- Regina Morrison Newman is the Shelby County Trustee.
Supplied the problems still left driving by the ice storm that strike Shelby County before this thirty day period, this subject is primarily timely.
So quite a few persons are working with problems to their properties from the ice storm – trees slipping on their residences, frozen pipes bursting and creating drinking water destruction, even fires brought about by electric power surges as MLGW bought electric power turned back on. Depending on the quantity and kind of injury, folks are determined to get it repaired. Enter the unscrupulous “home repair” folks.
Several periods we reach out to pals and spouse and children for suggestions. Most of the reputable people are booked for months if not months, specifically immediately after a weather conditions party like we had. Sadly, that leaves the fly-by-night time household fix scammers driving neighborhoods seeking for residences with hurt and supplying their companies. They promise to be readily available promptly and to do the get the job done for a lot less cash than the types you would have to wait around weeks for. Never be fooled.
Some will ask for revenue up front for “supplies” and vanish. They may possibly give you a handwritten “contract” with doubtful language that is open to interpretation about the amount of money in fact owed. Our seniors feel to be preferred targets of these people.
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In accordance to the Superior Business Bureau, in 2021, 22 “property enhancement” cons had been reported to our scam-tracker by Shelby County consumers for a reduction of $74,317.56. All of these losses were noted by seniors. Most of these were storm chasers, or fly-by-night “contractors” who took dollars and by no means returned.
A lot of studies were being filed on reputable contractors, also. Roofers, plumbers, contractors, and so on., who have F rankings with the BBB. Try to remember that the least expensive price doesn’t always suggest the do the job will be carried out correctly, if at all.
Ahead of engaging any one to make repairs to your residence, examine them out. The subsequent recommendations compiled by the Much better Business Bureau are a great way to decrease the option for fraud.
Know your regional and condition specifications for licensing of contractors. Needs differ from condition to condition and, in some circumstances, metropolis to town or county to county. You should make contact with your area allow business office or nearby constructing official concerning regional necessities. Do not be reluctant to check with for a copy of the demanded license.
- In Tennessee:
- Employment in excess of $25,000 involve a valid TN General Contractor’s license.
- Contractors executing function concerning $3000 and $24,999 in nine Tennessee counties will have to hold a legitimate TN Residence Enhancement license. Shelby and Haywood are the only two counties in West Tennessee that call for this license.
- Positions under $3000 do not call for a point out license in Tennessee.
- Be wary of door-to-doorway personnel who present up unsolicited providing to make repairs. This incorporates corporations presenting to clear away fallen trees and branches, which could induce even further injury if not correctly removed. Just because somebody has a chainsaw does not necessarily mean they know how to appropriately take out a fallen tree.
- Test with your coverage company about coverage protection and unique submitting specifications. Maintain copies of receipts for crisis repairs for reimbursement later.
- Get time to shop about for highly regarded contractors. Get at least three estimates and look at out contractors with BBB.
- Ask the BBB for a list of dependable BBB Accredited Corporations to pick from such as roofers, tree removal businesses, fence companies and other property maintenance enterprises.
- Get almost everything in writing. The created settlement should define the work to be performed, the products to be used, and the price breakdown for the two labor and materials. Critique it cautiously ahead of signing. Vague clauses these types of as “repair roof” are invites for abuse.
- Hardly ever pay back the entire amount of money of repairs in progress. The BBB recommends that you pay no more than 30% up front. Shell out with a credit rating card if doable, which offers you extra security if the work is not finished as specified.
Not only do we want to enable you and especially our seniors stay away from scammers, we also want to make sure our seasoned citizens can take benefit of all the federal government products and services and systems out there to them in Shelby County. As element of our Shelby County Cares initiative, the Trustee’s Office environment along with County Mayor Harris and a number of other Shelby County organizations have compiled a booklet of expert services provided to seniors that will be mailed out this thirty day period.
If you do not obtain a single by the conclude of March, remember to call (901) 222-0206 to request one.
Regina Morrison Newman is the Shelby County Trustee.