A statewide sting to catch unlicensed contractors called “California Blitz” caught six people in Chico.
During a two-day operation March 13-14 the Contractors State License Board’s (CSLB) Statewide Investigative Fraud Team worked with the Butte County District Attorney’s office to investigate people at a private home in Chico. The suspected unlicensed contractors were invited to bid on landscaping and home improvements. Six people made a bid for more than $500.00 for contracting services and were determined to be unlicensed. They were cited for misdemeanors.
The CSLB operates under the California Department of Consumer Affairs. They recommend consumers follow their tips before hiring people to work on their property. First, they say to check the contractor’s license number which should always be stated in an advertisement. In California, unlicensed people are not allowed to work on jobs valued at more than $500.00. Plus, contractors are required to have their plastic pocket license registration card with them. The board says to always ask for photo ID to verify their identity. It is recommended to always get at least three bids and check their references. Make sure to get a written contract as well to review. Never pay more than 10% or $10,000.00 or whichever is less as a down payment. Also, the board says to never pay cash or let the payments get ahead of the work.
Butte County D.A. Mike Ramsey wants to remind people of the risks they take when they hire unlicensed contractors to work on their home. Ramsey says it may seem like a good deal, but always ends up costing more in the end.
For more information on contractors or to check a license number visit the CSLB’s website: http://www.cslb.ca.gov