Author Topic: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining  (Read 12656 times)

Travis

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Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« on: January 19, 2016, 04:36:08 PM »
So I'm sure everyone has had at least once experience with door to door vacuum cleaner sales.  My current device is a product of one such experience.  I had a guy come to the door yesterday and while my wife was pleasant with him, she was also direct that no matter what he said or did we weren't buying anything.  She likes to humor salesmen while her father tears them to little bits, especially cold callers working off scripts.  He offered to shampoo the carpet as part of his demo and she took him up on it.  While he's showing her how awesome his new Kirby is and how inadequate our Tri-Star is, she's constantly having to remind him we just don't care.  I'm down the hall, but still within visual of his demonstration and checking out the product on my phone.  Amazon is offering the same vacuum at half the price from a reseller with a nearly identical warranty. Of course he couldn't disagree that $2600 is a lot for a vacuum regardless of how great it was.  As with many door to door sales, he also showed us the "contest" he was a part of.  I tried my best not to laugh at him.  I had to remind him several times that we're content with our current device and I wasn't going to spend over $2000 on anything he had to offer.  I also pointed out I just spent the equivalent of three of his vacuums on a car.  He finally got the message when I explained to him if he was showing me the 2017 model of a shiny new car with all the trimmings and gizmos I would stand there and agree it was an awesome and high quality vehicle. And I still wouldn't buy it.  My wife's cheerful politeness started to ebb as it became apparent he wasn't going to spend the time to clean our carpet unless we were more committal to buying one.  We finally got him to stop looking for an opening and he politely packed up and left after a 30 minute "10 minute" presentation. 

What I held back but explained to my wife a few minutes later was that 1) there are a couple thousand open complaints with BBB and Consumer Reports for Kirby's hard-sale tactics and harassment 2) the same model was offered brand new from other retailers at a fraction of the cost and 3) if his vacuum was so great why do I need HIS warranty?  Ours is going strong after 6 years and I know he'd be back in a couple years to offer us the next model anyways.

scottish

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #1 on: January 19, 2016, 04:43:04 PM »
 I let one of those guys into my house once, before I was old and wrinkly.  I don't know what I was thinking.

He did his pitch and he couldn't believe I wouldn't buy his "Filter Queen".   Eventually he stopped pitching and told me that most people would have bought the d**n vacuum cleaner.   Madness.

enb123

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #2 on: January 19, 2016, 04:50:23 PM »
An eccentric friend of mine briefly managed a small office for one of these vacuum manufacturers.  It was basically a Ponzi scheme - they would churn through high school/college age "salespeople" who would sell one to their parents and maybe their grandparents, then eventually quit.  I'm sure they were happy if they ever made a sale to an "outsider" - they certainly tried - but he told me that wasn't the real goal.  He gave me the pitch as kind of a joke, and it actually was pretty entertaining if you aren't feeling pressured to buy one.

I'd no idea these types of companies were still around!

EDIT:  I should note that one of the best features of the vacuum he showed me was the "head massager" attachment.  I don't recall what it looked like, but you rubbed it around in your hair and it was pleasant.  This was probably designed as a "closer" for the salesforce, assuming they hadn't been shown the door already!
« Last Edit: January 19, 2016, 04:54:15 PM by enb123 »

Papa bear

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #3 on: January 19, 2016, 04:51:11 PM »
Kirby's are pretty damn awesome vacuums though.  My parents have had one for 40 years.  Still vacuums the pants off of anything else I've used. 

They really need to drop the door to door sales and just go retail. They would probably go down in price. 


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RetiredAt63

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #4 on: January 19, 2016, 06:19:39 PM »
We had one come to the house years ago.  First, the vacuum being demonstrated (I forget the brand) couldn't cope with the dog fur in the rug.  Then he showed us photos of dust mites - scanning electron ones, so totally freaky.  DH and I were going - nice pics.  Look at the clarity.  Look at the texture on the exoskeleton.  It's hard to freak out two zoologists.

We thought it was a fun exercise.  I think the demo guy was quite frustrated.  There was very little carpeted area in the house, and the only way to really get the dog hair out was to damp mop the rug (yes I know that sounds odd) before vacuuming.  So any old vacuum did for us - the shop-vac got more use than the regular vacuum.

GuitarStv

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2016, 06:27:31 PM »
If you have an afternoon to kill and haven't done any vacuuming in a while it's worth having one of those guys over.  I was able to get one of 'em to do most of my living room, the living room blinds, and 1/2 the carpeted stairway before he caught on and left.

justajane

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #6 on: January 19, 2016, 06:31:43 PM »
You got off easy with only 30 minutes. I think they were here for over an hour when I let them in a few year back. At least they shampooed the stairs, though!

Tjat

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2016, 06:35:10 PM »
If you have an afternoon to kill and haven't done any vacuuming in a while it's worth having one of those guys over.  I was able to get one of 'em to do most of my living room, the living room blinds, and 1/2 the carpeted stairway before he caught on and left.

hahaha. "hmm, yes, I see it does the carpets well, but can it also handle these delicate curtains? How mobile is it on the staircase? mm hmm, yes, I still wonder if it will work over here...."

MgoSam

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2016, 06:59:11 PM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

justajane

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2016, 07:20:56 PM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

We love the Shark we bought at Costco for $140. We have three kids and one cat, and two years in it's still doing the job pretty well. I haven't noticed much suction decrease. We probably run it five times a week.

GuitarStv

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #10 on: January 20, 2016, 06:23:39 AM »
We've had a Dyson canister vacuum for seven or eight years now, and it has been awesome.  My only complaint is that it's very loud.

I'm a red panda

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #11 on: January 20, 2016, 06:44:01 AM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

We have a hoover pet rewind.  We like it a lot. It's held up really well for a number of years, but was inexpensive enough that we wouldn't be pissed off if we ever had to replace it.


Also, we fell for the Kirby guys once. Nearly had to call the police to get them out of our house.

Dezrah

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #12 on: January 20, 2016, 07:25:29 AM »
We had Kirby guys visit our home one evening.  The one was nineteen and had a baby and wife at home eighty miles away (sheesh) and the other one couldn’t have been any older.  They reached the portion of the pitch where they asked me to say how much I would be willing to pay for their (admittedly very nice) vacuum.  I told him I could name a price but it would only insult him.  I nearly died when I heard the actual price, and no, I’m not interested in financing a cleaning product. 

Our current vacuum was from my husband's grandmother who gave us her Hoover Windtunnel.  It worked fine but it was too heavy for both her and her housekeeper to use efficiently.  It worked fine for years until it just seemed to stop cleaning well.  I took to a dinky little vacuum repair shop and he found that multiple components needed to be replaced due to normal wear.  For the same price I could buy a lightly used Windtunnel from him. 

After conversing a bit further I learned they were the Kirby central office for the region (same one that sent those guys from earlier).  The reason he had so many good quality used vacuums in house had to do with their sales tactic of trading the customer’s current vacuum in exchange for knocking down the price of the Kirby.  They can then flip those in his office.  He said when people like me come in needing a replacement, he tries to offer them the same model they recently had since they’re presumably satisfied with it (another easy sales tactic?).

So Kirby’s business model seems to be a bit more nuanced than simply “sell vacuums door-to-door”.

OT: Does anyone else get constantly freaked out by the double-u in vacuum?  No other word does that!  What are they thinking?

GuitarStv

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #13 on: January 20, 2016, 07:46:24 AM »
Yes.  The double 'u' is stupid.  If anything it should be two 'c's and one 'u'.

HairyUpperLip

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #14 on: January 20, 2016, 07:49:20 AM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

My family has been using Dyson's for 10+ years now. We seem to like them a lot.

As the kids have moved out, we've all gotten our own Dyson's as well. No complaints.

zhelud

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #15 on: January 20, 2016, 08:13:59 AM »
My grandfather's very first job, when he arrived in the US in the late 1940s as a refugee, was selling vacuum cleaners door to door. Since he spoke English well, he did the talking, and his big friend who didn't speak English carried the vacuums.

cautiouspessimist

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #16 on: January 20, 2016, 08:18:57 AM »
We had one come to the house years ago.  First, the vacuum being demonstrated (I forget the brand) couldn't cope with the dog fur in the rug.  Then he showed us photos of dust mites - scanning electron ones, so totally freaky.  DH and I were going - nice pics.  Look at the clarity.  Look at the texture on the exoskeleton.  It's hard to freak out two zoologists.

We thought it was a fun exercise.  I think the demo guy was quite frustrated.  There was very little carpeted area in the house, and the only way to really get the dog hair out was to damp mop the rug (yes I know that sounds odd) before vacuuming.  So any old vacuum did for us - the shop-vac got more use than the regular vacuum.

Haha, that's quite funny.

justajane

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #17 on: January 20, 2016, 08:44:45 AM »
If you really want a Kirby, buy it used on Craigslist. After the hour+ presentation extolling its virtues, I went searching for a used one. Since we actually don't have a closet on our main floor in which to store a huge honking vacuum, I opted not to buy one. But you could find barely used ones for between $100-$400.

I didn't understand vacuum repair stores until I realized that people actually pay thousands of dollars for them.

Travis

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #18 on: January 20, 2016, 08:52:56 AM »
We've had a Dyson canister vacuum for seven or eight years now, and it has been awesome.  My only complaint is that it's very loud.

Turning on a jet engine in your home will do that. My Tri-Star is also pretty loud. The Kirby that was demo'd in my house was even louder.

Rubic

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #19 on: January 20, 2016, 09:03:45 AM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

The go-to guy for vacuum cleaners is Reddit's hilarious, opinionated, touchmyfuckingcoffee.  He's the Click-an-Clack of vacuum repair technicians.

Here's his AMA: https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/2ldfs3/iama_vacuum_repair_technician_and_this_is_the_1/

Making Cookies

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #20 on: January 20, 2016, 09:08:18 AM »
What did you say? I can't hear you over the vaccum (spelled the way it ought to be!)

We don't have any patience for any kind of salesman no matter what they want to tell me about - their politics, religion or their vaccum cleaners.

I'm going to always spell that word the way I think it ought to be spelled from now on. ;)
« Last Edit: January 20, 2016, 09:10:14 AM by Jethrosnose »

Magilla

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #21 on: January 20, 2016, 09:10:58 AM »
I'm amazed any of you let in a door to door salesman.  I didn't even know such a thing still existed.  I'm having a hard time even thinking of anyone under 55 who would even consider purchasing something from a door to door salesman.

GuitarStv

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #22 on: January 20, 2016, 09:21:24 AM »
We've had a Dyson canister vacuum for seven or eight years now, and it has been awesome.  My only complaint is that it's very loud.

Turning on a jet engine in your home will do that. My Tri-Star is also pretty loud. The Kirby that was demo'd in my house was even louder.

:P

We solved the problem the same way that air traffic controllers solved their jet engine problem . . . by keeping a pair of these handy:


russianswinga

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #23 on: January 20, 2016, 10:14:54 AM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

We have a Dyson DC39 and love it - it's light as a feather and the fact that it's a canister vac and not an upright makes the stairs a breeze. I don't know how anyone with stairs can even consider uprights...


acroy

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #24 on: January 20, 2016, 10:21:09 AM »
We've had a basic Hoover upright for 6+yrs
http://www.amazon.com/Hoover-WidePath-Bagged-Upright-U5140900/dp/B0009ONZ8G/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1453310344&sr=8-7&keywords=hoover+upright+vacuum
Got it for $75 on sale with 10bags
Durable and works well. Used daily, about 1500sq ft carpet with 8 people (no pets).

$2500 vacuum = LOL. 'First world' item!

TheAnonOne

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #25 on: January 20, 2016, 10:54:39 AM »
Ugh...

If you read about these jerks on ConsumerAffairs, it will make you sick. They seem to enjoy cornering the elderly into 100+ dollar payments for years.

http://www.consumeraffairs.com/in_home/kirby.htm

fattest_foot

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #26 on: January 20, 2016, 12:01:27 PM »
I'm amazed any of you let in a door to door salesman.  I didn't even know such a thing still existed.  I'm having a hard time even thinking of anyone under 55 who would even consider purchasing something from a door to door salesman.

Solar panel companies seem to be big on the door to door sales. Look for one to visit you next summer!

Tjat

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #27 on: January 20, 2016, 12:12:18 PM »
Also window replacement people. Get one of those once every other month. I also get door2door exterminators and religious people.

Mr Dumpster Stache

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #28 on: January 20, 2016, 03:54:00 PM »
I'm amazed any of you let in a door to door salesman.  I didn't even know such a thing still existed.  I'm having a hard time even thinking of anyone under 55 who would even consider purchasing something from a door to door salesman.

I was experiencing nostalgia for the Kirby Men that used to come to my parent's house. :D

Drifterrider

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #29 on: January 21, 2016, 08:57:21 AM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

I have an upright Dirt Devil I bought 10 years ago from Target/Wal-Mart for $50.  It will suck up carpet threads.  You can buy washable filters for it on e-bay.  Clear canister so you can see the dirt.

Love it.

ABC123

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #30 on: January 21, 2016, 10:20:26 AM »
I actually spent a week as a Kirby salesperson back in my college days. Actually, since I didn't actually sell anything I probably shouldn't even be called a salesperson. No door to door cold calls, all of mine were previously set up appointments. But I had a hard time convincing people to spend that much on a vacuum.  I eventually decided it was silly to try to make someone else buy something that I wouldn't buy myself. So I turned in my loaner machine, and found a better summer job. We only got paid commission,  so that was a completely wasted week for me.

I have a Dyson currently, the kind with the orange ball. Works well for us.

LennStar

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #31 on: January 22, 2016, 03:38:28 PM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

I have used a no-name (as in not even printed anywhere) one that cost I guess 40€ for more then a decade.
It does its work if you dont forget to change the... hmm whats the word? the paper container for the sucked stuff.

It is loud, it is a bit smelly (burnt air) so I only use it before opening windows and it has this hilarious 1-2-3 switch thats just a dummy, but it works.

Arktinkerer

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #32 on: January 24, 2016, 09:49:47 PM »
Mom had a Kirby.  Had it rebuilt.  Finally had to let it go--too heavy and hard to push as she got older.

We had a demo on a Rainbow.  We thought it was a good idea and good presentation.  No way we were going to pay that price though.  We kept our eyes open and eventually bought one on Ebay under 20% of what they wanted.  Within a year had picked up a second at a yardsale and sold it to the shop that sent us the salesman with enough of a markup so that we paid for the first unit.

We get a pile of old vacs from our rental units.  Seems people leave them behind when they bail...

serpentstooth

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #33 on: January 24, 2016, 09:56:14 PM »
We've had a Dyson canister vacuum for seven or eight years now, and it has been awesome.  My only complaint is that it's very loud.

Turning on a jet engine in your home will do that. My Tri-Star is also pretty loud. The Kirby that was demo'd in my house was even louder.

:P

We solved the problem the same way that air traffic controllers solved their jet engine problem . . . by keeping a pair of these handy:



I used to keep books in a bar, behind a curtain. I'd put on earbuds, then put on those headphones, and sit there and crunch numbers while people partied.

GuitarStv

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #34 on: January 25, 2016, 06:38:39 AM »
You sir, have the social graces of an excellent engineer.

Hunny156

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #35 on: January 25, 2016, 04:58:13 PM »
I found out about Kirby while attempting to take a 15 month old Hoover to the repair shop, hoping it was just a belt.  The guy was really nice, and told me that for what it would cost to repair, I could buy another one brand new.  I agreed, but expressed frustration at buying stuff that didn't last, so he started showing me a few of his refurbished units.  We found out in conversation that he had 5 kids and 4 dogs, so hubby asked him what vacuum he used at home, and he immediately said Kirby.  So we went home and did some research.  I eventually bought a 10 year old refurb unit for $300.

They are built like tanks, and they haven't deviated in the design from the 1950's, it seems!  Great vacuum, never failed me once.  I moved into a house w/no carpet, so it didn't see much use.  A few years ago, while moving again, I opted to sell it on Craig's List.  It was close to 20 years old.  I still managed to get $250 for it!

Oh, and it was great when the Kirby salesman stopped by, b/c I could easily say, yup, I already have one, thanks!, and shut the door.  :)

Tom Bri

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #36 on: January 25, 2016, 06:08:58 PM »
Dyson, ten years old, only one replaced hose. Yes, I literally wear ear protection.

Meowmalade

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #37 on: January 25, 2016, 06:43:07 PM »
We got conned by those Kirby guys!  But not into buying one.  We were staying at an apartment at the time, and a girl knocked on our door advertising a free sample cleaning.  She said it was a cleaning service and they just wanted to demo their service on a small area, no strings attached.  Our cat had vomited on a corner of the carpet, so I thought that it was a good opportunity to get it cleaned up.  Soon after, a guy showed up and started to demo the Kirby vacuum, which also had a wet clean feature.  It took us a while to understand that it was not in fact a cleaning service as they'd advertised.  We told him that we were moving to a house with hardwoods (true!) and that we weren't going to buy a vacuum that day.  After a while his boss showed up and tried to do a hard sell.  If we signed up NOW, he'd knock it down from $4k to $2k.  He even did an impressively bad fake call to his manager to "approve" the discount.

1.5 hours after they showed up, we finally got them to leave.  I literally saw the guy's face fall as he realized that we really weren't going to buy.  Dinner was cold.  My husband said never to let people into our apartment again.  I looked up the Kirby vacuum online and the typical selling price was more like $1k-- wonder how many people actually bought??  And the next day I found out that door-to-door advertising was banned in our complex.

At least we got the cat vomit out of the rug, and weren't charged for it when we moved out of the apartment!

P.S.  Love our Miele.

Ohio Teacher

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #38 on: January 25, 2016, 06:50:31 PM »
We have a strict Do-Not-Solicit list in my city, on which our address is listed.  Violators are supposed to be reported directly to the police (non-emergency #).

That hasn't stopped 2 visits from Kirby salespeople.  On the first one, I calmly explained our city's solicitation ordinance to the salesperson in lieu of calling the police and I sent an email to Kirby.  They responded quickly and apologetically, but explained that local distributors control door-to-door sales.  Essentially, that they as a national company can't do anything about it.  So, when the second guy came to the door at 7pm on a Friday night on my pitch dark porch (very creepy), I called the police.  I didn't hear back as to whether they caught up to them and/or were fined.

This is a pretty big deal around here, and the city even won a court case brought by a national direct sales organization, upholding the solicitation ordinance.  Even so, I find that door-to-door salespeople are mostly scofflaws.

Travis

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #39 on: October 16, 2016, 09:42:32 PM »
Just wanted to resurrect this thread to say a teenager came to my door a yesterday offering carpet shampooing services with the usual "I'm not selling you anything, but if I get 100 referrals I get a trip/prize/something."  After a couple different ways of telling her no, she tried briefly to guilt trip me into helping her with her "trip" before she left.  She handed me a flier to hold onto and I ground my teeth after noticing that she's sponsored by a Kirby distributor.  The flier says "Try dry foam 'the alternative' to steam and dry chemical cleaning."  It goes on for a couple more sentences how fast it dries and that something called "Kirbyguard" is involved.  In bold letters it says "TODAY AT NO CHARGE. We will...with no obligation to buy anything."  The kicker is the fine print on the flier says "For preview of new Kirby system."  It says right there in black and white that they're going to try to sell you a vacuum.

I'm not sure what upsets me more - that Kirby hasn't changed one damn bit or that they're getting kids involved in their sales tactics now.  Recently the school sent home the fund raising packets of chocolates and useless trinkets.  Thankfully they also sent home a form that allows for a direct donation to the school.  I hate these fund raising schemes with a passion and Kirby seems to have merged them with their hard sale tactics.

mwulff

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #40 on: October 16, 2016, 11:44:56 PM »
Our country doesn't really do door to door sales, it's actually illegal here. But wrt vacuum cleaners we have a small Electrolux  vacuum and a Roomba.

The roomba does every day cleaning every other day and once a month we whip out the Electrolux and give it a thorough vacuuming. It works really well and I recommend the setup if your house is roomba compatible.

ooeei

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #41 on: October 17, 2016, 06:28:06 AM »
That reminds me, any recommendations for a vacuum cleaner? I need one for my house.

The go-to guy for vacuum cleaners is Reddit's hilarious, opinionated, touchmyfuckingcoffee.  He's the Click-an-Clack of vacuum repair technicians.

Here's his AMA: https://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/2ldfs3/iama_vacuum_repair_technician_and_this_is_the_1/

Was going to post this exact thing.  I bought a Riccar (the lowest level model) per his recommendation, and it's fantastic.  I've had cheapo $150 vacuums all my life, and when I first used it I had one of those "ah, so THIS is what a vacuum is supposed to be like" moments.  It's crazy how much stuff gets packed in the bag, there's no burnt smell or crap in the air while using it, and it cleans in 1-2 passes the majority of the time.   

I think it cost about $300-400, and I don't regret it for a second. The big brands seem to spend a lot on advertising, Riccar, Miele, and a few others he recommends seem to actually spend their budget on engineering and production.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #42 on: October 17, 2016, 06:31:06 AM »
Back to the demo stories.  We had one, years ago, and were obviously not going to be an easy sell.  The guy hauled out scanning electron micrographs of dust mites, and said they were living in our carpets.  Instead of being properly horrified, DH and I said, of course they are there, and were going on and on about the quality of the pictures, and how you could see all the external anatomy details.  Poor guy gave up.

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #43 on: October 17, 2016, 08:36:48 AM »
It boggles my mind people still sell vacuum cleaners door to door.  I thought that stopped in the 80's.

jinga nation

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #44 on: October 17, 2016, 09:31:33 AM »
Where the hell do y'all live that you have door-to-door salesman? How come I don't get any of these jokers? I live on a street house, not a gated HOA. In suburbia.
And how come, as a minority, I haven't had one single survey phone call in 18 years of living in the US? WTF are these polling companies doing, calling the same schmucks every time?
I'm being discriminated against, I tell ya!
Bloody everlasting bastards missing out on some Jinga Nation time.

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #45 on: October 17, 2016, 11:24:29 AM »
OT: Does anyone else get constantly freaked out by the double-u in vacuum?  No other word does that!  What are they thinking?

Yes.  The double 'u' is stupid.  If anything it should be two 'c's and one 'u'.

Let's be rational, folks. Vacuum is the modern Latin neuter of the Latin word "vacuus" (empty) - analogous to the word "continuum", which probably doesn't cause you any stress because you actually pronounce it correctly. Vacuum should be a 3-syllable word.

Making Cookies

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #46 on: October 17, 2016, 01:07:18 PM »
I found out about Kirby while attempting to take a 15 month old Hoover to the repair shop, hoping it was just a belt.  The guy was really nice, and told me that for what it would cost to repair, I could buy another one brand new.  I agreed, but expressed frustration at buying stuff that didn't last, so he started showing me a few of his refurbished units.  We found out in conversation that he had 5 kids and 4 dogs, so hubby asked him what vacuum he used at home, and he immediately said Kirby.  So we went home and did some research.  I eventually bought a 10 year old refurb unit for $300.

They are built like tanks, and they haven't deviated in the design from the 1950's, it seems!  Great vacuum, never failed me once.  I moved into a house w/no carpet, so it didn't see much use.  A few years ago, while moving again, I opted to sell it on Craig's List.  It was close to 20 years old.  I still managed to get $250 for it!

Oh, and it was great when the Kirby salesman stopped by, b/c I could easily say, yup, I already have one, thanks!, and shut the door.  :)

That's what you are supposed to say to anyone that shows up at your door to sell something... ;) Yep - I got Jesus, a Kirby, and 50 magazine subscriptions!

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #47 on: October 17, 2016, 02:04:23 PM »
An eccentric friend of mine briefly managed a small office for one of these vacuum manufacturers.  It was basically a Ponzi scheme - they would churn through high school/college age "salespeople" who would sell one to their parents and maybe their grandparents, then eventually quit.  I'm sure they were happy if they ever made a sale to an "outsider" - they certainly tried - but he told me that wasn't the real goal.  He gave me the pitch as kind of a joke, and it actually was pretty entertaining if you aren't feeling pressured to buy one.

I'd no idea these types of companies were still around!

EDIT:  I should note that one of the best features of the vacuum he showed me was the "head massager" attachment.  I don't recall what it looked like, but you rubbed it around in your hair and it was pleasant.  This was probably designed as a "closer" for the salesforce, assuming they hadn't been shown the door already!

DH sold them one summer, not many sales for the hours and far far below minimum wage, etc. But.. He did sell one to a guy with no carpets. What?  The guy wanted to keep his truck tractor clean ( commercial trucker). I guess a $100 k plus work vehicle needs a $2000+ vacuum.

mtn

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #48 on: October 17, 2016, 02:15:34 PM »
Everyone with damaged vacuums--the're really simple devices, and 90% of issues on them are clogs and busted belts. Belts are cheap on amazon. Clogs can be fixed by taking it apart and cleaning it.

I made some money in college getting them really cheap, fixing them, then selling them for only sorta cheap. $10 or $15 profit.

slughorn

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Re: Door to door vacuum sale - it was strangely entertaining
« Reply #49 on: October 17, 2016, 09:29:34 PM »

Was going to post this exact thing.  I bought a Riccar (the lowest level model) per his recommendation, and it's fantastic.  I've had cheapo $150 vacuums all my life, and when I first used it I had one of those "ah, so THIS is what a vacuum is supposed to be like" moments.  It's crazy how much stuff gets packed in the bag, there's no burnt smell or crap in the air while using it, and it cleans in 1-2 passes the majority of the time.   

I think it cost about $300-400, and I don't regret it for a second. The big brands seem to spend a lot on advertising, Riccar, Miele, and a few others he recommends seem to actually spend their budget on engineering and production.

Back when we bought our first Riccar, the tagline was, The best vacuum you've never heard of.