Sept. 18, 2017 – With the recent devastation our area has seen from Hurricane Harvey, we have received many notices already from members being scammed by home repair companies. These remodeling and repair scammers will be out in full force for the next few months, so it is important to take caution.
Do Your Homework – Check their rating with the Better Business Bureau. You can search for any business by clicking here. You may also ask for recent letters of recommendation from past customers. If the business doesn’t have any, a good source of information from past customers can usually be found on the company’s social media pages, such as facebook and twitter. If the business does not have any letters of recommendation or social media pages, consider it a red flag.
Get Estimates – It is always a good idea to get multiple estimates from different companies. Have them print a quote with exactly what they will be doing so that you can compare the different contractors. This can also help you to negotiate prices.
Ask Questions – Ask your questions via email, so that you have in writing exactly what the company has promised you. Below are questions that you should ask before paying someone any money.
- How many projects like mine have you completed in the past year?
- Will my project require a permit?
- How long will my project take?
- What type of insurance do you carry?
- Will you be using subcontractors on this project?
Red Flags – How can you tell if a contractor might not be reputable? You may not want to do business with someone who…
- Knocks on your door for business or offers you discounts for finding other customers
- Just happens to have materials left over from a previous job
- Pressures you for an immediate decision
- Only accepts cash, asks you to pay everything up-front, or suggests you borrow money from a lender the contractor knows
- Asks you to get the required building permits