BBB Singles Out ‘Local’ Company With ‘F’ Grade

CANTON, Ohio (News Talk 1480 WHBC) – It’s the time of the year when people get their driveways sealed or repaved.

It’s also the time of the year shady contractors try to rip people off.

The Better Business Bureau’s Canton office is passing the word about a supposed Canton company listing a bogus address in the city.

They grade out “A Team Asphalt” with an “F”.

They say owner Stevee Castle was successfully sued by the state of New York while doing business as Tri-State Paving.

Here’s the release from the Canton BBB:

Recently, a Fairview Park resident reported to the Better Business Bureau that A
Team Asphalt approached his family. The consumer told BBB the company had a “50’
dump truck loaded with asphalt” and was working on his neighbor’s driveway. When
the consumer’s wife came home, she was approached by the contractor as she was
getting out of her car. The consumer told BBB “they offered to pour their extra
asphalt for $7 a foot. My wife came inside and got me, and I agreed to $7 a foot. In
checking on the job, it went to $7 per square foot, making what would have been a
$700 job become over $10,000. By this time they had already poured about 30
square feet. I told them to stop where they were. They wanted to charge $3,000 for
what was done. At the moment I told them I would give them $2,500 and supplied a
check. Overnight thinking about it, I realized that this was the scam to get what they
could to unsuspecting victims.” The consumer immediately stopped payment on the
check and contacted BBB.

BBB Serving Greater Cleveland and BBB Serving Canton Region & Greater West
Virginia looked into A Team Asphalt’s past and realized this consumer’s situation was
not unique. “A Team Asphalt” was registered as a trade name in Ohio by Stevee Paige
Castle on August 18, 2022. Castle has been connected to other asphalt and paving
scams. This includes a 2017 lawsuit brought by the New York State Attorney General
who won a case against Tri-State Paving, which was owned and operated by Castle
and a partner. The company was ordered to pay $33,400 in restitution to former
customers and a $10,000 state penalty. BBB also researched A Team Asphalt’s
reported business location 4109 Valley Dr. NW, Canton, Ohio, and found they are using a residential address.

An auditor property search revealed the property is not owned by the company principal.

Additionally, a complaint was filed against A Team Asphalt in 2022 by another
Fairview Park resident who said “I was approached at home by a gentleman who had
extra tar and needed to use it up. He was fast-talking like he was in a hurry to get
back to the company. I couldn’t understand everything he was saying but in the end,
I found out he told me about charging $10.00/sqft @764 sqft to cover my drive and
partial front lawn. I told him I could not afford seven thousand dollars. He asked me
what “CAN I AFFORD”, I was scared and upset because the work had already started.
I told him I could give him around two thousand. He agreed so I approved $1700.00
from my bank account, $200.00 from my credit card, and my granddaughter
approved $600.00 from her bank account and she also gave $260.00 of her tip
money. We found out later that he took $780.00 from my granddaughter’s account.”

A Team Asphalt currently has an F rating from BBB due to industry concerns and the
length of time the business has been reportedly operating. To avoid becoming a
victim of a shoddy contractor, BBB advises:
● Don’t make decisions at your doorstep. Research businesses carefully.
Door-to-door solicitors are often con artists who try to get high prices for
shoddy work.
● Research companies before making a decision. Ask for references from
past customers and check out the company’s business profile at
Request a physical company address as well as contact information and names
of managerial staff.
● Pay by credit when possible. Cash payment is the preferred option used by
fly-by-night scammers. When possible, use a method of payment such as a
credit card, which provides recourse if a project goes sideways.
● Don’t fall for deceptive sales tactics. Scammers typically use high-pressure
sales tactics or report they can give a great deal because they were already
working in the area and had leftover supplies. Be wary of work crews who use
these approaches or offer a limited-time special on jobs.
● Get contracts and receipts. Keep a written record of quotes and payments
in case these are disputed in the future or the company tries to renegotiate
prices after work has started.
● Check licensing and local laws. Many cities require a solicitor’s permit if a
contractor solicits work door-to-door. Check with your local police department
to see if the company is registered. Other municipalities may require
contractors working in the city to register with a zoning department first.
Check local laws, licensing, and permit requirements.