call us if you have questions. We're always here to help.