MARLBOROUGH, MA – As the weather is warming up, Better Business Bureau Serving Eastern Massachusetts, Maine, Rhode Island and Vermont (BBB) is warning consumers to beware of scammers going door-to-door with different scams to steal personal information and money.
While some salespeople may be trustworthy, working for legitimate businesses, there are also scammers out there “posing” as them. Many consumers report con artists offering lawn care or discounted paving services this time of year.
Consumers report door-to-door salespeople offering to pave their driveways or complete other outside maintenance and ask for payment upfront for materials. In some cases, scammers take the money and are never seen again or start the job and never finish. It’s important to know what to look for when being approached by these scammers to keep you and your property safe.
BBB offers tips for dealing with door-to-door salespeople:
Do your research. If a person is selling lawn care or discounted paving services, you can always tell the person you’re interested, but to come back another time. This way you have time to look up their business at bbb.org.
Don’t fall for high-pressure sales tactics. If a salesperson is making you feel uncomfortable on your own property, whether it be by aggressive selling or pitching a personal sob story, remember that they are on your property and you can ask them to leave.
Never pay upfront. If you’re paying for a service, make sure the work is being done to your satisfaction – before you pay. If it’s a product, get a receipt for payment.
Get all promises in writing. If you decide to do business with a door-to-door salesperson, make sure to get total price, all services, and approximate start and end time of any work. Get it written in a contract. If it’s some sort of subscription, and they promise there are no hidden fees, get it in writing.
Ask to see the terms and conditions. Legitimate businesses will give you the details in writing, including the commitment period, total price and cancellation instructions.
Request to see the seller’s license. Many municipalities require a solicitation license before you can sell door-to-door. If your town has this law, be sure to ask to see the seller’s license.