Texas Association of REALTORS®

 

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7 tips to avoid scams when you rebuild from Harvey

Posted on by Texas Association of REALTORS®

Ensure you’re working with legitimate professionals, whether rebuilding your own home or sharing these tips with clients.

Be suspicious of builders who contact you first. A person knocking on your door may say he’s a contractor, but how do you know? Ask for identification, and look up the phone number of the business the person claims to represent and call that place.

Don’t provide personal information. Unless you’ve initiated contact with a company, don’t respond to texts, phone calls, or other requests for your personal information.

Avoid contractors who offer to waive deductibles or handle your insurance claims. They could be submitting false information to your insurance company or violating other laws.

Talk to your neighbors. If your property needs repair, it’s likely that your neighbors’ properties incurred damage, too. Ask what companies they’re using and what they’re paying.

Get it in writing. Get written estimates from at least two contractors that include a description of the work, required materials, start and end dates, price, payment schedule, and the company name and contact information.

Don’t pay up front. Contractors usually request a downpayment to start work; however, your final payment shouldn’t be made until the job is finished.

Trust your instincts. If something seems “off” about a person or company, take your business elsewhere.