Beware of scams

by Christa Lollis

LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - After the hurricane blew through, fallen trees and roof shingles were scattered across neighborhoods all over East Texas.

At a time when people are desperate to fix their houses, D & J Roofing warns, that's when scammers can come in. "Storm chasers as you call them coming in and representing themselves that they've been around for a long time and they haven't been and then whenever they had problems with the roof you couldn't find them," Doyle Scott explained.

It's a problem Doyle says happened too many times after Hurricane Rita. And it leaves homeowners wondering how they will fix their houses. Scott says, "People paying too much money to get the trees removed and then when it comes to fixing up the rest of the part of the house people don't have enough money to do it."

But this time around he says homeowners are already being more cautious. Kip Hillabrandt, who lives in Lufkin, says he'll be checking with his neighbors before picking a contractor. "From that just talk to people and see if they've heard, well I've heard bad things about this guy or you know I've heard really good things about this company."

Doyle also recommends checking references and getting warranties on any work you have done. And Kip says, the cheapest company isn't always the best choice. "Just because somebody says that it's ten dollars less doesn't necessarily mean, you don't want to get in trouble because you picked the guy that was ten dollars less and he doesn't do the job and it costs you 200 dollars to fix what he did."

So even though you may be ready to have your house back to normal, be cautious when picking the company to help you get there.