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HomeStratford NewsPolice warn about door-to-door scams

Police warn about door-to-door scams

The Huron County OPP is warning you to be vigilant about door-to-door scams.

Police were notified earlier this week about two sales agents going around the Exeter area attempting to sell water purification systems.

The pushy salesmen wanted the homeowner to replace his current system and upgrade to a newer version under a 25 year contract for $8,000.

The homeowner declined the offer and after they left he contacted the company to complain about their sales tactics.

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He learned the salesperson was no longer employed by the company and was using the company brochures in an attempt to scam customers.

The next time you encounter a high pressure door to door salesperson at your front door, keep these tips in mind:

It’s your home! – You do not have to let a salesperson inside your home and you have every right to ask someone to leave your property at any time.  If they don’t leave, call the police.  An unwanted person on your property can be removed by police and charged under the Trespass to Property Act.

Ask for Identification- Reputable companies use photo ID.  Don’t let the salesperson start their pitch until you have seen photo ID.  Get the name of the business and the name of the salesperson.  Go online and complete checks on the company and query the company through the Better Business Bureau.

Get the info in writing- Ask about the rental fees, installation, repair and extra service charges.  Review the warranties and insist on getting the details in writing.  Keep copies of this information.

Don’t sign on the spot- If the salesperson pressures you to sign on the spot, don’t.  Shut the door or insist that you need additional time to read and understand the agreement.  A “deal” is never only good for that visit.  If you need further time to review the offer, demand it.  An honest and reputable company will understand your decision and the deal will be ready when you are ready.

Understand the agreement- How long does the agreement last?  Are there any other costs other than the monthly rental?  Are there fees if you cancel the agreement? Will the company renew the rental agreement without your prior written consent?

Know your consumer rights- The Ontario Consumer Protection Act protects people who enter into rental contracts from door to door salespeople.  You are entitled to a 10 day cooling off period to change your mind and opt out of any contract you sign.  The 10 days begin when you receive your copy of the written contract.

All charges within the contract must be exactly as they are stated.  For example, a company is not allowed to add a surcharge that is not noted unless it is a tax.  You have up to one year to cancel if the agreement does not meet certain requirements such as costs and contractual rights.

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