I am a hardwood flooring contractor and I finally decided to try HomeAdvisor. I wish I hadn't.
So far I've been billed about $1100 in the month since I signed up, for that money I've received 24 leads, of which 9 were unreachable. Of those 9 I was able to get credited for 3 of them before my account was flagged for "too many credit requests" and now all of my requests are being rejected with no information given. Of the 15 that were reachable, 4 weren't even interested in getting an estimate, and of the 11 remaining, most didn't even seem ready to actually do the project, they seemed to just want rough ideas on cost for possible future planning. So for $1100 I have landed $2650 worth of sales, which after material costs and taxes, leaves me having made about $600 for around 7 days of work.
When I spoke to customer support about the credits, I was told they would only issue credits if the phone number was incorrect or out of service. If the phone number goes to a voice mail greeting that merely states the phone number back to me, how am I to differentiate between incorrect information, and customers that just didn't actually want to hear from anybody in the first place? The two are identical to me. It also forces me to attempt to contact people multiple times who may not even want to hear from me, because HomeAdvisor doesn't really tell customers what they are signing themselves up for when they submit a request.
Most of the customers I spoke with weren't even aware that HomeAdvisor charged large fees to every contractor they were matched with. All of this leaves HomeAdvisor with the incentive of just driving as many people to their website as possible to submit requests, with essentially no screening to find out how serious they are, since HA takes no responsibility for the quality of the leads, only that somebody ticked a box that matched your services, and was in your geographical area. It doesn't matter if it was a serious customer, or a competitor who just decided to submit bogus requests to cost you money, or somebody who didn't know what they were getting into, and suddenly triggered hundreds of dollars of charges to contractors that they were unaware of. HomeAdvisor still gets paid, you don't.
All this before even getting into the deceptive nature of their "screening" process for pros. Screening consisted of verifying my contractor license, and having me pay a subscription fee. The profile set up was populated with reviews that were essentially fabricated by the sales rep. I gave legitimate customers who I had done work for recently and were willing to give me a review, and the sales rep made up single sentence reviews and attached their names to them.
So for the home owners trying to find reputable contractors, you really have no idea if the person is reputable. You can verify a contractor license yourself on L&I's website, and HA is just fabricating the initial ratings and reviews, so all of the contractors will look equally reputable. I am still trying to find out if it is possible to get credits for unreachable "leads" or get refunded part or all of my annual subscription, but customer service has been very unhelpful.
I assume this will keep up until HA's reputation gets too bad to hide again and they have to rebrand as they have already done twice, which I also didn't find out about until after I signed up. TL:DR - avoid these scammers.
Product or Service Mentioned: Homeadvisor Leads.
Reason of review: Not as described.
Monetary Loss: $1000.
Preferred solution: Full refund.