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Officials: Homeowners must use caution when hiring roof contractors

PHOTO GALLERY: Hurricane Michael - 11
Posted at 12:04 PM, Oct 19, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-19 12:04:00-04

FLORIDA (WTXL) - Homeowners need to make sure they hire only Florida licensed contractors for repairs or replacements of their homes and property, according to Florida officials.

The Florida Roofing and Sheet Metal Contractors Association (FRSA) says unlicensed contractors, con artists and scammers often prey on homeowners in their time of need.

Officials say it’s important that owners remain aware of Florida law so they are not taken advantage of.  Florida Statues require that roofing contractors are licensed through the Florida Construction Industry Licensing Board.

The FRSA serves to help homeowners as they rebuild. FRSA is a nonprofit trade association of licensed and insured roofing professionals.

 Through FRSA’s website, www.floridaroof.com, property owners can find roofing professionals in their area, information on scams and alerts, and documents about hiring Florida licensed contractors.

FRSA also partners with local and state organizations to post notices to owners on additional services available them such as Governor Scott’s “Operation Blue Roof,” which launched Wednesday to assist homeowners in getting free blue tarps installed on their roofs by the U.S. Army.

Disaster recovery organizations also caution homeowners to be suspicious of any contractor who demands cash or full payment upfront. Owners should make sure the contractor has a Florida licensed and is insured.

According to FRSA, homeowners need to ensure the contractor isn't steering them to a specific lender or asking to file the insurance claims on their behalf. Owners should be cautious if a contractor ask for personal financial information prior to starting the repair or lending process.

For more information and suggestions from the FRSA, please visit www.floridaroof.com.