Trading standards: keep vigilant on rogue traders in the shire

Aberdeenshire Council Trading Standards are warning householders against giving driveway and other building repair work to people who call at the door.

Friday, 31st August 2012, 2:32 pm

The warning follows a complaint received about rogue workmen cold calling in Aberdeenshire, claiming to have worked for the council.

Every year Trading Standards receive complaints about itinerant workmen carrying out work such as laying driveways, roof repairs or gardening work. On this occasion the men said they were working in the area and that they had surplus tar that they needed to get rid of.

Senior trading standards officer David Tough said: “Typically, the rogue traders will try to get the homeowner to agree to the work being carried out straight away.

“The homeowner will be made to feel that the offer is for a limited time and if they don’t sign up, they’ll miss out. They may also use deceptive and misleading claims, as in this case where they falsely claimed to have worked for the council.”

Although doorstep trading is not illegal, there is a substantial risk in purchasing from such traders. While the prices being offered may be tempting, hasty decisions made on the doorstep can sometimes result in agreeing to work that isn’t necessary, and often turns out to be more expensive than quoted.

Chair of Aberdeenshire’s Infrastructure Services Committee, Councillor Peter Argyle said “There are traders who call at your door who are honest and genuine. However there are others who may look to take advantage of you by using clever and persuasive tactics.“