BBB Release: Home Improvement Industries Top BBB's Inquiries
BBB Provides Homeowners with Reliable Home Improvement Tools
Anchorage, Alaska – July 13, 2010 – Summer is a peak time for home improvement projects and Better Business Bureau is arming consumers with tools to avoid common remodeling troubles. According to BBB's second quarter statistics (April through June 2010), the following home improvement categories were among Alaska's top 20 most-inquired-about industries:
#1 Contractors – General (Also tied for third for most-complaint-about industries.)
#4 Roofing Contractors
#8 Construction & Remodeling Services
#9 Heating & Air Conditioning
#11 Painting Contractors
#13 Plumbing Contractors
#15 Landscape Contractors
#16 Heating Contractors
#17 Contractors – Electrical
#18 Excavating Contractors
Common Scams. BBB serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington warns of:
- "Traveling Handymen" - Beware of unknown solicitors who show up at the doorstep promising home or yard repair for a low day rate. They may ask for money up-front, and then disappear—leaving jobs incomplete.
- "Extra Materials" - Don't trust repair solicitors who claim they've got leftover materials from working on a neighbor's home. They guarantee a good deal and perform the work, but then demand a higher payment. In other scams, they collect a full payment and ditch out mid-project.
- "#1 Contractor" - Be careful with contractors who embellish qualifications, but aren't properly licensed or offer poor workmanship.
Caution Signs. Steer clear of contractors and remodelers that:
- Use high pressure sales tactics and aggressive limited time offers.
- Show up on foot or in unmarked vehicles. Legitimate repair businesses usually use trucks featuring their company logo or decal.
- Refuse to provide a written bid or estimate.
- Demand a full payment up-front.
Home Improvement Tips. Do research first.
- Check licensing. Alaska businesses are required to have a business license and many Alaska home remodeling industries are required to have professional licensing. Verify proper state licensing at www.commerce.state.ak.us/occ/.
- For a listing of pre-screened remodelers, check BBB's Accredited Business Directory; BBB verifies proper licensing and other details.
- For more BBB Home Improvement Tips, visit www.bbb.org.
About your BBB serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington:
Your Better Business Bureau is a not-for-profit organization funded by Better Business Bureau Accredited Businesses. The BBB’s mission is to be the leader in advancing marketplace trust. For more information about the services and products provided by your BBB, call 206-431-2222 or 253-830-2924 in Washington, 503-212-3022 in Oregon, 907-562-0704 in Alaska, or visit our website at www.bbb.org.
Posted: July 13, 2010