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Don’t get scammed; 5 tips to remember 

By Charlotte Smith

After Hurricane Matthew citizens were victims of price gouging, fraud and scams. Don’t let that happen to you.

“After hurricane Matthew people in Lumberton were charged for tearing out damaged duct work at the same rate we charge for tearing out the duct work and installing brand new duct,” Daine Smith with Cape Fear Heating & Cooling said.

Be prepared to call a honest professional if you need construction work or tree removal services after a natural disaster strikes.

Here are five tips to help guide you in the right direction and safeguard you against scams, fraud and price gouging.

1 – Don’t rush. It is important to abate water damage quickly, but it is not worth being taken advantage of during your time of need.

2 – Ask if the contractor is licensed and insured in North Carolina. There are certain codes all contractors must adhere to when completing jobs. If a contractor is licensed and insured you may hold them accountable for the quality of their work.

3 – Get a second opinion. If you ask more than one professional you will not only give yourself more options, but you will also know if the contractor you want to use is offering you a reasonable price.

4 – Don’t forget permits. Ask your contractor to obtain proper permits before work begins.

5 – Get your work inspected. After the work is completed your contractor should ask for the proper inspections.

Reputable contractors will be licensed and insured. Tree removal companies may not be licensed, but should have insurances.

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