Contractors are in high demand right now as people try to get their homes repaired from the floods but not all are on the up-and-up and some homeowners are getting scammed by crooked companies.

The Canadian Home Builders’ Association of Calgary says flood victims are being approached by unscrupulous contractors who are taking advantage of people who are desperate to get back into their homes.

“Don’t be caught up in the rush to get back to normal as fast as you can,” said Doug Whitney, president of Canadian Home Builders’ Association - Calgary Region. “We know it’s a very emotional time for everyone, but we continue to emphasize the importance of ensuring you are protected at this devastating time. There have already been stories circulating about these fly-by-night tailgaters approaching people and taking money as a ‘down payment,’ then never coming to do the work.

The Home Builders’ have a few tips for people to reduce the risk of getting scammed:

  • Get it in writing
  • Do your homework and research the contractor
  • Ask for and check references
  • Get a budget estimate before the work begins
  • Never, ever do business with a contractor who insists on cash payments, especially up-front payments

For more information on hiring a contractor, visit the Get It In Writing or Canadian Home Builders' Association of Calgary website.