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Safety & Security Tips

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Before you allow people into your home, check their identification.  If they say they are from the Water, Electricity or Gas Board for example, ask them to wait outside, close the door, then find a recent bill and ring the help number on it to verify that their staff are working in the area and need to call on you.  Genuine workmen will not mind if you check they are who they say they are.  If you prefer, ring a neighbour or friend who can come along to help you.  Meters can be read by appointment or you can read them yourself and send in the details. 

When unknown workmen call and offer to carry out jobs for you, ask them to call back and arrange for someone to be there when you discuss what needs to be done.  Look to see whether they have a company vehicle with the name written on the side and ask for a calling card so that you can contact them later.  You should not be asked to pay anything until after a small job is completed, but be sure to ask the full price before they start.  Ask for a written quotation for larger jobs and then ask other companies for alternative quotations.  If they need to buy anything you should be able to make the cheque out direct to a supplier you know rather than pay cash.  Usually, only a small deposit is needed so do not part with any money until you know how much it will all cost. 

It is a good idea to have a security chain on the front door it does not need to be on all the time but try to remember to slip it across whenever you answer the door, even if you think you know who is there.  If you have a hall window which you can open and speak to whoever it is, then do that.  Remember to close it securely again even if you are just going to ring the organisation to check that the call is genuine. 

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