How To Protect Yourself From Potential Scammers 9/7/13
CBS 7 News
September 7, 2013
MIDLAND-A father and son in Midland formed a construction company that promised people quality work at a good price, but it was too good to be true.
John Daniel Lopez and Thomas Daniel Lopez were both arrested in connection with a construction scam.
Police say the pair would never refund money for substandard or unfinished
Victims say John and Thomas Lopez would go door-to-door handing out business cards and asked for work under the name, Desperate Housewives Construction.
Despite the outrageous business name, these men were still able to get work from people.
“With technology, the way its increased, it’s hard to tell (if someone is being scammed),” said Riley Coffman, an Odessa Resident.
“Now a days it’s very important to check the background of any business, because there’s a lot of guys doing the same thing, scamming across the country,” said another Odessa Resident.
Tyler Patton, with the Better Business Bureau, says contracting scams are on the rise as Midland's economy continues to boom.
"It's well known there’s a shortage here of people who build houses, do construction and repair work, so scammers will take advantage of this,” said Patton.
Patton says asking for references are one way to protect yourself.
"The best idea is to get the names of three different companies and have three different estimates done on whatever job it is that you need done," said Patton.
Patton says it’s critical to always be on your guard.
Another tip to keep in mind, if anyone asks for a substantial amount of money up front, this is a big red flag. Patton says this is abnormal for a business to do.
For other ways to protect yourself, you can go to the Better Business Bureau’s website at bbb.org, for a list of approved contractors in our area.