Officials warn of post-storm construction scams

Officials warn of post-storm construction scams

HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) - As the cleanup from the tornado damage in the Pine Belt continues, officials are warning homeowners to be aware of construction scams.

John O'Hara with the Better Business Bureau was in Hattiesburg Thursday giving homeowners tips to stay safe.

"After you have all this relief and the volunteers cleaning up, people are going to need repairs. You'll get what we call storm chases, going door to door," O'Hara said

He said it is very important to know who is on your property doing work.

"If they're not insured and they get hurt on your property, that could come back on you," O'Hara said.

He said to be on the lookout for out-of-state tags and people knocking on your door..

"They'll ask for money up front they might not be licensed to do the work, they might be trying to get a quick buck," O'Hara said.

O'Hara urges residents to get at least three estimates, never pay for the work in advance and get everything in writing.

"The contract with everything written out, when you add stuff and subtract stuff protects you take off protects both the consumer and the business," O'Hara said.

He said being proactive will help you weed out the good from the bad.

"There are more people we like to emphasize that do good, but there's just that small percentage that are out there that will try to take advantage of this situation," O'Hara said.