Never, I repeat NEVER sign up for anything at your door. I know there are probably articles all over the net about companies like Direct Energy, Just Energy, National Home Services (recently acquired by Just Energy), Universal Energy Corp. and a host of many other companies. But I wanted to put it out there once again and warn all my readers.
When K and I bought the house we were first time owners and I'll say it, we were dumb! Somebody from Direct Energy came to the door the day we moved in. My father answered told them we were busy, so the lady came back about a week later. I answered the door and she told me she was from our gas company (Enbridge). She had a gas bill from Enbridge and an ID card from them as well. She told me that she wanted to make sure that we were on the savings plan and that everybody in the neighborhood was being switched over to this service. She made it sound like it was inevitable, that we'd eventually have to do it, so she wanted to make sure we were setup. I was very skeptical. I continued to ask who exactly she worked for. Long story short, she called into the call center so I could confirm that I wanted to switch our service. Again I was skeptical with the person I spoke to on the phone. About a week later we figured out what the heck was going on when we got a letter from Direct Energy. Well let me tell you, I was none too pleased. I called the office immediately, asked them to pull my call because I was certain they never said they were Direct Energy, and I wanted them to send me the copy of the contract I signed. Luckily for us, they were not able to pull the call (they probably realized I was right) and they couldn't find my contract, so we got out of the deal.
This is not the case for my parents. Once again shady sales tactics were used, agents did not identify themselves as working for X company, instead they flat out said, or insinuated that they were with the power or gas company. My parents got signed up with Just Energy and now their electricity bill is almost $200 dollars more than ours, and we use more electricity! Their gas bill is also significantly higher. We're talking $455 every 3 months! And they are now locked in for 5 years!
So here are some pointers to make sure you don't get yourself into the same situation.
1. Don't talk to people at the door. You just never know these days.
2. Do not EVER show anybody your bill for ANY REASON! If they really do work for the company they would know what you were paying.
3. Specifically ask them who they are working for. "DO you work for Endbridge?" "Who do you work for?" and be careful because these sales people are sneaky!
4. If you realize that you've been signed up with one of these companies call and cancel immediately. According to the laws you only have a 10 day cooling off period, so time is of the essence.
For information about Gas prices click HERE
For information about Energy prices click HERE
CBC's Market Place ran a show about The Power of High-Pressure Sales you can watch it HERE they interviewed two former employees of Direct Energy who explain how they are trained and taught to approach and lie to home owners.