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                                         ROGUE TRADERS / DOOR TO DOOR SALES

 Week by week we bring you reports and updates on the many types and methods of online frauds and scams that keep appearing.

However, long before online fraud appeared in our lives, the Rogue Trader was knocking on doors, and sadly still is, and claiming more victims according to reports received.

So be wary if someone knocks on your door claiming to be a tradesperson, and that work needs doing on your property immediately. They may claim they have seen some loose tiles on your roof, or your gutters need cleaning, areas you cannot always check yourself.

But Door-to-Door frauds can take many forms, including:

  • Pressure selling
  • Unfair contracts
  • Overpriced or substandard home maintenance or improvements
  • Phoney consumer surveys
  • Bogus charity collections.

Such frauds involve promoting goods or services that are either never delivered to you, or are of a very poor quality. Fraudsters may also bill you for work that you didn’t agree to. There are specific laws about door-to-door sales. Many are required to give you a ‘cooling-off’ period (where you can change your mind or request your money back).

Bogus tradesmen will offer none of these, and even if they do, you can be sure their ‘guarantee’ will not be honoured.

Protect yourself against Rogue Traders

  • Always ask for identification before letting anyone you don’t know into your house.
  • Check credentials, including a permanent business address and landline telephone number. The mobile phone numbers given on business cards are often pay-as-you-go numbers which are virtually impossible to trace.
  • Take control by asking the questions. Ask for references from previous customers or to see examples of their work.
  • Don’t sign on the spot – shop around. Get at least three written quotes to make sure you are not being ripped off.
  • Always read documents carefully before you sign them and make sure you fully understand your rights. It’s best to ask salespeople to call back so you can do this in your own time – don’t be rushed into signing before you feel ready.
  • Avoid handing over money before work is started. A reliable trader will never ask you to do this (even if they need materials). Never agree to go with a trader to the bank to take money out.
  • Take time to talk to someone you trust – family member, friend or carer – before signing up to anything

 If you do decide to buy:

  • Always get any agreement you make in writing.
  • Beware when filling in forms or when speaking to the salesperson, that you don’t reveal confidential details that a fraudster could use to assume your identity or take control of your finances. This may allow a fraudster to steal money from your account or order goods and services in your name.
  • Usually, you have a fourteen-day cooling off period. So if you decide to cancel the contract, act fast
  • Think very carefully about having any work done or goods delivered during the cooling off period. You may have to pay, even if you change your mind.
  • Never pay for work before completion, and only then if you are happy with it.

                                                And finally … it’s OK to say no

Remember it’s your doorstep and your decision. If you feel pressured for any reason ask the person to leave.

Please feel free to share these messages with any vulnerable friends, relatives or neighbours.


Take Five To Stop Fraud

STOP: Taking a moment to stop and think before parting with your money or information could keep you safe.

CHALLENGE: Could it be fake? It’s OK to reject, refuse or ignore any requests. Only criminals will try to rush or panic you.

PROTECT: Contact your bank immediately if you think you’ve fallen for a scam and report it to Action Fraud



  • Avoid disclosing security details
  • Emails, Phone Calls and Texts may not be authentic
  • Always make direct contact with any organisation by using a genuine phone number
  • Stop and Challenge any unexpected requests
  • Protect others by reporting Fraud and Scams


If you’ve fallen for a scam, report it to Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040 or via actionfraud.police.uk.

Scam Text messages can be forwarded to 7726 to help phone providers take early action and block numbers that generate spam on their networks.

Forward Fake Emails received to .