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Lesson 1: Being an Informed Consumer Lesson 1: Being an Informed Consumer

Overview of Lesson • • What is a consumer? When is someone NOT a Overview of Lesson • • What is a consumer? When is someone NOT a consumer? What is a contract? What questions should you ask before you buy?

What is a consumer? • A consumer is a person who buys goods or What is a consumer? • A consumer is a person who buys goods or services for personal use or their own consumption • In order to be protected by law, consumers must buy from someone whose business it is to sell goods or provide services, e. g. you are not protected if you buy a second-hand car from a private seller

You are not a consumer if you…. • Buy goods for commercial purposes • You are not a consumer if you…. • Buy goods for commercial purposes • Buy goods from an individual that is not a business

Difference between a Consumer and a Customer Consumer Customer Difference between a Consumer and a Customer Consumer Customer

What is a contract? • A contract is a legally binding agreement, between two What is a contract? • A contract is a legally binding agreement, between two or more parties which can be enforced by law • When you buy goods or services you are entering into a contract • A contract is formed following offer, acceptance and consideration (payment) • Goods on display in a shop window are considered an “invitation to treat”, which is an invitation to make an offer to purchase the goods which can be accepted or rejected by the retailer

Can I insist on something being sold to me? • No. The shopkeeper displays Can I insist on something being sold to me? • No. The shopkeeper displays the goods for sale and invites you to buy the goods • However, the shopkeeper can still refuse to sell you the goods • A contract is made only when you offer to buy the goods, the seller accepts your offer and consideration is paid

Before you buy… • Can I afford it? • Do I really need it? Before you buy… • Can I afford it? • Do I really need it? • What is the unit price of the product? • Is the product suitable for the purpose I need it for? If you take the time to answer these questions, you’ll be a more informed consumer

Before you buy… • Are there any hidden extras? • What does the description Before you buy… • Are there any hidden extras? • What does the description tell me? • Have I checked the price of the product in several different retailers? • Will a ringtone download tie me into a subscription service?

Before you buy… • What are the terms and conditions of buying the product/service Before you buy… • What are the terms and conditions of buying the product/service (e. g. buying a mobile phone on an upgrade may lock you into an 18 month contract) • What is the returns policies? • If it’s an electrical or gas product, or a toy, does it have a CE Mark? • Do I have room for it?

Summary of Lesson • • What is a consumer? When is someone NOT a Summary of Lesson • • What is a consumer? When is someone NOT a consumer? What is a contract? Questions to ask before you buy