Spring home rogue traders alert

LINCOLNSHIRE Trading Standards has issued advice to help residents avoid rogue traders hoping to exploit the springtime push for home improvements.

Officials are urging people to choose carefully when taking on workmen and to only select those who are well known to do a good job.

The advice comes ahead of one of the year’s most popular times for home revamps. It’s hoped that the tips will help Lincolnshire residents avoid getting conned this spring.

Common tactics used by rogue traders have included professional-looking advertising, cold-calling and high-pressure selling.

They’re all easy to avoid, if you stick to three golden rules:

Get at least three quotes to compare.

Use reputable companies that have been recommended by friends or family, are part of an approved trader scheme, or where you’ve seen examples of their work first-hand.

Keep in control and don’t feel pressured. If in doubt, just say ‘no’.

Lisa Foster, principal Trading Standards officer, said: “Everyone likes to think they’re safe in their home and fortunately, in the main they are. But each year thousands of unsuspecting people find themselves targeted by criminals at their own front door.

“It’s usually the vulnerable and elderly who fall victim to these confidence tricksters, who then persuade them to hand over money, carry out shoddy work, or steal from them. Please follow our advice to avoid it happening to you.”

If you have been approached by anyone offering to carry out work that you think is suspicious, or if you have an elderly or vulnerable neighbour who you feel may have been tricked, contact Lincolnshire Trading Standards on 01522 782341 or at tradingstandards@lincolnshire.gov.uk