As Tropical Storm Issac passes us and transforms into Hurricane Issac we need to keep the folks in Mississippi and Louisiana in our prayers.

We dodged a bullet with Tropical Storm Issac. It appears there hasn’t been much damage caused from the storm except for some fallen branches and some higher water in canals. However, unlicensed contractors always see any type of storm as an opportunity to take advantage of innocent homeowners for necessary or unnecessary repairs.

A licensed contractors has to be tested and certified in their field, they need to carry workers compensation insurance, they need to carry property, vehicle and liability insurance and much more. An unlicensed contractor doesn’t incur any of these necessary expenses to operate a legitimate business and often they don’t have the right amount of time or experience in the trade they are trying to perform work.

A homeowner often is just trying to get the most in-expensive cost for the job. Did you stop to think that if that person falls on your property they can sue you? A licensed contractor can submit a claim to their insurance company.

An unlicensed contractor often takes short cuts to give you that lower price. If they do it wrong or cause damage to your property what re-course do you think you have? With a licensed contractor you have the backing of State, County and City Municipalities in a mediation type environment.

When a person bidding a project for you says they are licensed in Georgia but cannot produce a Florida License they are considered an unlicensed contractor. To be a legitimate licensed contractor in The State of Florida they must be licensed with the Department of Business and Professional Regulation.

For a short period of time Southwest Florida may be swarmed by “unlicensed” contractor activity. We urge you to do your due diligence by asking them to produce licenses and proof of insurance. By doing this you will be protecting yourself and the hundreds of small business owners in the Lee County, Charlotte Count and Collier County Areas.

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