• Home security scam impacts Memphis neighborhood

    By: Kristin Leigh

    Updated:

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. - When an Alder Home Security salesman came to his door in February, Ray Smith thought he was getting a good deal. 

    The retired Memphis man wants to protect his family and their home on Fairley Rd in Whitehaven.

    The salesman offered to buy Smith out of his contract with one security company, in exchange for a cheaper plan with Alder. 

    “He said he was going to pay that company off,” Smith told FOX13, explaining why he signed a new contract with Alder. “I would like to void that contract because of this. They lied to me.”

    More than a month later, Smith said he is still getting bills from both companies. 

    “They haven’t done what they was supposed to do,” Smith said. 

    Adam Christian, a spokesperson for Alder Home Security, told FOX13 in a statement that the company intends to pay the former security company. 

    Confusion between Smith and the representatives he spoke with on the phone caused a delay. 

    “Alder was, in fact, at all times willing and prepared to pay off this mount,” Christian said in the statement, on behalf of Alder. 

    “The delay in payment to Smith’s previous provider was that we could not get a final statement of the balance he owed his previous provider,” Christian added. 

    FOX13 covered complaints about Alder Home Security last fall, when Dennis Mickens described similar frustrations

    Eventually, Alder settled the issue with Mickens, and the customer opted to continue paying the home security provider for its services. 

    Alder said it hopes to find a similar solution with Smith. 

    “We attempted to work closely with Mr. Smith and to resolve his concerns,” Christian said in the statement. “We take customer service seriously and make every effort to ensure each of our customers are satisfied with the services we provide.”

    Alder had a D+ rating with the Better Business Bureau at the time this story was published. The company has more than 490 customer complaints. 

    Government-run consumer agencies have launched investigations in three states related to Alder’s sales practices. 

    Most recently, the State of Arkansas filed a “Consumer Protection Action,” claiming Alder violates the state’s Deceptive Trade Practices Act, according to the BBB. 

    After his recent experience, Smith filed a complaint with the BBB. 

    “The situation has not been resolved,” Smith said. “I should have checked first with them to see if that was a legit company.”

    Full statement from Alder Home Security’s Adam Christian:  

    “In reviewing Mr. Ray Smith's account, which includes the Welcome Survey and Affirmation of Understanding, Mr. Smith understood the terms of the agreement and the services he would receive from us.  Mr. Smith became upset with us because of the delay in making payment to his previous alarm service provider, despite our previous assurances.  Alder was, in fact, at all times willing and prepared to pay off this amount.  The delay in payment to Mr. Smith's previous provider was that we could not get a final statement of the balance he owed his previous provider.  To assist him, we ultimately obtained the final statement late last week directly from the provider and the check to pay off his balance was set to be mailed early this week.  We attempted to work closely with Mr. Smith and to resolve his concerns.  And, when he called to complain about the balance owed to his previous provided having not yet been paid off, we reduced his monthly monitoring rate as we worked to get his final statement for him. We take customer service seriously and make every effort to ensure each of our customers are satisfied with the services we provide. We will continue to work hard to ensure Mr. Smith is satisfied with the resolution of this matter.”

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