Written on: 22/06/2012
I signed a contract for some new Anglian windows. On the contract it says you have 7 days cooling off to cancel and then you are liable to pay 25% of the total estimated cost.
A bit concerned by this we got assurances by the salesman that if we cancelled within the seven days we would get our £50 deposit back. If we cancelled after the seven days we would lose the deposit but that was all. Only after the engineer to measure up for the windows would we be liable to pay the 25% cancellation.
I phoned to cancel on day 8 (after the long jubilee weekend, I would have phoned earlier otherwise) and was told to submit in writing (this you have to do).
Three days later I got an extremely blunt letter topped off in bold letters saying BREACH OF CONTRACT and telling me that I was liable to up to 80% of the contract cost for cancelling outside the 7 day cooling off period.
This was clearly rubbish but you are then confronted with the shocking reality that the only thing that is legally binding is on paper and that says you are liable to pay the 25% if you cancel after the cooling off period. All you have is a salesman's verbal assurance that this is not the case.
I assume this standard letter is a tactic employed by Anglian to bounce people into reconsidering and ordering their windows.
I phoned the number of the area sales rep that was included in the letter and waited for a week for a reply.
By the time he called back I had been fretting for days that legally I might be liable to pay £2500 for cancelling windows that had not been measured up or made. So I told the area rep what I had been told in my house by his junior rep: namely that I was only liable to lose the £50 deposit and that was all I was prepared to pay.
He said he would call back after consulting his colleagues. When he did he accepted that all I would lose is the £50 and then proceeded to make me a substantially better offer for the job.
But where does this leave me and Anglian Windows? Well I will not order windows from them. The experience was extremely stressful and it leaves the impassion that you are dealing with a bunch of spivs. As a national company they should aspire to be like John Lewis, instead they seem to behave like pay-day loan sharks.
So my advice: don't be bounced by their threatening letter. Tell the salesman in advance of his visit that you will not sign a contract when he is there but need to be left with the contract to consider. Get it in writing if the salesman makes you an offer that is better than that included in the contract and I suppose don't buy from Anglian.