Is this a scam?


#1

Do you think a scam is going on? Yesterday someone knocked on my
door. I usually don't answer the door but I had the shade open because my toddler likes to look outside and if the shade isn't open, he will damage it trying move it to look, so I noticed the man outside saw me when I stood up so I answered the door. The man standing there wanted to give a free mold inspection and estimate. He said he saw some mold growing. I said no and he kept on it and on it and kept on asking when am I available for him to inspect even though I kept on saying I am not interested.

Today someone else came knocking on my door and I didn't answer. When I saw he left I went to check to see if there was mail and I heard him talking to the next door neighbor. He said he was giving away free carpet shampoo and he wanted to come in to spot clean her carpet. She said she didn't have a carpet and he said "you must have area rugs!!". He kept on it then she finally got him to go away. Now, not even 1/2 hr later someone else nocked on my door. It was some woman wearing a santa hat.

Last year someone called the house saying that we won a $1000 gift cert from walmart, all we had to do was give our credit card number because we had to pay for shipping the gift card to us. Obvious scam. My husband called them out on it.

I am kind of nervous about this especially since the shade was open again today so anyone can look in and see everything if they are at my front door. I know a lot of scams are going on now especially around the holidays.

Also, we have been getting calls from "credit card services" to lower rates for the past 2 years. Most recently today. This must be scam day. They won't even say what credit card they are. It's a recording and it asks you to press 9, then it takes you to a live person. We looked up the return number on the caller ID and there is a big thread about it being a scam. They ask you for your credit card number. If you call the phone number back, it says it's disconnected.

This is one of many sites of people complaining about the calls.
800notes.com/Phone.aspx/1-310-944-1681/4


#2

Call the police to report the man who you have been seeing in the neighborhood, trying to gain entrance into people’s homes. Seriously. It’s not just a scam, it’s quite possibly an attempt to commit a crime.

Seriously, call right now.


#3

If someone knocks on your door and you have not ordered their service I would not even open the door. Someone could force their way into your home. If they are persistant or see you tell them they have 10 seconds to get off your property or you are calling the police.

If you are worried about your blinds and your toddler, (mine is the same way) get some of the removable frost stuff from Home Depot and put it on the window.....then you toddler cannot ruin your blinds and outside people can't see in. We are doing that with our side window at our new house and having a peephole put in the door.

You might also consider a no solicitation sign as well.


#4

These are door to door salesmen. This used to be a well known and respected profession but today it is not. We now have access to many more market opportunities, closer stores, everyone drives, multiple cars per family, internet, etc. These could also be scams, like the mold guy.

I would not argue with them. After I told them no once I would close the door. You are not being rude to do so, they are being rude for going on after you have said no.

Some communities have ordinances against such a thing, but many do not, so calling the police might not accomplish anything.


#5

My grandfather had a great saying. “If it sounds too good to be true, knock out the person and run away, because your going to get cheated.”

Pay attention to that.


#6

[quote="StJudePray4Me, post:2, topic:222876"]
Call the police to report the man who you have been seeing in the neighborhood, trying to gain entrance into people's homes. Seriously. It's not just a scam, it's quite possibly an attempt to commit a crime.

Seriously, call right now.

[/quote]

Good advice.

A man came to our door a while back "selling home security systems". He had a "special promotional deal" that he was offering. He claimed to be from a large organization (like SF or Pru or something of that size/reputability). I asked him for some literature... he didn't have any. I asked him for his card... he didn't have one. He advised me that if I called Company X and asked for him they wouldn't know who he was because the "promotional department" is separate from the main office. I told him no thanks and anyway one of our neighbors is a cop (true!). He then asked which one was the cop's house "because we like to cooperate with local law enforcement".

The attempt to gain entrance into a home is generally a ploy to facilitate the commission of a subsequent theft, or worse. Those are the times we live in, I'm afraid.


#7

Anyone at your door who offers a free service is a scammer. They're probably not criminals. But, they will use high-pressure sales techniques to sell you something that is way over-priced and that you probably don't need in the first place.

Sometimes someone will see that you have an obvious outdoors need and he'll offer his services. He may be a scammer or he may be honest. I wouldn't consider saying yes to anything more expensive than mowing the yard, and then only if I could pay in cash after the job is done.

People just intending to drop off a flyer or a doorknob hanger for a local business are probably honest.


#8

[quote="snowflakes, post:1, topic:222876"]
Do you think a scam is going on? Yesterday someone knocked on my
4

[/quote]

yup they are all scams
alert your local police of incidence of these people knocking on the door is increasing, they may be organized gangs working the scam, or casing the neighborhood for robbery. Do not open the door to them and do not engage them in discussion, they may be trying to learn more about you and your home.

There is a national hotline to put yourself on do not call list for credit card offers and other phone solicitations. report emails you did not ask for as spam


#9

[quote="ByzCath, post:4, topic:222876"]
These are door to door salesmen. This used to be a well known and respected profession but today it is not. We now have access to many more market opportunities, closer stores, everyone drives, multiple cars per family, internet, etc. These could also be scams, like the mold guy.

I would not argue with them. After I told them no once I would close the door. You are not being rude to do so, they are being rude for going on after you have said no.

Some communities have ordinances against such a thing, but many do not, so calling the police might not accomplish anything.

[/quote]

Calling the police actually does accomplish something. They are trepassing on private property, and have been asked once to leave. That's against the law. Also if they are scaring you and you feel they might be criminals again call the police. They will come, I know because I've done this in the past with particularly persistant and creepy sales people at my door, and our community doesn't have ordinances prohitbiting door to door sales.


#10

Sure is a scam. If they won't leave after you ask them nicely, you shut the door and call the police. As others have said, it's probably a way to case a house before robbing it.


#11

Yep, call the police. In some areas, there are local codes on these door to door salesmen.

We have Kirby salespeople in our area. Rings in their noses, pierced tongues. Horribly expensive vacuums and then they have these questionable come and go commissioned “sales people” coming to your home.

No Thank You, You’re Not Welcome Here.


#12

We actually had to print up a sign and place it on our storm door that said "Thank You For Not Soliciting". It worked for a few days, then sure enough, someone woke me and my youngest up from a much-needed afternoon nap by ringing the bell and knocking on the door to inquire if we needed our lawn mowed.

After that, we changed the sign to read:

"NO SOLICITING : this includes attempts to sell security systems, new roofing/siding/windows, cable/dish networks, offers for yard work (mowing or snow removal), candy for school trips, and political surveys. Also, no religious conversion attempts and no leaving WatchTower material!"

Then I used an online translating site and put it in Spanish as well.

Other than ads for a new Asian food place and a new pizza delivery service in the neighborhood, we haven't had anyone come knocking.

It sounds harsh, but I value my privacy and I don't want to be bothered by some potential scam artist or to have someone interrupting my youngest's nap time or instructional time with my older children, and besides that, I certainly don't need a stranger in my house, whether their intentions are to sell me something I don't want, need, or can afford , or to "case the joint" so to speak!


#13

Any of the calls you have been getting *might *be scams.

As far as the door-to-door sales people They might be legitimate. Or they might be casing the neighborhood. Or both.

My city has an ordinance that requires all door to door sellers to carry a badge which identifies them as representing legitimate businesses. That way the city knows if anyone is annoying residents. If they don't have a badge then the local police want to know about it. (I'm not sure if people handing out fliers need a badge.)


#14

There was a big burglary ring in my county last year around Christmas time... when they finally caught the guys, it turns out the guys had been posing as door-to-door salesman to scope out people's houses. If no one answered the door, they'd break in. If someone answered, they'd give some sales pitch and try to get a look at what you had inside (presumably to come back later).


#15

[quote="SMHW, post:13, topic:222876"]
Any of the calls you have been getting *might *be scams.

As far as the door-to-door sales people They might be legitimate. Or they might be casing the neighborhood. Or both.

My city has an ordinance that requires all door to door sellers to carry a badge which identifies them as representing legitimate businesses. That way the city knows if anyone is annoying residents. If they don't have a badge then the local police want to know about it. (I'm not sure if people handing out fliers need a badge.)

[/quote]

I was going to mention always ask to see some kind of official identification.

Also never give your personal information, including your credit card number or social security number over the phone, unless you have initiated the call. Any person that initiates the call and asks you for your info, is a scam. Call your state's attorney general and report the number if it appears on your caller ID.


#16

Get a sign right away - either "DO NOT RING BELL!" or, "NO SOLICITING." If anyone rings the bell, and they can see you, just point to the sign and shake your head. If you can get an alarm or if you have one, keep the panic button near by. And if you suspect anything really fishy, call the police. Do you have a neighborhood watch by any chance? That can help deter this kind of thing too.

Many times, criminals will find a target by doing just this, and if they ring the bell and no one answers, the other crook who is waiting around the corner in a car, will come and join them and then kick the door in and steal valuables. They get in, grab and get out quickly. You definitely don't want this to happen while you are home! Always respond to the door, by calling out, "I'll get it honey!"

A loud barking dog is good too.

But never, ever, ever open the door. Any of those guys could have shoved you backwards and entered your home. Don't mean to frighten you, it's just reality.


#17

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:16, topic:222876"]
Get a sign right away - either "DO NOT RING BELL!" or, "NO SOLICITING." If anyone rings the bell, and they can see you, just point to the sign and shake your head. If you can get an alarm or if you have one, keep the panic button near by. And if you suspect anything really fishy, call the police. Do you have a neighborhood watch by any chance? That can help deter this kind of thing too.

Many times, criminals will find a target by doing just this, and if they ring the bell and no one answers, the other crook who is waiting around the corner in a car, will come and join them and then kick the door in and steal valuables. They get in, grab and get out quickly. You definitely don't want this to happen while you are home! Always respond to the door, by calling out, "I'll get it honey!"

A loud barking dog is good too.

But never, ever, ever open the door. Any of those guys could have shoved you backwards and entered your home. Don't mean to frighten you, it's just reality.

[/quote]

All of which are good arguments for owning a 12-gauge.


#18

I just wanted to update everyone. My husband ended up calling the non-emergency police line. They told him that anyone who knocks on the door soliciting services needs to be wearing an employee identification visable or they need to produce an employee identification when asked. It's illegal for them not to be carrying work id and could indicate a scam. They said that if they can't show the work id, then end the conversation and call the police back with the description of the person. The police will come down and check things out. Some of you have mentioned about the ID in your posts, it looks like our township has the same laws.

thanks for the advice ! I am going to have to be extra cautious just to be on the safe side.


#19

[quote="SMHW, post:13, topic:222876"]
Any of the calls you have been getting *might *be scams.

[/quote]

Oh, no, they were without a doubt scams. The walmart scam, dh called the guy out on it. Of course he didn't admit to scamming. Dh called Walmart headquarters and reported the call and they verified there was no give away. Plus, they said if there was, they wouldn't make a customer pay for shipping.

As far as the "Credit card services" call. When they call they say that they are calling from your credit card and when you ask what card, they won't say. We searched the number and there are numerous complaints saying it's a scam. They try to get you to give them your credit card numbers to "lower your rate". I posted a link to one of the complaint boards about that particular scam in my first post.

[quote="SMHW, post:13, topic:222876"]

city has an ordinance that requires all door to door sellers to carry a badge which identifies them as representing legitimate businesses. That way the city knows if anyone is annoying residents. If they don't have a badge then the local police want to know about it. (I'm not sure if people handing out fliers need a badge.)

[/quote]

Yes, we found out yesterday that our township has this law too. Read post above this.

But it's horrible not to be able to trust people.

God bless


#20

[quote="snowflakes, post:18, topic:222876"]
I just wanted to update everyone. My husband ended up calling the non-emergency police line. They told him that anyone who knocks on the door soliciting services needs to be wearing an employee identification visable or they need to produce an employee identification when asked. It's illegal for them not to be carrying work id and could indicate a scam.

[/quote]

I'm not aware of any laws that require a door-to-door salesman to carry an employee ID. But, there are some locals where they are required to carry a government-issued vendor licence or solicitation ID. If your location is one of these, I bet everyone who came to the door had them (people selling for non-profits are exempt). I doubt any of them were "criminals" (except the one wanting the credit card information for shipping costs), even if they were scammers.


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