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Know your rights with doorstep traders by Dean Dunham

publication date: Jul 24, 2012
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author/source: Dean Dunham
Dean DunhamAt youandyourrights.com we are hearing more and more horror stories from people who have been conned by doorstep traders.  With this being the case youandyourrights.com is about to launch a joint campaign with the Office of Fair Trading where our aim is to educate householders on what their rights are when doorstep traders come calling.

So with this in mind here are my top tips on doorstep selling:

1.     Written cancellation notice

By law the trader must give you a written cancellation notice at the time you buy, telling you about your right to cancel (even if there is no written contract). If you don't get a cancellation notice, there's no binding contract between you and the trader and you don't have to go through with the sale.

2.     Seven day cooling off period

You usually have a cooling-off period of seven days to change your mind and cancel.

The cooling-off period starts on the day you get the cancellation notice. If you cancel within the seven days you won't owe anything and you should get back any money you have already paid (including a deposit).

3.     Deciding to cancel

If you do decide to cancel the contract you must let the trader know in writing within seven days of receiving the cancellation notice. When cancelling, keep a copy of your letter or email as proof of cancellation. If you send your letter by post, get proof of postage as well. If you receive goods during the cooling-off period and you didn't agree to this in writing, you don't have to pay anything if you cancel. Keep the goods safe and ask the trader to collect them. The trader should not insist that you pay any money.

4.     Starting work or delivering goods within the cooling-off period

If you are buying services or certain types of goods (e. customised goods) you can agree in writing for work to start or goods to be delivered during the cooling-off period. If you have agreed this in writing then you can still cancel within seven days, but you may have to pay the trader something (usually a reasonable amount). 

5.     If you don't want to be disturbed by doorstep sellers

If you want to stop doorstep sellers knocking on your door simply display a sign on your front door stating that you do not answer the door to doorstep sellers and that they should not knock on your door. If they ignore this report them to the police and trading standards.

Please help to spread this knowledge, especially if you know anyone who is elderly who could be vulnerable to doorstep sellers.

For more information log on to www.youandyourrights.com