Arrow-right Camera
The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

BBB Tip of the Week: Fall Home Improvements

Veronica Craker,BBB

The days are getting shorter and the nights are getting colder. It’s official, fall is here in all its glory. For Spokane, that might mean a bite in the early morning air and a heavy breeze rolling across the prairie.

Now is the time to get some of those fall projects taken care of —like foundation or roof repair —before the winter chill sets it. But finding the right person to ensure a good job can be tricky, especially when you’re hoping not to spend too much before the holidays.

The BBB Scam Tracker reports there have been more than 260 home improvement scams in the U.S. the last year. A Washington resident reported they lost $500 to a garage door repair scam in the spring. What started off as a good deal turned ugly for the homeowner.

To help homeowners avoid becoming the next victim, Better Business Bureau serving the Northwest offers the following tips:

  • Search for the right business. Get referrals from friends or neighbors. You can also check to get reviews of contractors in your area.
  • Do cost comparison. Try to obtain at least three written estimates from prospective contractors. But remember, cheaper isn’t always better. Utilize BBB’s Request A Quote program to get quotes from a number of businesses in your area.
  • Check their credentials. Visit the Washington State Department of Labor & Industries to verify if a contractor’s licenses are up to date. BBB Accredited Businesses are also required to stay up to date on all of their licensing and credentials.
  • Review the contract. Look for any hidden fees, like upfront costs or material expenses. Ask for an itemized list of all costs involved.

To see what type of home improvement scams have taken place recently visit BBB’s Scam Tracker at