SAN MARCOS (CBS 8) - There's a warning Thursday for victims of the recent wildfires to make sure the contractor they're working with is fully licensed.
An undercover sting operation took place, cracking down on unlicensed or unscrupulous contractors.
Rick Lopes with the contractor's board says the sting operation was done in the heart of the wildfires in San Marcos. What they found was plenty of unlicensed contractors willing to exploit homeowners.
One unlicensed contractor identified as David Hargrove was fined earlier this year for taking more than $21,000 for a remodel he never finished.
Meanwhile, longtime San Marcos resident Mike Santino, whose home came just inches away from the flames, is just starting the cleanup process
Santino isn't taking any chances. He's using Belfor, a company recommended by his insurance company.
"Going through this once in a lifetime is enough. You don't want to deal with people that aren't going to be reputable," he said.