Misery as rogues target flood victims

VICTIMS of last week’s severe flooding across the Bognor Regis area have been warned to be on their guard against rogue traders.

Residents are urged to be vigilant after reports unsolicited traders have been appearing on the doorsteps of households in neighbouring Littlehampton, offering to carry out repair work.

Kevin Byrne, founder of Checkatrade, which vets and monitors traders companies and services to help people avoid cowboy builders and rogue traders, provides a checklist of what to consider when looking for a tradesman you can trust.

These include watching out for contractors who cold call, and making sure you have adequate contact details for your trader in case things go wrong.

Obtain quotes from at least three contractors and insist on a written quotation or estimate for the work. Keep them all on file in case of any disagreement.

To avoid costs spiralling, try to get the job done on a fixed-price basis in case the work takes longer than expected.

Pay for the work by credit card wherever possible so it will be covered by the protection of the credit card company if things go wrong.

Once you agree terms and before work starts, draw up a simple contract, including the work to be done, the price and the time frame. Regularly check works are on schedule and keep talking to your contractor.