MISSISSAUGA, Ontario — Warren Heeley, president of the Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Institute of Canada (HRAI), applauded the Ontario government for taking action against unscrupulous door-to-door sales tactics that have been occurring within Ontario for a number of years. This situation has become increasingly problematic for consumers, specifically with those who are unaware of the ramifications of purchasing a major appliance such as a furnace or water heater at the door, noted HRAI.

In a letter to Ontario Minister of Consumer Services Tracy MacCharles, HRAI voiced its support for the proposed new rules for door-to-door sales of water heater rental contracts that will provide additional protection for consumers. HRAI members have expressed serious concerns to the Ministry in the past about unfair sales practices being used by door-to-door salespersons and the association is pleased to see action is being taken on this matter.

In the letter, HRAI also expressed concern about the narrow focus on water heaters and urged the Minister to broaden the scope of the rules on door-to-door sales to include other offerings including furnaces, air conditioning, and service contracts.

HRAI recently launched an awareness campaign that identifies the concerns surrounding this topic. According to a recent survey commissioned by the HRAI, the majority of Ontarians (57 percent) admit to making at least one purchase from a door-to-door salesperson and 35 percent said they regretted the purchase.

“HRAI is committed to providing Ontarians with the information and resources they need to make significant decisions on heating and cooling systems for their homes,” said Heeley. “Investing in a long-term contract, such as a water heater rental agreement, should not be handled in the same manner as purchasing Girl Guide cookies. Much like any major home appliance, water heaters require a detailed contract and proper installation by a qualified contractor.”

Publication date: 4/22/2013

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