Avoid A Contractor Scam Post Florence

Posted by Hannah Lapin on Sep 21, 2018 9:00:00 AM

miniature people lined up facing man in suit standing on a calculator

According to the Houston Chronicle, since Hurricane Harvey, over 400 formal complaints and lawsuits have been filed against dozens of contractors, and more are being filed each week. The unfortunate reality is that even in the aftermath of tragedy, there are bad people who will take advantage of distressed homeowners. Don’t get scared; get proactive. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC), outlines best practices for hiring a contractor and common red flags. It is always important to exercise due diligence, seek referrals, and compare quotes.  Be very weary of contractors who:

  • Ask you to pay for everything upfront
  • Only accept cash
  • Ask you to get the required building permits
  • Tell you that permits are unnecessary
  • Pressure you for immediate decisions
  • Have leftover materials from a previous job

In addition, the FTC advises never to:

  • Sign a document that you haven’t read or has blank spaces to be filled out later
  • Let anyone pressure you into signing a document
  • Agree to financing through your contractor without shopping around and comparing loan terms

For more information on how to find and hire a contractor, read the full FTC guide. Additional resources for Hurricane Florence can be found on our Hurricane Florence Resources Page.

 Hurricane Florence Resources

 Related: What to Do For Uninsured, Flooded Rental Properties

Topics: Hurricane Recovery