Wednesday, 3 March 2010

Fear of Crime

For the first time tonight my dad is worried about crime. To be precise he is afraid of being burgled. He wasn't this morning in fact it hasn't crossed his mind once in the nine years he has lived in the house that someone could lift the windows out to get in.

So what has changed well this morning he got a leaflet inviting him to meet a double glazing salesman.

The first I knew was mid afternoon when he rang me seeking some advice was £6k reduced on today only discount to £4.5k a bit much for replacing the downstairs windows. I was with him yesterday and this hadn't cropped up so why was he considering this now?

A little gentle probing revealed that the salesman had majored on how vulnerable his windows were to breaking in they could "just be lifted out" and this concern was the main reason he was now considering the purchase.

I just about kept my anger under control and pursuaded him that this was not a reason alone to purchase and if he was keen to then he needed to get several quotes. "But this was today only I got back" so I went though the whole distance selling process etc. He finally agreed that this was not a good idea and rang off to tell them he wanted more time.

Five minutes later he was back it was now the absolute rock bottom of £4k and was this now acceptable again security was the concern. I told him no if they were so keen for his business they would always find discounts and in the mean time why not get the local police to send a crime prevention officer round to look at the overall security of the house without any vested interest. He agreed.

What incenses me though is that even today companies are allowed to prey on the fear of crime to try and pressure sell products to older members of the community.

I await with interest the report from the cpo if there is no problem I will be suggesting to my father to make a formal complaint about the sales technique used but how many other people dont have a son or daughter on the other end of the phone? Without doubt it is time for a new look at doorstep selling tactics it seems that some double glazing salesmen even now havent changed since the 80's

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