How to identify a paving scam ahead of time
WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – As the warmer weather approaches, West Springfield police and the Department of Public Works are reminding residents to be aware of paving scams.
The scam typically involves a person coming to your door saying they have extra asphalt from another job that needs to be used and offer the homeowners a discounted price to pave their driveway. Homeowners that agree or even those that do not firmly refuse the offer can be affected by this scam, as a crew quickly appears at the home and begins working on the driveway.
The scammer then claims there is a mistake or issue and that the price will now be several thousands of dollars more than discussed. Refusal to pay the additional money then threatens them to leave the driveway incomplete.
West Springfield Police are offering the following tips to avoid falling victim to this scam:
- Beware of unsolicited offers to do paving work. Calmly but firmly tell the solicitors you are not interested and tell them to leave your property. If they refuse your instructions, call the police.
- Do not let solicitors inside of your home.
- Ask to see proof of the solicitor’s insurance; these scammers rarely have worker’s compensation insurance and if one of them is injured at your home, the claim could be made against your homeowner’s insurance.
- Paving requires a permit from the DPW specific to your home; if a solicitor is offering to immediately begin paving work, it is probably not a legitimate offer.
- Call the police if anyone begins “working” at your property without your consent.
- Educate yourself and your family. Search the internet for “paving scams.”
- Be vigilant on behalf of your neighbors; paving scams often target senior citizens.
- Call the police if you have questions, or if unfamiliar people or companies appear at your door or in your neighborhood.
Anyone that is soliciting is required in Massachusetts to register with the police department ahead of time.