How to Avoid Being Scammed During Home Repairs

avoid being scammed during home repairs

Unfortunately for many individuals, finding a reputable company isn’t as easy as it seems. Some home owners are shocked to learn that the individual they hired was not licensed, not insured and most importantly, not a legal business.

For some, the contractor they’ve paid disappears as soon as the payment has been made – leaving the individual without the repairs and without a clue how to recuperate their money.

Here are 3 tips to ensure the company you’re hiring is reliable, so your project will end up finished safely and professionally:

1) Ask and Check References Carefully

Businesses who have been around for quite a while will have a list of references for previous clients or businesses they’ve worked for. Be sure to ask any company bidding on your home repairs for this list – and follow up with telephone calls.

Be sure to ask their references about timelines, budget, finished results and whether they were happy with both the workmanship and professionalism. While you can always use the portfolio provided by the company in question, it’s not uncommon to ask the references for a few photographs they’ve taken of the renovations. Many individuals will happily send through electronic copies of their completed projects and repairs.

2) Ask for Proof Upon Contract

Majority of all contracting businesses will have insurance, bonding, criminal checks and licenses. Before signing off on all contracts, make sure to ask for proof of all items. Be leery of any business that can’t or won’t provide proof of these items. A reliable company should have no problem producing these documents to a customer at the time of signing contracts for any home repairs.

3) Get Everything in Writing – Including Any Conditions You Have

When you’re working with a company, a contract is the defining agreement between both parties. When you’re signing the contract, remember this document is to not only protect the contractor, but also to protect you- in the event something goes awry.

Make sure to document all conditions of what they’re supposed to do for your renovations, and whether it will be the contractor in question, or sub-contractors. Many individuals are surprised to have signed an agreement with one individual and see another sub-contractor appear on the day they’re supposed to start working.

Finally, make sure you write down the final working day, any penalties or payments due. Be sure to have both parties sign the agreement and keep this document in a safe place at all times. If any changes arise within the contract, both parties should initial and date any changes at the time they were made.

 

While there are obviously other things to consider when hiring someone for home repairs, these are three important components to take very seriously. By spending the time at the beginning of your search, you’ll be less likely to find yourself on the end of a home repair scam, and more likely to find yourself dealing with a professional, reliable contractor who understands the industry.

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