DLLR Urges Homeowners to Use Licensed Contractors to Repair Damage Caused by Recent Storm


Baltimore, MD (11/17/10) - Alexander M. Sanchez, Secretary of the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (DLLR) urges homeowners in the areas affected by the recent storm to be careful when repairing damage. Because the storm caused a wide variety of damage, homeowners need prompt repairs; however, to protect themselves and their properties, they need to be careful when hiring contractors.

"Too often, unlicensed contractors arrive after harsh conditions, such as the recent severe storm, with offers to help when their true intent is to take advantage of people in distress," said Secretary Sanchez. "Often the first available or the cheapest contractor is not the best choice."

Homeowners who use licensed home improvement contractors are protected by the Maryland Home Improvement Commission's Guaranty Fund. This fund is administered to compensate homeowners who suffer economic damages at the hands of a licensed home improvement contractor. No coverage is provided to the homeowner if the contractor is unlicensed.

"Homeowners should remember the law requires contractors to hold a current license in order to perform home improvement, electrical, plumbing or heating, ventilation, air conditioning, and refrigeration (HVACR) work," said Stanley J. Botts, DLLR's Commissioner of Occupational and Professional Licensing.

It is unlawful for any home improvement contractor, electrician, plumber, or HVACR contractor to work in Maryland without a license. Penalties include criminal fines or imprisonment. Consumers may contact DLLR's Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing at 410-230-6001 or our website to check on the licensing status and complaint history of any contractor.

For more information on what to do if your home has sustained storm-related damage, visit the Maryland Insurance Administration website.