Rogue traders warning for Morecambe and Fylde coast
Wednesday, January 15, 2020
There has been an increase in reports of rogue traders operating in Morecambe and across the Fylde coast, over the past couple of weeks.
Trading standards officers from Lancashire County Council are investigating a number of complaints, particularly in Cleveleys, Fleetwood and Morecambe.
The reports relate to cold callers offering roofing work, gutter cleaning and fascia and soffit repairs. They have been targeting elderly and vulnerable people and using very aggressive and dishonest sales tactics, falsely claiming that chimneys are dangerous and ridge tiles loose.
Rogue roofers have also alleged that roof spaces have become damp and that, as well as the repairs, customers would have to hire a dehumidifier at considerable expense.
In one case, a resident in Cleveleys paid around £14,000 for some poor-quality work and hire of a dehumidifier after being driven to the bank. The dehumidifier never arrived and, although some unnecessary work had been carried out, the roof was still leaking in the original place.
Trading Standards advice is to always say no to cold callers and find a reputable local trader to carry out the work.
County Councillor Albert Atkinson, cabinet member for technical services, rural affairs and waste management, said: "Doorstep crime can affect anyone and we all need to be aware of it. However, these rogue traders often target elderly or vulnerable people.
"They can be pushy or aggressive or even try to befriend people to get them to buy their services.
"However, when people do use them, the work is often of a poor standard and very expensive.
"There have been reports of rogue traders damaging people's property deliberately to get more work, claiming they have carried out work that hasn't been done, and making false declarations about qualifications and trade association membership.
"This is why we always recommend that people say no to cold-callers and find a reputable trader in their area.
"Anyone wanting to find a trader can visit the county council's Safe Trader website or call the Safe Trader team.
"If you want to report a rogue trader, you should contact the Citizen's Advice Consumer Helpline who will pass the details on to our Trading Standards team."
The Safe Trader scheme can help you find a trader in your area, contact 0303 333 1111 or visit www.safetrader.org.uk
To report a rogue trader or get consumer advice, contact the Trading Standards service via the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 03454 04 05 06.