SOUTHWEST LOUISIANA (KPLC) - The Better Business Bureau is warning consumers to be wary of door-to-door vendors selling alarm systems. The BBB reports that every summer they receive complaints from homeowners who say they have been exposed to high pressure sales tactics.
"Consumers are often told they must act now, but it's important to take a little time and do some research before purchasing any product or service," said Carmen Million, local BBB President.
For anyone considering purchasing a security system, the BBB offers the following tips:
Deal with reputable firms. Do some research and check out the company's Business Review at www.bbb.org.
Verify that company is properly licensed and has necessary permits to solicit door-to-door. Even if the company has a permit, you should still investigate the company you are relying on to protect your property.
Know your rights. Consumers have 3 days to cancel any door-to-door contract if the contract is over $25. Contracts should be canceled by sending a letter certified return receipt.
Study the contract carefully. Confirm information such as installation price, monthly price, installation time, length of contract, refund policy and cancellation procedures.
Ask about a moving clause. What happens if you move? Can the system come with you? Is there a fee to move the system? Ask before you buy.
Check out the monitoring company. The company making the sale may not be the company providing monitoring. Check out any company you would be dealing with before making a purchase.
Compare similar systems. BBB recommends consumers get three quotes before making any purchase. But when gathering quotes, make sure you are comparing similar equipment and monitoring plans.
Ask for the procedures in writing before making a purchase. What happens if the company can't reach you? Is the alarm reset? Are the police called? Are your alternate numbers called?
"A home security system is a great way to keep your home and your loved ones safe," said Million. "Asking the right questions and doing a little research helps consumers get the best security system for their needs."