12/01/03 03-117

12/01/03 03-117


December 1, 2003   

Subject:           Roofing and Housing Repair Scam Alert

San Francisco police are alerting homeowners to door-to-door roofing and home repair scam artists who tend to operate during the rainy season.  Offering a great price for roofing or general contracting repairs, as well as painting, driving repairs, etc., they will often demand more money after the job is completed, claiming additional work was required or the cost of additional material necessitated the higher cost. The scam artists do sub-standard work at best and may even cause damage to the house.  Often they use home repair as a means to gain entry to the house to commit theft. These con artists are particularly intimidating toward the elderly.

In October, police arrested Sam Miller, 48, in such a scam perpetrated on an elderly Richmond district couple.  Police are still searching for his brother, Efram “Pudgy” Miller, 40, in connection with that fraud.

Police urge homeowners never to feel pressured or obligated to have home repair work done. Always ask for a contractor’s license (some persons offering to do work are simply unlicensed contractors), and to call the Contractor’s State License Board, 916-255-4027 or to go on-line at www.cslb.ca.gov to check on the status of the license.  Ask for references and call the references for job satisfaction feedback.  Make sure you get a written estimate.  The estimate form should have the name, address, telephone number and license number for the contractor.

For more information, please contact:
Inspector Greg Ovanessian
Fraud Section