Sunday, April 15, 2012
Sedgwick County officials are asking residents to use caution when hiring contractors to make repairs after the weekend’s severe storms.
Scam artists looking for roofing, landscape, siding and window repair are quick to descend in times of natural disasters. The county also asks drivers to be aware of auto body repair scams.
Citizens are asked to take the following measures if approached by anyone offering to work on the damage:
· Ask for proof of licensing and bonding.
· Try to get at least 3-4 quotes from contractors, and insist that payments be made to the company, not an individual.
· Do not pay for the job in advance. Be wary of any contractor who demands full payment up front.
· Do not hire people who show up at your door offering services such as tree or debris removal and roof repair.
· Resist high-pressure sales tactics such as the “good deal” you’ll get only if you hire the contractor on the spot.
· Get a written contract that specifies the price and the work to be done and a time frame.
· Prices are often high in the immediate aftermath of a storm. Buy only the services that are necessary to make your home safe and habitable.
· Never pay in cash.
· Be sure that all promises made are put in writing.
Consumers should also check with the Better Business Bureau to review the company’s previous history.