How to get help when dealing with a bad deal

Before you buy anything these days, you probably read the reviews. Do you get the best information by looking around? Or what if you need help handling a bad deal? We examine what you need to know about the background of a company with the Better Business Bureau.


100 Years Greater Houston Better Business Bureau

The BBB is the original review site, but now there are dozens of ways to find out or get help when you have a dispute with a company and you should check as many as you can. We sat down with the President of the Better Business Bureau in Houston, South Texas to talk about how to get the most out of the company’s website.

(Copyright 2021 by KPRC Click2Houston – All rights reserved.)

How is the BBB different from other review sites?

Unlike a Google or Yelp review, every complaint and review on the BBB is checked before it’s posted, so you know the person who posted was actually a customer. From retail to restaurants, you can see the total number of complaints a business has received in the last three years.

How the company responds to the customers who have filed these complaints is part of what determines their score with the BBB and therefore you have a better chance of getting a response if you file a complaint with the BBB.

“We’re not telling the company you have to do this. We are not on sale. We are not judges, we want an answer. Can you speak to your customer? We try to close this gap. Yes. Well, if the company is one of our accredited companies, well, we call members, okay, we search with a much stricter filter because they’re held to a higher standard,” said Dan Parsons, president of BBB Greater Houston and South Texas.

(Copyright 2021 by KPRC Click2Houston – All rights reserved.)

Here’s how it works when you file a complaint with the BBB

Anything you submit will be forwarded to the company within two business days. The company will be asked to respond within 14 days and if no response is received a second request will be made. Complaints are generally closed within 30 days.

Timeline for resolving your complaint

  • Complaint is submitted.

  • BBB is working to resolve the complaint within two business days.

  • The company is requested to respond within 14 calendar days from the date you submitted the complaint. If no response is received, a follow-up letter will be sent to the company.

  • The consumer will be notified of the business response when the BBB receives it and will be prompted to respond.

  • If the company does not respond, the consumer will be notified. Complaints are generally closed within approximately 30 calendar days from the date of submission.

  • If the company responds to a complaint but the customer remains unhappy, BBB may request a second response from the company. BBB staff will also consider whether mediation or arbitration should be offered.

Failure to respond to a BBB complaint can negatively impact a company’s BBB rating, as responding to customer complaints is a core element of both BBB accreditation standards and BBB reporting standards.

(Copyright 2021 by KPRC Click2Houston – All rights reserved.)

There is also the BBB Scam Tracker where you can report scams and see what other people are dealing with.


In the full “Ask Amy” episode, you can hear more from Parsons on how the grading process works and how companies have lost their membership due to poor business practices.

(Copyright 2021 by KPRC Click2Houston – All rights reserved.)

Usefull links:

Better business office

How to file a complaint with the BBB

BBB scam tracker

How to check charities

Tips on how to deal with a problem on your own


Do you have a request or a question for me? Email [email protected] and I’ll work to find answers!

Copyright 2022 by KPRC Click2Houston – All rights reserved.

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