WNY storm victims warned against scam artists

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Buffalo, N.Y. (WIVB) – With more heavy rain expected this week and the potential for flooding, Western New York homeowners are being warned to be wary of “storm chasers” who may arrive from out-of-state offering to help with repairing storm damage.

The Better Business Bureau of Upstate New York has issued a statement urging consumers to be cautious when hiring repair workers and clean-up companies, since not all will be reputable.

The President of the BBB serving Upstate New York, Warren Clark, said, “General contracting is one of our highest complaint areas. Too often consumers find out after they’ve hired a fly-by-night operation that may have an F rating, or are left high and dry after making a cash deposit.”

The BBB is expecting an influx of traveling workers it calls ‘storm chasers.’ After the storms blow through, scam artists may arrive in this region offering to ‘help.’ They may go door-to-door with flyers advertising their services, offering to work with insurance companies or offering to help immediately.

Clark says homeowners “need to ask questions, even in dire situations.” He says they should “hang onto their cash until they have all the answers and confidence the job will be done right.”

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