Washington Dept. of Labor Offers Tips on Hiring Contractors for Storm Cleanup

Beware of contractors who ask to be paid in cash, to have a check made out to someone other than the business, who will work just weekends, or who use high-pressure sales tactics.

Winter storms can wreak havoc on trees and power lines, leaving homeowners with the task of cleaning up and repairing the damage.

Whether you’re hiring a tree removal service to clean up a downed tree or a general contractor to repair damage to your roof and gutter, the Washington Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) reminds consumers that a little homework up front can protect you against fraud, shoddy work, or simply bad contractors.

In most cases, those hiring a contractor should plan their project and interview several contractors before settling on one. But when time is short, and you have a yard full of limbs or a damaged home, some basic steps can help protect you:

  • Whether you’re hiring a tree trimmer or general contractor, use the Internet to look up the contractor you are considering hiring and verify that the company is a registered business. You can also check on the amount of insurance coverage the contractor has and how large a bond they carry.
  • Beware of contractors who ask to be paid in cash, to have a check made out to someone other than the business, who will work just weekends, or who use high-pressure sales tactics. These are red flags and could be signs of a scam or an unregistered contractor.
  • Avoid paying a large deposit to a contractor or the entire cost of the job up front, and be sure the contractor provides written documentation for any project that is more than $1,000.
  • If subcontractors are used or costly materials from suppliers, get lien releases from them. Before making final payment on the job, make sure subcontractors aren’t owed any money. Unpaid subcontractors can hold you responsible for their work by putting liens on your home.

Download Center

HTML - No Current Item Deck
  • Safety Management Software - Free Demo

    IndustrySafe Safety Software’s comprehensive suite of modules help organizations to record and manage incidents, inspections, hazards, behavior based safety observations, and much more. Improve safety with an easy to use tool for tracking, notifying and reporting on key safety data.

  • Create Flexible Safety Dashboards

    IndustrySafe’s Dashboard Module allows organizations allows you to easily create and view safety KPIs to help you make informed business decisions. Our best of breed default indicators can also save you valuable time and effort in monitoring safety metrics.

  • Schedule and Record Observations

    IndustrySafe's Observations module allows managers, supervisors, and employees to conduct observations on employees involved in safety critical behavior. IndustrySafe’s pre-built BBS checklists may be used as is, or can be customized to better suit the needs of your organization.

  • Why Is Near Miss Reporting Important?

    A near miss is an accident that's waiting to happen. Learn how to investigate these close calls and prevent more serious incidents from occurring in the future.

  • Get the Ultimate Guide to Safety Training

    When it comes to safety training, no matter the industry, there are always questions regarding requirements and certifications. We’ve put together a guide on key safety training topics, requirements for certifications, and answers to common FAQs.

  • Industry Safe
comments powered by Disqus

OH&S Digital Edition

  • OHS Magazine Digital Edition - April 2019

    April 2019


      Taking the Guesswork Out of De-Energizing Industrial Equipment 
      Four Simple and Effective Ways to Avoid Digital Eye Strain
      PPE the Automotive Industry Needs to Invest In
      Eliminate 10 Fire Hazards That May Be in Plain Sight
    View This Issue