The arrival of September means fall will be here soon, cooler weather is on the way, projects geared toward the winter months are beginning, and scam artists are preying on vulnerable Twin Falls homeowners. One of the easiest fall scams to avoid involves the part of your home that Santa Claus will be using to deliver gifts to the kids in just a couple of months.

Fall arrives in less than two weeks. Leaves and pine needles are piling up, cords of wood are being stacked, gravel is being spread about driveways, and home safety measures are being carried out. One of the most important things to have done in the next few weeks is to make sure your home's fireplace is free from any chemical build-up that could result in a fire.

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September is the most popular time of year for chimney maintenance. We get up on the roof of our Twin Falls home this month every year and give a look-see to make sure nothing is obstructing it or has left excess creosote. Hiring a Twin Falls professional is a good way to go, but odds are if you haven't reserved an inspection yet, you'll likely be left to handle it yourself.

Chimney cleaning scams happen in every state in the U.S. this time of year. The one red flag to watch out for is giving any sort of cash deposit to someone claiming to work in the business prior to doing the actual inspection. Door-to-door introductory tactics are how most of these scammers find an in, so make sure to research online and contact a local company that has a brick-and-mortar address.

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