PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — With Valentine’s Day coming up, the R.I. Attorney General’s office is warning consumers to watch out for romance scams.

Attorney General Peter Neronha said his office is getting daily calls about such schemes. According to the Federal Trade Commission, nearly 70,000 people reported being scammed for love and money in 2022.

Neronha said it’s a good reminder to stay vigilant around Valentine’s Day.

“Those reach-outs are always scams,” Neronha said. “Recognize it as such and don’t get drawn in.”

Often, these scammers will build someone’s trust and then ask for money. Scammers will tell people someone close to them is either is sick, hurt or in jail, according to the FTC.

In a recent interview with 12 News, Neronha said his top consumer concerns also include cracking down on landlords who have lead paint in their homes.

More than 500 children a year in the state suffer from lead poisoning, Neronha said, posing a severe health risk.

If lead paint is found in a home, the R.I. Department of Health will hit landlords with a violation in an effort to get homeowners to take care of the health hazard.

“When they find it, it’s often found everywhere,” Neronha said. “In the soil outside where the children are playing, in children’s bedrooms, and living rooms.”

He said landlords often ignore the violation. That’s when his office steps in to take legal action.

Neronha’s office has filed about 18 lawsuits in court to hold landlords accountable.

“45 units have been remediated, including just within the last week or so,” he said.

Another challenge his office is tackling is the expense of electricity impacting people in the state.

“You should always compare your current bill to your past bill,” Neronha advises.

This winter, electric rates went up 9.6%, which is an extra $89 annually, according to the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission.

Neronha said it is important for people to keep track of their energy expenses closely, in case there is an error on the bill.

“You want to look an see if there is a charge there that doesn’t add up,” he said.