Conned!!!!

Tender Face

Account Closed
Mar 14, 2006
5,379
NW England
Well, I'm hopping (again!) ..... there have been a lot of sudden downturns with mum just recently .... one 'upside' has been that she is appearing quite animated and confident ... trouble is it is often very much mis-guided self-confidence ....

This morning she has been proudly telling me about how she had organised having some trees cut down in her back garden (I think the tree obsession from last year is resurfacing but that's another matter) ....... I must confess, I don't regularly check her back garden for missing trees :eek: as I do, say her fridge for misplaced objects ........ I inspect and discover she has had a beautiful conifer completely lopped .... leaving a huge gap whilst magnificently dead specimens of overgrowth - which are due to be cut back by her regular gardening service - are still resplendent ....

"So how did you arrange this?" I ask .... "Well, this man knocked on the door ...... " (I don't need to spell it out do I?) But apart from a missing conifer, there is - you will have guessed - rather a large amount of cash missing too ........:mad:

"Mum, you mustn't give money to people offering to do your garden - I pay for the gardening service to come ....or anyone else for that matter who happens to knock on your door" ...... "Oh right" ... but I see her crumple ....... She was soooooooooo proud of herself thinking she had organised something without my help? How can I say - Mum - just DON'T!!!!!!!!???????

Karen, x :(
 

jenniferpa

Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
39,448
Ah Karen - what can one say? You're trying so hard to maintain her independence (or her belief in it at any rate) and then this. No answers that would be any help at all, just sympathy.
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
71,568
Kent
How can I say - Mum - just DON'T!!!!!!!!???????
:(
You can`t Karen, because even if you did your mother would forget. As you said, she was pleased she made a decision. The wrong one admittedly but a decision no less.

My mother was conned left right and centre, in particular by unscrupulous garages when she filled the car with diesel instead of petrol, and by `someone` who `learned ` her to drive when she was in danger of losing her licence, and wanted to prove she was still a good driver. And I could go on.

The only time there was more control was when my mother went to day care Monday--Friday and we watched her at the weekend.

Even then, we couldn`t keep total control, which was demonstrated when we found her freezer had filled itself with M&S Gateaux whist we were out shopping to fill it for her. To this day I don`t know how she managed it.

It isn`t funny, I know, and I`m not making light of it. The only way out is to limit her access to cash. I told my mother she was over spending and there wouldn`t be any left to pay bills. Her answer was `take it out of the bank.` I wish you better luck with your mother.

As for corrupt gardeners, we too were conned when we first moved. I won`t bore you with the story but all I can say is it`s easily done.

Love xx
 
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gigi

Registered User
Nov 16, 2007
7,788
67
East Midlands
As for corrupt gardeners, we too were conned when we first moved.
You're not the only ones..last year just after Christmas our tree at the front needed tidying up..but it still had the Christmas lights in it..

A very nice man knocked on the door one day and said he would tidy the tree up for £40..and take the lights down for us..what a nice man...:)


When I unpacked the lights to put back up this last Christmas..(nice man had wrapped them up beautifully and put them away for me..I was so grateful at the time..)...you know what's coming..
He'd taken them down by cutting through them...:mad:

So, Karen..your mum isn't the only one to have been conned..but she is obviously vulnerable..and that's a concern.
I've never been in your situation..but you do have my sympathy..

Love Gigi xx
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
71,568
Kent
I suppose it is the only advantage in caring for a partner rather than a parent. Much more straightforward financial control, even if it does come at a price.
 

MJK

Registered User
Oct 22, 2004
54
No help I'm afraid but we had exactly the same problem with Mum and gardeners. Either no apparent work and large amounts of money paid, or wrong trees taken down etc. It seemed to be the same as in your case, people just coming to the door.

I don't know how you stop it. We put tight controls on Mum's bank account (she just had a cash card) and had standing orders paying in a small amount each day so that Mum could never get hold of say £100+.We still never knew where all her money went but at least we knew it was just small amounts.
 

TinaT

Registered User
Sep 27, 2006
7,095
Bolton
My mother has very early AZ and has also been conned by the garden man (wonder if he travels the country?). I have a lovely man who comes and when she needs him,she lets me know and then I let him know. Last week whilst visiting I asked her where were her beatiful daffodils and spring flowers? "Oh, a man called and asked if I wanted any gardening done. He's killed all my plants".

My friend's mother continually buys things from any catalogue or magazine she gets her hands on. Apparently she has 22 pairs of new shoes in her wardrobe, none of which fit. As her mother hides these things, it is too late to find out where she bought them from and send them back.

What can one say???
 

Tender Face

Account Closed
Mar 14, 2006
5,379
NW England
The only way out is to limit her access to cash.
I am more worried that mum would say 'yes' to someone 'unscrupulous' who knocked on the door and then didn't have the cash available to pay for whatever she agreed to .... :eek: (Mum often says 'yes' rather than admit she can't hear the question in the first place!!!!! :eek:) I know, I know I'm getting paranoid and panicking ........ and mum's 'cash stashes' are her comfort blankets ......

It's not so much about the loss of some cash (I try to exercise 'damage limitation' on that score anyway - else she would have 50 handbags instead of the ten she's bought recently:rolleyes:) - it is the vulnerability .... but when she is managing so well on so many other fronts I don't want to be panicked into thinking she might have to relinquish her independence because of some 'swines' who might knock on her door ........

'Sheltered housing' is screaming at me ... but from memory sheltered housing and dementia sufferers don't mix? Besides, the whole point is, mum wants to stay where she is ....... it's not big enough for us to move there - and ours is not big enough for her to move here even if she wanted to ..... no scope for developing either property appropriately ...... been through that loop several times ....:(

"Risk management, risk management" ..... but right now I have no ideas what to do on this one ......:(

Thanks all, love Karen, x
 

christine_batch

Registered User
Jul 31, 2007
3,388
Buckinghamshire
Peter being a painter/decorator would always keep our property in tip top condition.

Since he has AD the normal jobs did not get done. So I called a local man in to do the outside, check seals on the Consevatory.

One evening, Fleur and I were in the Conservatory on the Computer when it was pouring with rain. Just where the light was, in came water.

I got back on to the WORKMAN! He was not interested in coming to rectify the job. My little bit of emergency money was diminishing quite quickly.

So I contact someone else. All the things he was telling me that needed doing, I knew was correct (picked up enough experience from Peter). Job done perfect.

Then this person drew my attention to the woodwork on the outside. It was disgusting. No proper preparation, only one coat of Sadolin (Peter always did two). No spare paint the B*****d had taken what I had paid for.

As keeping our property in good condition in so important, I needed to have it done properly, which will be done in May.
Also being given a very good price.

So I too am really fed up with people conning us left right and centre.

What these con people forget, word of mouth works for me as no way would I recommend the original swine.

Christine
 

Tender Face

Account Closed
Mar 14, 2006
5,379
NW England
Mum and dad always had 'No canvasser' stickers on their door - not that that stopped the illiterate of course!!!!!!! (Not mentioning any political party candidates - let alone gardeners!!!! ;) Sorry - trying desperately to find something to smile about today!:rolleyes:)

I wonder if some kind of more prominent sign would help? We always worried when 'grab-rails' were installed externally when dad was ill that it in fact shouted out 'someone vulnerable lives here'...... signage could make things worse? But for what it's worth - this is the only kind of idea I can come up with just now ...... mum's house has the scope for prominent signage by her main door .........

Sorry, you need to humour me just now ......:eek:

Karen, x




Warning!

If you want to persuade me
To have my trees lopped ...
My garden fixed ....
Change my electricity supplier ...
Get Sky installed ....
Switch gas company ....
Sell me raffle tickets
Or anything else I don't need ......

I will first consult with my resident bodyguard and his pit-bull

Thank you for calling!!!!!!!
 

jenniferpa

Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
39,448
Karen this may be off the wall but perhaps what you need is a deterrent. What about one of those dummy security cameras directed towards your mother's front door? I'm just thinking - perhaps if a con artist thinks he might be having his picture taken maybe he'll give your mum's door a wide berth. I say a dummy camera, because I understand that you don't want to add to confusion, but anything that might cut down on potential baddies might be worth investigating.
 

Norman

Registered User
Oct 9, 2003
4,348
Birmingham Hades
Karen
so sorry to hear about Mum being conned.
It seems to be a nationwide problem ,swines like like preying on the vunerable.
I like Jwennifer's suggestion,a dummy camera.
A sign on the door drawing attention to it may help.
Norman
 

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
71,568
Kent
Or with the correct spelling, not that it would make any difference to the con-men.

Beware Rottweilers
 

Clive

Registered User
Nov 7, 2004
716
I find it sad that with all the ridicules health and safety, politically correct, nonsensical rules that we have to obey these days, people are still allowed to knock on our doors and con our old people into giving them jobs that they don’t do properly.

Clive
 

jackie1

Registered User
Jun 6, 2007
238
Cheshire
Sadly it's not just parents!

I arrived back from work one lunchtime to find that John had agreed to workmen adding these plastic bits to the edge of the roof. As a number of other neighbours had had them fitted they weren't total cowboys but what John had agreed to pay them was! After some very heated negotiations the price came. Luckily there is no money in the house and he does not have a cash card (even if he could remember the number) so they'd had to wait until I got back.

Jackie