Wednesday, December 14, 2022

Christmas song #11


Caught a scam just in time yesterday. A gutter cleaning company dropped off a personalized leaflet in the letter box. Just what was needed to clear out the old unused birds nests in the down pipes. Checked out the company online. Also checked them out with the Companies House website. Good reviews and fifteen years of unblemished trading history. Phoned the number at the bottom of the leaflet  and agreed a time for them to come and a price. Both were reasonable. The charming young lady on the other end of the phone asked for my credit card details which I gave. Guess what ? Within seconds a charge was applied to the account that was very different from what had been agreed. Misappropriation of a genuine traders identity is a new one on me. Got the credit card company just in time. Just because the name is that of an honest company doesn't mean the person you're talking to works for them. In future I'll always check the phone numbers.

Another bright and sunny but bitterly cold morning. There's a bank of cloud offshore which is forecast to 'burn off' in the sunshine. The family diva joins me for a quick detour into town for a coffee, bowl of water and shared pain au raisin.  Sophie has discovered that frozen puddles can be alarmingly slippery. 

The sound of Christmas carols wafts up from the forecourt of the museum. A group of lady brass band enthusiasts are playing away to a non-existent audience. Their bucket is empty so I slip them a fiver.  How dispiriting it must be not to make your petrol costs. They all stop mid-tune and wish me a Happy Christmas. Why they should be playing to an empty forecourt on a cold exam day morning is unexplained. They'd do much better on one of the shopping streets.

Christmas song #11. Very Stanford :


Linda said...

Sorry to hear about your scam. But rule number one of Scottish life these days - never respond to a trades leaflet, however glossy, put through the letter box. Gutter cleaning, roof moss removal, driveway monoblocking (ghastly), hedge cutting - all are used by fraudsters travelling the country in vans, and often targeting the elderly and vulnerable in particular with astronomical prices.

Coppa's girl said...

It's a good job you managed to foil the scam before they took your money. Scams happen everywhere these days and some are very persistent.
Well done those ladies for being out so early to play their carols. I wonder if they do that before the 'day' job!

Tigger's Mum said...

Linda is so right and it isn't unique to life in Scotland. 'Time was' you knew the tradesmen in your village, or your neighbour or mate did. These days so many have been replaced by remotely owned bigger businesses and that creates opportunity such as you describe. We have been known to engage people we have seen working on houses down the street (and asked the houseowner for an opinion). We have taken a longer time to discover that tradies know other tradies - our window cleaner is a mine of useful, and so far reliable, referrals!

WFT Nobby said...

Keeping ahead of ever more creative scammers is one of the challenges of 21st century life. One has to be so very careful. I rely on my cycling group - between us we possess wealth of knowledge about reliable local tradesmen and frequently exchange tips.
It's winter wonderland in Aberdeen today, so no cycling!

Melinda from Ontario said...

Thank you for writing about your close call with a scammer. I would have fallen for a leaflet in my mailbox, (particularly after checking out the company name online.) My naturally trusting nature is being put through the wringer with the continuous barrage of scammers out there.