Stupid or bul­lied?

Kapi-Mana News - - NEWS -

It ap­pears David Lord and his vac­uum cleaner sales­peo­ple have been busy.

Kapi-Mana News’ story on June 14 about Ranui res­i­dent Shirley Na­jbert and the ag­gres­sive tac­tics from Liv­ing Longer New Zealand has seen more than 40 com­ments posted be­low the story on­line at kapi­, with a num­ber of phone calls and peo­ple drop­ping into our of­fice to share their ex­pe­ri­ences.

Mrs Na­jbert was sold a $4349 vac­uum cleaner on June 1 af­ter a three­hour sales talk she felt she was pres­sured into.

She traded in five vac­uum clean­ers she owned as part of the deal, which saw the sales­per­son ac­com­pany her to the bank to with­draw the cash.

Mrs Na­jbert later re­ceived a $550 dis­count af­ter threat­en­ing legal ac­tion, but was re­fused a re­fund.

Among the com­ments on the KapiMana News web­site are links to sto­ries from TVNZ, Hawke’s Bay To­day and Con­sumer mag­a­zine, out­lin­ing the prac­tices of Mr Lord and Liv­ing Longer NZ.

Bert Mein­ders, who says he sold vac­uum clean­ers for a time, said he was in­structed to show highly mag­ni­fied pic­tures of dust mites to ‘‘ stress how harm­ful they were to peo­ple’s health, par­tic­u­larly chil­dren’s, health . . . Don’t let these peo­ple in! If you want what­ever it is that they are push­ing, go out and find it in a shop, and de­cide for your­self whether to buy it.’’

A com­mon tac­tic ap­pears to be a tele­phone call ask­ing a res­i­dent to take part in a sur­vey.

The next night they are called again, and told they have won a prize.

The catch is that a ‘‘rep­re­sen­ta­tive’’ must come to the home to de­liver it, which is where the sales pitch starts.

One man who came to our of­fice says if you pay by fi­nance, the ‘‘ex­tra fees’’ add about $1000 to the to­tal bill.

Don Phillips, who lives in Porirua East, says he and his el­derly wife had a Liv­ing Longer NZ sales­man in their home from noon un­til 10pm re­cently.

‘‘He went on and on, we got very hun­gry but he wouldn’t lis­ten to us when we say we’re on a ben­e­fit and can’t af­ford this [ new vac­uum cleaner]. He didn’t want to know, just kept push­ing and push­ing.’’

He says they paid $ 5250 and al­though they re­ceived a $400 dis­count, they traded in a three-mon­thold vac­uum cleaner that was ‘‘work­ing per­fectly’’.

Al­though most of the com­ments on our web­site were sup­port­ive of Mrs Na­jbert, some had no sym­pa­thy.

‘‘Just be­cause you’re a lit­tle old lady doesn’t give you an au­to­matic ‘feel sorry for me be­cause I did some­thing stupid’ card,’’ said one.

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