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How a Good Oaks Home Carer can help you protect yourself from door step scammers

Sadly, rogue traders and scam artists at your door pretending to be the police or an official, are increasingly common occurrences. These could be people offering to quote for doing work on your property, someone pretending to be from the council or police and asking to come in, or even someone asking for help to use the phone. But did you know that having home care help, like that from us as Good Oaks Home Care, can help you against scammers?

If you have live-in care, your carer will be available to answer the door and check anyone’s credentials. And if you have visiting care, it provides a visible presence coming in and out of the house, so people know the house is occupied and won’t know someone is living alone for example.

Our guide will help you spot and stop the scammers, as well as show how a home carer can help you to stay safe.

 

What are doorstep scams?

This is when someone comes to your door under false pretences and tries to scam you out of money or gain access to your house where they could potentially steal something.

This could look like:

  • Someone coming to your door pretending to be quoting for work. They could try and pressurise you into getting unnecessary work done or asking for cash as a deposit and they promise they will return the next day to do the work. They won’t.
  • Someone pretending to be from the gas or water board.
  • Someone pretending to be a plain clothed policeman/ woman.
  • Someone pretending they have broken down and have to use your phone/ toilet.

 

What can I do to prevent myself or love done being targeted?

Ask yourself:

  • Was I expecting this person to turn up? Scams are usually unexpected – the consumer questionnaire that just happens to be today or the trader who was just passing your house when they saw this urgent work that just needed to be done for cash.
  • Is this person being overly pushy or insistent? Why can’t they wait for 24 hours for you to think the offer over? Remember not all scammers are pushy, they may be very polite and friendly.
  • Could there be another reason they want to get into your house? Could they be checking the security out? Or are they looking for valuables?

You could think of investing in a chain on the door, to stop people getting in/ or a peep hole or video doorbell can let you see who is at the door before you answer.

Put up a sign to show ‘no cold callers’ or what about a ‘beware of the Doberman dog’ sign?

Always check someone’s credentials – officials will have certified ID. You can always make them wait outside until you have called the gas or water company to check they are who they say they are.

If in doubt, keep them out. You don’t have to answer the door if you don’t know who it is. Officials will have leaflets or something to put through the door to say they will be back if it is important.

 

What should I do if I think I have been scammed?

If you are worried you may have been a victim of a scam, contact Action Fraud (call 0300 123 2040 or website is here, your local police on 111 or your bank to decline any payments / cards.

 

How a home carer can help to prevent scams?

If you have a home care visitor or live in carer they can help to prevent scammers. This is because:

There will always be someone there in the house with you, so they can answer the door, check credentials and turn people away.

Visiting carers provide a visible presence coming in and out of the house, so people know the house is occupied and won’t know someone is living alone for example.

They can help to make the house more lived in, by helping with gardening, bringing in milk deliveries, bringing in/ putting out bins, or making sure post isn’t hanging out of the post box. These are all signs that the house either isn’t often lived in or that the person living there is vulnerable. So having a carer helps to prevent this.

How Good Oaks Home Care can help

If you would like help or support for you or your loved one, please feel free to get in touch for a free consultation about the care we could provide. You can find our contact details online here: goodoakshomecare.co.uk/contact-us or feel free to give our head office team a call on 01202 757787 and we can put you in touch with your local branch.

 

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