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Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

Posted by lucille (My Page) on
Wed, May 28, 14 at 18:00

I am needing some siding work done and I'm getting some bids. I had joined Angie's List several years ago and was very happy. I read reviews, real reviews by real people and that is what I want.
I let my membership lapse as the stuff I've been doing this last year did not require me hiring anyone.
I was going to sign up again and then I saw this article.
Opinions?

Here is a link that might be useful: Article about Angie's List


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

I think Consumer Reports does a great job: I've subscribed for over 30 years. But sometimes they get a little too neurotic. If they said the reviews on Angie's list were fake or were altered, I'd be concerned, but they didn't. In general, I've found the reviews to be believable and useful, and much better than trying to nose around on my own.

I don't care if companies that advertise appear earlier in the ratings, their ratings are what they are. And, if I'm going to hire someone for an expensive job, I am going to look at all the companies in that category, regardless of where they show up. I also don't expect that my use of Angie's List guarantees that I will always be totally happy with the outfit I hire. I expect to have to employ due diligence after I develop my short list from going over their reviews. The link you provided was interesting, but I didn't see anything there that compromises my use of Angie's List, or my view of its usefulness.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

There have been numerous threads on these boards regarding angies list and not a lot positive.

They are a pay-for-play organization, with a business model not the dissimilar from the BBB.

I've used this as a resource for years, because they self-police and the resources are localized via their search engine.
http://www.thebluebook.com/


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

Kudzu, I think you make good points. I am going to go ahead and subscribe.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

I joined Angie's list and after using it numerous times have NOT found it to be helpful or accurate. Very disappointed. Seriously, have gotten better info from YELP.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

mdln-
Maybe it's a function of where you live. I live in a major metropolitan area where the listings in each category are pretty extensive, and I have found contractors for several different kinds of jobs in the last year (tile work, fence building, rug cleaning, tree removal) that were all excellent and reasonably priced.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

@kudzu9 - I am in the Chicago area.

Interestingly, a friend had a problem with a contractor and threatened to post his bad experience on Angie's list. That prompted the contractor to issue a refund. Unfortunately, his bad experience was not posted, so others will not know of the bad experience.

Any member can write anything, about any company. After my experiences, I am now thinking business owners get people to write good reviews for them.

Would be more valuable if reviews were verified.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

mdln-
I am sure you are right about contractors getting friends to post reviews, but they do have to be a paying member to post a review, which I feel is a better screening device than, say, Yelp, where anyone can post. Further, I typically only go for companies that have lots of reviews and I feel like I can tell when someone has enough detail that I trust the review not to be a puff piece. I know Angie's List is not perfect, but I have had much better results with it than asking friends for recommendations or trolling through the phone book.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

@kudzu9 - agree!

Have went back to Consumers Checkbook; hope I have more luck there.

It is so hard to find contractors at the high end of the bell curve, the top 10-20% - the best of the best. Probably grew up watching too much "This Old House." :-)


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

"It is so hard to find contractors at the high end of the bell curve,"

This is where you find them;http://www.thebluebook.com/

No subscription fee for the use.

Area and trade search.

I believe in ones ability to succeed or fail based upon their own merits, not on a pay-for-play subscription service.

Several of my past customers have, as a courtesy, asked if they could refer me to angies list.

I urged them to resist that temptation, with their dying breath.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

it is far fetched to say people post fake reviews. angieslist forces me to login under my user name and verifies my review before posting to their site. it is always possible for someone to scam the system but it would be costly and difficult to have a bunch of fake user names to post fake reviews.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

I've had contractors give me a quote contingent on my promising to give them an outstanding rating on line. (Similarly, allowing them to put up an advertising sign in my front yard.)

This post was edited by saltidawg on Wed, Jun 4, 14 at 20:13


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

ardcp-
I agree. Unless a contractor on Angie's List has only a couple of reviews, I'd say the likelihood of any significant percentage of the reviews being questionable is quite low.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

As far as trusting the reviews,consider this. If a consumer was for some reason unable to post a bad review,the word would quickly get out. I tend to agree with pay to play,albeit somtimes a small amount. I offer CraigsList as an example of the foolishness and discontent some will cause in a free inviroment. The biggest opertunity for keeping contractors and repair shops honest would be stings by State Attorney Generals. It wouldn't require them to investigate all complaints,just a few plus stiff penalties for crooks. I think Adam Corolla's new show is a model of what could be accomplished if A.G.s would make the effort. I'm aware the subject of Angie's List is more about compitency than honesty but the two cross paths very often.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

On the truly left coast, the Dept. of Consumer Affairs, Contractors State Lic. board routinely conduct stings, and they have subpoena powers.

But none the less. supporting a pay-for-play organization is a wide open door for the potential of larceny.

There are few thing beneath my dignity, belonging to a pay-for-play, is right near the top.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

I have been a member of Angie's list for at least 5 years. Have used them very often, maybe 15 or 20 times. We got scammed 10 years ago before Angie's list came to our town so I am sensitive on this subject.

Though every contractor on Angie's list has not been totally satisfactory, several have been mediocre, I have found that I can be fairly confident I won't get scammed. The really oily, greasy con artist contractors stay away from Angie's list. I think that is worth $45 a year given the amount of work we need done at our house.

And at east half of the contractors have been above average. Though I am no longer naive and I know that in the climate of capitalism with a down economy, due dilligence is still very important and making assumptions along with poor communication can still give you less than good results, Angie's list or not.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

I subscribed to Angie's List a year ago just for what I thought would be one job, since you can do a month-to-month subscription for a couple of bucks. Then I started using it more and more and switched over to an annual. If you call and ask what the best deal is, you can usually get a greatly reduced price if you are a first time customer. I think I got 3 years for about $45. Whatever the cost, it's a trivial amount if it helps ease the search for a good contractor and avoid just one bad one.


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RE: Consumer Reports gets on Angie's List, where do I go now?

We had trouble finding contractors for our remodel until a member from this Gardenweb site recommended Angie's list to me. It turned out it was a sound advice.

I read every review of contractors in the category we were looking for. I picked out ones who had done projects of similar size and dollar amount. It helped me to compile a list of questions and contractors to call. We set appointments with contractors who sounded promising in the phone conversations. We met these contractors in person and presented scope of work. We then made final decision based on their quotes, personality, feedback from their references, work style and starting time.

Angie's list provides a starting point; there is fair amount of work afterwards to screen contractors. We know there is risk involved because good contractors work out with other clients may not guarantee they would work well for us. We like to spell out details and specifications, a contractor may think we are difficult. We figured, at least we made informed decisions.

We liked the contractor we chose so much while half way working the first project, we asked them to plan for another one. We are very happy with both projects, and had great working experience with the contractor and all of his subs.

I left a glorious review for the contractor and his company on Angie’s list. I also mailed him my review so that he could use it as a reference.

On a different subject - we had used Consumer Report for almost 30 years, but in recent years, we are not so sure about their ratings....


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