Loves Park family warns of potential scams after elderly couple hires workers for roof repairs

The family said the workers smeared blacktop sealer on the roof and called it quits, walking away with thousands of dollars in cash.
Published: Sep. 2, 2021 at 5:41 PM CDT
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LOVES PARK, Ill. (WIFR) - An elderly couple is out nearly $10,000 after hiring door-to-door workers to fix their roof. Now their family members want to save you from becoming a victim to home repair scams.

If the roof on the Cleveland’s home in Loves Park could talk, it would tell a disturbing story. Its owners recently hired what they thought was a roof-repair company to fix storm damage.

“At first, they said the charges would be $5,000. By the time they were done, they said they were owed $9,500,” said Tim Cleveland.

That’s nearly $10 thousand in cash. The couple’s son, Tim Cleveland, said workers smeared blacktop sealer on the roof and called it quits. They wouldn’t accept a check, and they drove his mom to her bank.

“The lobby was closed because of COVID,” said Cleveland. “They made her walk through the drive-thru on foot.”

The alleged roofers took the money and dropped Tim’s mom off at a nearby business on IL 173 in Machesney Park. Tim said she became confused and didn’t know where she was.

“Anger definitely came in, that these other guys took advantage of my mother because of her age,” Cleveland said.

What’s even more frustrating, Tim said, is the bank tellers didn’t ask more questions, or notice something seemed off.

“You have this elderly woman, in her 80s, on foot going through the bank and was able to make a deposit of $9,500 in cash,” said Cleveland.” I know fast food restaurants that don’t serve people when they walk through the drive-thru, let alone a bank. There were so many red flags.”

We reached out to the Cleveland’s bank and didn’t get a response.

“It isn’t the responsibility of the bank. However, to me, that would cause you to ask some questions,” said Better Business Bureau Director, Dennis Horton. “Where’s your car? It’s not that they’re prying, they’re trying to prevent you from being ripped off.”

To avoid becoming a victim, Horton advises to say no to cash-only deals, upfront payments and on-site inspections.

Always ask for references and check into the company.

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