Peterborough Trading Standards is warning residents to be on their guard following a spate of complaints regarding doorstep sellers offering loft insulation.
The cold callers often claim that it will “add substantial value to the house and save you a great deal of money”.
The prices quoted are very high, often in excess of £3,000.
Helen O’Driscoll, police community safety officer in Peterborough, said: “We strongly advise that residents say “NO” to all doorstep cold callers - if no sales are made in the area they are less likely to return.
“If you do require work to your property always get a minimum of three written quotations from established traders.”
Residents should remember:
. Use your door-chain or door-bar when answering the door and install a door viewer and an outside light. If you have a video doorbell then make sure you check and remember you can speak to any caller via the audio function.
. Ask to see the caller’s identity card and check it thoroughly. If you feel unsure ask the caller to wait on the doorstep while you phone the company to check. It is good to have a list of key contact numbers (utility companies) by the phone so you can check out callers using reliable contact numbers for them.
. Lock the door whilst you go and phone (don’t forget the back door also) and don’t open the door until you are totally convinced. Anyone who is genuine will not mind you doing this.
. Don’t let callers put pressure on you to let them in. Call a neighbour or the police (via 101) if you are suspicious of them.
. If in doubt - keep them out.
Cold callers have in the past attempted to trick their way into people’s homes with the intention of stealing money or property. These people often work in teams of two or more and they usually prey on people who are elderly or vulnerable.
Bogus callers can be anyone and use many different guises to gain entry to your home, often pretending to be council officials, workmen from the gas or water board, or even the police.
If a crime is happening or someone refuses to leave your home, always call 999 immediately.
If you would like any further information or advice on cold callers or think you may have been a victim of a rogue trader then email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Helen via 101.
For information on the Peterborough Neighbourhood Watch Association, email email@example.com or go to www.peterboroughnhw.co.uk.