Rogue traders could be foiled by inspection plan

Chartered surveyor e.surv has launched a property inspection service aimed at elderly or vulnerable homeowners who may be in danger of failing prey to cowboy builders and workmen.

The annual inspection, called PropertyCare+, checks the fabric of the building, such as the roof – a common target for rogue traders – as well as giving advice on appliances such as boilers. It will highlight repairs that need immediate attention, point out areas that may cause problems later, and advise on routine maintenance, as well as offering guidelines on repair costs. It aims to ensure that the property does not deteriorate.

Richard Sexton, director of e.surv, said: "It should be particularly useful for the elderly and less physically able who might not get up into the attic as often as they once did and are therefore, for instance, less likely to notice problems with the roof. Hopefully it will stop people getting ripped off by unscrupulous tradesmen, too."

A survey from the website revealed that one in seven homeowners have been targeted by rogue traders more than three times.

PropertyCare+ costs between £199 for a two-bed property, up to £269 for a five-bed.