BBB warns of scams during Severe Weather Preparedness Month in Illinois

(The Center Square) — March is Severe Weather Preparedness Month in Illinois and Better Business Bureau officials from Illinois are warning people to be wary of scam contractors who seek to capitalize in the wake of damaging storms.

Severe weather in Illinois typically includes natural disasters like storms, tornadoes and flooding, and often brings out the best in people, but also scammers, such as contractors who take advantage of those who have incurred losses from severe weather.

Jessica Tharp, president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau of Central Illinois said homeowners need to research any company before signing a contract.

“There are companies that come from all over the place,” Tharp said. “It doesn’t necessarily mean they are bad companies, but it might mean that you need to do a little extra homework.”

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency reported in 2019, the biggest disaster to impact the state was the river flooding that occurred in more than 33 counties, affecting about 2.1 million residents.

BBB is also warning contractors to beware of storm chasers who offer to pay local construction companies substantial amounts of money to use the business’s established name, reputation, and phone number.

Tharp added the BBB website is a good place to research contractors.

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