Homeowner Scams & How to Avoid Them!

We’ve all heard of homeowner scams and know people that have been scammed, whether it is something business-related or personal. Scammers are clever and it’s up to us to be diligent in what information we give out and what services we use for & in our homes. At Compass Homes, Columbus custom home builders, we’re careful who we work with & recommend to others. We want you to be careful & avoid homeowner scams that could affect you and/or your home.

Movers Scams

When we move, we want to be sure our belongings are well taken care of, and that our expectations for service are met. But how do you know that the movers you choose are legitimate & reliable?

  • Beware of a price too good to be true. Just because they may quote you a price that’s lower than anyone else, doesn’t mean it’s really the best price. Get several quotes so you can compare services & promises.
  • Do your research in person & online. Talk to other people that have used companies you’re researching. Don’t just go for the first one that comes up in your search.
  • A moving company shouldn’t ask for money up front, or at least no more than 10%. If the mover asks for more, this isn’t the mover for you.
  • Don’t accept a quote made online or over the phone. A reputable company will come inspect & complete a contract. Don’t ever sign a blank contract. Movers charge by mileage, the weight of belongings, and space taken up on the truck. Most of us don’t estimate this correctly, so the movers need to come to your home to provide you with an accurate quote. This means that they will ask questions and look in drawers, cabinets, attics, and closets.
  • Read the quote carefully & ask for an explanation for anything that doesn’t make sense.
  • Get the full legal name, address, and phone numbers, any license info (Dept. of Transportation, state & federal) as well as their insurance information. Try to use a local company so that you can research their address & name. Some companies change their names to stay ahead of being found out.
  • Ask for references & call all of them. Check out the company’s Facebook page, website,  and any other social media pages for other reviews.
  • Ask about the packers’ experience. You might want to pack some items yourself, which saves you money, but means the movers aren’t responsible for damage. The more experience the packers have, the more likely they will take care of your fragile items.

Roofing Scams

When you purchase a new home, the roof isn’t an issue. But as time passes, you will need to replace the roof due to wear & tear, or fix it due to a weather-related event. How can you be sure you won’t get scammed?

  • Don’t make a down payment before the work begins, or you might fall victim to the company not coming back to do the work. This is especially important if you’ve filed an insurance claim for repair. Don’t sign the check you receive over to a roofing company.
  • If there was a recent storm and someone comes to your door offering a free roof, be careful. A salesman may tell you there is damage on the roof that doesn’t actually exist or that they created so that the insurance company will pay. However, the company could truly be legitimate, but don’t sign any paperwork until your insurance company inspects the roof.
  • Get all costs up front. Ask about the roof deck (which can’t be examined before repairs begin) and what costs will be levied if it needs to be replaced. A legitimate contract will list the cost of labor & materials, including possible roof deck repairs.
  • Do your due diligence and get referrals, multiple quotes, and ask for references. Use a local company, not a company that may be chasing storms around the country.

Scams can happen in other ways related to our homes, the two above are just some of the bigger, possible homeowner scams. Any type of home repair, window replacement, yard work, tree removal, or driveway repair is a beacon for possible scams.

Do your research, get references & referrals, get multiple quotes, and know that if it’s too good to be true, it probably is. A reputable company will be transparent & work with you to get the best result possible. Like other reputable companies, at Compass Homes, with homes for sale in Upper Arlington, we take our desire to do the best we possibly can for our clients, seriously.