After Threats of Legal Action I Had To Move This Blog Re: Alarm Companies
I wrote a blog on my Century 21 website a year ago based on several articles that were in the paper about practices by some alarm companies. I was contacted on Canada Day by one of the US companies referred to in the articles and threatened with a law suit. I am a small fish but apparently my blog goes a long way as I ticked a lot of people off (hence the bullying phone calls and 3 or 4 letters from bulldogs at these companies and their lawyers). To be honest, it has reinforced my belief that consumers need to be aware of the reports about foreign alarm companies reportedly operating in Saskatchewan. As a realtor in Saskatoon I believe that my clients need to be aware of any reported and/or potential property related scams or unscrupulous businesses. In addition to raising awareness of potential problems related to home ownership my practice has always been to refer clients to Saskatoon locally owned and operated companies in order to avoid the potential pitfalls of dealing with foreign companies.
Some other links to consider when shopping for alarm companies:
Here is the EDITED version of the blog that caused so much ruckus and controversy.
I was recently contacted by one of the owners of a local security company as the Better Business Bureau of Saskatchewan has been receiving hundreds of complaints about home security ‘salespeople’ that have been going door to door and misrepresenting security companies in Saskatoon and Regina. I saw these young men (from Alberta by their plates) going door to door this past weekend. They didn’t stop at our house perhaps because we had a security sign on our front step and it was not a local security company so they likely couldn’t find it on their list. We did the old trick of putting up a sign without having an alarm-now we have Reed Security as I trust them!
I had a neighbour with a local company’s sign on their lawn who told me that these guys told them they were with that company…but I know all of the sales people there and this was not the case.
These US based companies are reported to operate under several names but may be linked and the names mentioned in the articles can easily be accessed on the internet. Do a google search and see for yourself, but it is my opinion based on my experience and the information available to me that signing up for an alarm plan, or any other plan or product for that matter, should be avoided if it is the result of high pressured sales tactics. Stick with your locally trusted companies and don’t be pressured by unscrupulous sales people from any company who show up at your door.
Here is a link that warns Saskatoon consumers:
(Apparently they got to the Star Phoenix too as this article appears to be removed)
I am advised that these salespeople may see your security company sign and tell you that they work for that company and then try to give you a “Free upgraded” alarm system, but this upgrade will actually cost you about $45/month and it isn’t through your current supplier. They also reportedly try to name drop and tell you that your neighbour X has upgraded their system, even though they probably did not and I have heard they especially like to go after seniors.
Be aware of these high pressured sales tactics.
SO that was the blog that started this whole thing and my lawyer agrees that as a Saskatoon Realtor and as someone my home buyers in Saskatoon trust to help set them up with quality people that it is reasonable for me to want to warn my Saskatoon home buyers of any reported and/or potential scams or questionable businesses, especially first time home buyers in Saskatoon.
When choosing and alarm company it is always advisable to do your due diligence by checking out the companies you wish to deal with (ie: do they have a local office, have they been reported to the Better Busineses Bureau, do they have local references…). If you do choose to use any company that is not locally based it is always prudent to do your own due diligence and get references but ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS ask them for the business cards before allowing them to even speak to you and ask them to leave any contracts and documents with you for your review before you agree to anything.
Good luck consumers! Hopefully this post by a small fish realtor in Saskatoon won’t warrant more threats as I do believe in freedom of speech!
Saskatoon Real Estate Agent
Century 21 Fusion