Contractor Fraud / Home Repair Scams

After a stormy spring and with the approach of the hurricane season, many homeowners may face the need to make repairs. Storm damage is the type of thing that prompts con artists to scam people needing to make repairs. Property owners need to prepare themselves before they make any agreement or payment.

It is also important that people don't rush into a decision until they are satisfied that they have found the right contractor for the job. People need to be aware that not every person who approaches them will have good intentions. When working with a contractor, it is important to get all guarantees, promises and warranties in writing.

Reputable contractors won't hesitate to provide a written estimate and contract. For work costing more than $150, contractors should provide the following in writing: start times, end times and a description of the planned work.


Here are some more tips for dealing with home repair contractors:

  • Hire only licensed contractors or builders.
  • Call your insurance adjuster for estimates.
  • Record the salesperson's vehicle license plate number.
  • If a down payment is required, the payment should be no more than a third of the project's total cost.
  • Never pay for work before it's been completed.
  • Call police if you think you've been the target of a scam.

Below are several links to various agencies that you can contact to verify a contractors license, any complaints about previous work, the laws regarding contractors and how to file a complaint if you feel that you may have been scammed.