Experts Warn: Don’t Fall For The Scam After The Storm

DETROIT (WWJ) – As wind damage cleanup and repairs continue across the state, the Better Business Bureau in Michigan is warning residents of potential contractor scams.

“Everyone should be wary of door-to-door solicitors or workers,” said Phil Catlett of the BBB. “They may claim that they have leftover materials from a job down the street or claim they don’t have a permanent place of business.”

Always verify that any contractor you are considering is licensed and insured.

[Thousands Could Be Without Power Through Weekend After Damaging Winds]

Catlett said swindlers are notorious for flocking to areas hit by damaging weather; some even traveling from afar to try to pick up work.

“Workers who come from out-of-state have no skin in the game,” he said. “They don’t have any reason to be reliable down the road, because they’re just going to move on to the next place and take advantage of yet another victim.”

Catlett advisers property owners to get at least three quotes for a job, and to take their time when picking a contractor. Also very important: Contact your insurance company first, get everything in writing, and check out the contractor online before you agree to a deal.

“Be cautious with your money,” he added. “Don’t pay much up front for repairs and don’t pay with cash.”

Catlett said that while many legitimate businesses may ask for a deposit, you should never put more than a third down on the job.

Get more tips from the BBB about hiring a contractor, at this link.

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