How You Can Protect Yourself When Door-to-Door Salesmen Come Knocking


Several local residents have been taking to Facebook, voicing concerns about sales representatives going door-to-door trying to demonstrate some great household products. We reached out to some businesses to see if their people still hit the streets to sell their products. 

Thursday residents in Bethlehem may have noticed an unfamiliar man going door-to-door wanting to demonstrate some amazing cleaning product. Usually these sales people wish to come inside to talk and explain how their products work, but in today’s society most people are comfortable letting a stranger come into your homes.   

Police say, in order to go door-to-door to sell anything there are some steps in which the sales person and their company need to go through, in the city of Wheeling.

“To solicit and actually sell things door-to-door you do need a license or permit from the city of Wheeling, if you’re in Wheeling and that permit is easily obtained, but you do have to have one. They should have a copy of their permit and
license and each salesman should have one with them,” said Wheeling Police Deputy Chief Marty Kimball.

Seeing folks come through town to sell products in this manner is something we don’t see often anymore, but nonetheless; they’re still out there.

“Groups like this will come through town every year or two, they’re very common, most of them are legitimate, however;
you don’t know, when someone is knocking on the door, you don’t know that,” Kimball said.

Police say there are some factors you should consider when answering the door to strangers. 

“Time of day, anybody else around, any suspicious people you’ve seen in the neighborhood. Obviously before you
answer the door, you should look through a peephole, look out a window to see who’s out there, whether there is one
person, two people, maybe more,” Kimball said.

And of course, you always have the option to not answer the door if you’re not expecting visitors.

“Just let those people move on to somebody else, and if you’re suspicious, always call the police,” Kimball said.

We did reach out to some businesses that have traditionally been known for having door-to-door sales representatives like Rainbow and Kirby Vacuum, and they do have representatives that come to your home, but Rainbow says they will never come to your home without first scheduling an appointment.

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