Warning as doorstep sales grow

A WARNING has been issued to residents to be on their guard against dodgy door-to-door salesman in the borough.

North Tyneside Council and Age UK North Tyneside issued the advice after an rise in enquiries concerning roofing, guttering and paving work.

Although it is not illegal for traders to canvass door-to-door, residents are being asked to carefully consider any work or service they are being offered.

Coun George Westwater, cabinet member for regulatory services, said: “We want residents to become more aware of the risks of doorstep sellers and the tricks they can use to get people to agree to buy goods or services.

“Decisions made quickly on the doorstep may result in work being done which isn’t necessary or more costly than expected.

“Also, bogus doorstep traders often use a range of persuasive and emotional tactics to secure a fast sale and con people out of their money.”

Jill Davison, Age UK North Tyneside’s information and advice centre manager, said “Our advice team see the damaging effects of bogus doorstep traders and would urge any older person to seek advice from us, if they are at all uncertain, and not to feel pressured into making on the spot decisions.

“Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If in doubt, check it out first.”

Residents are advised to:

n Shop around for products and services to make sure they get the best deal;

n Seek a number of written quotations from reputable traders which detail any work to be done with prices before deciding to have any work done;

n Know your rights – for goods or services over £35, many sellers must give their customer the right to change their mind over a seven day cooling off period;

n Seek recommendations from friends and family.

Residents can also access a list of registered local traders who have undergone certain checks by the council’s trading standards team by contacting 0845 600 6400 or visiting www.traderegister.org.uk/nnt

For advice on doorstep selling, contact Consumer Direct on 08454 040506.