Adam Levin spoke to Nina Pineda of WABC TV about the most common summer scams targeting your hard-earned cash, and the best ways to avoid them.
First up: the unlikely travel bargain.
If you want a cheap vacation, don’t fall for the free cruise scam. These scams promise a free cruise to the Bahamas and hit you with hidden fees. The customer is usually directed to a customer service number or a website where they are asked for their credit card information or other personal information. Once that’s accomplished, the scammers have all they need to hijack your identity and your bank account.
Second: the vacation rental scam.
Scammers post picturesque waterfront properties online, take the customers deposit and run off with the funds because the property is not theirs! One man stole one thousand dollars from a group of vacationers who thought they were getting a steal, but they were actually scammed by a man living in a homeless shelter.
If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Consumers should also be wary of so called “brokers” who only communicate by email, or if they can’t be contacted by phone and will not permit you to view the property beforehand. Finally, it’s always best to use a licensed broker.
If you are looking to go to that Beyonce and Jay Z On the Run concert, be careful about buying fake tickets. One thousand StubHub customer accounts were recently hacked by a cyberfraud ring that was able to steal tickets. When trying to get tickets, use reputable companies and avoid sites like Craigslist that don’t offer customer protection.
Contractors from Hell
You want to do a home makeover? Make sure you hire a licensed contractor. Scammers will pretend to be licensed contractors and offer to upgrade your home on the cheap. You pay them a down payment and they either do a shoddy job or take the money and run.
Never pay in full upfront, check for references and photos of past work and check with your state to make sure the Contractor is licensed and bonded.