Consumer Protection

Summer 2007 CSANews Issue 63  |  Posted date : Aug 07, 2007.Back to list

Home Renovations
  • Renovations don’t automatically add to the value of your home. Don’t be talked into unnecessary renovations.
  • Don’t be pressured into signing a contract right away in order to take advantage of a door-to-door special.
  • Make sure that everything you agree to is in writing – the cost, start and end dates, and who is responsible for cleanup.
  • Building permits are your responsibility. Check with your city or town hall before work begins. If your contractor says that you don’t need a permit, get another contractor.
  • Never pay more than 10% of the contract price as a deposit on the job.
  • The final cost of the project cannot increase by more than 10% of the original contract price. Exclude project changes agreed to by the consumer.
Telephone Sales
  • Beware of calls from unsolicited vendors.
  • Do not buy on impulse.
  • Get the company information and contact numbers.
  • Do not accept high-pressure sales techniques.
  • Do not believe information that you have won something.
  • Never pay in advance.
  • The company must provide you with a written copy of the agreement that you have entered into within 30 days of billing, or within 60 days of your entering the contract – whichever comes first. If the company does not do this, you have up to one year to cancel the agreement.
Charitable Donations
  • Never give in to pressure. Real charities don’t use high-pressure tactics.
  • Get the charitable registration number before you give.
  • Request a tax receipt.
  • Beware of a P.O. box address, rather than a physical address.
  • Never give cash – make cheques payable to the charity's full name.
  • Find out how much of your donation will be allocated to fundraising and administration costs.
  • Never give out your personal information.
If you think that you have been targeted in a scam, contact PhoneBusters, the Canadian Anti-Fraud Call Centre at 1-888-495-8501

Ontario residents can get If you want more information on consumer protection issues or a free Smart Consumer Calendar, call the Ministry of Government Services Consumer Services Bureau at 416-326-8800 or 1-800-889-9768. or visit them online at:

Related links
Ministry of Government Services Consumer Services Bureau