It was a difficult time for many families last fall after super storm Sandy hit the east coast. Some families were lucky enough to escape the wrath of Sandy, while others lost everything. Recently, Governor Cuomo, of NY, extended FEMA funding in an effort to support struggling families during their time of need. For those who were in a position to rebuild, their first step was to reach out to a general contractor and get a quote on how much it would cost to repair their home.
And handful of contractors proceeded to quote jobs, some as low as $9,000 dollars, and went on to find out that these struggling homeowners were in fact undercover investigators whose main goal was to weed out improperly registered general contractors who were looking to exploit people’s needs after the storm. The investigation managed to single out 8 home-improvement contractors, who are now facing criminal charges. Their offense: not registering with the state they had claimed to be insured under.
The investigation began once homeowners started filing complaints. State officials are now stating that this situation will only continue as time progresses, and work which was performed starts to fall apart. State laws require that a home improvement contractor register with the division of consumer affairs and in addition to that, provide proof that they have at least $500,000 dollars in liability insurance coverage. To prevent getting tricked, take into consideration where you find your leads on contractors. Sites such as craigslist or the yellow pages should provide information on their registration as a licensed contractor. If you are still skeptical, ask for their registration number and look into it yourself. Whether you are a homeowner looking for the proper insurance coverage for your property, or a contractor who is still unsure about licensing and liability insurance, be sure to contact one of our professional insurance agents today. It’s unfortunate that the many homes destroyed by sandy had to deal with other complications, so if there is anything we could do to help, we would be more than happy to assist you.