Bexley Trading Standards warn reisdents off door-to-door tradesmen after victim lost £6,000 after rogue deal
PUBLISHED: 11:59 07 March 2017 | UPDATED: 11:59 07 March 2017
An annoymous female turned up at the Civic Offices to give the money back to the victim
An 80-year-old man from Sidcup was taken advantage of after a tradesman turned up on his door unannounced and demanded excessive roofing costs.
Now Bexley trading Standards team are advising residents not to deal with uninvited traders.
The attempted con happened on February 13, when the resident, who lives alone, returned home to find a man standing at his door, saying that a large piece of concrete had just fallen off his roof. He was told that it could be mended for £2,500 cash, with a further £6,000 to be paid.
However, the trader ended up removing the entire roof and then demanded a further £39,000 to finish the work.
Trading Standards attended the address but the unidentified trader had left. The trader then continued to contact the elderly man by phone. During one call the trader was spoken to by police and informed that Trading Standards were dealing with the matter. After contacting Trading Standards by phone the same day, the trader was told he needed to return the total of £6,000 paid so far by the victim.
Much to their surprise, an anonymous female attended the Civic Offices the following day and handed over £6,000 in cash to Trading Standards.
Trading Standards have now liaised with Bexley’s Staying Put Service for a reputable trader to put a new roof on the property.
Peter Craske, Bexley councillor and cabinet member for community safety, environment and leisure said: “Sadly there are always unscrupulous traders around who will try to take advantage of people, particularly the elderly and vulnerable. The best advice is not to deal with uninvited traders at your door. Before hiring any trader check them out on reputable sites such as Bexley’s What Tradesman? scheme where bona fide traders are rated by residents who have used them and can recommend them.”
Further information on the What Tradesman? scheme can be found at bexley.gov.uk/whattradesman.
To report rogue traders please contact Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 040506.