ROGUE TRADERS have come under the hammer from Trading Standards this week as part of the city’s clampdown on illegal sellers as part of Scam Awareness Month.
Both Coventry Trading Standards and Coventry CAB focused their attention on doorstep scams last week following regular reports of rogue traders knocking on homeowners’ doors offering to carry out work ranging from gardening, fencing and roof repairs.
Rogue Traders target vulnerable residents and complete their work to a poor standard – before making the final bill much higher than what was verbally agreed.
Earlier this year, a case was reported to Trading Standards where a trader took an elderly resident to their bank to arrange a bank transfer – the only paperwork that had been issued was a scrap of paper with an amount of money written on it.
Other cases reported include where paperwork handed out has little information on it, making it virtually impossible for the customer to contact the rogue trader again should a problem occur.
Since these incidents, Coventry Trading Standards have issued the following tips to help protect residents from doorstop sellers.
Top tips to protect you against rogue traders and doorstep scammers:
• Never agree to deal with cold callers – this is a favoured approach used by rogue traders.
• If you find someone’s behaviour on your doorstep becomes threatening or intimidating, call the Police on 999.
• Remember, if taken to the bank ask if you can speak to the cashier privately and inform them of the situation, they can then call trading standards.
The law states if you agree to have work done on your property, the trader must legally provide you with a written 14-day cancellation period – allowing you time to change your mind.
Failure to provide this written notice is a criminal offence and any trader who ignores any request by you to leave your home and not return also commits an offence.
For further information about Coventry Trading Standards, visit www.coventry.gov.uk/stop-cold-callers or call 024 7643 3982.