According to the Better Business Bureau, as temperatures increase, so do the number of door-to-door sales scams. BBB's Emily Valla says it’s important to keep in mind there are legitimate door-to-door sales people, but everyone should be aware of what to do if you aren’t sure.
Valla says some common door-to-door sales are:
Home improvement contractors: "Some less-than-ethical door-to-door contractors are unlicensed, uninsured and unqualified to do the work they offer. Even if they claim to be doing work for a neighbor, be vigilant about checking out their business," Valla said.
Magazine sellers: "Students are often unaware they are being duped into selling magazine subscriptions for disreputable operators," Valla added.
Alarm systems: "BBBs across the country receive complaints about people selling alarm systems and failing to divulge terms of the contract for alarm system monitoring," Valla said.
Meat sellers: "Some door-to-door salespeople will try to sell meat and/or food products on the spot and lie about the quality of the products," Valla continued.
BBB says your first question of a salesperson should be, “Can I see your solicitor’s permit?”
"Any response other than showing you the permit should be met with a door slam and calling the local police nonemergency line. You don’t want that person preying on your neighbors," Valla said.
If you decide to buy, Valla says to ask for refund policies and get everything in writing, including a receipt.
"Don’t feel pressured to by on the spot. Ask for a business card and do a little research with BBB. If you want to buy, follow up with the seller. A good salesperson will take your deal tomorrow just the same as today," Valla said.
Remember the Federal Trade Commissions’ “Cooling-Off Rule.” This generally allows consumers three days to cancel purchases of more than $25 that are made in their home. There are several exceptions to this, so check with the Idaho Attorney General’s Office if you’re unsure.
For more information visit www.bbb.org.