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Ways to Avoid Home Improvement Fraud

by Terry Naber 09/08/2019

Do the echoing thumps of a hammer, or the high pitched-squeals of a table saw trigger any Deja-vu? That is right, the season of home improvement is officially here. Whether you are adding a deck, installing a new window or perhaps replacing a roof, the fact is you're most likely going to hire a contractor to make this happen.

To avoid falling victim to home improvement fraud, you need to know how they operate and the techniques they use. Once equipped with this knowledge, it's tough to become a victim of the scam.

It's crucial to research and ask questions about their services before hiring a contractor. However, you can never be too careful, so brace yourself with these tips on how to identify a contractor that is trying to defraud you:

  1. Your contractor states that their service to you is going to be a demonstration. 
  2. They prefer you pay in full before work commences.
  3. They give a lifetime or unrealistic warranty.
  4. Their business number is unregistered on any directories.
  5. They pressure you into making hasty decisions.

Contractor scams are one of the most significant issues in the contract industry, and those who fall a victim, end up spending thousands of dollars to remedy the situation. According to many victims, scammers work by putting you off balance and luring you into a vulnerable position that allows them to drain you out financially before you even know what's happening.

A common trick used by scam artists is to knock at your door and offer to do a free inspection. At the mention of free, you let your guide down and in turn, pay for things you know nothing about later.

Another example of contractor scams is the roofing scam. These scammers are popularly known as storm chasers. They travel the country, looking for desperate and vulnerable homeowners to scam under the guise of roofing. They do a poor job and most often, leave the town afterward, thereby ensuring the homeowner is stranded and swindled.

From the above tips, you can understand how they work and counter their manipulative techniques without any hurdle. In addition to being informed, whenever you’re in doubt, always remember not to be in haste to make decisions. Avoid the offer of free home inspections without proper verification and lastly, don't permit work without a duly signed contract. Knowledge is power, and that is the best tool you have against contractor scammers.

About the Author
Author

Terry Naber

Your "Good Neighbor" In Colorado Springs Real Estate Since 1990

Broker Associate (28+ years experience)

Certifications:

  • CRS
  • CDPE
  • LHP
  • MRS
  • CFE
  • MRE
  • CNE
  • IRES
  • SRES

Specializing in

Specialties:

  •  Buyer's Agent
  •  Listing Agent
  •  Relocation
  •  Foreclosure
  •  Senior Real Estate Specialist

Terry is long time resident of Colorado Springs and has been an award-winning licensed Realtor since 1990 when Colorado Springs was "Repo Capital" of the United States.  Getting into the business when most agents were getting out of the business was a challenge, but one that she eagerly embraced because she came in with a different business philosophy of putting her clients interest above all else, serving them with integrity and care, She soon had all the business she could handle from appreciative buyers and sellers.  Terry's commitment to being at the top of the profession for her clients has resulted in awards for every year of her 28 years in real estate and several prestigious designations:

  •  RE/MAX Properties 2015 Client Service Award
  •  RE/MAX Lifetime Achievement Award for sales surpassing $100 million
  •  RE/MAX International Hall of Fame Award
  •  The CRS (Certified Residential Specialist designation held by only about 7% of all agents); CDPE-Certified Distressed Property Expert; CNE-Certified Negotiation Expert; RFC-Residential Finance Certification; IRES-International Residential Specialist; LHP-Luxury Home Professional
  • Managing Broker's License

Terry can help you in any phase of Residential Real Estates-buying or selling single family homes; investment properties, luxury properties; town-homes/condos; income properties; new construction and resales; vacant land, short-sales; foreclosures and more.  Call her today for a free consultation 719-590-4796.

Experience, Commitment, Hard Work, Enthusiasm, Integrity, Results

When it comes to a successful real estate transaction, you should have seasoned experienced agent on your side.  Terry is experienced, confident, knowledgeable, and above all, she cares.  Whether you’re selling or buying a home, having an agent of our caliber representing you is invaluable.  She will be your advocate, your advisor and will relentlessly use her expertise to pursue your goals!

Get a positive, helpful partner for buying or selling a home:

  • Trusted resource for answers about the process
  • Innovative marketing strategies
  • Expertise about neighborhood features
  • Ability to target home searches
  • Strong negotiation skills
  • Support through the closing and beyond
  • Years of Experience

Find Your Next Home

In this incredibly difficult Seller's market, you need someone who knows how to beat the other buyers to the best homes, get your offer accepted and knows the area inside and out !  Terry can work with you to find the right home at the right price for you, including the neighborhood amenities that matter - not to mention the essential criteria you have for your ideal home.

Sell a Home

When it's time to move, you need someone who will market and advertise your home, show to prospective buyers, negotiate the purchase contract, arrange financing, oversee the inspections, handle all necessary paperwork and supervise the closing.  But even more importantly, an agent who has the experience and knowledge to prevent problems from the get-go and solve the ones that can sink your real estate ship.  She can take care of everything you need, from start to close, making the difficult task of selling less stressful.

Consult on Home Selling Tactics

Often times buyers don't visualize living in your home the way you do.  Terry can help you make your home attractive to its ideal audience - which can help you get top dollar in the shortest time.  Staging and photographing your home, recommending minor repairs or improvements can make the difference between a home getting stale on the market and one that is sold quickly for the maximum net to you.