Case reference number: CE9706-12
Complainant: OFT own-initiative investigation
The OFT opened an investigation into the business practices of
Weatherseal Home Improvements Limited (Weatherseal), a national provider
of double glazing and other energy efficiency and home improvement
The investigation stemmed from a wider OFT consumer protection review
of the energy efficiency
following which the OFT is working with local Trading Standards Services
and other partners to drive better practices by companies.
The Enterprise Act 2002; the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading
Regulations 2008; the Cancellation of Contracts made in a Consumer's
Home or Place of Work Etc. Regulations 2008.
Summary of work
The OFT investigated concerns about Weatherseal's business practices,
and consulted with the business, using its powers under the Enterprise
The OFT raised concerns with Weatherseal about the conduct of some of
its self-employed sales agents when selling to people in their home. For
instance, some consumers complained that they felt pressured to make a
purchase and that the terms of credit used to purchase products were not
always clearly explained. The OFT also had concerns about the training
provided to sales agents to ensure that they complied with consumer law
and about the handling of customer complaints and enquiries.
Weatherseal cooperated fully with the OFT's investigation. Whilst the
company said that it had already made changes to how it conducted its
business and that it believed its practices complied with the law,
following consultation it has given assurances about its future conduct,
in particular that it will:
- improve the training given to its agents concerning sales techniques
and regulatory compliance
- ensure that customers are clearly informed of the terms of any credit
agreement they enter into
- provide customers with accurate information about their cancellation
- make a follow-up call to each customer who has placed an order to
confirm that they have been left with copies of documents, understand
what they are agreeing to, and that they still wish to proceed
- ensure that complaints and enquiries are dealt with in a timely,
reasonable and professional manner.
The OFT has also received similar assurances from Window Care Limited, a
company that provides training, compliance and customer service
functions on behalf of Weatherseal.
The OFT was assisted in its investigation by a number of Trading
Standards Services including Trading Standards Scotland and Cheshire
West and Chester Trading Standards Service.
Published 31 January 2014