Citizens must be cautious

Published 8:52 am Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Some Ironton residents have learned a painful lesson that who you hire to work on your home makes all the difference in the world.

At least a dozen homeowners have filed complaints with a combination of the Better Business Bureau, the Ohio Attorney General’s office and the Ironton Police Department about allegations that a Grayson-based contractor All-Seasons of Kentucky took their money without performing the work promised.

The IPD and the attorney general’s office are still investigating the claims in an effort to learn exactly what occurred. But this type of problem is common where companies, often called storm chasers, come into a community that has been hit hard by Mother Nature and prey on those most impacted.

Email newsletter signup

Property owners can take a few steps to help protect themselves.

First, try to always use local contractors who have a history in our community. Those who have physical locations often pose even less risk of just disappearing.

Secondly, do some basic detective work to find out more about the companies. Do they have a website? When were they incorporated? Have complaints been filed with the Better Business Bureau? Have they been sued recently? Much of this information can be found online through simple searches.

Third, check as many references as possible, not only the ones they provide but also any others that you may know of on your own.

Lastly, only provide partial payment or set up a draw system. Most reputable companies will agree to this because they have the credit and collateral needed to purchase the supplies so they can to get started. Anyone who wants paid in full upfront should be scrutinized carefully.

Hopefully these homeowners will be able to locate and work out a solution with All Seasons of Kentucky and this is just a terrible misunderstanding. If not, these and other Lawrence County homeowners must do everything they can to protect their property and their assets.