Top 10 complaints and top 10 inquiries of 2016

In 2016, people turned to BBB more than 165 million times for business reviews through their website.

2016 was a busy year for the Better Business Bureau serving Mainland B.C., dealing with nearly 6,000 complaints, publishing over 4,000 BBB verified customer reviews and fielded over two million inquiries through their website.

In 2016, people turned to BBB more than 165 million times for business reviews through their website at

With all that data, along with other big projects like Top 10 Scams, Torch Awards, and dozens of public and trade show appearances, the BBB has released the Top 10 industries that get the most complaints and the Top 10 types of businesses that people inquire about when looking for a service provider.

“Some of the types of business that get the most complaints do so because they are very large businesses, we expect that,” said Evan Kelly, senior communications adviser. “Others have little oversight when it comes to guidelines and regulations.”

The top 10 complaints by type of business:

  • parking lots and garages: 218 complaints
  • stereo systems – dealer (typically big box electronics stores): 200 complaints
  • automobile dealers – new cars: 144 complaints
  • movers: 141 complaints
  • telephone service: 109 complaints
  • furniture dealers: 107 complaints
  • home décor, accessories and gifts – online: 105 complaints
  • collection agencies: 103 complaints
  • plumbers: 102 complaints
  • loans: 95 complaints

“There are a lot of complaints in these industries that deal with contract issues, refund issues, and billing or payment problems. In other cases such as the moving industry, we find a plethora of delivery and timing issues,” said Kelly. “Advance fee loan companies are another problem that we deal with on a weekly basis. Those complaints are harder to deal with because these lending companies are fly-by-night and know full well they are scamming people.”

The top 10 BBB inquiries by type of business (accredited and non-accredited):

  • roofing contractors: 69,613 inquiries
  • movers: 67,637 inquiries
  • plumbers: 65,235 inquiries
  • used car dealers: 56,433 inquiries
  • renovation contractors: 54,580 inquiries
  • heating contractors:33,630 inquiries
  • general contractor: 33,447 inquiries
  • car repair: 29,112 inquiries
  • landscape contractors: 27,902 inquiries
  • painters: 25,799 inquiries

“What BBB means by inquiry is that a consumer has searched our database for information on a type of business or particular business,” said Kelly. “The consumer may be looking to hire a service provider and wish to view their BBB business profile or they may be looking for information on a company they think might be questionable. With 98 thousand B.C. businesses in our database, there is lots of information to share.”

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