(WTNH) — The weather is getting warmer, and as the temperature goes up, so does the number of door-to-door scams. Someone who shows up at your door might be trying to sell you something – or rip you off.
Many of these scams involve home improvement. They often happen after a storm.
Someone might drop by, offering to fix something for a very low price. This person may even claim to have done work for one of your neighbors. If the person pressures you to make a decision immediately, wants to start work right now, or if the price seems too low, it could be a scam.
Door-to-door scams go beyond home improvement, however. Another one involves magazine sales. Someone may show up selling magazine subscriptions that often seem expensive. You might be told that some of the money will go to charity.
Some crooks will even impersonate workers from power companies.
Experts say sometimes the people who come to your house are not the ones behind the scam.
“When they’re working on commission, they’re not necessarily getting a decent hourly wage,” said Lora Rae Anderson, Director of Communications Department of Consumer Protection. “Sometimes they’re taken advantage of in the workplace. Sometimes people coming to your door selling magazines are even victims of human trafficking, on the really bad end of this.”
To protect yourself from being scammed, don’t answer the door for people you don’t know. If the power company does need to do maintenance, it will let you know beforehand.
Ask questions. If the person won’t answer them or is vague, it could be a scam. Do research. Make sure a business is legitimate before you agree to any services. Report anything suspicious.
When it’s warmer outside you may also see people outside stores collecting money for charity. They should have a specific charity in mind and be able to tell you where the money is going.