Here's how the scam works. Gangs of laborers, often from the UK, come to Australia on short-term visas. They go door to door, offering work such as painting and roofing at unbelievable prices.
"Unbelievable" is the operative word. After the homeowners pay for the work, the workmen run off with the money, leaving a shoddy job behind.
Consumer Affairs Minister Tony Robinson has warned householders to refuse these incredible offers. "While the offer of cheap work can be tempting, it usually ends up costing more because you end up having to pay to fix a poor quality or incomplete job," Robinson said.
It's true. Reputable firms don't send people door to door offering bargains. We don't need to. Courtney & Wise, for example, has been painting homes, businesses, and public buildings in Sydney for over half a century. We won't be knocking on your door with a shady story.
Instead of chancing having to pay for a poor quality job, and then having to pay again to have the damage undone and the work done over, be cautious in hiring. When you consider hiring a firm to do any work on your house, check up on them:
- How long have they been in business?
- Do they carry insurance? Ask to see the papers.
- What certifications do they have?