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Be Cautious Hiring Help During Wildfire Recovery

As the rebuilding process begins following the devastating wildfires in Southern California, homeowners should be extremely cautious when hiring contractors. A good, trustworthy contractor will be a key partner in the recovery process. However, unscrupulous contractors may take advantage of people who have experienced a catastrophic event. Homeowners should take their time in choosing true professionals to repair their homes.

Ten Checks to Avoid Getting Scammed

  • Take your time in choosing true professionals to repair your home.
  • Get estimates from several licensed, bonded contractors.
  • Check their credentials with your local Better Business Bureau or Home Builders Association.
  • Inspect contractors licenses and proof of liability insurance.
  • Get a contract in writing.
  • Avoid paying money up-front. Some reputable contractors will require partial, up-front payment, but these pre-work payments shouldnt exceed the cost of materials or 20 percent of the total estimate.
  • Follow local building codes and inspection procedures.
  • If anyone performs unauthorized work on your house or property and demands payment consider contacting local authorities.
  • Avoid signing over an insurance settlement check to the contractor.
  • Immediately report any suspicious behavior to your local police, sheriffs department or the California Department of Insurance.

The Allstate Corporation (NYSE: ALL) is the nations largest publicly held personal lines insurer. Widely known through the Youre In Good Hands With Allstate® slogan, Allstate helps individuals in approximately 17 million households protect what they have today and better prepare for tomorrow through approximately 14,600 exclusive agencies and financial representatives in the U.S. and Canada. Customers can access Allstate products and services such as auto insurance and homeowners insurance through Allstate agencies, or in select states at allstate.com and 1-800 Allstate®. Encompass® and Deerbrook® Insurance brand property and casualty products are sold exclusively through independent agents. The Allstate Financial Group provides life insurance, supplemental accident and health insurance, annuity, banking and retirement products designed for individual, institutional and worksite customers that are distributed through Allstate agencies, independent agencies, financial institutions and broker-dealers.

Contacts:

The Allstate Corporation
Laura Strykowski, (847) 402.5600

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