Ontario region issues warning about aggressive tactic using loophole to pressure sales

Following years of aggressive tactics from sales staff in Ontario, the government banned door-to-door sales of many items in March 2018.

However, Durham Region has just issued a warning after reports of high pressure sales tactics being used by companies trying to sell or rent water filtration equipment.

While it's illegal in Ontario to go door-to-door trying to sell water filtration equipment, if the company calls you and you agree to invite them over the ban does not apply.

"These people are trying to get inside your home to try and sell you water filtration equipment," said John Presta, The Director of Environmental Services for Durham Region.

Leading up to the ban CTV News Toronto did many stories with viewers who felt they were mislead by sales staff, which is why the province banned unsolicited door to door sales of water heaters, furnaces, air conditioners and water filters. 

Presta said Durham Region has been getting complaints from residents that companies want to come and test their water or check their water meter.

In some cases the caller will claim to be a municipal employee. 

"There are people out there who want to get access to your home. They claim they are with the region, the city or the town," said Presta.

Durham Region also is reminding residents the water is safe to drink and while someone may choose to filter their water it is not required or necessary. 

In a statement Durham Region also said it doesn't endorse or sell water filtration equipment and that if you get a phone call that’s a water filtration sales pitch don’t feel pressured to allow a home visit.

If someone comes to your door don’t sign contracts on the spot, never give out your personal information and ask for identification as regional employees carry photo ID.

Presta says there are various ways residents are being contacted for the sales pitch adding "it can come in the form of a prize ticket, a telephone call or in an email link."

In the event you have signed a contract for an in home purchase there is cooling off period that allows you to cancel the contract within 10 days.

Also, keep in mind not all door-to-door sales are banned in Ontario. Some companies are still selling security systems, thermostats and smoke detectors usually in longer term expensive contracts.