Most building contractors and sub-contractors are legitimate, but some may not be competent or on the up-and-up, doing shoddy repair work, failing to complete work as promised, or charging you well over the market value for their services.
And then there is another breed of contractors and home repairmen who are out-and-out con artists, whose goal is to bilk you out of your money.
These indicators, while not necessarily deceptive in nature, point to potential problems and are red flags warning you to exercise caution. Does the contractor:
- Solicit door-to-door?
- Just happen to have materials left over from a previous job?
- Only accept cash payments?
- Ask you to get the required building permits?
- Not list a business number in the local telephone directory?
- Tell you your job will be a "demonstration?"
- Pressure you for an immediate decision?
- Offer an exceptionally long guarantee?
- Ask you to pay for the entire job up front?
- Suggest that you borrow money from a lender he or she knows?
If you believe you have been the victim of home repair fraud, contact the Georgia Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division at 404-651-8600 or 800-869-1123.