It is a sad fact that during times like we are experiencing now, when we need help the most, you also have to be the most cautious. Always check licenses and associations of any people doing work on your property. After an event like Mathew when people need reliable companies to do work to help restore their properties from the damage of the storm it is easy to hire the wrong people. There will be some coming into this area that either do not know the codes for building here or are outright intent upon taking advantage of people in the area. Here are a few tips:
- Get it done the way you want. Don’t let someone tell you that you have to accept less than you want for your home unless they can provide a logical structural or code based reasoning behind it.
- Always, always, always check the licensing of a contractor. People can make up license numbers to look legitimate or use someone else’s number on their vehical. To make sure go to http://www.myfloridalicense.com/dbpr/ and click on ‘Verify a License’ to check them out. It takes a few seconds but can save you thousands of dollars later.
- If someone says they are working with a local company then contact the local company and make sure that it’s true. People can look up a local company name and say that they are subcontracting for someone without the local company knowing anything about it and then you have no one to guarantee the work done. Always call and ask. Again, a few seconds can save lots of headaches down the road.
- Cheap is not always cheap. Sometimes discount repairs sound great until you have to redo them at your expense or worse, when the structure fails and someone gets hurt.
Years after Hurricane Charlie there were people that went to sell their homes only to find out the repair work done by out of town companies did not meet Florida codes and they had to pay out of their own pocket to have the work redone. We sincerely hope that you never face this situation but it is a possibility as everyone is anxious to have their home repairs done as soon as possible. This will bring unscrupulous people to town looking to make a quick buck.
Any reputable person in business in the area should be able to provide references. We often refer customers to businesses we have worked with before or have known for years. If someone is unknown or unlicensed, don’t use them for your repairs no matter how good the deal. Not only should you not use them, you should warn your neighbors and report them to the authorities. We need to look out for each other in times like these; we’re neighbors and we need to make sure none of us end up getting more
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