Hampshire Trading Standards Service is warning the public to be wary of cold callers at the door offering to pressure wash driveways and paths. Reports have been received from the Stubbington area, but the warning applies to all of Hampshire.
One of the tricks used by traders is to tell the resident that the neighbours have already signed up to have their driveways cleaned.
Prices quoted range from £150 – £600. Attempts to raise the price may be made if a vulnerability is suspected. Little or no paperwork is given, and cancellation rights are not provided.
Promises to return the following day to apply a sealer are often broken.
Trading Standards would advise consumers not to agree to work that is instigated as a result of a cold call or via a leaflet drop. Consumers should obtain at least 3 written quotes from reputable businesses or traders who are either members of the Hampshire County Council Trading Standards Buy With Confidence Scheme or a recognised trade association.
Members of the Buy With Confidence scheme are fully audited to ensure their trading practices are legal, honest and fair. All members have been checked for trustworthiness and compliance with consumer protection laws. Details can be obtained by telephoning 01962 833620, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or via the website www.buywithconfidence.gov.uk
Traders who agree work at the home of an individual or at a place other than their usual business premises are required by law to provide consumers with a Notice of Right to Cancel, which gives consumers a 14 day cooling off period from the date the work starts. So, legally, you may have the right to cancel even though work has commenced..
If anyone has any information about traders who are cold calling or requires any advice on doorstep crime they can contact Hampshire County Council’s
Quick Response Team on 01962 833666
(Monday – Friday 0900hrs to 1700hrs)
where specially trained officers are on hand to provide advice.
If assistance is required outside of these hours please contact Hampshire Police on their non-urgent number 101 or dial 999 if you feel threatened or intimidated.
Hampshire County Council Trading Standards Service
Montgomery House Monarch Way
Winchester Hampshire SO22 5PW
Tel: 01962 833620
Fax: 01962 833698