3rd Party Contractors - Are You Checking Them Out Too?

WINSTON-SALEM -- 2 Wants to Know has hammered home the point with you that before you hire a company - check out their BBB report, their license. Now - when another company sends a sub-contractor to work in your home, do you check the company out? Probably not. But you will after you hear the story this Winston-Salem woman told Call for Action and Two Wants to Know's Lechelle Yates.

Valerie Bridges wanted to protect her family of two - herself and her dog Nelson. She bought a home warranty to cover costly home repairs. "It was worth it for me because the technicians were already evaluated and licensed."

When her furnace broke, she called her home warranty company. They sent out a third-party contractor. He installed a new furnace. It worked fine for a while. "I noticed about a year and half later insulation siding coming off was peeling apart," says Valerie.

In the end, that was just one of 16 repairs the furnace needed! It turns out the technician hadn't been licensed for almost ten years."I just couldn't believe this happened but it indeed it had," said Valerie.

Valerie's story made us realize - it's easy to lulled into false sense of security. But the North Carolina Consumer's Council says remember the point we hammered home. "It all comes back to the basic thing that we tell everyone - you are responsible for yourself. Don't ever assume that some one else has done the checking for you," says Matt Oliver.

It's a mistake Valerie will never make again. "You have to be more active and researching when it comes to your home. I did not do that."

So who's at fault when there's a problem? Attorneys say - everyone in the chain. But they say doing your homework before is much easier than getting a lawyer involved after.

It's also important to find out if the work needs a permit. If it does, ask to see the permit when the contractor gets there. If they don't have it, don't let them start work. And find out if the work needs to be inspected when it's finished.


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