As Confessors know, and as The Ticket's sales department either loves or hates, I listen to the ads.
Lately I've been feeling sorry for the guy who owns, and reads the ads for, Structured Foundation Repairs. I think his name is Tom Kidd.
He sounds like a really nice guy, sincere. I'm sure it's a great company with a fine product. If you go to its website (http://www.structuredfoundationrepairs.com/) you will see all manner of testimonials, 5-star approval rating (although if you click on those five stars, there's no link, so the provenance of that rating is not clear), good works for the community. (Although they have the same logo, the connection between www.structuredfoundation.com and www.structuredfoundationrepairs.com is unclear.) And their foundation repair is probably terrific, backed by what sounds like a solid warranty.
But for years The Ticket has been a home-away-from-home for All-Pro Foundation Repair.
It has a gigantic promotional footprint on The Little One.
Back in October 2010, I wrote this article ("Never Never No Never No No Never -- and I Mean Never -- Buy a House from a Ticket Host") in which I noted that Craig, George, Norm, Bob, Dan, and Mike all stated in an ad then running that they were "customers" of All-Pro, and I suggested that Ticket hosts must be cursed since they all seemed to have foundation problems. Either that or those gents were victims of an incredibly unfortunate coincidence. (Corby and Gordon, who did not confess to being All-Pro customers, were having terrible plumbing problems that Baker Brothers tended to -- note Baker Brothers' neat "we get it" comment to that article.) This was the first time that I thought maybe someone at The Ticket might actually read this site, because not long thereafter the ads changed to remove the suggestion that Ticket hosts had bad foundations, and now they just say that all the hosts "endorse" All-Pro. And, of course, many of them continue to appear on nearly every All-Pro ad.
And All-Pro has a very tight jingle ("the right solution for your home").
And All-Pro's ad features a professional announcer in addition to the host-endorsers.
And the All-Pro guys are University of North Texas alumni.
And there's a whole batch of them, a couple of whom used to be on the ads, sounding like a couple of frat guys with dirt-support engineering degrees.
And -- and surely this is critical -- All-Pro employs all methods of foundation repair, including some kind of exotic solid core pier, so that no matter how lopsided your crib may be from the subsidence in the earth's crust caused by the fracking operations just over George's fence, they can find some kind of gigantic tool to put it level again.
What about Structured Foundation Repairs?
No celebrity endorsers. No host reading copy. Just Tom. And, recently, little daughter Kylie, whose fee is probably fairly modest.
Only one guy.
No suggestion that SFR has more than one kind of pier. (Although Tom offers the same lifetime transferable guarantee as All-Pro. By the way, what is a lifetime transferable guarantee? If you sell your home and transfer the guarantee, and then you die, does the warranty expire? Does your buyer have some stake in keeping your ass alive after you've stuck him with your defective sinking dump?)
And the guy is an Aggie.
So I'm trying to imagine the Ticket account person visiting Tom there at Structured Foundation Repair, trying to sell him some time. And I'm wondering how it goes. I mean, Tom has got to know that APFR is spending an ungodly fortune both for the time and for the goodwill of those enthusiastically endorsing hosts. Mostly, I'm wondering if The Ticket is such an incredible promotion machine, especially when so many hosts jump on to endorse the sponsor, that Structured Foundations had to do something just to stay in the foundation-repair consciousness of uncounted heads-of-household for whom The Ticket hosts speak gospel. (I'm one, but don't tell Mrs. Plainsman.)
So I'm thinking: Tom probably has a damned fine product and no one with a sweet daughter like Kylie is going to screw me on my foundation repair, should I need one. And All-Pro is probably already completely swamped with P1's hoping to take advantage of the free engineer's report -- and mind you, it's an independent engineer -- a goddam $500 value! -- if you sign up for the All-Pro deal on that visit, which, correct me if I'm wrong, renders the engineer's report 100% worthless.
So I'm thinking that Tom and his crew are highly incentivized to come out very promptly and give me a good deal and make me a happy, non-slanting homeowner.
Therefore, I'm proud to announce that effective immediately, My Ticket Confession is endorsing Structured Foundation Repairs, Inc.