Wednesday, May 23, 2018
Deals & Shopping

Top consumer complaints involve autos, home improvement and credit

The Consumer Federation of America and the North American Consumer Protection investigators surveyed 40 state and local agencies about the types of complaints they'd received last year. Here are the top 10 complaint categories that most frequently appeared in the agencies' top 10 lists for 2012.

1. Auto: Misrepresentations in advertising or sales of new and used cars, lemons, faulty repairs, leasing and towing disputes.

2. Home improvement/construction: Shoddy work, failure to start or complete the job.

3. Credit/debt: Billing and fee disputes, mortgage modifications and mortgage-related fraud, credit repair, debt relief services, predatory lending, illegal or abusive debt collection tactics.

4. Utilities: Service problems or billing disputes with phone, cable, satellite, Internet, electric and gas service.

5. Retail sales: False advertising and other deceptive practices, defective merchandise, problems with rebates, coupons, gift cards and gift certificates, failure to deliver.

6. Services: Misrepresentations, shoddy work, failure to have required licenses, failure to perform.

7. Home solicitations: Misrepresentations or failure to deliver in door-to-door, telemarketing or mail solicitations, do-not-call violations.

8. Landlord/tenant: Unhealthy or unsafe conditions, failure to make repairs or provide promised amenities, deposit and rent disputes, illegal eviction tactics.

9. Internet sales: Misrepresentations or other deceptive practices, failure to deliver online purchases.

10. Household goods: Misrepresentations, failure to deliver, faulty repairs in connection with furniture or appliances.

• • •

When asked about the fastest-growing complaints that agencies received last year, the top five were:

1. Towing disputes.

2. Landlord/tenant problems.

3. Abusive debt collection practices.

4. Telephone service billing issues.

5. Unlicensed contractors.

Other fast-growing complaints that were cited included free trial offers, imposter scams, fraud against seniors, door-to-door sales, online magazine sales, business opportunity/work-at-home schemes, deceptive practices targeting immigrants, ID theft, used car sales, bogus offers of loans, utility billing issues, billing disputes with dentists and optometrists, and scams in which payments are made via cash reload cards that are designed for loading money onto prepaid cards.

Comments
5 things to do under $5: Sand mandala construction, Blast Friday, get outdoors at Bass Pros Shops

5 things to do under $5: Sand mandala construction, Blast Friday, get outdoors at Bass Pros Shops

1 Tibetan Monks’ Mandala: As part of a Sacred Art Tour, eight Dalai Lama-sanctioned monks from India will be at the Florida CraftArt Galleries for a week to create a sand mandala of the Green Tara, a female representation of the Buddha of Compassion....
Published: 05/23/18
Meet beauty influencer Nicol Concilio and drop anchor at Ship Chic’s block party

Meet beauty influencer Nicol Concilio and drop anchor at Ship Chic’s block party

BEAUTY INFLUENCER: MEET NICOL CONCILIOThanks to the magic of the internet, self-taught beauty vloggers have become so influential that major cosmetics brands are teaming up with them to create special products. One such vlogger is Nicol Concilio, who...
Published: 05/17/18
Plan your weekend May 18-20: Royal wedding watch parties, David Koechner, Fiesta Maxima, half off Dali admission

Plan your weekend May 18-20: Royal wedding watch parties, David Koechner, Fiesta Maxima, half off Dali admission

What's happening this weekend in Tampa Bay.
Published: 05/16/18
Updated: 05/18/18
Ticket window: Christina Aguilera, Shawn Mendes, Dierks Bentley and Paul Anka on sale this week

Ticket window: Christina Aguilera, Shawn Mendes, Dierks Bentley and Paul Anka on sale this week

Tickets for the following events go on sale this week:• Wiz Khalifa, 6 p.m. Aug. 16 at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre, Tampa, $29-$125.95, on sale at noon Friday at the box office, 4802 U.S. 301 N, and via Ticketmaster at Ticketmaster.com, ...
Published: 05/16/18
5 things to do under $5: Bike to Work Day, Woofstock, Leonard Bernstein celebration

5 things to do under $5: Bike to Work Day, Woofstock, Leonard Bernstein celebration

1Bike to Work Day: If you’re too nervous to face Tampa streets on your own, seven neighborhood meetup locations have been set up in South Tampa, Ybor and Tampa Heights for a Friday morning ride with experienced cyclists. Leaving at about 7:10 a.m., t...
Published: 05/16/18
Romaine lettuce illnesses are now in Florida. What does it mean for Tampa Bay?

Romaine lettuce illnesses are now in Florida. What does it mean for Tampa Bay?

Caesar salad fans, you’re not going to like this.Eating romaine lettuce has been a no-no for about two months, when a string of related food poisonings emerged around the country. Until now, Florida has been mostly unaffected.But an update Wednesday ...
Published: 05/11/18
Get your vintage fix at Wood Paper Stone, the Wedding Flea returns and a Mother’s Day market

Get your vintage fix at Wood Paper Stone, the Wedding Flea returns and a Mother’s Day market

VINTAGE FIX: WOOD PAPER STONEA big shout-out to Facebook for introducing me to Wood Paper Stone. The new boutique in the Skyway Marina Mall is home to the vintage collection of Fabulous Artifacts, a.k.a. Lisa Lippincott. Just scrolling through the Fa...
Published: 05/10/18
Plan your weekend May 11-13: Mother’s Day fun, AirFest, Third Eye Blind, Darci Lynne Farmer, Florida Orchestra salutes Michael Jackson

Plan your weekend May 11-13: Mother’s Day fun, AirFest, Third Eye Blind, Darci Lynne Farmer, Florida Orchestra salutes Michael Jackson

Plan your weekend   Holiday Mother’s Day: While breakfast in bed and a bunch of flowers are nice, consider treating your mother to a day of fun together this Sunday. Mom can get in free with a paid loved one for a range of experiences, from...
Published: 05/09/18
Updated: 05/11/18
5 things to do under $5: Free tours of Bok Tower Gardens, Florida Orchestra for kids, Family Tennis Festival

5 things to do under $5: Free tours of Bok Tower Gardens, Florida Orchestra for kids, Family Tennis Festival

1 National Public Gardens Day: The American Public Gardens Association provides up to four free passes to Bok Tower Gardens per person. Located about 25 miles southeast of Lakeland, the lush tropical garden and bird sanctuary was opened nearly 90 yea...
Published: 05/09/18
Mother's Day free admissions, brunches and more in Tampa Bay

Mother's Day free admissions, brunches and more in Tampa Bay

Sunday is Mother’s Day, and it’s all about the women who gave us life, good advice and the occasional stink-eye when we needed it. If you are scratching your head about what to get dear old Mom, relax. We got you. While breakfast in bed ...
Published: 05/08/18
Updated: 05/10/18