By Will Carpenter

RISMEDIA, Friday, February 19, 2016—

The more active the housing market becomes, the higher the chances that you may encounter unethical home remodeling contractors. To avoid being a victim of home improvement fraud with these tips:

Special or Limited-Time “Deals”

Any pressure placed on a homeowner to rush into a project in order to receive special discounts should raise a red flag.Well-established,reputable contractors may certainly offer savings, but they shouldn’t put a short deadline on pricing or signing a contract for work.

Door-to-Door Solicitors

Some scammers show up at the door with a story about working just down the street and noticing that the homeowner needs work done. This is a very common ruse and one that is, unfortunately, often successful. Homeowners should never accept this approach at face value; thorough vetting of such offers and the contractor presenting the offer is a must.

Advance Payment Demands

The requirement to pay for a project in full before work can begin is a deal-breaker. Down payments for materials and initial labor, and phased payments as work is completed, are standard practices, but no ethical contractor would expect homeowners to risk 100 percent of their money before any work is started.

Unverified Licensing or Insurance

Anyone can show a homeowner paperwork and references that appear to be in order, but it is critical that all credentials are verified. Advise your clients that the key to a successful project is identifying the right contractor to work for them. Getting references from neighbors and friends is not enough. It is important to make sure that any contractor they plan to work with has been fully vetted, including verification of licensing, available insurance coverage, proven financial stability,and quality of prior work completed.

For a hassle free way to find quality contractors, reach out to David Abramson. or 240-475-5001

David has a “BLACK BOOK” of quality contractors no matter what job or home improvement you are looking to do. All of Davids recommended contractors are licensed, bonded and insured and have personally done work for David as well!

This content is not the product of the National Association of REALTORS®, and may not reflect NAR's viewpoint or position on these topics and NAR does not verify the accuracy of the content.