Disaster Scams

When choosing a contractor for home projects in Texas, exercise caution to avoid potential issues. Follow these tips for a smooth and reliable experience:

Check Credentials

  • Ensure the contractor is licensed, insured, and reputable.
  • Verify their status with online reviews and licensing boards.

Common Consumer Concerns

  • Be aware of frequent issues like cost overruns, missed deadlines, and poor workmanship.
  • Watch out for contractors who take advance payments and vanish without completing the work.

Licensing Requirements

Trade-Specific Regulations

  • Different trades, such as plumbing, have their own regulatory boards. Check with the relevant board for additional information.

Written Contracts

  • Always use a written contract detailing project specifics, including names, addresses, and phone numbers.
  • Ensure the agreement covers the work description, materials, start and completion dates, cleanup, and payment schedule.
  • Avoid contracts with blanks and never pay the full cost upfront.

Payment Guidelines

  • Restrict upfront payments on remodeling projects to one-third of the total cost.
  • Withhold the final payment until the project is completed as per the contract.
  • Confirm payments to suppliers, employees, and subcontractors have been made by the contractor.

Changes and Amendments

  • Address any changes to the original contract promptly and put them in writing.
  • Clearly outline the associated costs and time implications.

License Verification

  • Request to see a copy of the contractor's license or pocket card issued by the State of Texas.

Effective Communication

  • Discuss the project thoroughly with the contractor to prevent misunderstandings.
  • Document any issues in writing and communicate them to the contractor for resolution.

Additional Support

Seek help from The Attorney General of Texas at (800) 252-8011 for further assistance.

By following these guidelines and staying informed, consumers can make informed decisions and minimize potential disputes with contractors.