COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost has filed two separate lawsuits against homeowner contractors.
According to Yost, these contractors allegedly failed to provide the home repairs and renovation services promised to and paid for by homeowners.
“Instead of strapping on their toolbelts and going to work, these scammers thought they could run off with the money,” Yost said. “So now we’ve grabbed our tools and we’re going to drop the hammer on these guys.”
The suit was filed in Franklin County Court of Common Please against Weylin Stewart, Roofless General Contracting LLC and Gutter and Downspouts LLC.
According to court documents, they are accused of taking over $36,000 from homeowners meant for home renovations and repairs. The suit claims they failed to complete the work they were already paid for.
Here are ways to avoid contractor scams, provided by the Attorney General Office:
- Ask the contractor for and check references. Beware that contractors may use alternative business or individual names to avoid bad references.
- Ask the contractor for proof of licenses, insurance, and bonding. State law does not require home improvement contractors to be licensed, but many Ohio cities do.
- Check with the local Better Business Bureau at www.bbb.org and the Ohio Attorney General’s Office to see if complaints are on file against the company or the individual. You can also search for previous lawsuits filed by the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Section, click here.
- Obtain at least three written estimates from three different contractors.
- Get all promises, specifications, and warranties in writing. Once a contract is agreed upon, read the contract fully before signing.
- Do not pay for the entire job upfront. Try to work out a payment schedule with the contractor – such as one-third up-front; one-third halfway through, and one-third upon completion to your satisfaction.