Follow Rosalie Linkedin Facebook
Email Rosalie Email
Other
Aug 7, 2023

Natural Disasters and Scams

Sponsored Content provided by Rosalie Calarco - Associate State Director, Coastal Region, AARP

It seems like natural disaster season is never ending these days. With it being the height of hurricane season, now is a good time to remind ourselves that after Mother Nature moves out the criminal scammers tend to move in.
 
Following extreme weather events, dubious contractors and outright scammers descend on affected communities, offering quick, cheap fixes. They canvas neighborhoods in search of “work” that they may or may not even attempt to do. Many will specifically target older homeowners who they perceive as more likely to have savings. 
 
It’s safest to only trust contractors that you proactively reach out to. Also, regardless of who you are talking to, get written estimates and compare bids from multiple contractors before starting any work.  Finally, pay no more than a third of the total cost prior to the work beginning – and then only when materials arrive. 
 
Avoid Charity Scams
 
One of the things that often comes with all of the personal losses from a natural disaster are fake charities offering to help.
 
Americans contributed more than $485 billion to charity in 2021, according to the Giving USA Foundation’s annual report on U.S. philanthropy. That generosity can help a devastated family or community start to rebuild but it can also put someone at risk of unknowingly supporting criminal activity instead.
 
Here are three ways to avoid criminal charity scams. Rather than respond immediately to donation requests, do some research. Look up the charity on sites such as CharityNavigator.org or CharityWatch.org to make sure that it is legitimate and that much of the funds raised goes to the organization versus overhead.
 
Consider creating a (researched) list of charities you will support in the coming year and stick to the list. If other charities reach out, let them know you’ve made your giving plan but can consider them for your list the following year.
 
Also consider using a credit card when making your contribution — it’s easier to keep track of it, and if your card is misused, you have more loss protection than with other forms of payment. 
 
Be a fraud fighter!  If you can spot a scam, you can stop a scam. 
 
Visit the AARP Fraud Watch Network at www.aarp.org/fraudwatchnetwork or call the AARP Fraud Watch Helpline at 1-877-908-3360.

Other Posts from Rosalie Calarco

317
Ico insights

INSIGHTS

SPONSORS' CONTENT
Tommytaylor ceo unitedway

How Philanthropy Fits Into Your Financial Plan

Tommy Taylor - United Way
Gretchen roberts 2021

5 Finance Topics Every Small Business Owner Should Master

Gretchen Roberts - Red Bike Advisors
Georgiarowe

Salling and Tate Dentistry Launches Annual "Gunner’s Runners" Shoe Collection Event, Aiming to Surpass Last Year's Success

Georgia Rowe - Wide Open Tech

Trending News

Riverlights Could Add 73 More Townhomes To Mix, Site Plans Show

Staff Reports - Apr 18, 2024

Game Over For Michael Jordan Museum At Project Grace

Audrey Elsberry - Apr 19, 2024

City Approvals Push Forward Plans For Former Wilmington Fire Stations

Emma Dill - Apr 17, 2024

Surf City Embarks On Park’s Construction

Cece Nunn - Apr 19, 2024

Taking Marine Science On The Road

Lynda Van Kuren - Apr 19, 2024

In The Current Issue

Info Junkie: Lydia Thomas

Lydia Thomas, program manager for the Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at UNCW, shares her top info and tech picks....


Funding A Food Oasis: Long-awaited Grocery Store Gains Momentum

With millions in committed funding from New Hanover County and the New Hanover Community Endowment, along with a land donation from the city...


MADE: Makers Of Important Papers

W.R. Rayson is a family-owned manufacturer and converter of disposable paper products used in the dental, medical laboratory and beauty indu...

Book On Business

The 2024 WilmingtonBiz: Book on Business is an annual publication showcasing the Wilmington region as a center of business.

Order Your Copy Today!


Galleries

Videos

2024 Power Breakfast: The Next Season