By Rod Davis, BBB CEO, BBB serving Southeast Florida and the Caribbean
Every day new questions are submitted to us at BBB by consumers. Some questions are trying to get information to determine if a business or offer are legitimate, and, if the business and/or product and service will be top quality. Other questions come to us after a purchase and the consumer is trying to manage a not so great outcome. Since we learn from experience it can be helpful for consumers to learn from situations other consumers have already encountered. Let’s review a few of the questions coming to BBB recently and what every consumer should learn to avoid or resolve potential problems.
Question from Maggie G: Do I need building insurance if I am renting?
Answer: Hello Maggie. The owner of your building should have insurance on the property. You should ask the landlord for a copy to know what coverage exists on the property. Some renters will add rental insurance to cover theft of property, but that is a different kind of insurance and for a different purpose. If you decide to obtain rental insurance you should obtain several quotes so you are able to compare some of the key variables:
- Rates: The rate will vary based on the coverage, deductible, and the insurer.
- Deductible: The higher the deductible (i.e. the amount you pay out before insurance coverage begins to pay for the losses) the less costly your coverage will be since you self-insure that initial amount.
- Actual Cash Value vs. Replacement Value: If your coverage is based on actual cash value the amount you will receive to replace a sofa or TV will be reduced by the number of years of use a person has from the product (i.e. depreciation). Replacement value coverage will provide funds to replace the covered item. Since the liability to the insurer is greater for replacement value coverage it will routinely be more expensive.
- Quality/Reputation: Like all businesses, some are just better than others. BBB always encourages a consumer to purchase the best value businesses which combine a good price with excellent products, services, and customer support. Always check out a business at www.BBB.org and other sites (e.g. Google, Yelp) before making a purchase. The experiences of other customers can help you assess whether the business stands behind their product/services.
Question from Felicia M: Does anyone have any reviews on Dr. Purita from the Institute of Regenerative Stem Cell treatment in Boca Raton, FL? Does it work or not?
Answer: It is important to always validate any advertising claim, but when it comes to health care issues, it is even more important. You may want to consult with your physician to obtain their guidance about any proposed treatment. Ideally, any business making claims should have data to support claims and for medical claims, there should be valid studies that are conducted in accordance to acceptable procedures. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) collaborate to enforce advertising of health-related claims. This FTC blog covers some of the key points: www.FTC.gov/News-Events/Blogs/Business-Blog/2015/12/5-Principles-Help-Keep-Your-Health-Claims-Healthy.
You should always ask for such studies from any provider. If they do provide studies, ask your medical provider to review them and provide their expertise in evaluating the claims and their relevance to your situation. Specific to Stem Cell Treatments, the FTC recently took action against a California based company and you may want to review that action and the guidance provided by the FTC as part of your due diligence (www.FTC.gov/News-Events/Press-Releases/2018/10/FTC-Stops-Deceptive-Health-Claims-Stem-Cell-Therapy-Clinic). Legitimate businesses should have the documentation to share with you that meets the FTC/FDA standards, and if not, then it is very possible the claims and results may not live up to the standards you are seeking.
Question from Jorge: What information do you have on Miami Roofing Systems?
Answer: BBB has a complete report on Miami Roofing Systems on our website: www.BBB.org/US/FL/Miami/Profile/Roofing-Contractors/Miami-Roofing-Systems-Inc-0633-14000881. The report shares information about the ownership (Javier Martinez), the business start date (10/13/2003), the license number (CCC1330811), the rating (A+), any complaints filed within the last three years (0), any customer reviews, and additional information about the business (website, phone, address, etc.). BBB also reports on BBB Accredited Businesses and business not accredited. Miami Roofing Systems has been BBB Accredited since 2010. BBB has determined that Miami Roofing Systems, Inc. meets BBB accreditation standards, which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. Whenever making a major purchase BBB always recommends getting three quotes and consulting multiple sources to help you find the best business to meet your needs.