How to protect yourself from home improvement fraud

ELKHART, Ind.-- Police are warning people in Michiana of the dangers that come with home improvement scams.

Captain Siegel with the Elkhart Sheriff's department has a few tips on how you can prevent yourself from being a victim of home improvement fraud.

Captain Siegel said, “Know what you want. That might not sound like a tip, but if you have no idea what a 2 by 4 costs, I could come in and say that 2 by 4 was $12 when really it was 89 cents!”

Captain Siegel said home improvement fraud is very common in Michiana and homeowners need to do their research before hiring a handyman.

Dana Eckstein said a quick Google search could save you a lot of money.

Dana Eckstein said, “As a consumer the best way you can protect yourself and your family is make sure that they are licensed and bonded and when they give you the license number take ten minutes and make a phone call. Make sure it’s a legitimate number!”

Eckstein recently moved to Elkhart and said she was wary of becoming a victim to home improvement fraud. She believes it is important to submit reviews for workers.

Eckstein said, “Make it known if somebody does it wrong, and really make it known if somebody does it right. Make a complaint so that the next person who checks them out can see they’ve had some complaints!”

A salesman at ACE hardware said it’s smart to stay local, and do searches through the Better Business Bureau online.

Bill Ashby said, "If they say yeah they did a good job, charged me a good price, by all means go there! Word of mouth is huge!”

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