Skip to main content

«  View All Posts

Siding | Exterior Painting | Concrete Coating | Window Replacements | Doors | Window Treatments | Contractor

5 Tactics Bad Contractors Use To Get Your Money (What To Watch Out For)

March 16th, 2023 | 9 min. read

5 Tactics Bad Contractors Use To Get Your Money (What To Watch Out For)

Print/Save as PDF

When looking to hire a contractor for your home remodeling project, the last thing you want is to choose the wrong one. 

Now, any home remodeling project is a large investment, and everyone loves a discount and a deal. Sneaky contractors are aware of this. 

To avoid choosing the wrong company to work with, being taken advantage of, and wasting your money, you must be aware of the common tactics bad contractors use to gain your trust and ultimately get your money. 

Southwest Exteriors is an expert at spotting a faulty contractor because we’ve been in this industry in San Antonio since 1989. After over 33 years, we’ve helped hundreds of homeowners correct the mistakes of a previous company and show them what real trust looks like. 

We pride ourselves on treating our clients with love and excellence through every step of your project. Whether you decide to work with us or not, our top priority is to educate you so you can make the best decisions for you

Here are five common things a sneaky contractor will do just to make a sale and get your money. 

  1. Pressure you into buying that same day
  2. Call their supervisor to “get permission for an additional discount”
  3. Establish fake trust and act buddy-buddy to make you feel comfortable
  4. Design your project as fast as possible to get the check
  5. Only make it all about them and not about you

Let’s explain each of these five tactics so you can understand what they look like in the home and avoid falling for them. 


1. They pressure you into buying that same day

One of the first (and easiest) tactics to spot in a sneaky contractor is if they push you into buying from them the same day you meet with them. 

They may entice you with an additional discount or tell you any discount is only offered if you purchase on the same day. While that may be true, this means they only want your money and don’t care about what’s best for you. 

If a contractor pulls this tactic, you must be aware of why they are doing this. 

Is their company pressed for money? Do they have the funds to support themselves, or are they surviving check to check? How long have they been in business?

These are just a few questions you should consider if a contractor tries to pressure you into signing a contract and writing a check the same day you meet with them. 

Contractors that use this tactic typically don’t want you to be talking to other companies and getting other (possibly better) products. This is a sign they know they don’t have the best products for you and just want your money for themselves. 

Things this contractor might say…

  • “This deal is only good for today.”
  • “If you sign with us today, we can provide an additional 15% off your project.”
  • “What if I was able to get an additional discount for you?”
  • “Take the leap and start your project now.”


2. They call their supervisor to “get permission for an additional discount”

The next sneaky tactic a contractor might use to get your money is to pull the “Let me call my supervisor to see if this is okay.” You’ll notice this if you’ve expressed your concerns about the cost and their convincing hasn’t been working on you. 

Here’s how this usually goes. 

A contractor is trying to pressure you into buying and making an impulse decision, but it’s not working. You still aren’t comfortable with the cost (or the contractor) and don’t feel ready to make a decision. 

As a last-ditch effort, the contractor says something like, “Let me call my supervisor to see if we can knock off an additional 10% for you.” They proceed to call their supervisor or manager, put them on speaker phone in front of you, and act like you are best friends with them. 

They put on a show to you and their supervisor (who is in on the act) and pretend like this is the first time they’ve ever done this when in reality, this is a rehearsed bit they use on almost everyone. 

This is an attempt to make you feel special like they will make exceptions for you and pressure you to make an impulsive decision and give them your money. 

Things this contractor might say…

  • “I might be able to get an additional discount.”
  • “I’m not usually allowed to do this, but…”
  • “Let me give my manager a call.”

 Download this FREE guide to home remodeling!

3. They establish fake trust and act buddy-buddy to make you feel comfortable

This next tactic you must keep an eye out for throughout your entire time with a contractor, and you have to trust your gut feeling with this one. 

If a consultant walks into your home and starts pointing out things they see on your walls or around your living room, complimenting them and making personal conversation off them, this is a red flag. 

While, of course, small talk is typical, trustworthy contractors will also take note of your likings and what’s important to you. This is why you must trust your gut and realize when a contractor is being fake or genuine. 

When a contractor is acting buddy-buddy with you, they’re trying to make you feel like their best friend, so you trust them and give them your money. If a contractor talks about their personal life and yours more than the project at hand, this is a red flag. 

Common courtesy and polite small talk are perfectly normal in any human interaction. But, if they continuously talk about themselves and try to relate to you to gain fake trust, do not fall for it. 

Things this contractor might say…

  • “I can tell you’re a big fan of (X)! I also love this thing, and actually…”
  • “You know, I love this grill you have out in your backyard. Is it new?”


4. They design your project as fast as possible to get the check

To build off of the third tactic, a sneaky contractor might spend the majority of their time with you joking around and making regular conversation, then rush through designing your project to get your money as fast as possible. 

When you’re about to spend thousands of dollars on a home remodeling project, the last thing you want is to rush through the design process. 

You want to be fully educated on all options available to you. If you are rushed through designing your project, learning about the installation process, and understanding a contractor’s warranty, there is a higher risk of mistakes and wasting your money. 

If you have questions, do not hesitate to ask. If a contractor rushes through answering or doesn’t give a clear answer, this is a red flag. 

Did they take the time to understand what you want? Did they only talk about their products and how great they are? Did they try to upsell you on everything?

Trust your gut and be smart about how a contractor acts towards you. Building your dream project should never be a rushed process. 

Things this contractor might say…

  • “Adding this upgrade to your windows would go beautifully with your home. It’s only an additional (X amount) to your project. 
  • “I know you said you want something more like this, but I have the perfect solution for you.” 
  • “There’s not much of a difference between X and Y, so you may as well go with this choice.”  

Schedule your commitment-free consultation today!


5. They only make it all about them and not about you

The final thing a sneaky contractor does is make the entire process about them and not about you. This tactic essentially wraps all the other red flags into one. 

If a contractor isn’t listening to your needs, fakes being buddy-buddy with you, and tries to upsell you on everything, they are making it about them, not about you. 

This contractor does not take your wants or needs into consideration and only talks about how great their company is. They most likely also talk badly about their competitors and can’t say one nice thing about them. 

You want the company you work with to listen to your needs and put you first. You need to trust them, and they need to earn your trust. 

Things this contractor might say…

  • “I think this option would be better for you.”
  • “Definitely do not reach out to this company. They are the worst.”
  • “Trust me. You don’t want to go with any other contractor around here.”


Avoid A Sneaky Contractor And Work With A Company You Can Trust

Now you know five common tactics a sneaky contractor uses to take advantage of you and what to look for so you can avoid them. 

Working with the right contractor is the most important aspect of a successful project. Even if you find the highest quality products, if they are not installed properly or with care, they will fail. 

  • A trustworthy contractor will listen to your needs, put you first, and help educate you so you can make the best decisions for your project. 

  • A sneaky contractor only cares about themselves, pressures you into making impulsive purchases, and just wants to get your money at the end of the day. 

Along with the ability to identify a sneaky contractor you can’t trust, you also want to know what qualities to look for in a trustworthy contractor. 

Take this 10-question quiz to learn how risky your potential contractor may be so you can find the right company for your project and have a successful outcome. 


Ready to work with a company you can trust? 

Southwest Exteriors offers high-quality window, siding, and door replacements, as well as professional concrete coatings and window treatments. 

Serving you with love and excellence are two of our top priorities. If you need anything after your project is complete, we’ll be here to help for as long as you own your home. 

Schedule your commitment-free consultation with a design consultant today to get the look you love coming home to!