Be Alert for Scams
Building repair scams, fraudulent fundraising and price gouging are among the top concerns during the time of a crisis like a natural disaster.
After Hurricane Katrina struck, an estimated 4,000 Katrina-related websites claimed to offer help to victims. The FBI believes up to 60 percent of these sites were scams.
Protect yourself and your congregation from dishonest solicitors in your rush to get back to normal.
Often, local and state government Web sites post pertinent information about scam warnings related to a particular disaster.
After a disaster, building repairs are a given. Here are a few rules of thumb to guide you through the construction process:
- Find your contractor, don’t wait for one to find you
- Be wary of prices "too good to be true"
- Contractors should always obtain building permits
- Obtain three separate bids for the work
- Agree to a payment schedule; pay for the portion of the job completed and inspected
- Get a written contract after you agree to a written estimate
- Ask for references and check your local Better Business Bureau for possible complaints