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Scam Artists Come Out After Storm Damage Is Done

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Written By Jodi Brooks

DENVER (CBS4) – When your property is damaged because of a storm, the reaction is to get it fixed fast. But despite the urgency – slow down. Don’t give into the high pressure tactics, and read very carefully everything you’re asked to sign.

Here’s what to do when a storm hits your property.

It was May 26, 2010, when powerful storms pounded the northeast Denver metro area.

Tony Duran remembers, “The hail just came down from out of nowhere. It came down once and then it quit and then it came back down again.”

Hail tore up his back patio awning. Duran said that his roof took a beating too.

“There were a few contractors that come over. Not all at once, but I had five or six that came over,” said Duran.

It was the same scenario for his neighbor Anthony Montoya.

When asked who he trusted, Montoya replied, “Who do I trust? I trust Anthony.”

He said laughing.

He said, “I mean, that’s all there is.”

He knows you have to watch out for yourself.

When storm damage hits your property, you need to be prepared.

Dale Mingilton is the President and CEO of the Denver/Boulder Better Business Bureau.

“The worst case scenario is that you’ve written a check and no one shows up,” said Mingilton. “You hire someone that’s not qualified to do the work, they do it all wrong, and you have to pay to tear it out and redo it.”

Mingilton stressed always get three bids. He said to get references, and if possible go see how the finished work looks.

He said to read the fine print in the contracts, and to be cautious of doing business with out of state companies. Also, if possible, pay when the work is finished.

Anthony Montoya ended up using a friend to fix his roof.

“You’ve got to be very careful out there who you are dealing with because there sure are a lot of takers out there,” said Montoya.

As for Tony Duran, he said, “the insurance came out to look at it and said there wasn’t enough damage.”

Tornadoes and hail storms descend on Colorado during the end of spring and throughout the summer. When you need something repaired, take the time to do your research.

You should call your insurance agent or company as soon as you notice storm damage.

Practically all home owners’ policies cover hail damage. And your car will be covered if you’ve purchased comprehensive coverage.

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