DO – Before starting any home repair work:
- Hire companies that are known or recommended. Check the background of companies by calling the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Hotline: 800-392-8222 or call your nearest Better Business Bureau. The Saint Louis BBB, Southwest Missouri BBB, Kansas City BBB, or you can visit the main BBB site.
- Check the credentials of the company. Verify their numbers and addresses in the phone book, internet search, check for county and local permits, and ask and get physical proof that they are licensed, bonded, and insured. Any legitimate contractor will gladly give you a Certificate of Insurance proving they have insurance. THEN, follow up with a phone call to the agent/broker.
- Get at least two or three DETAILED estimates IN WRITING.
- NEVER PAY NO MORE THAN 25% DOWN.
DON’T – Trust any worker who:
- Goes door-to-door. This is the way most con artists work.
- Drives an out-of-state or unmarked vehicle, especially after damaging storms. Be aware of ‘Storm Chasers’ who move from state to state.
- Has no identifying address – just a phone number. Many out of state contractors will move in-state, get a local number to appear like they’re local.
- Demands full payment before beginning work. Again… Pay NO MORE THAN 25% DOWN.