Friday, 19 August 2016

The Voice - Consumer's Voice

Is Helping Hands International legit?

People have been approaching me to join Helping Hands International. They say I can get a house, a car, a laptop and income for life. Can this be true?

I think you know the answer to this question already, don’t you?

I’ve seen some of the advertisements on Facebook for Helping Hands International and they show all the signs of a pyramid scheme. They use phrases like “start to live your dream”, “residual income” and “financial freedom”, just like all the other pyramid schemes.

One of their recruiters posted some questions and answers about the scheme on Facebook. These questions tell you all you need to know about this scheme. One was “When I sign-up, do I need to sell any goods like other MLM companies?” The answer was “No. We dont sell any goods.” Another question asked whether the scheme is supported by any reputable organisations and they claim that they’re supported by Apple, Hyundai, HP and even the United Nations. In case you haven’t guessed already, this is a lie. A complete lie. Do you trust liars?

I think the evidence about Helping Hands International is very simple. As their representatives say, there are no products on sale, you just need to recruit people who in turn recruit other people, each of whom pay money to join. It’s a pyramid scheme, they’ve confessed that themselves.

Like all pyramid schemes this one will eventually collapse leaving a lot of people who devoted a lot of money, time and effort to recruiting other people beneath them poorer and frustrated. Do you want to be one of them?

Won’t they fix my car?

I bought a car from one of the car dealers in Francistown and the car gave me a problem the following day. It was producing some sounds in the engine. I returned it to the dealers and they refused to help saying there is no warranty. I did not sign any documents when I bought the car. They just signed the registration papers of the car as we were registering the car into my wifes ownership

We never came across such words about the warranty we just paid and got the car and everything was done. There was too much excitement of a new car so we didn't waste any time as we were looking forward to enjoy our new car. So there was less talking with the gentlemen. We just talked about the price and that was it. Please help. I am now helpless since I can not drive it anymore?

Unfortunately, I don’t think there’s much you can do. When you buy a second-hand car, particularly from one of the less reputable dealers, you usually buy the vehicle without any warranty. The words might vary, some will say the sale is “voetstoots” (meaning “as it stands”), others will say “as seen”, others are more direct and simply say “no warranty”.

When you sent me the receipt that they gave you it was quite obvious. Stamped right in the middle of the receipt were the words “No guarantee”, meaning that the dealer offers you no assurance that the vehicle is roadworthy.

The law on these situations is quite simple. You disclaim your right to a warranty when you agree to this condition. This doesn’t mean that the dealer can lie to you, they can’t hide some disastrous fault in the car but they are able to say that they won’t help you if the car fails. Given that this is an old car then it’s reasonable to assume it’s going to break down sooner or later. Unfortunately for you it was sooner.

Unless you’re an expert mechanic you are taking a real risk when you buy a second-hand car. Our advice is always to get a trusted mechanic to check a car you’re considering buying before you hand over your money. If you don’t know one, I’m sure the last garage that serviced your last car will lend you one for a small fee. It might cost you a few hundred but it could easily save you tens of thousands.

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