If you purchase doors or windows from a merchant who goes to your home (whether or not at your request), you are doing business with an itinerant merchant. The Office de la protection du consommateur has all the information you need to know before doing business with that merchant.

Tips before purchasing from an itinerant merchant

Get information about the merchant

Does the merchant hold a permit from the Office? This permit is mandatory. It provides you with a financial protection: if there is a problem, you could file a claim for compensation.

The answer to this question can be found using the Get information about a merchant tool. You can also find out whether a merchant has received a formal notice from a customer and whether the Office has intervened with that merchant.

Choose the merchant carefully

  • Ask for recommendations from friends and loved ones.
  • Make sure the merchant holds a licence from the Régie du bâtiment du Québec.
  • Check whether the merchant holds third-party liability insurance. This is a form of protection in the event any damage is caused to your property, among other things.

Beware if the merchant…

  • does not provide a complete address, or only provides a phone number to be contacted. If there is a problem, you could have trouble finding the merchant;
  • presses you to sign a contract, or refuses to give you written documents so that you can take your time reading them. Generally speaking, an offer made today will still be valid tomorrow. Take the time to think things through, check up on things and compare the offer with others. It is easy to say no on the spot, but to say yes at a later date. The reverse is more complicated;
  • does not want to write promises in the contract that were made verbally.

Find out about the terms of payment

  • An itinerant merchant is generally not allowed to ask you for a down payment or full payment within 10 days after receiving a signed copy of the contract. To find out more, refer to the page titled Find Out About the Terms of Payment.
  • Come to an agreement with the merchant ahead of time to pay for the work in instalments, in accordance with the progress made. You could make a final payment (10% to 15% of the total cost) once the work is completed. You will then be assured that all of the work will be done to your satisfaction.

Check the contract

  • Before you sign, make sure the contract includes all of the information provided for by law. The page titled What a Contract With an Itinerant Merchant Contains lists this mandatory information. The clearer the agreement, the more you will avoid problems in the future.
  • You can cancel a contract entered into with an itinerant merchant, without having to pay any fees or provide explanations, within 10 days after receiving your signed copy of the contract.

More tips

You will find more tips and detailed information in the section on itinerant sales.

You recommend this page: https://www.opc.gouv.qc.ca/

Last update : May 25, 2021

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The information contained on this page is presented in simple terms to make it easier to understand. It does not replace the texts of the laws and regulations.