BUSINESS + ECONOMY

Scammers see opportunity in Utah’s flooding

Apr 20, 2023, 12:30 PM

a home is pictured with sandbags deterring flood water...

Sandbags protect a home from floodwaters on Orchard Ridge Lane in Kaysville on Wednesday, April 12, 2023. (Spenser Heaps/Deseret News)

(Spenser Heaps/Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah’s Better Business Bureau warns that scammers are likely to take advantage of people after natural disasters, like floods.

Utah typically sees contractor or insurance scams targeting people who are trying to clean up. Spokesperson Britta Clark said someone from FEMA will never try to charge you.  

“We see high-pressure sales you know, making them feel like they have such a good deal and you only get it if you hire me on the spot that sort of thing,” said Clark. “That makes you feel like if you don’t you’re going to lose out on this great opportunity.”

The best way to stay protected Clark says, is to get multiple bids and check contractor licenses at Utah’s Division of professional licensing. 

She says other types of scams include someone asking a person to sign over theirnsurance check, or giving money to a fake charity for disaster relief.

“The best way to know what’s normal for the industry is to get multiple people to come look at it [the flood famage]to get multiple bids, to get multiple contracts that you can review and figure out what’s normal,” said Clark.

“So, that way if you see an outlier like if somebody is asking you for 10 grand upfront before they finished the job then you can understand that that is unusual.”

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Scammers see opportunity in Utah’s flooding