DENVER – June 25, 2015 – (RealEstateRama) — This spring, Colorado has experienced extreme weather, leaving many homeowners with costly damage from water and hail. Colorado Attorney General Cynthia H. Coffman is reaching out to homeowners to warn them of phony home repair contractor scams.
“Coloradans are no doubt eager to repair weather-related damage to their homes and property this spring,” said Coffman. “But, it’s important for Coloradans to take their time choosing a contractor that best fits their needs and to safeguard themselves, their family and their friends from those trying to take advantage of this situation.”
These scams typically involve phony contractors going door-to-door offering a “special price” on roofing, siding, windows, asphalt or other services. Some claim to have done work for neighboring homes and have extra materials that they can offer at a discounted rate.
To get victims to commit, contractors will claim the price is only good “right now” and request all or most of the cost paid up front before work is complete. But once the homeowner pays for the services, the contractor disappears with the money without doing any or most of the work. Any work that is completed is typically of poor quality.
Here are a few tips for avoiding home-repair scams:
- Never allow an uninvited contractor into your home to “look around” or make an “inspection.”
- Say no to contractors using high-pressure sales tactics or requesting that you make an immediate decision.
- Before you spend any significant amount of money on home repairs, obtain bids from at least three different contractors.
- Before you select a final contractor, check the complaint and business history with organizations like your local Better Business Bureau.
- Demand the selected contractor sign a written contract that spells out specific details of the agreement including: when the work will be started, the quality and type of all materials to be used, and when the work will be completed. Insist on making partial payments under the contract as specific work is completed to your satisfaction.
- Require your contractor to obtain mechanic’s lien waivers from all suppliers and subcontractors.
- If you believe you have been victimized by a home repair scam or wish to report suspicious activity, please file a report online at StopFraudColorado.gov .
Stop Fraud Colorado (stopfraudcolorado.gov) helps Coloradans prevent fraud and report complaints to the Office of the Attorney General.