|The Kingsport Police Department is issuing a general advisory concerning con artists potentially operating in the area in the aftermath of the recent hail storm. Anytime disaster strikes, there are always those who show up attempting to further victimize people through scams.
Here are a few tips and suggestions to avoid becoming a victim:
1) Verify for yourself that you actually have new damage caused by the storm. Don’t just take somebody else’s word for it.
2) Be especially cautious when approached by a contractor who suddenly appears at your home uninvited offering to do repairs. Quality repair specialists are typically so busy, that they don’t have time to conduct door-to-door solicitation.
3) Consider utilizing reputable local repair specialists who have been in business for an extended period of time, rather than the “fly-by-night” companies that suddenly appear immediately after the storm.
4) Insurance companies will provide their clients with a list of credible repair specialists.
5) Ask for references, and more importantly, actually follow-up and contact the references.
6) Make sure the contractor’s licensure is up to date with the State of Tennessee and that they have the required permits to operate inside the City of Kingsport.
7) Always obtain multiple detailed written estimates in advance.
8) Before having any work done, make sure you have a contract specifically stating what will be done, how much it will be cost, and when the work will be completed.
9) Never pay for any work up front.
|Thomas M. Patton, Public Information Officer
Kingsport Police Department Professional Standards Unit