On Sunday, March 27, 2004 Dixie HomeCrafters salesman Robert Jackson visited my home in Athens, Georgia to provide an estimate for replacement vinyl windows, exterior doors, and vinyl siding on a four-side brick home. Dixie was one of five such companies with whom I've interacted as sought quotes for a very small job.
The home is only 1050 sq.ft. with 8 standard sized windows, three standard sized doors, and only the soffits and overhangs needed vinyl. The other companies took no more than two hours of my time to measure and give their sales pitch for the product lines they offered. Not bad, all things being equal. Jackson, the Dixie salesman, took more than FIVE HOURS of my time to do the same thing! He essentially filled my living room with five suitcases worth of stuff, making a polite "no thanks and goodbye" impossible. His estimate was an outrageous $26,000, which when compared to others ranging from $6,000 to $11,000 for the same basic work and product.
When I questioned the obvious difference in price, he offered to give me a discount to $23,000 if I signed the work order right then and there! I refused, and then he entered into another angle on his sales pitch. He suggested that if I didn't sign right then and there that the price would could be more later. No time to call references, see other work, etc. SIGN NOW. SIGN NOW. He offered to do a "credit check" to see if I qualified for financing through their sources. BUT TO DO THE CREDIT CHECK, HE INSISTED I SIGN THE CONTRACT! I refused, and at that point knew I wouldn't do business with Dixie, especially if this high pressure sales job was an indication of things to come.
Strangely enough, once I refused to sign the contract, he still demanded I sign a few other "declarations" to prove to his sales supervisor that he was indeed in my home and met with me. Who has ever heard of that?! And to make things more odd and obviously inappropriate, he said he'd submit my credit check form without a contract just to see where I stood on financing. This is after he said he absolutely couldn't without a signed contract in hand. That ended my interest and interaction, and I asked him to pack up his five suitcases. He did so, took the "declarations" I signed (only under duress and great pressue) and bolted.
The next day their finance person Wendy calls my office leaving a voicemail wanting me to provide information for the credit check that I told the salesman NOT to bother with both at the end of our conversation and again by voicemail the next day. I'm still getting phone calls from their finance person Wendy asking if I'm seeking financing for "my job" through other sources! I never signed a contact for "my job" with the salesman! ARGH.
Needless to say, I'm going with another vendor who offered a more reasonable cost and didn't use these pressure tactics. I encourage anyone dealing with Dixie HomeCrafters to have another person available for the meeting and to set a clear time limit on the discussion. FIVE HOURS IS FAR TOO LONG FOR ANY SALES CALL.