Avoid Home Repair Scams
Safely Repairing Property
As important as it is to make home repairs as soon as possible following a natural disaster, it is also important to take some time to plan the project, consult with city officials and choose a contractor wisely.
Before residents begin rebuilding the City of San Marcos recommends they review the Halloween Flood Reconstruction Guide (PDF) available. If residents have questions about permits they should call the City's Permit Center at 512-805-2630.
After natural disasters, door-to-door salespeople flock to some neighborhoods offering clean up and repair services. While many of these people are honest and reputable, some are not. Residents should protect themselves from scammers.
Residents who have insurance should call their insurance adjuster and have them make an estimate of the damage and probable repair cost. This will give homeowners a benchmark estimate, prepared by a professional, when negotiating with contractors.
If someone visits a home offering to do repairs, the City of San Marcos and the Texas Attorney General's Office suggest:
- Ask for references, or rely on recommendations from friends or relatives who have had experience with honest contractors.
- Be wary of contractors who solicit services door-to-door, especially those that are unfamiliar or from out of town
- Consult the Better Business Bureau to ensure you are working with a trustworthy business.
- Contact an insurance adjuster to get an estimate of the damage and repair cost;
- Don't rush into signing a contract, and never pay up-front for promised work
- Get the salesperson's license plate number
- Know that under Texas law, the door-to-door seller must advise you orally and in writing that you have a right to cancel the sale within three days. View more information.
- Only do business with licensed or bonded contractors or builders
- Secure the terms of any warranty work in writing
Residents who believe they have been scammed should call the San Marcos Police Department non-emergency line at 512-753-2108 or call the Office of the Attorney General's toll-free complaint line at 800-621-0508. Residents can also file a complaint online.