In light of what appears to be a very disturbing gap in the home service protocol of many U.S. homeowners and homerenters to protect themselves, families, homes, and finances from dishonest contractors and impostors, the “Volunteer Challenge of the Month” has been adopted.
Apparently, through instituting this test of the resolve of Americans who have the time to volunteer, it is hoped that more people will see the need to step forward to share information with those of the private home sector which is helpful toward these residents making safer and more conducive decisions about those they hire.
From New York to Washington
The consumer advocate cites widespread examples of private home residents from New York to Washington who were seemingly unprepared for being defrauded by people with bad intentions. Of the ever-populating list of victims, RB mentions only a few hot spots in just the space of the past 12 weeks:
· In Georgia, the Governor’s Office of Consumer Protection was compelled to issue a warning particularly for its senior citizens to be extremely cautious about the people they hire to work on their homes. This special urging came on the heels of 5 people being charged for scamming, reportedly, in the area of 25 senior citizen private homeowners for a cumulative estimated amount of $74,500.00(
· New Hampshire … … a man went from house to house collecting thousands of dollars for doing home repair work he never got around to. His cumulative take was approximately $50,000.00;
· Colorado … … one contractor required payment up front of $7,600.00 for a roofing and siding project which he botched, then walked away leaving the house with all appearances of disfiguration(
· New Jersey … … … a Toms River contractor offered to renovate a home for $40,000.00 reportedly had not done much work on the project before he received the full amount. Once the money was in his hands, he abandoned it(June);
· Hawaii … … … an impostor who promised two separate homeowners that he’d do various home projects for them reportedly cajoled them into paying him thousands (unspecified)
· Delaware … … a Millsboro man was arrested for swindling a 68-year-old Sussex County homeowner of an estimated $10,000.00. He was charged with three counts of unlawful use of a credit card and three counts of identity theft (report from May);
· Louisiana … … a dishonest residential contractor was jailed for having received thousands (unspecified)
· Florida … … an elderly woman (89 yrs old) gave a contractor $11,000.00 for remodeling her kitchen. Reportedly, the individual she hired tore out everything, giving the appearance of being diligent about doing the work, but once he received the money, he reportedly deserted the project, leaving behind all he had demolished scattered throughout the kitchen(July);
· Washington … … a Seattle contractor gets charged with receiving in the area of $45,000.00 from homeowners of Seattle and three neighboring cities for kitchen & bath work he either didn’t complete or didn’t start (July);
· New York … … a contract imposter was sentenced to jail for receiving thousands unspecified)
· Pennsylvania … … one of the biggest victimizations on the front (so far this year) of home maintenance and improvement from a single homeowner reportedly occurred in the Shenandoah Heights area of that state: $450,00.00. As of this writing, according to RB, the contractor who didn’t complete the job but literally disfigured the home ,is still at large (August).
Frustration About Volunteer Inertia
Of course, RB confesses that these accounts do not scratch the surface of either the number of states affected or of the number of people in these states who select and hire dishonest contractors to work on their homes without “due diligence.” In other words, he finds that far too many people, whether by naiveté or blind pride, do not have intact protocol at home for first examining the backgrounds, reputations, and current performance ratings of contractors before making selection and hiring decisions.
However, notwithstanding the great efforts HGRBS volunteers have contributed in their own way in the past and present, according to RB, there remains the frustration over so many people willingly volunteering their time to established, popular(for-
Yet, by contrast, there is seemingly a deaf ear turned for more volunteers to participate in the special mission of the still very small and hardly known network. They are needed to embrace and to partake in the HGRBS mission to the country’s population of private homeowners and homerenters.
Summary: Contagious Optimism
The mission of HGRBS is on record as offering free advice, consultation, and support to the people of the U.S. private home sector without requiring office visits or meeting halls. These free services are primarily performed from online, hence, the network provides a very convenient, easily accessible, and expeditious conduit for sharing invaluable information and for offering commensurate guidance for residents to have more successful home project experiences and less grievous ones.
Quite evidently, everyone’s hopes are up very high for the ultimate success of this newest effort for more volunteers representing all 50 states.
For more information, interested parties can browser for:
Volunteer Associates - HGRBS