Recruitment drive for scheme to stop cowboy builders and rogue traders
Published: Tuesday 04 Jul 2017 by Fife Council
Become a Trusted Trader
Throughout July, Fife Council’s Trading Standards Team is joining forces with Citizens Advice to give people in Fife the knowledge to spot scams and expose the tactics of fraudsters to protect others.
As part of Scams Awareness Month, a national campaign encouraging people to report and talk about scams, more traders are being urged to join Fife’s Trusted Trader Scheme.
Scammers can strike at any time, from cold-calling people with fake investment opportunities, to posting online adverts for products that don’t exist.
Unfortunately, Fife residents, particularly the vulnerable, continue to be frequently targeted by unscrupulous, cold calling, rogue traders and doorstop sellers. Many people are still falling prey to rogue traders, someone who comes to your home, without an appointment, and offers to do work on your property for a fee and then does not complete the expected work, completes substandard work and/or charges an unreasonable price.
Fife Council’s Trusted Trader scheme helps customers choose a reliable trader by publishing an online directory of local, Trading Standards vetted businesses that have allowed previous customers to comment and rate their work. The scheme is part of the Council’s efforts to marginalise bogus workmen, whilst promoting Fife businesses to consumers.
Cllr. Ross Vettraino , Convener – Environment Protective Services & Community Safety Committee, Fife Council, said: "Small to medium businesses in Fife are being urged to join Trusted Trader, our local membership scheme created to increase consumer confidence, promote good practice within local business, and help protect citizens from doorstep crime."
Dawn Adamson, Trading Standards Service Manager, Fife Council, said: “We are consistently cracking down on rogue traders who may offer residents a discount rate on major projects, like building work or laying a drive, but then do a shoddy job and charge them over the odds.
“You are under no obligation to allow anyone to enter your home, and can refuse access. You should never allow anyone access to your home unless you are able to verify their authenticity and confirm that they have a valid reason for being there. If you are concerned that a doorstop caller may not be a legitimate caller, you can report this to Police Scotland by telephoning 101.
“Legitimate callers will not mind being challenged and will expect you to ask them for identification. Generally, a competent and experienced trader will not need to cold call to gain work.
"We advise residents to find reputable businesses using our Trusted Trader scheme which features many builders, joiners, plumbers, landscapers and decorators who have signed up to do a good job at a reasonable price."
Benefits of joining Trusted Traders for businesses include:
- market their business to new customers – the scheme is widely advertised
- get new business leads and gain more business
- develop the reputation of their business as offering reliable and quality services or products
- inspire consumer confidence in businesses that have been vetted by Trading Standards
- gain valuable feedback for their business
- use the Trusted Trader logo and receive a membership certificate to display.
Fifers can find a Trusted Trader at fifedirect.org.uk/trustedtrader, or phone the Trading Standards duty officer on 01592 583141. This offers a list of businesses that have been rated and reviewed by their previous customers and can be relied on to do a job properly.
How traders can apply to join
The annual membership fee is £205 + VAT. Membership of the scheme is renewable on 1st April each year. A pro-rata amount will be charged if joining part way through the year.
Please contact us by telephone on 01592 583141 or at email@example.com
Tel: 03451 55 55 55 + Ext 44 03 52 Contact Dawn Adamson online
By Post: Kingdom House Kingdom Avenue Glenrothes Fife KY7 5LY