Each year someone invents a new home improvement scam to add to the many scams that already exist. From painting, to roofs, to flooring, there are many scams to watch for, therefore, I have some tips that will help you when you are in the market to do your home improvements.
Home Improvement Scams to Avoid:
Door to door contractors – If someone shows up on your doorstep saying your neighbor has hail damage I bet you do too, be leery. Even be leery of someone who comes by asking if you need yard work help. A reputable person will have some type of advertisement out there and won’t go door to door. Use contractors that you find on your own.
Use a trustworthy contractor – A trustworthy contractor can be found online, the phonebook or through word of mouth from family and friends. Search the contractor for complaint history at the Better Business Bureau. Also, make sure they carry the proper insurance. Get paper proof of the licensing, liability insurance and bonding. A reputable contractor will not hesitate to share this information with you.
Multiple bids – It’s always wise to get multiple bids before handing one the job. Do a price, quality and guarantee before you make a firm decision on who you will choose. And remember, lowest is not always best.
Never pay 100% upfront – Never, never, never pay for the job upfront. A reputable contractor will not require the full payment before he begins. Only a scam artist will want the full amount before work begins. Typically, you can expect to pay around 30% upfront and rest upon completion. In some cases, the contractor will want 30% upfront and then setup a draw schedule. This means you will pay at certain completion points of the project. This helps the contractor to cover all material costs in the event you decide you don’t want to pay them at the end of the job.
Educate the elderly – Sadly, our elderly are the most commonly scammed homeowners. In many cases they are trusting of others making them easy prey. Talk to your elderly family and friends about these tips. And let them know that they can contact you anytime they have questions about hiring a contractor.
These tips can help you for years to come. And, if you think you are being scammed by a contractor, turn them over to the proper authorities as soon as possible. Awareness is the most effective tool to keeping scammers out of work.
Originally posted at: http://allamarillohomes.info/home-improvement-scams-to-watch-out-for/