As Nebraskans clean up from flood damage, victims are warned to remain vigilant when it comes to hiring services or purchasing goods to make repairs. Mike Wight with the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services says the first thing a victim needs to do is contact their insurance company.
“It is the responsibility of the homeowner and the business to check with their insurers to see what is covered and not covered before they get to the point of trying to fix their home or business.”
Wight says unfortunately, there will be scam artists who follow tragedies like this hoping to make a buck. They often times just take your money and run or do very sloppy, unsatisfactory work.
“About door to door experts who might offer a bargain. Sad, but it does happen how people take advantage so if someone comes knocks on the door and offers to make repairs, especially if it is a low cost, we all know the low cost is an indicator it may not be the best option.”
Wight says scam artists usually are pretty forceful in getting you to hand over your cash or sign on the dotted line.
“If the bid is too good to be true, it probably is. Don’t accept high pressure offers. Don’t let them force you into anything. Most salespeople will try a little of that but they won’t push as hard as someone who is a scam artist. Be skeptical if they demand an up-front payment. Be aware if a contractor comes to your door with a business card containing a phone number and no address.”
The Department of Health and Human Services reminds victims your best bet is to go with local contractors or to follow the instructions of your insurance company. If you are contacted by someone with a company you don’t know, first thing is not give them personal information or any money. Contact the Better Business Bureau to see if they are a legitimate business or if there are any complaints against this person or company.