"Dear Red Phone, recently there was a security company (Vivint) going door-to-door attempting to sell their ‘monitored' system at a "highly reduced installation rate." Though they are located in Utah, they used the recent burglaries and (they claimed) slow police response times in Morgan Hill as a selling point to their system. The salesperson (quite clean-cut) gets into your house by asking about your thermostat, doors, windows, etc. Once there, he walks through your house to scope out your system, or lack of one. He says he will install up to $2,000 of free equipment if they can put a sign in your yard. He "qualifies" you (Note: you have already been checked out) and locks you into a 42-month contract at $49 to $69 a month - which renews automatically! The installers quickly arrive and you are stuck. Oh, you only have a three-day trial period. They will not allow you to think about the deal because they "are only in the area for that day." Upon an Internet check afterward, they are known under several different business names and, there are some questionable business/sales issues, particularly with older people. (Ripoffreport.com). My question: Are door-to-door solicitors, particularly those from out of town/state, required to have some sort of permit/license in Morgan Hill? Once they have left the town, is there any recourse? If so, how does a resident know whether they have complied since they are only here for one day, usually on the weekend when City Hall is closed? Thanks.
Red Phone: Dear Is There Recourse, Red Phone contacted City Attorney Danny Wan for clarification. The business in question, Vivint, did register and acquire a Morgan Hill Business License, as it is required under the Morgan Hill Municipal Code, he said.
"All businesses operating in Morgan Hill (including door-to-to solicitors) must register and obtain a business license, which triggers a check for compliance with specified land use and public safety regulations. Doing business in the city without a business license is a misdemeanor, subject to criminal prosecution. Any resident wishing to verify whether a business is registered with the city may call the city to verify. Residents are also encouraged to report to the police any incident of suspected fraud in door-to-door sales or other illegal business practices."
Hope that answers your questions, good caller.