More homeowners complain they were tricked by security salesmen

More homeowners complain they were tricked by security salesmen (Image 1)

More Tampa Bay homeowners have stepped forward to say they were lied to and tricked into signing up for a security system they don’t need.

The homeowners say salesman are canvassing their neighborhoods. The salesman say the homeowners’ security company went out of business and they are taking over. They may also say they actually work for the homeowners’ security system, and need to make an upgrade to their system.

But here’s what happens: the homeowners get stuck with two security systems because both of those stories are lies.

Harlan Brown saw our 8 On Your Side investigation into shady actions by a home security company and had one thought:

“I thought, “Oh, my God, I just got took,” Brown said.

Brown says two salesmen knocked on his door last week and said the company he had for 20 years was out of business and they were taking over the contract and needed to make an upgrade.

“I feel taken advantage of,” he said.

Then there’s Ellen Palmer.

“I don’t feel safe without having a security system,” Palmer said.

Palmer is 73 years old, and her security system is her contact with the outside world when she’s home alone. She has used it to contact emergency officials before, but it was that very security system that made her a target.

Earlier this month, there was knock at Palmer’s door. A young man with “vision security” explained that her security company was out of business. He had new equipment and wanted to sign her up with his company. And he was in a real hurry to get her signature.

“He gave me the impression he was really in a hurry, had somewhere to be. In fact, he kept looking at his watch,” Palmer said.

After he left, Palmer got suspicious and called her old company. She found out the man’s story was a lie. Now, she’s on the hook for monthly payments to both companies.

It turns out this isn’t the first time this company has faced a similar complaint.

I found out Vision Security is based in Utah and has hundreds of complaints and an F rating with the Better Business Bureau. Plus, the attorneys general in Ohio and Utah have gone after the company for misrepresentation.

Palmer is upset and plans to file complaints of her own with law enforcement.

“I’m angry more at myself for signing without reading it,” Palmer said. “But I don’t think he should be taking advantage of senior citizens.”

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