News | Communication Services, 360-902-5400 - PublicAffairs@Lni.wa.gov

Don't be a victim: Visit L&I experts at upcoming home shows to learn how to avoid contractor scams

See more More news releases

September 19, 2013

Tumwater – When it comes to remodeling, hiring a qualified contractor can mean the difference between a home improvement and a renovation nightmare.

Starting this week, experts from the Department of Labor & Industries will be available at the Washington State Fair, and later at home shows throughout the state, to offer tips on achieving the remodeling project of your dreams.

One key to success is hiring a contractor registered with the state. Registered contractors must have liability insurance, a business license and a bond, which gives homeowners some monetary recourse if a job is left undone.

L&I also recommends consumers:

  • Interview and get written bids from at least three contractors. If one bid is significantly lower, question whether all construction rules will be followed and what corners may be cut.
  • Pay only as each stage of work is completed. Consider paying suppliers directly.
  • Before making final payment, have the general contractor provide a "lien waiver"— a document signed by all major subcontractors and suppliers acknowledging they’ve been paid in full. Otherwise, unpaid subcontractors and suppliers could file liens against the homeowner’s property, even if the general contractor has been paid in full.
  • Visit ProtectMyHome.net. It’s a one-stop shop to check contractor registration, learn about disclosure statements, and get L&I’s "Hire Smart" worksheet, a lien waiver form and much more.

For more one-on-one advice, stop by the L&I booths at the:

Please contact Shari Purves-Reiter at 360-902-4733 for more information on the above events.

###

For media information: Debby Abe, L&I Public Affairs, debby.abe@lni.wa.gov, 360-902-6043.

Connect with L&I: Facebook (facebook.com/laborandindustries) and Twitter (twitter.com/lniwa)

Broadcast version: When it comes to remodeling, hiring a qualified contractor can mean the difference between a home improvement and a renovation nightmare. Experts from the Department of Labor and Industries will be at the Washington State Fair this week and at home shows this fall to give tips on how to avoid getting scammed by unscrupulous contractors.  To see the schedule, go to www dot lni dot wa dot gov and search for "home show."

End of main content, page footer follows.

Access Washington official state portal

© Washington State Dept. of Labor & Industries. Use of this site is subject to the laws of the state of Washington.