Local residents have been conned into spending more than £40,000
Merton residents are being warned to be wary of ‘cold call’ builders knocking on doors looking for work, with some people in the borough having paid more than £40,000 for unnecessary work.
Cowboy builders will typically pick on elderly and vulnerable residents offering quick cheap repairs that are often shoddy, incomplete and overpriced, says Merton Council.
“We’ve had some real horror stories,” says Councillor Ross Garrod, Cabinet Member for Street Cleanliness and Parking, “and if it sounds too good to be true it most probably is.”
Merton Council’s trading standards team, which is responsible for investigating cases and bringing the accused to court, said examples include:
Tell-tale signs that things aren’t right include work starts before an agreement is reached, no documentation, the job cost rising beyond what was originally agreed, poor work, and traders becoming aggressive and intimidating
Councillor Garrod added: “If in doubt, ring our trading standards team who will try and arrange to be there next time the builder calls to find out what is going on.”
If you are concerned about an agreement you have entered into with a trader to have work done on your house or garden, phone the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 03454 04 05 06. If necessary, your call will be referred to us and we will deal with it promptly. If you feel intimidated or frightened by a trader you should dial 999.
July 18, 2017