After a few questions about door-to-door solicitors in recent weeks, and a report tonight, it’s time for a refresher course on the rules. First, the report sent by Nicholas:
Just wanted to give our neighbors a heads up that at about 6:00 pm tonight we had door to door solicitor come to our house on Alki and claim to be selling magazine subscriptions with an emphasis on making a commission if you buy multiple years’ worth of the product. He was a mid forties black man with glasses, button down dress shirt, slacks and white sneakers- his dress looked like he stepped out of the mid-nineties. He claimed to be part of an organization called Young Connections That Work and when we looked that up online while he was at the door the website came back with an Error 404 message. He said he was up from Tennessee and that he has been doing the magazine sales for about 3 months. He was carrying a binder with magazine offerings and prices as well as “receipt” booklets. He was pleasant and not aggressive, though he repeated himself often and deflected our questions about the organization. He also smelled of alcohol. When we finally told him we weren’t interested and didn’t feel comfortable with the level of information he had, he told us he would be back again soon.
After he left we did some more digging and found multiple businesses listed as operating out of the same address connected to Young Connections That Work – none of which seem legit. We’d caution anybody who is approached by this individual or anyone else with a similar story.
Nicholas says the solicitor did not display a license. While that’s not required for charity-donation soliciting, it is required for sales. from the Seattle Municipal Code:
*Door-to-door (residential) selling is allowed between 8 am-9 pm.
*The entity for whom the seller is working has to have a license, and the seller (agent) must have ID showing the license and the agent’s name: “All licensees and agents shall conspicuously display on their outer clothing their residential sales license or residential sales agent licenses when selling.” If you choose to open the door, ask to see it immediately: “Each residential seller or agent shall, immediately upon contacting the prospective buyer, disclose to the prospective buyer his/her name, company, and the product or service represented.”
*Solicitors are required to honor a “no soliciting” sign if you have one. Whether you do or don’t, they’re also required to honor this part of the code: “If requested to do so, (the agent) shall leave the premises immediately.”