This weekend the Maricopa County Home and Garden Show is back at the University of Phoenix Stadium in Glendale. It is an indoor, air-conditioned vendor show that also includes home improvement and gardening seminars, a technology center and contests and giveaways. I have been to the show several times in past years, and I took some photos so that readers can get a feel for what happens here. I also have a short list of tips for those of you attending.
I received the following comment in an email from a reader:
You should have mentioned to check the vendor's reputation with the Better Business Bureau. There are two exhibitors at the show this weekend with F ratings.
I did not check the Better Business Bureau ratings of all the vendors that will be at the Maricopa County Home and Garden Show. Of course, I'm not contracting with anyone at this show either. Here's how it works. According to the Maricopa County Home Show website, "The Maricopa County Home Shows pre-screens all of our home improvement vendors through the AZ Registrar of Contractors to make sure that they are in good standing and are using good business practices."
According to that reader, this means that if a licensed vendor has a clean record with the Arizona Registrar of Contractors, that there is no further screening performed on that exhibitor. You might, however, find that the same vendor has a less than stellar rating at the Better Business Bureau.
If you have a specific project in mind, and BBB ratings and assessments are important to you, you can check out the exhibitors before you go to the show. If you are at the show, and arranging for a significant job or signing a contract for a home improvement, you can always get to the BBB website from your smartphone and check them out. If the ratings are not good, or you can't find anything about the company, you'll have to decide based on the value of your project and your appetite for risk if you should sign on the dotted line or not.