The Vernon North Okanagan RCMP is investigating after two area residents were scammed out of over $16000 by an Okanagan based landscaping company. In both of the investigations, the victims found the company through an advertisement on Facebook. After hiring the company, the victims transferred large deposits for work and materials. The contractor has not been heard from since.
Unfortunately, both victims ended up paying thousands of dollars up front in deposits for work that was not completed or even started, states Constable Chris Terleski, Media Relations Officer for the Vernon North Okanagan RCMP. The Vernon North Okanagan RCMP wants to remind residents of the importance of being diligent and double checking before hiring a contractor for home renovations or projects.
- Be suspicious of someone asking for cash only or full payment up front;
- Always ask for references
- Ask to see a business license;
- Get several written quotes;
- Seek out someone you trust who has knowledge about the work and discuss it with them
Home renovation and improvement projects can often involve large sums of money and there are reputable companies and people in the business, adds Terleski. You need to take your time and go through the right steps to find them.