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Watch out for contractor fraud post-hurricane

On Behalf of | Apr 8, 2021 | Firm News |

Louisiana is no stranger to active hurricanes and the damage that they can cause to homes and businesses. Unfortunately, for some storm victims, the damage is not only the weather. Many Louisiana residents find themselves getting scammed by roofing contractor fraud schemes.

What are contractor fraud schemes?

Contractor fraud schemes happen when a contractor takes payment for services that were not rendered. For example, after a hurricane hits, a roofing contractor may offer to repair your damaged roof for a set price. They will ask for the money upfront and schedule the service for a future date. Unfortunately, the contractor never shows up again, and these individuals find themselves having to scrounge together another way to pay for the new roof that they never received.

Extra vigilant after major storms

People who commit contractor fraud are more likely to appear after major hurricanes. They know that people contact their insurance company and receive a lump sum of money to pay for the repairs to their roof. One surefire way to tell that a contractor is not legitimate is that they ask for the whole lump sum upfront before any work is performed.

You should never pay a contractor upfront for the entirety of the service. Rather, they are to be paid upfront for the cost of materials, and they will receive the remaining funds for the labor once the work is performed. In addition, you should check with your local permitting and code office to see if the contractor is licensed in your area. If a contractor is not licensed, then you do not want to hire them to do any services.

While it may seem inhuman to try and scam people out of money after they’ve undergone a natural disaster, there are still people that do it. When it comes to roof damage, fly-by-night contractors pop up after natural disasters to scam unsuspecting homeowners out of money. By following the tips that we went over above, you should be able to avoid any sort of scheme.