Gutter Scams Heating Up Across the West Coast

Typically, household tasks like gutter cleaning and minor repair work should be done around once or twice a year. For many homeowners, they physically can’t get up on their rooftops to clean out their gutters — or they’d just prefer a team of professionals to do it — so they hire someone. Unfortunately, the person or group taking on these projects aren’t always acting in good faith.

Across the country, faux gutter cleaning services are being offered to homeowners as a front for much more damaging scams. These gutter cleaning scams can occur at any time but they are much more frequent during the warmer months as homeowners begin thinking about their rooftop repairs.

According to ABC 7, one scammer in San Francisco took a total of $4,000 for a gutter replacement job and never did any work on the home.

Calvin Chow wasn’t exactly tricked by a savvy Internet scammer, however, he offered the money to a reputable organization — Home Depot and is still out the four grand.

“They did come out, gave an estimate, said how long it would take,” said Chow. “He said he does these San Francisco houses all the time. He’d have it done in three weeks. Wow. I was impressed.”

Three weeks passed and so did three more months and Chow had yet to see any gutter work done on his home. He said Home Depot kept citing various reasons as to why they haven’t finished or even started the job. Some of the excuses included needing necessary permits, waiting to order gutters, and unable to perform the tasks due to rain.

Home Depot has since provided Chow with his money but was forced to abandon the project due to a work backlog.

Not every homeowner is that lucky, however.

KSDK adds that in Kirkwood, California, a group of men posing as gutter repair workers stole diamond rings from a woman’s home. The three rings that were stolen were worth approximately $5,500.

“Don’t randomly let them in your house, thinking it could be a good deal when it could be a scam,” said Kirkwood Police Detective Robert Bruhy.

Whatever part of the country you’re living in, always beware of housing repair scams — especially after storm damage — and make sure you’re working with a reputable company that can reciprocate for any lost work.

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