Police are warning about ‘very persistent and aggressive’ rogue traders after two vulnerable victims were targeted.
Both incidents took place in the last few days in Stanground and Bretton where the men offered to do gutter cleaning after it was believed they undertook a leaflet drop a few days earlier.
Police crime prevention officer Amanda Large said: “Although they may appear genuine and trustworthy, often they are not and they can become very persistent and aggressive.
“They have then said more work needs doing and have then charged a much higher fee than first agreed. Often, no work has ever been done.
“The Bretton male was described as white, tall, approximately 6 foot, scruffy and approximately 40 years old. In the Stanground incident there were at least two males and we believe they had a vehicle, but no descriptions are known.”
Rogue traders use a range of techniques to encourage you to hand over your cash. Beware of people who say things like:
“I was passing and noticed your gutter and tiles are loose.”
“I don’t want to worry you, but there have been a lot of burglaries in the area recently.”
“This offer is only available today.”
“If you pay cash today I can give you a special discount.”
“I’ve been working at the house across the road or in the area.”
Amanda added: “Please do not buy services from cold callers to your door, and do not let them into your home. Don’t be another victim!
“If you have agreed to work that you did not want or cannot afford, you may still be able to get out of the contract.
“If you buy something for more than £42 from a doorstep seller, you have 14 days to change your mind and cancel the contract. You should be given notice of your right to cancel in writing: if this doesn’t happen then the trader probably can’t bind you to any agreement.
“Never sign something to waive you right to cancel.
“Once you have decided to cancel, you must let the trader know within 14 days of signing that you are exercising this right. This should be done in writing and ideally by recorded delivery letter – keep a copy of the letter that you send as proof of cancellation.
“Report any doorstep incidents. If you feel afraid or threatened call the police on 999. For non-urgent calls 101 or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”