Santa Clarita Valley Business Journal

5 signs your contractor is scamming you

By Randal Winter, founder of Randal G. Winter Construction

Way too many people get swindled by contractors each year. It’s appalling and it’s unnecessary. Take note of these 10 signs so you can avoid getting scammed by a fraudulent contractor!

  1. Provided a low-ball offer

If one quote came back much lower than the rest, it’s most likely a scam. The individual who provided the low bid will take the money and run, or they will tack on additional fees during the course of construction.

  1. Requested a large upfront deposit

Some projects may need a sum of money upfront to buy materials. If the contractor is asking for more than 10 percent of the total cost of the job, beware.

  1. Asked for cash payment

If your contractor has requested to be paid with cash or they’ve offered an incentive to get you to pay with cash, consider this a warning. Cash means they likely aren’t paying taxes and they likely aren’t paying for insurance.

  1. Offered free or discounted material due to excess

Many con artists will knock on doors, stating that they just finished work at a neighbor’s house, and they have extra material that they can install for you for a low price. It’s possible that a reputable contractor might do this. However, it’s unlikely that a reputable contractor would have excess materials because they are usually very careful about estimating their materials.

  1. Suggested no-license price-break

Do not choose a contractor that does not have a license or insurance. Without insurance, you could be liable for any injuries that may occur on your property. The fees would far outweigh whatever savings you were hoping to enjoy. 

When it comes to large construction projects for your home or commercial property, you need to work with someone you can trust. Randal G. Winter Construction has been serving the Santa Clarita Valley and surrounding communities with reliable, high-quality service and craftsmanship for nearly 40 years.\

We offer architecture, design and planning services that help our customers maximize space, enhance living quarters, improve living conditions, expand working areas, develop open spaces and save energy. If you would like to learn more about finding a good contractor, order a copy of Randy Winter’s book, “How to Select the Right Home or Building Contractor,” which is available on Amazon.

Call Randal G. Winter Construction today for a free consultation at 661-239-7173 or visit www.RGWinter.com. CA Contractors Lic No. 395715.

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