You may receive a cold call knock at your door from someone claiming to be a tradesman working in the area. They will call unexpectedly, offering services or goods you had not asked for. Those who accept work often find the price increases or the work is left unfinished.
The usual type of work offered includes pressure washing driveways, garden clearance, chimney repairs, replacing loose tiles, repairing leaking roofs or guttering and driveway work. If you accept work from a doorstep trader you’re very likely to pay much more than the price initially agreed for very poor, unnecessary and sometimes dangerous work and you are likely to be targeted by them again in the future. They often target the older generation, who are often more trusting and vulnerable to falling victim to these types of traders.
Doorstep traders rarely provide paperwork so they can’t be traced once they’ve left your home. Names, addresses and business details are often false and telephone numbers are not answered. They have no interest in doing work properly, their only concern is getting the cash and disappearing before Trading Standards or the Police can catch up with them.
Cold Calling can also be a cover for persons planning more serious offences, such as burglaries, to see if houses are occupied. Cold Callers might also commit Bogus Official offences where they gain entry to the house by deception in order to steal, whilst the occupant is distracted.
Please pass on this advice to friends and neighbours who might not receive Thames Valley Alert emails or texts. Genuine reputable local tradesmen do not need to find work in this way.
You should never feel pressured to accept any work or service you do not want or need. It is your home and your right to say NO. If you suspect a crime is in progress, or about to occur, please note any descriptions and contact police on 999.
Download your FREE Home Security Guide from the Thames Valley Police website: https://www.thamesvalley.police.uk/police-forces/thames-valley-police/areas/advice/home-security-guide/