FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 12, 2015
MEDIA CONTACT: Abigail Lootens / Katyusca Abreu
Department of Consumer Affairs
(212) 436-0042 firstname.lastname@example.org
Department of Consumer Affairs Warns New Yorkers about Advertising by Home Improvement Contractors that Claim Energy Savings
Consumer Affairs Settles Charges with Renewal by Andersen Garden State Custom Windows, LLC for Deceptive Advertising
Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Julie Menin today issued a warning to New Yorkers about deceptive advertising by home improvement contractors that make claims about energy savings and offers of free goods or services without defining the conditions. A contractor cannot advertise claims about the energy efficiency of its work without provable facts if conditions are beyond their control. Also, as required by New York City law, a business that offers a “free” good or service must clearly state the conditions of the offer next to the word “free” and the condition must be at least half the font size of the word “free” in the ad. The warning comes on the heels of DCA’s settlement with Garden State Custom Windows, LLC (d/b/a Renewal by Andersen), a New Jersey-based contractor with a DCA home improvement contractor license to operate in New York City that also does work in Nassau, Suffolk, Rockland and several New Jersey counties.
“With the warm weather here, many homeowners may be looking to hire a home improvement contractor and we want New Yorkers to be aware of businesses that may take advantage of them with false advertising,” said DCA Commissioner Julie Menin. “Contractors cannot guarantee things like energy savings or claim a good or service will be free without clearly stating the conditions. I encourage anyone hiring a contractor to get our tips first and to only hire a licensed contractor.”
Garden State Custom Windows, which does business as Renewal by Andersen, ran at least three advertisements in the New York Post and Metro New York (images below) between September and November of 2014 that violated the City’s laws against deceptive advertising. The settlement resolves charges by DCA for running these deceptive advertisements, which claimed that the windows would be up to 70 percent more energy efficient without basing it on provable facts and offered free services to customers without defining the conditions. Under the settlement, the company agrees to remove the deceptive language from all advertising and promotional materials targeting New Yorkers, comply with all New York City laws and pay a fine.
DCA encourages New Yorkers to get their tips
before hiring a home improvement contractor and, if they see false advertising or have a problem, to file a complaint with DCA at nyc.gov/consumers
or by calling 311. New Yorkers can also tweet a tip to @NYCDCA
and post to DCA’s Facebook
The Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) licenses, inspects, and educates businesses, assists and informs consumers, mediates complaints, and offers free financial counseling and safe banking products. DCA enforces the Consumer Protection Law, the Paid Sick Leave Law and other related business laws throughout New York City and licenses nearly 80,000 businesses in 55 different industries. For more information, call 311 or visit DCA online at nyc.gov/consumers or on its social media sites, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and YouTube.
Three ads from Renewal by Andersen in the New York Post and Metro New York.