Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Beware of Scammers!

I just got a good email from Connecticut State Senator Bob Duff. He is warning folks to make sure that the contractors they hire are actually licensed. Many people, especially seniors, are preyed upon by scam artists looking to make a quick buck. By asking to see a contractor's license, they can avoid scams. I'm pasting part of Senator Duff's email below. To check on licenses for your contractor, visit this site for Connecticut's Department of Consumer Protection:

http://www.ct.gov/dcp/site/default.asp
Friends:

In light of the recent storms in our area, I thought it would be a good time to remind you to be careful if you are hiring a contractor to do some work on your house.

Most contractors are hardworking people looking just to make a living through their trade. However, we all know that unscrupulous people will often try to capitalize on the misfortune of others in order to make a buck.

Though many out-of-state contractors may be looking for work in Connecticut, they must be licensed with the state to legally conduct work here. To protect yourself, your family and your property, you should take the necessary steps to verify that a contractor is licensed and in good standing with the state before choosing to hire them to work on your home.

Contractors-including carpenters, electricians, plumbers, heating and cooling specialists, stump removers and other trades people-must be registered with the state Department of Consumer Protection to conduct work in the state. Similarly, arborists must be registered with the state Department of Environmental Protection.

You are also encouraged to ask contractors to show a copy of their Connecticut license or registration cards and insurance certificates and to ask for a list of references.

If you've experienced property damage or unfinished work at the hands of a registered contractor, you may qualify for restitution through the state's Home Improvement Guaranty Fund. However, this fund is not available to homeowners who hire unregistered contractors.

For more information about hiring a home improvement contractor and the Home Improvement Guaranty Fund, call toll-free 1-800-842-2649.

I hope you enjoy the upcoming week.

Sincerely,
Bob



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