Floridians need to know it is illegal for businesses to grossly inflate the price of any essential items just because a disaster has occurred. My Price Gouging Hotline will continue to operate for all affected counties throughout the emergency declaration to assist any consumers who have concerns.
Price gouging is just one type of scam Floridians should guard against as we move through the height of hurricane season. Following a storm, repairmen are in high demand, making conditions ideal for debris removal and home repair scams.
If your home or property recently suffered water or tree damage, and someone shows up at your front door claiming they can repair the damage or remove the downed limbs, make sure they are licensed and insured. Obtain multiple estimates, check references and never give final payment before the work is finished. Read any contract in full, including the fine print, before signing. By providing my Hurricane Preparedness Guide, I hope to help consumers recognize and avoid these and more storm-related scams.
As we head into the long weekend, please check on family members and friends to ensure loved ones are safe, especially older friends and neighbors. Scammers often use disasters to take advantage of seniors who may not be able to remove even small debris from their property.
My thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by the impact of Hurricane Hermine, and I wish Floridians and our visitors a safe Labor Day.