The scam artists want to pull a fast one on you – police call it the water heater scam. Talk about getting into hot water!

By Pepper Parr

BURLINGTON, ON  October 16, 2012  They show up at your doorstep.  The look innocent enough; they have a badge or what looks like a badge and they will tell you about how they can upgrade the water heater you have – free and save you some money.  But they need to look at the water heater first.

The sales rep can sound very convincing, claiming to be representing a company that has taken over for another company.  In most cases, they will look official and attempt to gain entry into your home to look at your water heater.  They will then tell you your water heater needs to be upgraded and that this is a free service.

You might be asked to sign some paperwork and they will offer you discounts for signing up on the spot. You may end up locking into a contract where you have not read the ‘fine print’.

That hot water heater might need an upgrade – but talk to someone you know and trust – and that probably isn’t the person standing on your doorstep offering a free upgrade.

Several reputable service companies have been calling customers and warning them of this scam, however Halton Police has still been receiving calls from residents who have fallen victim.

Police offer the following advice to avoid becoming victimized:

•              Never let unsolicited workers in your home if you are unsure of their identification

•              Always read the full contract

•              Do some research on the service being offered

•              If you do allow someone into your home and you then feel your personal safety compromised, dial 9-1-1

Additional information concerning frauds/scams and what you can do to avoid being victimized can be found at www.haltonpolice.ca under the ‘Specialized Units – Fraud’ tab.

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