As we enter the summer season, be sure to know what to look out for when hiring a contractor to make repairs to your home post-disaster or when your home simply is in need of repairs.
How to Prevent Contractor Fraud?
It all begins at your doorstep. Often, these types of scams begin with a salesperson going door-to-door offering an unsolicited sales pitch on contracting services. So before hiring any contractor, be sure to contact your insurance company to verify the service.
Reach out to friends and family.
Recommendations from others are one of the best ways to ensure that you are happy with your provider. Reach out to neighbors, friends, and family to avoid hiring a dishonest service provider.
Search for credentials.
Check a contractor’s credentials and business profile at BBB.org. Here, you can also read verified customer reviews and information on company history. This information can help you narrow down your choices and find the best fit for your home.
Make sure contracts are legit.
Contracts should be in writing and before signing a contract, make sure all blank spaces are filled or removed. Any blank space can later be altered and lead to costly consequences.
Avoid payment scams.
Payments should be made at the end of the service. Also, always use a check or credit card to pay for services and avoid using cash. In the event of fraud, this practice ensures that the transaction can be traced.
If you do have damage that needs repair after a disaster, be sure to save your receipts and contact your insurance agent to understand what damages will be covered.