As part of this week’s National Rogue Traders Week, the Federation of Master Builders is urging homeowners to on their guard against con-men and rogue-traders.
Trading Standards estimate that over £170m is stolen every year from 90,000 unsuspecting homeowners across the UK by rogue traders.
To help protect householders the FMB, in conjunction with Trading Standards, has published its “Nail the Rogues” leaflet which gives advice to householders on how to spot and avoid a rogue trader as well as how to find a reputable trader. A window sticker is also available which can be placed in a front window to warn off rogues. On the back of the sticker there is information about how to spot and get rid of a rogue trader who may be standing on the doorstep.
Brian Berry, Director of External Affairs at the FMB said: “Rogue traders come in all shapes and sizes. They may look and sound quite professional but one way to spot them is by the lines they may use to try and talk you into parting with your cash. Cold callers may say things like, ‘I was just passing and I noticed you have loose tiles on your roof’, to frighten householders into doing business with them.”
He continued: “If you thinking of having work done to your home ask friends and family for recommendations or check with a trade association such as the FMB and its find a builder website Always get at least three quotes and use a contract which you can download free of charge on the FMB website. Finally, never pay the full cost of the project up front.”