(Indianapolis, IN) - With thunderstorms brewing, Attorney General Todd Rokita is warning Hoosiers to be wary of scams.
With Spring storms, scammers will be out in full force trying to con Hoosiers out of their hard-earned money, and calling it clean-up, repair, or rebuilding.
“Hoosiers can protect their hard-earned money by asking questions, demanding a written contract, and doing old-fashioned research. It can be tempting to accept help to fix damages to your home, but it’s crucial to take a step back and fully vet the contractor,” Rokita said.
Unfortunately, Rokita said too many con artists appear on people’s doorsteps, promise to make needed repairs and never return after given a down payment.
Rokita is sharing the following tips to help keep from becoming a victim to storm-chasing scammers:
- Be skeptical of people promising immediate clean-up and debris removal.
- Know that FEMA doesn’t charge application fees. If someone wants money to help you qualify for FEMA funds, that’s probably a scam.
- Check out contractors’ reputations before enlisting their services.
- Ask for IDs, licenses, and proof the contractor is both bonded and insured.
- Get more than one estimate for work.
- Don’t believe any promises that aren’t in writing.
- Never pay by wire transfer, gift card, cryptocurrency, or in cash.
- Don’t pay the full amount for the project upfront.
Dealing with a disaster is never easy. But when scammers target people just trying to recover, the experience can become even more difficult. If you ever suspect a scam of any type, file a complaint at indianaconsumer.com or call Attorney General Todd Rokita’s office at 1-800-382-5516.