OFT Warns of Unfair Doorstep Sales Practices in Mobility Aids Sector

The OFT has today issued a warning about traders that use unfair sales practices to sell mobility aids such as scooters, stairlifts and adjustable beds to the elderly and disabled in their home.

Last year, Consumer Direct, the OFT-managed advice service, received 4,500 calls from people complaining or asking for advice about mobility aids.

An OFT report published today found that elderly and disabled customers who are subject to high pressure sales techniques from doorstep traders can pay high prices for mobility aids. It also highlighted the stress and inconvenience caused when customers are misled into making an inappropriate and expensive purchase.

As part of a national consumer awareness campaign, the OFT is encouraging people to shop around and understand their rights when buying mobility aids from doorstep traders.

People looking to purchase equipment that will help them or their family be more mobile and independent often invite mobility aid traders to their home so that it can be assessed and measured for the equipment. Many traders treat their customers fairly but some use high pressure sales tactics that encourage people to make snap decisions without comparing prices or checking to see if the product is the right one for their needs.

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