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I've been tempted to disconnect the doorbell at my parent's house. Last week I was there when a guy from AT&T came. I pointed to the no soliciting sign and he said "Oh, I'm not soliciting" and then proceeded to give me his spiel. I wanted to call the police. Has anyone had any success at getting this kind of thing stopped?

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Getting a gun here in Canada entails jumping through hoops but you can get BB gun without a licence or even a toy rifle would do. Just answer the door with it casually hanging by your side. Living in the middle of nowhere I my have to resort to a rifle to protect my critters. I leaned to shoot in the UK forever ago. I don't want a gun but I must protect my animals.
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This is a interesting thread I loved reading the comments . I put one of those no solicitor signs on my door.... Simone ripped it off and threw it on the ground .... I never answer the door anymore anyway. If I'm expecting someone I'll let them in but I don't answer the door
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love the answers, I use the do not call registry and it actually works, there is also one to stop the crap mail (as I call it) from coming to your house. I just had to post a sign on my front door stating that I sleep in the day, and that if anyone were to knock on the door, I would consider it disruptive and thus disturbing the peace and that I would call the police and follow the individual with the phone until police interception. We shall see if that works!
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I live out in the country. My doorbells weigh 100lb, have big teeth and kick up at anything within 100 yards. I don't answer the door and the dogs screaming inside makes them run, never to return.
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I hate getting up to answer the door and find that it's someone trying to sell me a vacuum or an alarm or even meat. Really?! Who sells meat door to door? My sign didn't work either. I figured a gun or something else might be better…?haha maybe they'll get the point then? I found one online that's kinda cool though. It's like a system where you buy the sign and then you can call in and report them and they call the police and report them to their own company for no soliciting and to the police. If anyone wants to test it out it was lastknock. Hopefully we can get these punks in trouble for disturbing my peace.
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Add another sign beneath "no soliciting" stating that: all sales, solicitations, polling, petitioner personnel are prohibited from disturbing this residence. If they proceed, police will be contacted immediately. Hopefully, this will limit them.
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I'd say to put something over the doorbell that prevents it from being rung, in tandem with a 'no soliciting' sign. My first thought was to disconnect it, but if someone presses the bell and doesn't hear a sound, they may start knocking LOUDLY. At least with something over the bell, they know that they're not supposed to ring, or solicit. period. That would also make the thieves think, that at least there might be someone home.
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I have a sign that says " In case of fire, please rescue my 10 ft 20 lb Boa Constrictor" and it works very well.
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I once hung a sign. " If you were NOT invited,LEAVE!"
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put a sign on the door that says you only open the door for friends who call on the phone first.
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OneMoreDay, Brilliant solution! I love it! XD

And to that idiot that said he wasn't 'soliciting' and kept blabbing, I would have cut him off mid sentence, would have told him to look up the definition of solicitation, then I would have shut the door in his face. The end.
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Simply don't answer the door or the phone. If you have not called me to let me know you are coming over, and if we don't expect you, we don't answer the door, period. The door and phone are for our convenience not theirs.
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They'll swim across!
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Dig a moat!
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I work from home and people knocking on my door infuriates me! Over the years I have created the perfect door sign that finally has people leaving me alone. I found that often folks didn't know what "soliciting" means. Or else the religious door-knockers would tell me that "God's love is free", etc. Here is what my door sign says:

STOP!
DO NOT DISTURB!
Unless you have an appointment, I am not interested in your services, product, church, political party or survey.
MOVE ON TO THE NEXT HOUSE

I have it taped right next to my door bell. I'm not kidding... this sign works.
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I really think that most of these people cannot read and they don't know big words like solicitor. All they know is they have to make a sale. Actions are far more effective than words. No need to be nice. But be sure to be lawful no guns, physical hitting etc. I like what onemoreday said.
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I would follow OneMoreDay's advice! My sign is a bit more gentle but we have no door bell ringers. You can also call the non-emergency police number if you have a no-solicitation law in your area.
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I just saw a doorbell cover that said "To Release The Hounds, Press Here"... I thought that was pretty clever! Otherwise, I would disconnect the doorbell - if they knock, chances are it won't be heard. You have to be careful though - in our area there are people who are ringing the doorbell, and when no one responds they break in and rob your house in broad daylight....there's always something to worry about.
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My Dad used to work shift-work and slept during the day. All us kids KNEW not to make noise but sales people...not so much. Mom attached a metal bottle cap over the doorbell with a note above stating that, "Night-shift worker asleep inside. Do NOT ring this doorbell. If you ring this doorbell, expect to meet mean, grouchy, muscled, angry shift worker and be physically ejected from this property."

I know it sounds unbelievable, but we did not have a problem with people ringing our doorbell. You might attach such a bottle cap with velcro so that you could easily remove it when family is expected. (?)
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Our town has a specific No Solicitation ordinance. I posted it along with the No Solicitation sign....Right above the door bell. We have had a few people walk up the front path, but they turn around before ringing the door bell.
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Thanks for the great replies. I wish there was a phone # that you could call for AT&T, Knology, etc. and tell them PLEASE DON'T COME TO MY HOUSE! But that would just be too easy. We live in the same neighborhood as my parents so we get all of the same "visitors." Shot on sight might not be a bad idea.... :-/
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This is a little off topic, but here goes. (mods feel free to move this post)

There are laws, The Do Not Call Registry specifically, but many people do not understand how many exceptions to the registry there are. The short answer is that most of these calls are actually legal.

Here is a pretty good, plain-talk summary of the DNC Registry. It is a few pages long, but worth reading. I won't elaborate further as this is is a thread about doorbell solicitors and not telemarketers.
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I think of how much better it would be if there were laws controlling telephone and door-to-door solicitation. Our main problem here is telephone -- credit card services, people wanting Medicare money (No, we don't want another free glucose meter!), and even nonprofits. The nonprofits have gotten very bad and I've lost respect for many of them with their aggressive fundraising via telephone. I know my parents are on an over-80 list, since older people are frequently targeted in this country.

I often wonder how much money the companies and fundraisers will have to get until they finally have enough. Our elders are so vulnerable to these societal vultures.
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I have the same issue. My mother gets all sorts of people doing the same. My new tactic is to first snap a picture with a camera phone. Step 2 is to not answer any of their questions. Instead, simply repeat that they leave or I call 911. That takes care of most of them.

The thing is with these solicitors is two-fold: 1) they count on you worrying about being rude, so they play on that aspect. and 2) using the advantage of #1, they will do anything to keep you talking so they find that "angle" they then can work so they can sell you that thing that makes them money but you have no use for.

It is a shame that as a society we have to resort to hardball tactics when dealing with people like this and certainly there are some well-meaning people who will come to your door and get a hard push back they may not have deserved. However, we have reached a point where the ratio of scammers to honest people is so stilted towards the likelihood the person at the door is some sort of con-man, it is nearly impossible to trust any of them.

Before I moved in with my mother to take care of her, she was sold thousands of dollars of worthless services from these door-to-door scammers. Since I arrive, that number has dropped to zero and her limited retirement monies are used for her mental well-being, health and happiness. For example, instead of being sold another driveway paving that would crack up in a year (which happened twice), I refused the scammer this last time and my mother used the money to learn Italian and go to Italy to visit her family.

The driveway put in 2 years ago is just fine btw. The cars seem to park on it with no issues at all. Imagine that?

I have also been researching a setup of simple security cameras for the house. Not so much for deterrence of burglars, but to take a picture of everyone who comes to the door. Should any of these scammers shows up, a picture is taken and that is printed. Then I go to them with picture in hand and let them know they have been documented. It will be interesting to see how many run away. I also get a record of exactly who has been targeting the house and will forward that to local authorities if necessary.

All this sounds harsh and I admit it, it is. But the point of implementing these procedures is to take the burden off my mother of having to put up with people who clearly do not have her best interests in mind. If paving her driveway each year was something she absolutely wanted, while I would certainly caution her that it probably is not necessary, if she had her heart set on it, I would not stand in the way. It is her money, she worked hard for it and deserves to spend it as she sees fit. It is the people who use underhanded tactics to convince her otherwise that I push back on.

I know this is a long winded answer to the question of stopping people from ringing your doorbell, but unfortunately these people do not play by or adhere to the same rules that persons with respect and logic do. In fact, they count on persons taking the usual routes to deter their activities as they have tried and true methods, talking points and answers to get around your refusal. They count on being able to keep the conversation going long enough to find that crack they can exploit. For that reason, it is an unfortunate fact of life that one has to push back harder and without hesitation.

Bottom line: 99% of the people who ring your doorbell (aside from people you know like neighbors and relatives) are there to try to get you to buy something you never wanted or perform some act to separate you from you money. To get them to stop, one has to adopt a stricter and more direct way of dealing with their games.
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I guess you could include another sign -- violators will be shot on sight. Or maybe a quarantine sign. :)
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I'd put a big "Beware of the Dog" sign with a growling dog picture right next to the "No Solicitors" sign. Can't hurt. :)
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Most towns (including yours) require solicitors to apply for and carry a permit. You can CALL the police. But that will be after the fact! : - ( Do you have regular visitors? Can you ask them to use a special signal or call as they approach the door bell? Then you could ignore all others.
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The first thing that came to my mind is to disconnect the doorbell. I think that is your best option. Or, if you are feeling really sly, install a doorbell water pistol. :-)
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