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30 October 2013, 07:57
Hampshire County Council Trading Standards Service is warning the public that rogue traders could try to profit from the damage caused by the recent storm.
They may take advantage of older and vulnerable residents trying to persuade them to have work done where it is unnecessary or charge exorbitant prices.
If people find their property is damaged, the advice from Trading Standards is to speak to their insurance companies before engaging anyone to carry out repair work and never to agree to work that is instigated as a result of a cold call or via a leaflet drop.
Householders should obtain at least three written quotes from reputable businesses or traders who are either members of the Hampshire County Council Trading Standards Buy With Confidence Scheme or a recognised trade association.
Members of the Buy With Confidence scheme are fully audited to ensure their trading practices are legal, honest and fair. All members have been checked for trustworthiness and compliance with consumer protection laws.
Details can be obtained by telephoning 01962 833620, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or via the website www.buywithconfidence.gov.uk
Traders who agree work at the home of an individual or at a place other than their usual business premises are required by law to provide consumers with a Notice of Right to Cancel, which gives consumers a seven day cooling off period.
Work should not commence until this period has ended, unless written agreement is obtained from that consumer beforehand.
If anyone has any information about traders who are cold calling or requires any advice on doorstep crime they can contact the Hampshire Trading Standards Doorstep Crime Quick Response Team on:- 01962 833666 (Monday – Friday 0900hrs to 1700hrs) where specially trained officers are on hand to provide advice.
If assistance is required outside of these hours please contact Hampshire Police on their non-urgent number 101 or dial 999 if you feel threatened or intimidated.