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Police warn residents of several ongoing scams

The OPP is reminding citizens about the potential of various home renovation scams and are appealing to residents to report any suspicious activity.

Various types of scams, such as driveway paving, lawn-care services, roofing, home appliance sales for items such as air conditioners or water heaters, usually begin with a cold-call door knock by someone offering to do repair work and/or sell merchandise.  

“Often, the suspects claim to be in the area for just one day and use hard pressure tactics to convince the homeowner to purchase the service or item,” police said in a press release.

Specifically, police are noticing an increase in door-to-door asphalt sales. While some companies are reputable, it is up to consumers to do their homework and ensure that the company they are hiring is legitimate and not just there to take their money, police say.

“Often times, the company will quote for a certain amount, and by the end of the actual work, that price has increased threefold and the quality of the work is less than desirable,” the press release states.

“After receiving cash deposits from customers, these suspects often do not return with the merchandise as promised nor do they arrive at a later date to complete the purchased service.

“In some cases, the service purchased is completed haphazardly and at a much higher cost than previously agreed upon. The target victims of this crime tend to be senior citizens, but all homeowners may be susceptible to this type of fraud.”

Wellington County OPP reminds the public that there are reputable home renovation companies in and around Wellington County.

“Legitimate companies will not offer you a deal which sounds too good to be true nor expect a business decision immediately without a written quote,” police say. “Residents are advised to ask for and to check business references.”

Police offer the following advice to avoid scams:

- be vigilant with all door-to-door business propositions and report any suspicious activity to police for further investigation;

- if someone comes to the door, ask to see some identification (you do not have to let them in and they must leave if you ask them to);

- before deciding to pay any money, take the time to find out about the business and the offer; and

- contact the Competition Bureau at 1-800-348-5358 or visit www.competitionbureau.gc.ca (you can also contact a local Better Business Bureau if unsure about a company).

June 26, 2015

 
 

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