On Monday 1st May 2023 a male attended at a property in Coldstream offering to tarmac the driveway with leftover materials. He was asked to return the following afternoon to discuss.
On the afternoon of 02/05/2023, the owner returned to discover a portion of his driveway had been re-tarmacked in his absence and without his consent.
The same male thereafter re-attended in a White, Land Rover Discovery, VRM U/K and advised the work had been part-completed, but there was an issue with his machine. Advised that work would cost £4,500 but he would be happy with a bank transfer. Owner then became involved in a dispute as he had never agreed to any work being carried out.
From bogus callers to rogue traders, doorstep criminals are cunning, creative, and often very convincing. Anyone can be fooled as these people are professional con artists.
These criminals will call at your home unexpectedly offering services such as tarmacking, gardening and home maintenance, they may appear very personable and offer work at discount prices.
Often however if any work is carried out it is sub-standard and further ‘problems’ may be discovered resulting in an ever increasing bill.
Police Scotland would recommend that if your home / garden require any work that you obtain quotes from businesses you have had time to research and do not be pressured into taking up offers from door step callers.
How can you protect yourself from Bogus Callers?
Be on guard if someone turns up unexpectedly.Keep your front and back doors locked.Use the door viewer or nearby window when answering the door.Fit a door chain or bar – use it and keep it on when talking to callers at the door.If you’re not sure, don’t answer the door.Don’t feel embarrassed – genuine callers expect you to be careful.Only let callers in if they have an appointment and you have confirmed they are genuine.Always ask for identification badges of anyone you answer the door to, but don’t rely on them. Identity cards can be faked – phone the company to verify their identity.Some companies offer a password system. Ask your utility providers if this can be used and if you have a password with a company make sure the caller uses it.Never let people try to persuade you to let them into your home even if they are asking for help – they may not be genuine. If someone is persistent, ask them to call at another time and arrange for a friend or family member to be with you.Never agree to pay for goods or give money to strangers who arrive at your door.Don’t keep large amounts of money in your home.Remember, it’s your home. There’s no reason why anyone should ever enter your home against your wishes.
If there is a suspicious caller at your house keep them outside and call 101, if they refuse to leave your door or you feel threatened call 999.
For further advice on how to protect yourself, friends and neighbours visit the Police Scotland website: Doorstep crime and bogus callers – Police Scotland
Also attached are Shut Out Scammers leaflet and Neighbourhood Watch Scotland’s Safer Neighbourhoods Stronger Communities booklet which is packed with practical tips on how to keep you, your family and your community safe.