Sayreville police want seniors to be aware of con artists

As summer turns to fall, residents are reminded that this is the time of year when film-flam and con man crimes increase. The Sayreville Police Department would like to take this opportunity to warn residents to keep up their guard and report any suspicious activity immediately to the police. Such activity commonly relates to home repairs.

Residents are requested to notify the police department if they are being solicited for home repairs they did not request. The solicitation to the resident may be by telephone, door to door or as the result of an unsolicited inspection of the exterior of the home. Home repairs that are common to the flim-flam are driveway sealings, chimney cleanings and roof repairs.

Senior citizens are predominantly the victims of such crimes. However, all residents must be circumspect in their dealings with home repair contractors. If you are in doubt, ask many questions, including requesting a detailed estimate, references, a review of any licenses held by the contractors and a complete history of their work experience. In addition, request that all warranties, guarantees or promises be specifically spelled out "in common language" in a written contract. Also remember, legitimate contractors should not have to resort to pressure tactics or intimidation to solicit work.

Remember, most home repairmen are legitimate contractors who will perform a quality service. However, if you feel that you have been solicited for a possible flim-flam, be proactive. Check out the contractor thoroughly before agreeing to allow any work to be performed and immediately alert the police department.

Detective Ken Kelly

Sayreville Police Department