'End of the road' for energy door-step sellers

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The Independent Online

More than nine out of 10 consumers who have purchased energy products from a door-to-door salesperson would never do so again, according to research from Consumer Focus.

Half of those who signed up to tariffs at the door said they had been pressurised into doing so.

The research comes as Ofgem, the energy regulator, is investigating whether the big six energy firms are breaking industry rules through pushy doorstep selling. In addition, Ofgem is concerned that customers who switch supplier this way often move to a higher tariff.

Consumer Focus is calling for a ban on doorstep energy sales. "The end of the road has been reached on cold-call doorstep sales," said Audrey Gallacher, the director of energy at Consumer Focus. "This industry has an appalling track record of mis-selling at people's homes and has had more than a decade to change. Assurances from firms that they will get better simply aren't good enough."

Which? told The Independent on Sunday that it was worried that energy mis-selling will take place with the introduction of smart meters next year. It called on suppliers to commit to not selling tariffs and other products when installing the meters.

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