March 23, 2005
Jefferson City, Mo. — Many homeowners consider springtime to mean the start of home repair and remodeling season. Unfortunately, some unscrupulous contractors see spring as the start of home repair ripoff season. Spring also brings the severe storm season, and damage from wind, rain or hail puts home repair in even higher demand.
Attorney General Jay Nixon is reminding consumers to be careful when they hire contractors to do work on their homes. Nixon's office in 2004 fielded nearly 1,400 consumer complaints relating to home repairs, many of which coincided with warmer weather or storm aftermath.
"This is the busiest time of the year for home repair scams, but there are some simple things Missourians can do to avoid problems with contractors doing repair or remodeling on their homes," Nixon says.
Nixon suggests homeowners do the following:
Nixon says unfortunately con artists often target the elderly, who often own their own homes. Many of these homes are older and do need repairs. There are plenty of good companies out there who can provide those repairs, Nixon says, and Missourians just need to follow these suggestions to find them.
Consumers who have questions or problems with a particular business can contact the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Hotline by calling 1-800-392-8222 or visiting www.ago.mo.gov.