A Middletown man has been charged in reference to two incidents of house enchancment fraud.
In line with New Fortress County Police, the incidents occurred within the Newark-area group of Center Run Crossing in March and Might of this 12 months. One man mentioned he paid 52-year-old Mark Perry greater than $17,000 for renovations that had been by no means accomplished in addition to supplies that had been by no means bought. One other major claimed he misplaced $10,000.
County Police mentioned a prolonged investigation led to Perry being charged Wednesday with two felony counts of house enchancment fraud. Perry was being held on $5,000 money bail at Howard R. Younger Correctional Establishment.
Police are additionally involved that there could also be further victims who haven’t but come ahead. Anybody with details about the case or believes she or he could also be a sufferer of an identical fraud is requested to contact New Fortress County Police. The non-emergency quantity is 302-573-2800. Additionally, suggestions could also be reported to Delaware Crime Stoppers at 800-TIP-3333.
New Fortress County Police additionally shared recommendation about minimizing the danger of turning into a sufferer of a house restore rip-off:
Do insist on seeing references. The Federal Commerce Fee (FTC) recommends asking previous prospects detailed questions, together with whether or not the challenge was accomplished on time and if there have been surprising prices. The FTC additionally suggests asking the contractor when you can go to a job at present in progress.
Do require a bid in writing and examine bids from a number of contractors earlier than agreeing to any work.
Do verify the Higher Enterprise Bureau (BBB) web site to see contractors’ rankings and whether or not any complaints have been filed towards them.
Do get a written contract earlier than you pay any cash and earlier than the work begins.
Do learn the tremendous print. The BBB says a contract ought to embody an in depth description of the work, materials prices, begin and completion dates, and guarantee data.
Do confirm, earlier than you make the ultimate cost, that each one work has been accomplished to your satisfaction, any subcontractors or suppliers have been paid and the job website has been cleaned up.
Don’t pay money. The FTC recommends utilizing a verify or bank card or arranging to finance.
Don’t put down an enormous deposit. The preliminary cost needs to be not more than a 3rd of the full estimate, payable on the day the supplies arrive.
Don’t routinely take the bottom bid. Some contractors lower corners to return in decrease than rivals, in line with the BBB. The FTC recommends that if one contractor’s estimate is considerably lower than these of rivals, ask why.
Don’t let the contractor organize financing for you. The FTC warns that you just could be tricked into signing up for a home-equity mortgage with hefty charges or a high-interest price, or one during which the lender pays the contractor immediately, giving her or him little incentive to complete the job or do it correctly.
In the event you assume you may have been the sufferer of a rip-off or fraud, please don’t really feel embarrassed or ashamed. These scammers may be very convincing, and you aren’t alone. Contact the New Fortress County Division of Police.