Shared Regulatory Services is committed to protecting consumers from detriment and tackling rogue trading practices.
In order to achieve this we work with partner agencies across Bridgend, Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan. Doorstep Crime can affect anyone, but often elderly and vulnerable people are targeted by Rogue Traders offering services such as roofing, driveways, gardening etc.
Rogue traders will initially provide a low estimate and once the work has started they will vastly increase the price of the job. The work is of extremely poor quality and they often provide false contact information and can be difficult to trace. Once a person has been subjected to this type of crime, they may find that they have multiple visits from similar traders.
Bogus Callers will often claim to be from the council, police, health carers, market researchers or utility and phone companies to gain access to your home and your property.
It may be easy to think it is a problem that only affects older people. However, there are many different reasons a person may be vulnerable to doorstep crime, such as:
- Recent bereavement in the family
- Mental health issues
- Poor health, or any physical disability
- Living alone
- Social isolation
- Being a single parent with young children
Officers will investigate and work with other enforcement agencies, including South Wales Police. We work with key partners to safeguard the interests of consumers.
In light of a recent successful prosecution for fraud of a rogue builder taken by Shared Regulatory Services, we would like to provide you with some advice if ever you are approached by anyone offering to do work on your property or if you have had work done and have encountered problems.
- If you are approached by someone offering to do work for you then it is advisable to obtain opinions from other builders first. Do not rush into making a decision. A reputable trader will not pressure you into making a decision there and then;
- If such a builder claims that the work is urgently required then it is essential that you obtain alternative opinions. Creating doubt and initiating urgency is tactic used by rogue builders;
- Paying a small deposit for agreed works is acceptable because this secures the contract but do not ever pay substantial amounts upfront for materials or for paying the builder’s workers before any work has started. Reputable builders will have a trade account with merchants that are settled later;
You can agree to make payments in stages. That is, for each section of work that has been completed satisfactorily a payment for that work can be made and so on until completion;
- Certain works require you to contact your local council’s Building Control department to ensure that the work complies with Building Regulations. The onus is on the homeowner but a builder should also be aware of such requirements. If you are unsure, contact Building Control just in case;
- If you agree to have work undertaken then ensure that you are given paperwork by the builder. The information on this paperwork should details the builder’s name and address, a breakdown of the quote and details of your 14 day cooling off period;
- If you desire to waive your right to cancel in the 14 day cooling off period then the builder must supply you with a form for you to complete to record this. Make sure that this is your own choice and not one suggested by the builder;
- Do not be pressured into agreeing to have any addition work done on top of that which has already been agreed;
- If you have an issue with the work that is being done then you have a right to seek an opinion from a different builder or a surveyor. If Building Control is involved then they will inspect the work at various stages.
- If you do have a valid complaint about the work then it is advisable that you make a formal complaint in writing by letter or email to the builder giving them the opportunity to rectify all of the issues that have been identified. It is advisable to obtain quotes from other builders to determine the cost of rectification if you encounter problems and you have to take the matter further.
If you have an issue that you wish to discuss further then contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 1133.
Report Rogue Trader
Never be afraid to report any suspicious persons or activity, by calling:
101 to report a suspected rogue trader, or
999 if a rogue trader has taken money from you and is in your home or still in the local area
Cold Calling Control Zones
Cold callers are classed as people who knock on your door, without warning, offering goods and/or services. You may, for example, get visits from double glazing firms, doorstep loans and other salesmen.
In an attempt to control this we have set up Cold Calling Control Zones (CCCZ) where all cold calling is strictly controlled.
Although cold calling is not illegal, businesses and other organisations are asked to respect the wishes of residents living in a Cold Calling Control Zone by not knocking on your door.
To discuss the creation of a Cold Calling Control Zone in your area, contact us:
- Contact SRS
- Civic Offices, Holton Road, Barry, CF63 4RU