Few things suck more than someone trying to persuade you to change electricity supplier while you're cooking dinner. A new study by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission highlights that despite the hassle, door-to-door selling is big business: the average household gets eight calls a year.
Picture by Cristiano Betta
There were 1.3 million sales through doorknocking last year, with the vast majority (1 million) relating to energy. The most disturbing aspect of the ACCC report is the shonky tactics used by some sellers. The one I find really detestable? Salespeople claiming they're looking for a lost dog as a pretext for getting into the house.
Under Australian Consumer Law All door-to-door salespeople must adhere to fixed hours: no calls before 9am or after 6pm on weekdays, before 9am or after 5pm on Saturdays, or at any time on Sundays or public holidays. They must provide a clear written statement outlining the total cost of any deal before you sign, and also clearly identify the cooling-off period (a minimum of 10 days) and any termination conditions. If you tell someone to leave, they must not return for 30 days.
My advice? Keep it simple. Say "I'm not interested" and shut the door. If you do want to change energy suppliers, you need to shop around carefully, not sign up through someone desperate to score a commission.