Nichole Hannahs

DeWine Warns of Home Improvement Scams

by Nichole Hannahs on May 12, 2014 at 7:25 am

As we move towards summer and warmer weather Ohio’s Attorney General has a warning for home owners.

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine said the warmer weather brings more door-to-door improvement sales. The Attorney General said, "Don’t be pressured into a decision on the spot. It’s best for you to research both the reputation of the business and the individual contractor first."

To avoid become a victim of home improvement scam the Attorney General said consumers should follow these steps:

  • Check with the Ohio Attorney Genera’ls Office and Better Business Bureau to determine if complaints are on file against the company
  • Conduct General Internet searches using the company’s name and indivdual’s name
  • Ask the contractor to provide references of past customers and check those references.

DeWine also said consumers should be skeptical of businesses that show up to your door unexpectedly and you have a three-day right to cancel most door to door sales, and businesses must give you written notice of that right.

He also said to not provide full payment up front and pay when work is finished or for portions of work as they are completed.

The Ohio Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Section has filed five home improvement lawsuits so far in 2014 against contractors believed to be violating the Ohio Consumer Sales Practices Act.

In the past year, the Section has received 1,587 complaints about contractors who do everything from roofing, windows, and paving to floors, gutters, and decks.

Consumers who believe they have been treated unfairly should contact the Ohio Attorney General’s Office at  800-282-0515.