September 25, 2006
Jefferson City, Mo. — While residents of central and southeast Missouri clean up and assess damage from Friday's storms, Attorney General Jay Nixon is reminding consumers to watch out for crooks hoping to make money on the misfortune of others. Nixon says the most common home-repair ripoff after severe weather comes from the storm chaser, a con artist who targets homeowners in hard-hit areas.
“We can always count on the generosity of Missourians to help their neighbors,” Nixon said. “Unfortunately, we can also count on the scammers to try to rip off those consumers in dire need of repairs. As difficult as this process can be, I urge homeowners to be careful and take their time in hiring a repair company.”
Nixon says consumers should be suspicious of workers who:
Nixon makes these suggestions for selecting a home-repair company:
Nixon says home repair is always one of the top complaint categories his office receives, with nearly 1,200 consumer complaints in 2005. That made it the third-highest category of complaints. Consumers can report fraud by filing a complaint online with the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Division by visiting www.ago.mo.gov or by calling 1-800-392-8222.